Health & Insurance

The New Zealand Government’s Education (Pastoral Care of International Students) Code of Practice 2016 requires all international students to have appropriate health and travel insurance during their period of study.

Whitireia’s responsibility under the Code is to ensure each international student enrolled for two weeks or longer, has appropriate insurance covering—

a) the student’s travel— (i) to and from New Zealand; and (ii) within New Zealand; and (iii) if the travel is part of the course, outside New Zealand; and

b) medical care in New Zealand, including diagnosis, prescription, surgery, and hospitalisation; and

c) repatriation or expatriation of the student as a result of serious illness or injury, including cover of travel costs incurred by family members assisting repatriation or expatriation; and

d) death of the student, including cover of— (i) travel costs of family members to and from New Zealand; and (ii) costs of repatriation or expatriation of the body; and (iii) funeral expenses

You are required to have approved insurance for the duration of your study, regardless of the type of visa you have.


Whitireia’s default insurance

Uni-Care NZ Student Plan is Whitireia’s default insurance provider for international students.

You don’t have to do anything to apply for Whitireia's Insurance. The insurance fee is listed within your Offer of Place to Whitireia, and you’ll be covered automatically once you have paid your fee, from the date of departure to New Zealand (provided this is not more than 31 days prior to your course start date) until the expiry date or cancellation of your visa to study at Whitireia.

The insurance fee quoted on your Offer of Place must be paid unless Whitireia approves the use of an alternative insurance provider. Your enrolment will not be completed, and you will not be entitled to attend classes or access Whitireia services until you have appropriate insurance coverage.

More information about the Uni-Care NZ Student Plan can be found here


Other acceptable insurance policies

If you don’t want to use Whitireia's Uni-Care NZ Student Plan Insurance, you can choose the following pre-approved policies, which meet Whitireia’s requirements:

  • Allianz Student Safe
  • Southern Cross International Student Travel Insurance 
  • Orbit Protect Prime Policy

If you choose one of these policies you are required to:

  • Organise your cover before you arrive in New Zealand
  • Provide a copy of your policy certificate, and
  • Sign a waiver to say you’ll take responsibility for your insurance and keep it up to date.

If you have a different insurance policy
Your insurance policy can only be accepted if it meets Whitireia's requirements.

If you already have insurance and it’s not on the approved list, you’ll need to:
Email the full policy wording and policy certificate in English to Whitireia International ( at least four weeks before your arrival in New Zealand. The policy will be reviewed and Whitireia will confirm whether it meets our requirements.

If your policy:
Is approved by Whitireia, you will need to complete a waiver form. You will receive a refund of the insurance component from your programme fees after international student orientation. Refunds may take up to three weeks to process.
Is not approved by Whitireia, you’ll need to purchase approved insurance before you can enrol or purchase Whitireia’s default medical and travel insurance (if you have not already paid for this component of your programme fees).


FAQS about insurance


Are pre-existing medical conditions covered? 
Travel Insurance is designed to cover unexpected events. Pre-existing medical conditions are not automatically covered. A pre-existing condition is any medical or physical condition or circumstance which you are aware of, or ought reasonably to have been aware of, before the start date of your policy.  

If you have a pre-existing medical or physical condition you need to tell us about it in your application and complete a medical assessment. Requests for cover may be made via an online medical declaration found here. Once the outcome of your medical assessment is known you can decide whether or not to proceed with purchasing the policy.

If the medical assessment team declines to cover a pre-existing condition it is not possible to pay extra premium to have the condition covered.


Is my immigration medical and/or x-ray covered by my insurance? 
No, your insurance covers unexpected events. Immigration medical and x-ray costs are not an unexpected event.


Is pregnancy covered? 
If you are pregnant when you apply for your policy there is no cover provided.  If you became pregnant after your insurance policy was issued then you are covered for unexpected medical complications or emergencies that occur up to and including the 20th week of pregnancy.

Please note that there is no cover for doctor’s or midwives' visits to monitor your pregnancy and there is no cover for delivery or hospital costs associated with delivery.


I have bought a car, is it covered by my insurance?
No, your car is not covered by Uni-Care insurance. You need to take a separate insurance policy to cover your car and any damage that you do to someone else’s property while using your car.

If you wish to purchase a policy to cover accidental damage caused to someone else’s property by your use of a vehicle please visit or for a competitive quotation. Short-term policies are available.

The Rental Vehicle Excess cover only applies if you have hired a vehicle from a rental company. It does not provide any cover for a vehicle that you own or borrow from someone else.


Are my household contents and carpets covered?
The Luggage section of the policy covers you for accidental loss of or damage to your accompanied luggage, personal effects, laptop computers and/or portable electronic property. It does not cover household contents or carpets of any kind. If you have general household contents that you need cover for you need to take out a domestic contents insurance policy.


I have a NZ Student policy but have finished studying. I’m staying in NZ to work, what do I do?
Once you have completed studying and your NZ Student visa expires (or is replaced by another visa type) you are no longer entitled to coverage under our NZ Student Plan. However, you may purchase a NZ Visitor policy and information may be found here. here.


My family are coming to New Zealand with me, are they covered under my student insurance?
The policy that you purchase through Whitireia covers enrolled students only; your family are not insured under this policy. However, Uni-Care are able to provide family policies that may include yourself and your family. Please contact Whitireia to arrange a quotation for a Family NZ Visitor policy.


What do I do if I have an emergency or claim?
In the event of an emergency, Uni-Care is ready to assist you 24 hours a day. Please call our toll free number 0800 864 227 in New Zealand, 1800 864 227 in Australia, or our Claims Team on +64 4 802 0173. Our Claims Team can help you with the following:

  • Verification on coverage and policy benefits to your doctor or hospital when necessary.
  • Coordinate payments with doctor or hospital.
  • Communication with relatives and school.
  • Arrangement of emergency medical evacuation when necessary.


I am going to see a doctor now, am I covered? 
While our Uni-Care Policy covers the majority of medical conditions, there are some medical conditions Uni-Care may not be able to provide cover for. If you are not sure if you will be covered, please contact our Claims Team for assistance.


How is my claim settled? 
Payments are made into your nominated New Zealand bank account. If you do not have a bank account in New Zealand or if you are travelling in Australia, we are able to arrange the funds transfer to a foreign bank account. We are not able to pay your claim to a credit card.


Is there a specific medical center or a doctor I must see? 
You can go to the nearest medical centre or after hours doctor to see a General Practitioner (GP). However, if you need to see a specialist, you must see a GP first to obtain a medical referral to a specialist.


How do I make a medical claim? 
Just complete and sign a Uni-Care Claim Form and send it to us a copy of original invoice. It is important that you advise us WHY you needed to see a doctor.


I have been burgled. What do I do? 
You will need to notify the police immediately after you discover the loss. When reporting the loss to the police, you will need to describe as much detail as you can regarding the event or the offender. After you have notified the police and lodged a complaint with them, you need to notify us of your loss either by phone or by email and then complete a claim form and return it to us with the original invoices and accessories for the stolen items.


My electronic item is damaged. What do I do? 
To make a claim for damaged personal effects, you will need to complete a claim form and supply a repair report. If the item is repairable, please send in the repair report and quote with your claim form. If the item is not repairable you need to send the item to us along with your claim form and the repair report.


I have accidentally damaged my home stay’s property. What do I do? 
Advise your home stay that you have an insurance policy which covers your personal liability and ask your home stay to make a claim with their own insurer. You must notify us of this accident and complete a claim form with the details of the loss.

This information is correct as of September, 2018.

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