COVID-19 accommodation support and FAQs

Information updated as at 25 January 2021

Unless otherwise ordered by the New Zealand Government, University of Auckland accommodation will remain open during lockdowns. Assessments on occupancy will be made at the time of any lockdown scenarios and Accommodation reserves the right to move students to best support those remaining on-site during the lockdown period.

Regardless of our national alert level, we require all of our Kainoho | Residents to:

  • Download and use the NZ COVID-19 Tracer app with Bluetooth on
  • Cover coughs and sneezes
  • Have reusable masks and use these where required
  • Let our kaimahi | staff know when they are feeling unwell
  • For up to date information, refer to https://covid19.govt.nz/

Accommodation Fees during COVID Alert Levels

If at any time residents are experiencing financial hardship, they are encouraged to contact the student hardship fund.

Alert Levels 1 and 2

Standard withdrawal policy applies should a student choose to withdraw from their residential agreement.

Alert Levels 3 and 4

Students vacating their accommodation for two weeks or more during Levels 3 and 4, as long as they are not breaching travel restrictions by relocating, will not be required to pay accommodation fees during their absence*. If a student elects to remain in residence, there is no reduction in fees. Standard withdrawal policy applies should a student choose to withdraw from their residential agreement.

*As scholarship students do not pay for their accommodation costs, this does not apply to them.

Can students withdraw from residence during a Level 3 or 4 Lockdown?

Those who choose to cancel their accommodation may do so, and understand that they will pay a penalty equating to up to 8 weeks accommodation fees, OR remain liable for fees until the end of the current semester, whichever is less.

If you have already left accommodation to isolate from home and choose to cancel your accommodation during a Level 3 or 4 lockdown, the date you notify us you wish to cancel will be the date of your withdrawal, and your items will remain locked in your room until you are able to return to collect them under Level 2. 

For more information see: Withdrawing your residential agreement

Remaining in Accommodation during Level 3 or 4 Lockdown

University of Auckland Accommodation remains open to safely support our kainoho | residents to self-isolate in secure bubbles during the alert levels. We communicate extensively with and support all those kainoho in house around how to keep themselves and their fellow kainoho safe and healthy.

What can you expect if you are in Wharenoho | Accommodation during lockdown?

  • Kainoho | Residents will be allocated to a bubble (this is likely to be their flat or their floor),
  • kainoho will be allocated specific resources and maybe specific times they can access these resources (eg. Laundry room schedules),
  • kainoho will be advised of alcohol & guest bans in place and are expected to adhere to these at all times and for the full period outlined,
  • there will be kaimahi | staff and contractors operating on site. These individuals will observe social distancing, and have daily health declarations,
  • our buildings will be locked down to only authorised individuals,
  • our kainoho will need to sign in and out of our buildings,
  • any of our kainoho who are working as essential workers will need to register this and complete health declarations,
  • Nga Wharenoho | Accommodation will have increased cleaning services throughout the residence,
  • our facilities will be arranged to ensure social distancing and safety. This may mean some facilities are temporarily not offered during the lockdown.

Our systems and processes have been reviewed by the wider University, Auckland Regional Public Health and the NZ Police. We are constantly reviewing these to ensure we are fully compliant with New Zealand Government guidelines and regulations.

Unless directed otherwise by the New Zealand Government, all of our kaimahi | staff will operate as essential services and continue to support all of our kainoho. Even if a kainoho has choose to isolate offsite, we will ensure they remain part of our digital community.

We will support our kainoho | residents in many ways, including;

  • Daily updates on social media
  • Weekly Zui (zoom) floor meetings
  • Regular 1:1 check ins with RA's on zoom or other messaging services
  • Converting our Peer Assisted Study Sessions to online through zoom
  • Hosting Tea and Talk drop in sessions online
  • Digital engagement programme including quizzes and competitions
  • Supporting students with online learning

We will continue to offer our intentional residential experience programme throughout lockdown. Our goals continue to be a transformative residential experience that prepare our kainoho to be better global citizens.

Can I return to Accommodation during Level 3 or 4 Lockdown?

For the safety of our community, anyone who was not living in our accommodation or left to isolate elsewhere under Levels 3 or 4 will not be permitted to return to accommodation until we reach Level 2. Unless the appropriate delegated Government agency has authorised a change in ‘bubbles’. If this does occur, we have processes and procedures to ensure there is a smooth and safe transfer of locations into our wharenoho.

University Financial Assistance

The University appreciates that you may experience financial difficulties while at University. Many of those difficulties can be unexpected and out of your control, in such situations the University may be able to provide you with hardship support. Find out more about the Student Emergency Fund.