A Guide on Cost of Living in New Zealand 2024

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New Zealand is a great option for Indian students who are looking for a high-quality education at an affordable price. The country has a well-established education system that is recognised around the world, providing a wide range of programs across different fields. 

Additionally, New Zealand is known for being a safe and welcoming country, with a low crime rate and friendly people. The country’s divergent culture also makes it a great place for Indian students who want to experience a different way of life and learn from people from different backgrounds

Moreover, international students who complete their studies in New Zealand are eligible for a post-study work visa, which allows them to work in the country for up to three years, providing them with valuable work experience and helping them to establish themselves in their chosen field. 

In this article, we will explore the cost of living in New Zealand in 2024 for Indian students, including accommodation options, transportation, food, and other expenses. 

We will also provide some tips on how to manage your budget effectively and make the most of your time in this beautiful country. So, whether you are planning to study in New Zealand or simply interested in learning more about this fascinating country, read on to discover what it has to offer. 

Here are the blog highlights:

Parameters (per month)Costs in NZDCosts in INR
Average Cost Of Living (without rent)170084K
Average Rent In City Centre190092K
Basic Utilities Cost 23011K
Average Net Salary after tax50002.4L
Average Tuition Fee22,000-32,00010L-15L
Top Universities-University of Auckland
-University of Otago
-Massey University
ScholarshipsNew Zealand Commonwealth scholarships
-New Zealand Excellence Awards (NZEA)
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Why choose New Zealand?

Here’s why New Zealand could be a perfect fit for your study-abroad adventure:

  • New Zealand provides an excellent education system that is recognised worldwide and offers a wide range of programs across different fields.
  • The country is a safe and welcoming place with a low crime rate and friendly people.
  • New Zealand’s multicultural environment makes it an ideal place for Indian students to explore different cultures and ways of life.
  • International students who complete their studies in New Zealand are eligible for a post-study work visa, which allows them to gain valuable work experience and establish themselves in their chosen field.
  • The cost of living in New Zealand is affordable for Indian students, and the country provides various accommodation options to suit their needs.
  • The country offers an enjoyable and relaxed lifestyle, abundant natural beauty, and a range of outdoor activities for Indian students to enjoy.
  • New Zealand has a high standard of living that is comparable to other developed countries, making it a great place for Indian students to pursue their career aspirations.
  • The country provides various scholarship options for Indian students to help them fund their education and living expenses.

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Cost of living in New Zealand for International Students

Understanding the cost of living in a foreign country is very important, especially for international students on a tight budget. It’s essential to manage your finances and create a budget in advance to ensure you have enough money to cover your expenses. 

To do this, you need to research the cost of living in the country, including accommodation, food, transportation, and other essential expenses. This will help you create a realistic budget and avoid financial difficulties. 

Note: It’s worth mentioning that all modes of public transportation in New Zealand, such as buses, trains, trams, and funicular railways, are free for everyone, including international students, tourists, and cross-border commuters.

Below is a table of the monthly cost of living in New Zealand which can help you better plan your finances. 

ParametersCosts in NZDCosts in INR
Average Basic Utility Cost23011K
Mobile Phone Monthly Plan Costs623K
Internet Plan Costs874.3K
Average Monthly Pass23010K
Average Food Cost600-80030K-40K
Healthcare costs34817K
Average Rent In New Zealand City Centre190092K
Average On-Campus Rent500-100024K-50K
Sourced By: Numbeo
Note: The costs mentioned in the table are approximate and may vary by location and currency exchange rates.

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A Guide on Cost of Living in New Zealand 2024

City-wise Cost Of Living in New Zealand

When considering living in New Zealand, it’s important to note that the cost of living can also vary significantly between cities. Knowing the costs of different cities can help you decide where to live and plan your budget accordingly. 

For instance, Auckland, the largest city in New Zealand, tends to be more expensive than other cities, whereas cities like Hamilton and Wellington have a lower cost of living. Researching and comparing the cost of living in different cities is essential to determine which suits your budget and lifestyle in New Zealand.

Here’s a table of the average costs of living in some popular cities in New Zealand:

CitiesOther costs (without rent)Average Rent per month
Auckland NZD 1800 (INR 90K)NZD 2215 (INR 1L)
WellingtonNZD 1900 (INR 92K)NZD 2500 (INR 1.2L)
ChristchurchNZD 1584 (INR 78K)NZD 2300 (INR 11K)
HamiltonNZD 1582 (INR 78K)NZD 1600 (INR 80K)
Sourced By: Numbeo
Note: The costs mentioned in the table are approximate and may vary by location and currency exchange rates.

Top 4 Universities In New Zealand

New Zealand boasts a well-regarded university system offering a diverse range of educational opportunities for domestic and international students. Eight universities are recognised by the Ministry of Education, each with a unique character and area of strength.

These universities are geographically spread across both the North and South Islands, with institutions located in major cities like Auckland, Wellington, and Christchurch, as well as smaller towns. This distribution allows students to choose a study environment that aligns with their preferences, whether a vibrant urban centre or a picturesque regional setting.

New Zealand universities emphasise research and innovation, fostering a strong connection between theoretical knowledge and practical application. They are consistently ranked highly in international comparisons, attracting talented faculty and students worldwide.

Here is a table of the top 5 universities in New Zealand:

UniversitiesAverage Fees in NZDAverage Fees in INR
University of Auckland$30,000-$80,000INR 14L to 39L
University of Otago$39,000-$80,000INR 19L to 39L
Massey University$35,000-$75,000INR 17L to 37L
Victoria University of Wellington$31,000-$50,000INR 15L to  24L
University of Waikato$29,000-$65,000INR 14L to 32L

Top 10 Courses To Study In New Zealand

New Zealand offers a diverse range of study programs for international students, including undergraduate degrees, postgraduate studies, and vocational training courses.

Universities in New Zealand offer bachelor’s degrees that typically span over three to four years, master’s degrees that can be completed in one to two years, and doctoral degrees that take three to four years to complete. 

There are also diploma and certificate programs offered at polytechnic institutes and private colleges that are more career-focused and of shorter duration. 

New Zealand’s education system is highly regarded worldwide, and its universities are consistently ranked among the best globally. The qualifications acquired from New Zealand institutions are recognised by employers and universities worldwide

Tuition fees for international students in New Zealand are dependent on the institution and level of study, but they are generally more affordable when compared to other popular study destinations like the United States and the United Kingdom. 

Popular fields of study in New Zealand include business, information technology, engineering, Architecture, and tourism, all of which offer excellent job prospects. Additionally, New Zealand offers unique programs like Maori language and culture, viticulture and winemaking, and adventure tourism, which are not readily available elsewhere.

Here is a list of the top 10 courses to study in New Zealand:

  1. Artificial Intelligence
  2. Architecture
  3. Civil Engineering
  4. Interior Design
  5. Business Administration
  6. Hotel Management
  7. Accounting
  8. Sports Management
  9. Information Technology
  10. Cloud Computing

Scholarships to Reduce Cost of Living in New Zealand

International students pursuing higher education in New Zealand can apply for various scholarships designed to mitigate the financial burden associated with living expenses. Various entities offer these scholarships, including the New Zealand government, prestigious universities within the emirate, and private organisations committed to educational advancement. Scholarship awards include tuition fees, accommodation, and other essential living expenses.

Given the competitive nature of scholarship opportunities, it is highly recommended that international students submit their applications well before deadlines and ensure the inclusion of all necessary documentation. Selection criteria for scholarships vary, with some prioritising academic excellence while others may emphasise financial need, nationality, or a combination of factors.

By actively pursuing scholarships, international students can significantly reduce their cost of living in New Zealand, allowing them to dedicate their focus to academic pursuits and personal development throughout their educational journey in New Zealand.

Here is the list of available scholarships for International students in New Zealand:

ScholarshipsBenefits
New Zealand Commonwealth scholarshipsThe scholarship covers tuition, accommodation fees, and health insurance for Masters and PhD students. They will also receive NZ$ 491 per week for living expenses, along with a setup cost and establishment allowance of NZ$ 3,000.
New Zealand Excellence Awards (NZEA)Education New Zealand and New Zealand universities fund scholarships for international students. 28 scholarships are available for postgraduate programs, while three are allotted for undergraduates. The amount awarded is NZ$ 5,000 for PG and NZ$ 10,000 for UG.
SEG ScholarshipThis scholarship is sponsored by the Soshi Educational Group and is available to students who are studying geophysics and geosciences. The scholarship provides an annual award of NZ$ 3,000 to selected candidates.
University of Melbourne International Undergraduate ScholarshipThere are three options for tuition fee remission for undergraduate degrees. The first is AUD 10,000 or INR 5.5 Lakhs for the first year of the degree. Second, a 50% tuition fee remission for the entire three-year duration of the undergraduate degree.Thirdly, a 100% tuition fee remission for the entire three-year duration of the undergraduate degree.
New Zealand Excellence Awards 2024This scholarship provides a bundle amounting to NZ$ 320,000.

Also Read: 

How To Reduce Cost Of Living In New Zealand?

Here are some recommendations to lessen your cost of living in New Zealand as an Indian student:

  • Craft a Comprehensive Budget: Establish a realistic budget outlining your income and anticipated expenditures. Categorise essential costs like housing, utilities, and groceries. Allocate remaining funds efficiently, and prioritize needs over wants.
  • Embrace Cost-Effective Accommodation: Explore alternatives to high-rent areas. Consider shared flats, homestays, or smaller abodes outside city centres. Research government housing assistance programs if eligible.
  • Negotiate Rent and Bills: When possible, engage in respectful negotiation with landlords or service providers regarding rent or utility charges. Explore bundled service packages for potential savings.
  • Become a Savvy Shopper: Prioritise grocery shopping at discount supermarkets or local farmer’s markets. Utilise loyalty programs and discount apps to maximise value. Plan meals to minimise food waste.
  • Embrace Public Transportation or Active Commutes: Utilise efficient public transportation networks like buses or trains for cost-effective commuting. Consider cycling or walking for shorter distances to save on transportation expenses and improve health.
  • Reassess Utility Consumption: Implement measures to reduce energy and water usage. Utilise energy-efficient appliances, practice responsible lighting habits and take shorter showers.
  • Review and Renegotiate Subscriptions: Evaluate recurring subscriptions for entertainment, phone plans, or internet access. Research alternative providers or negotiate better rates with existing ones if possible.
  • Embrace DIY Solutions: Consider learning basic maintenance or repair skills for simple household tasks. Explore free online tutorials or community workshops to empower yourself and minimise reliance on professional services.
  • Seek Out Free Entertainment: New Zealand boasts stunning natural landscapes and communities. Explore free recreational activities like hiking, swimming at public beaches, or attending free cultural events.
  • Embrace Flatmates or Co-living Arrangements: Sharing accommodation with responsible flatmates can significantly reduce housing costs. This can be particularly beneficial in larger cities with high rental demands.

By implementing these strategies, you can effectively manage your cost of living in New Zealand and enjoy a fulfilling life without financial strain. Remember, a combination of these tactics will likely yield the most significant cost reductions.

Cost of living in New Zealand vs. India

If you’re thinking of relocating from India to New Zealand, it’s important to note that there will be significant differences in culture, lifestyle, and cost of living. New Zealand has its own distinct culture and customs that may take some time to get used to. Furthermore, compared to India, living expenses in New Zealand are generally higher, which may necessitate some financial planning and adjustments. Conversely, India is known for its reasonable cost of living.

This difference is primarily due to various factors, such as currency exchange rates, average salaries, and the cost of goods and services

Understanding these variations can help you plan your finances better and make an informed decision before moving to New Zealand.

Here is a table that compares the monthly cost of living in New Zealand and India.

ParametersCosts of living in New ZealandCosts of living in India
Average Cost Of Living (without rent)NZD 1700 (INR 84K)24K
Average Transportation Cost (Monthly Pass)NZD 200 (INR 10K)INR 1000K
Average Basic Utility CostNZD 230 (INR 11K)INR 3500
Mobile Phone Monthly Plan CostsNZD 62 (INR 3K)INR 315
Internet Plan CostsNZD 87 (INR 4.3K)INR 700
Average Food CostNZD 600-800 (INR 30K-40K)INR 3000-5000
Healthcare costsNZD 348 (INR 17K)INR 500-1000
Average Rent In New Zealand City CentreNZD 1900 (INR 92K)INR 17K
Average Tuition FeesNZD 22,000-32,000 (INR 10L-15L)INR 1L to 8L
Sourced By: Numbeo
Note: The costs mentioned in the table are approximate and may vary by location and currency exchange rates.

Summing Up

New Zealand can be an excellent option for Indian students seeking high-quality education at affordable prices. The country has a well-established education system that offers multiple programs across various fields. 

Additionally, International students who complete their studies in New Zealand are eligible for a post-study work visa, providing them with valuable job opportunities and work experience and helping them establish themselves in their chosen field. 

In this article, we explored the cost of living in New Zealand in 2024 for Indian students, including accommodation options, transportation, food, and other expenses. We also provided tips on managing budgets effectively and making the most of your time in this beautiful country.

LeapScholar is dedicated to empowering international students throughout their educational journey. We provide comprehensive guidance and support services, encompassing everything from navigating the application process to securing visas.

And if you’re considering other options like the UK, USA and Australia, we’ve got you covered, too. Schedule a free consultation with our experts today for personalised guidance and advice.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Q: What are some of the living expenses in New Zealand?

    A: Some of the living expenses in New Zealand include rent, utilities, groceries, transportation, healthcare, and entertainment. The cost of living in New Zealand can vary depending on the region and lifestyle. For example, living in Auckland can be more expensive than living in other parts of the country.

  • Q: What is the average cost of living in New Zealand?

    A: The average cost of living in New Zealand can vary depending on factors such as location, lifestyle, and family size. On average, a single person’s monthly expenses in New Zealand can be around  3000 (INR 1.4L). However, this can be higher or lower depending on various factors.

  • Q: What are some of the most popular courses in New Zealand?

    A: New Zealand is known for its high-quality education system, and there are a variety of courses available for students. Some of the most popular courses in New Zealand include engineering, computer science, architecture, and interior design. New Zealand is also known for its excellent courses in subjects such as environmental science, agriculture, and creative arts.

  • Q: What is the cost of living in Auckland?

    A: Auckland is known to be one of the more expensive cities to live in New Zealand. The cost of living in Auckland can vary depending on factors such as accommodation, transportation, food, and entertainment. On average, a single person’s monthly expenses in Auckland can be around NZD 4000 (INR 2L).

  • Q: How much is the rent in New Zealand per month?

    A: The cost of rent in New Zealand can vary depending on factors such as location, type of accommodation, and number of people sharing the accommodation. On average, a one-bedroom apartment in the city centre can range from NZD 1900 to 2000 (INR 94K to 1L)  per month, while a one-bedroom apartment outside the city centre can range from NZD 1,000 to NZD 1,800 (INR 50K to 90K) per month.

  • Q: What are some of the best cities in New Zealand to live in?

    A: New Zealand is known for its high quality of life and there are many great cities to live in. Some of the best cities to live in New Zealand include Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch, and Dunedin. Each city offers a unique lifestyle and opportunities for work and study.

  • Q: Is New Zealand a good option for Indian students to study?

    A: New Zealand is a great option for Indian students looking to study abroad. The country offers excellent education opportunities and a high quality of life. New Zealand is known for its welcoming and inclusive culture, making it a great place for international students.

  • Q: What is the average annual salary in New Zealand?

    A: The average annual salary in New Zealand can vary depending on factors such as industry, experience, and location. On average, the annual salary in New Zealand is around (after tax) NZD 60,000 (INR 30L). However, this can be higher or lower depending on various factors.

  • Q: How can Indian students reduce living costs in New Zealand?

    A: Indian students can reduce living costs in New Zealand by sharing accommodation with other students, cooking at home instead of eating out, using public transportation instead of owning a car, and taking advantage of student discounts. Moreover, students need to plan their budget and expenses ahead of time to ensure they are not overspending.

  • Q: Do Universities in New Zealand offer scholarships to International students?

    A: Yes, universities in New Zealand offer scholarships to international students. These scholarships can cover tuition fees, living expenses, or both. Indian students can apply for scholarships such as the New Zealand Excellence Awards, the Commonwealth Scholarship, and the New Zealand Development Scholarship. It is important to check with individual universities for their scholarship opportunities and eligibility criteria.

  • Q: What are the monthly expenses in New Zealand?

    A: Monthly expenses in New Zealand can vary depending on factors such as location, lifestyle, and family size. On average, a single person’s monthly expenses in New Zealand can range from NZD 3000 (INR 1.4L). This can include expenses such as rent, utilities, groceries, transportation, healthcare, and entertainment.


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Saket Kohli

An International Higher Ed professional with 7+ years of experience studying, working, and living across three geographies, currently on a mission to share his journey as an International Student.

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