If you are thinking about rocking off to study at a university in Australia, start saving now. Your costs look likely to rocket.
The Australian government plans to increase the costs of university courses from the start of next year, and to make Kiwis who aren’t Australian citizens or permanent residents pay significantly higher fees to study in Australia.
Welcome to the A$100,000+ BA, BSc or BComm.
No subsidy means much bigger fees to study
At present New Zealand students are treated as Australian domestic students, meaning they qualify for Australian government support with university fees. The same thing happens here with the NZ government paying universities around two thirds of the cost they charge for your courses. International students here and in Australia don’t get that help, so their fees are often three or four times what a local pays.
If the changes come into effect next year, Kiwis starting study in Australia will face massive rises in their fees. Some believe that these course costs will rise at an average of about $9,000 more per year for Kiwi students. The cost of your bog standard Aussie bachelor degree just went up by almost A$30,000, and your specialist degrees like medicine will go even more stratospheric.
You may be eligible for an Aussie student loan
To soften this huge hike in costs, Kiwi students will potentially become eligible to take student loans out in Australia. These are actually more generous to students that are loans in NZ. The new changes will now have you start repaying your Australian HELP loan when you earn A$42,000 or more in a year, and the repayments start at a 1% rate rising to 8% when you earn well over A$100,000. In NZ you will start to repay your loan when you earn just $19,000, and here they take 12% of every dollar you earn.
For some years Australian universities have been luring the best New Zealand students across the Tasman with the lure of paying domestic fees being one of the sweeteners thrown in. With that enticement gone and fees being massivly hiked up, expect that stream of talent heading to Australia to study to potentially slow to a trickle from next year.
Here’s all the details on the The Higher Education Reform Package