Health and safety

Wellington is a safe place to live—find out where to get advice on health and safety.

Health and wellbeing

Studying and living in a foreign country can be stressful to start with. It can take time to adjust and settle in—it’s different for everyone, but in your first weeks in New Zealand you might feel:

  • homesick
  • emotional or depressed
  • tired or angry
  • lonely
  • confused.

The good news is that these feelings do eventually go away—but there are people you can ask for help in the meantime. Get some helpful tips, access resources, or attend a course or workshop.

Support from the International Student Experience Team

International student advisers are different from faculty student advisers—our primary role is student support rather than academic advice.

We understand that living and studying in a foreign country can be challenging and that it comes with its highs and lows—talking about it can help.

You can talk to us if:

  • you’re finding learning at our University very different from home
  • you’re finding it hard to meet people and are feeling isolated
  • things aren't going so well back home and you can’t concentrate on your studies
  • you need help with practical matters or day-to-day life.

The International Student Experience Team works closely with other university student support services. You can also come and see us if you have any health, emotional, or financial concerns and don’t know where to go for help. Get in touch with us at any time.

Other people you can talk to

You can talk to:

  • Student Counselling—they offer confidential help with any issues affecting your sense of wellbeing, relationships or learning. Appointments are covered by Studentsafe–University insurance.
  • Lifeline—a confidential and anonymous phone-counselling service. You can discuss personal problems with a professional Lifeline counsellor 24 hours a day on their toll-free number: 0800 111 777.
  • The Samaritans, who offer a 24-hour anonymous listening service on their Wellington phone line: 04 473 9739. You can also visit them for confidential face-to-face counselling at their address on the corner of Hill and Molesworth St, Thorndon, Wellington.

If you get sick or are injured

Most international students aren’t eligible for publicly funded healthcare—but Studentsafe–University insurance should cover your medical expenses. Find out more about healthcare in New Zealand.


In an emergency

  1. Dial 111 and wait for it to connect—don’t hang up the phone.
  2. The operator will ask you what service you need: fire, ambulance or police.
  3. They’ll connect you to that service.
  4. Tell the service where you are first. This is the most important piece of information. Then give them your name and the type of emergency.

After help has arrived, you should also contact the International Student Experience Team on their emergency contact number: +64 27 600 6864.

For non-emergencies

The Wellington Central Police Station is on the corner of Victoria and Harris Streets, next to the Wellington Central Library. It’s open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

You can also reach police services for non-emergencies by calling 105.

The NZ Police website has useful information in multiple languages.

On-campus security

If something is stolen or you don’t feel safe on campus, contact campus security.


  • campus security on 0800 842 8888
  • extension 5398 (or 8888) for emergencies if you’re calling from a campus landline.

General security tips

Every year many students have to replace their passport after it’s lost or stolen. We recommend you get an Kiwi Access Card to prove your age and identity—and keep your passport locked away somewhere safe.

Personal belongings

  • Keep any valuables hidden from view.
  • If your cell phone is stolen, ask the provider to block the SIM card immediately, then contact the police and make a police report.
  • Don’t leave your belongings unattended—there are lockers on campus you can hire for a small fee.
  • Insure your car—it’s not covered by your health and travel insurance.

Contact details

  • If you’re going to be away from home, make sure a flatmate, friend or International Office staff member can contact you if there’s an emergency.
  • Always keep your contact details up to date using Pūaha.

Personal security

  • Avoid walking around alone at night—stay with a group.
  • Don’t get in a car if you think the driver is unsafe, drunk, or has been using drugs.

Money matters

  • Open a bank account as soon as possible—don’t keep large sums of money in your room or carry them around with you.
  • Don’t walk away from an ATM with your cash visible.
  • Never keep your PIN number with your EFTPOS (debit) card.
  • If your credit or EFTPOS (debit) card is stolen, tell your bank immediately.
  • Don’t borrow or lend large amounts of money.

Carry your student ID with you while on campus—you’ll need it to access some rooms.