New Zealand: Foreign enrolment approaching 60% of pre-pandemic volume

– New Zealand's student visa applications have rebounded significantly, reaching almost 60% of pre-COVID levels as of July 2023.

– Immigration New Zealand advises all students to apply well in advance of their planned program starts due to heavy application volumes this year.

Year-to-date figures up to July 5, 2023, indicate that 53,428 student visa applications were received, with 47,057 (88%) approved.

– In comparison, the pre-COVID baseline for 2018/19 saw 89,096 applications, with 82,176 (92%) approved.

– The current approved application volume represents just over 57% of the 2018/19 baseline.

– The reported data includes applications for student visas and does not account for short-term course students or those on language studies not requiring student visas.

– First-time student visas granted for 2022/23 surpassed the numbers from 2018/19, with nearly 40,000 more students granted visas year-over-year.

– Offshore student visa applications (from outside New Zealand) numbered 43,541, with 37,916 processed and 32,457 approved as of July 11, 2023.

– Higher application volumes have led to some visa processing delays, and students are encouraged to apply around four months ahead of their intended travel.

– Students should not confirm travel bookings until their visas are granted.