Blogs on ‘Study in New Zealand’

Cost of Living in New Zealand for Students in 2024

3 min read
Blog Summary Explore the cost of living in New Zealand, covering essentials like housing, food, transportation, and healthcare. Discover how these expenses vary across cities, impacting lifestyle and budget planning for residents and expats alike.

New Zealand has become a popular choice for students worldwide, particularly those from Nepal, due to its stunning landscapes and excellent education system. Understanding the financial aspects of studying and living in this picturesque country is essential for anyone considering an academic journey here. This blog aims to shed light on the different expenses associated with residing and studying in New Zealand. With its high quality of life, New Zealand offers an unmatched experience for its inhabitants. However, being financially prepared is crucial. Explore the vital statistics and valuable insights we have compiled to assist you in effectively planning your adventure in New Zealand.

Accommodation Costs in New Zealand For Students:

Finding the right place to live is one of the first steps to settling into life in New Zealand. Here's a breakdown of the accommodation options available to Nepali students:

Accommodation Type

Weekly Cost (NZD)

Weekly Cost (NPR)

University Halls of Residence



Private Rentals/Flats






Purpose-Built Student Accommodations (PBSA)



Food and Groceries Cost in New Zealand for Students:

Managing food and grocery expenses is vital for daily life. Here's an overview of typical costs:


Cost (NZD)

1 kg of Rice


1 kg of Chicken


1 litre of Milk


Fresh Vegetables (1 kg)


Bread for 2 People


1 kg of Apples


1 kg of Potatoes


1 kg of Onions


1 kg of Tomatoes


1 kg of Bananas


500g of Local Cheese


12 Eggs


1 kg of Beef Round


Basic Lunchtime Menu


Fast Food Combo


Transportation Cost in New Zealand for Students:

Getting around in New Zealand is an essential part of the student experience. Here's what you need to know about transportation costs:

Transportation Mode

Cost (NZD)

Local Bus Fare (One-way)


Monthly Bus Pass


Taxi Fare (Per km)


Bicycle Rental (Per hour)


Train Fare (City to City)


Health Care Cost in New Zealand for Students:

New Zealand's healthcare system is renowned for its efficiency and quality, offering both public and private healthcare services. For international students, understanding healthcare costs is essential for effective budgeting and peace of mind. Here's a snapshot of typical healthcare costs:

Healthcare Service

Cost (NZD)

General Doctor Consultation


Specialist Consultation


Dental Check-up


Emergency Room Visit


Prescription Medication

5-20 per item

Health Insurance (Annual)


Utility Cost in New Zealand for Students:

Living in private accommodations means managing utility bills, which can vary based on location, usage, and provider. Below are the average monthly costs for utilities in New Zealand:


Monthly Cost (NZD)









Mobile Phone Plan


Entertainment and Leisure Costs in New Zealand for Students:

Balancing studies with a healthy social life is key to a fulfilling experience in New Zealand. Here are some costs associated with entertainment and leisure activities:

Entertainment/Leisure Activity

Cost (NZD)

Cinema Ticket


Gym Membership (Monthly)


Eating Out (Per Meal)


Concert Tickets


Museum Entry


Weekend Getaway


Sports Event Ticket


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Cheapest Cities to Live in New Zealand for Students:

Selecting an appropriate city in New Zealand is key to effectively controlling living expenses, particularly for international students. This segment delves into the most cost-effective cities across the country, taking into account aspects such as housing, food, transport, and entertainment expenses. Aimed at assisting students and their families in making well-informed choices, this guide focuses on finding a city that harmonizes financial constraints with lifestyle preferences.


Estimated Monthly Cost (NZD)





Palmerston North






Factors Influencing Living Costs in New Zealand:

Living expenses in New Zealand can differ widely, influenced by a variety of factors. It's essential for international students and anyone considering a move to New Zealand to grasp these determinants. Below are the primary aspects that shape the cost of living:

  • Location: Your choice of city or region within New Zealand plays a significant role in determining your living costs. Urban areas like Auckland and Wellington typically incur higher expenses than smaller towns or countryside locations.
  • Accommodation: Often the most substantial cost and accommodation expenses vary based on the type and location of housing, such as university halls, private rentals, or homestays.
  • Lifestyle Choices: Your personal lifestyle preferences, including dining, entertainment, and leisure activities, have a notable impact on your financial outlay.
  • Transportation: Costs here are influenced by your chosen mode of transport, be it public transportation, personal vehicle use, or cycling, and vary by location.
  • Utilities: Expenses for electricity, water, gas, and internet can differ, with some housing options including these costs in the rent, while others do not.
  • Food and Groceries: Spending on food is affected by dietary preferences and the choice between local or imported goods. Dining out regularly can also elevate your expenses.
  • Healthcare: New Zealand's public healthcare system is complemented by additional health insurance, which can be a cost factor for those not covered as residents.
  • Educational Expenses: Significant for students, these include tuition fees, books, and other academic materials, varying across different institutions and study programs.

Money-Saving Tips in New Zealand:

Efficient financial management and strategic planning can help international students save money in New Zealand. Here are several effective tips for budgeting:

  • Opt for Affordable Housing: Sharing apartments or choosing university dorms can help lower accommodation costs.
  • Home Cooking: Reduce dining out by preparing meals at home, saving significantly on food expenses.
  • Public Transport: Leverage public transportation systems over personal vehicles to cut down on travel costs.
  • Leverage Student Discounts: Make use of available discounts for students on transport, entertainment, and shopping.
  • Engage in Part-Time Work: Explore part-time job opportunities during your studies to support your finances.
  • Limit International Calls: Use online communication tools instead of international calling to stay in touch with family and friends.

In conclusion, the cost of studying in New Zealand encompasses a broad spectrum of expenses, from accommodation and lifestyle choices to transportation and educational fees. For international students, comprehending these costs is pivotal for thorough financial planning. By opting for affordable housing, managing lifestyle expenses, and utilising student discounts, students can make their educational journey in New Zealand both enriching and financially sustainable. Additionally, embracing part-time work and budgeting wisely can further alleviate financial pressures. With careful planning and strategic choices, pursuing higher education in New Zealand can be a rewarding investment in your future, offering a blend of quality education and a remarkable living experience in one of the world's most beautiful countries.

For more information on the Cost of Living in New Zealand, contact AECC today and take the first step towards a successful international academic journey.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the average cost of living in New Zealand for a single person?
The average cost of living for a single person in New Zealand varies by city but typically ranges from NZD 1,500 to NZD 2,500 per month, covering basic expenses such as accommodation, food, transportation, and utilities. This range can fluctuate based on lifestyle choices and the specific city.
How much does accommodation cost in New Zealand?
Accommodation costs in New Zealand depend on the type and location. University halls of residence can cost between NZD 300 and NZD 400 per week, while private rentals range from NZD 200 to NZD 500 per week. Homestays and purpose-built student accommodations also vary, generally falling within these ranges
Are food and groceries expensive in New Zealand?
The cost of food and groceries in New Zealand can be higher than in many other countries, with an average monthly expense of NZD 600 to NZD 800 for a single person. Prices depend on dietary habits, whether you buy local or imported products, and how often you dine out
What are the transportation costs in New Zealand?
Transportation costs in New Zealand vary based on the mode of transport and distance travelled. A monthly public transport pass in major cities can cost between NZD 120 and NZD 200. Owning and operating a car will have higher costs due to petrol, insurance, and maintenance.

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