Finding your home away from home
There are four main options when it comes to finding a place to live during your studies.
Depending on what you need – and your budget - your options include living in a hostel or halls of residence, private boarding, homestay, or independent accommodation.
When finding the right place for you, it’s important to keep in mind your budget, any extra costs you may need to cover such as a rental bond, meals or utility fees, access to public transport, distance to your campus and any other amenities or facilities you might want to be close to.
The halls of residence (or hostels) are usually a small walk from your campus – making them a convenient option as you won’t need to travel far and your accommodation may also include a furnished room and meals. If you’re looking for something a little more private, private boarding offers you your own room, which could be either in a residential home or a boarding house with other boarders.
The homestay option provides you with the opportunity to live with a New Zealand family in their home and comes with a furnished room and assistance from the family to help you settle in to everyday life in New Zealand.
Finally, independent accommodation offers you the chance to live with other flatmates and share the cost of rent and other amenities.
Accommodation on campus
Traditional halls of residence inside universities are a popular option for international students coming to New Zealand for the first time. Depending on the campus, these usually range from NZ$100 to NZ$700 per week. Students wanting on-campus housing should apply well in advance. Living on-campus conveniently places you near everything you need. Meals, computer facilities, laundry and cleaning services are sometimes also included in the package. Plus, if you do need any other form of assistance, your accommodation is part of a broader university community.
Homestay programs are a popular accommodation option for foreign students enrolled in short-term courses that give them the opportunity to stay with a New Zealand family. Homestays can have single or shared rooms, with costs that vary from NZ$110 to NZ$370 for each room per week. This cost typically includes three meals a day, laundry facilities, cleaning services, and utilities such as internet and phone.
Living in a privately rented property can be very attractive, especially as a student in a new country! It enables you to decide who you would like to live with and where. Students who choose this type of accommodation may either move into pre-furnished houses on a room-by-room basis, or apply to lease the place as a whole with friends they already know.