3 SEPTEMBER 2014
Student visa applications go online
People from all over the world who want to study in New Zealand can now apply for their visas online.
The new Immigration New Zealand (INZ) service allows students to apply, pay fees and upload documents online
. Until the widespread introduction of label-less visas (e-visas) next year, customers will still need to provide their
passports through Visa Application Centres offshore or to the INZ Palmerston North office onshore.
INZ General Manager Stephen Dunstan says that the first application submitted online under the new ICT system, known as
Immigration ONLINE, has already been approved, subject to the applicant’s passport being submitted. The application was
made by an Italian PhD student, whose application was processed at the INZ London office.
“The launch of student visas online has been a great success and will give our customers a much improved service,” Mr
Dunstan says. “This is a significant first step in moving as many of our services online as possible.”
Next year, online applications will cover visitor and work visas, as well as the Chinese language visitor visa form,
resulting in about 70 per cent of visa applications by volume being available online. At the same time, third party
partners such as immigration advisers, education agents and education providers will get the ability to apply on behalf
of their clients.
“When fully implemented, Immigration ONLINE will mean that INZ will have more flexibility to respond better to
customers’ needs and expectations,” Mr Dunstan says. “Customers will have a more personalised service through being able
to use the Real Me logon service under which the same logon details can be used to access other participating Government
service providers’ online services.”