Fees Free

Fees Free

Last updated 28 September 2023
Last updated 28 September 2023

The Tertiary Education Commission (TEC) administers the Fees Free Tertiary Education and Training (Fees Free) policy.

Fees Free Tertiary Education and Training was introduced on 1 January 2018 for first-time tertiary learners in their first year of provider-based study or their first two years of work-based learning.

The policy supports the Government’s commitment to make tertiary education and training affordable for all, by:

  • improving affordability and reducing debt levels
  • expanding access and participation, especially for those who have not previously studied or those for whom finance has been a real barrier to participation
  • supporting lifelong learning
  • ensuring the benefits of tertiary education for New Zealanders, including residents with an ongoing commitment to New Zealand, are shared through a highly skilled population contributing to a strong society and thriving economy.

Fees Free is one of more than 75 initiatives included in the 2019 Child and Youth Wellbeing Strategy.

The Government has advised they intend to change the Fees Free policy from 2025. The details of the change are yet to be confirmed, and we'll update tertiary education organisations via the TEC website and the Fees Free Focus when we have more information.

Fees Free policy settings for 2024 are unchanged and can be found on the following pages.

Information about Fees Free

Payments and reporting – Fees Free – how we make payments and how you report to us

Eligibility criteria and what Fees Free covers – the Fees Free eligibility criteria, how to check learners’ eligibility, and what fees the policy covers

Fees Free interactions with other funds – how Fees Free interacts with the Targeted Training and Apprenticeship Fund (TTAF), Māori and Pasifika Trades Training (MPTT) and Youth Guarantee (YG), as well as student loans, student allowance and scholarships

Statutory declarations – Fees Free – what to tell learners about finding out their eligibility

Learner marketing toolkit – Fees Free – material for tertiary education organisations, targeted at learners starting study or training in 2024

Carrying over Fees Free entitlement – how learners can use their Fees Free entitlement across years

Guidance – Fees Free – FAQs, information guides and other resources to help you understand Fees Free

Who to contact                                                                             

If you have any questions, please contact your Relationship Manager or Advisor, or the Customer Contact Group on 0800 601 301 or customerservice@tec.govt.nz.

For information on Fees Free for learners, see FeesFree.govt.nz. Learners can also call 0800 601 301 or email customerservice@tec.govt.nz.