About this case

An Indian student arrived in New Zealand to undertake a course at a Private Training Establishment (PTE).  Due to air travel delays associated with COVID-19 in early 2020, they arrived late on the day their course commenced and went straight to the school. The student asked to start a day later as they were fatigued from their travel, however, this was declined and due to missing the first day of class, the student was told that they would not be able to take part in the course. They were offered a place in the same course starting later in the year, but instead chose to enrol in an alternative course with a different provider.

After changing providers, the student requested that 80% of the original course fees be refunded and transferred to their new education provider. The school advised that they would refund 70% of the fees, which the student accepted. After three months of subsequent follow up by the student, the refund offered by the provider was changed to approximately 40% of the fees. The student was dissatisfied with this amount, believing they were entitled to more, as per their contract with the provider, and the earlier communication advising that they would receive 70% of their fees refunded.

How we helped

The student sought assistance from a trusted member of the Indian community who contacted iStudent Complaints as an advocate for the student. After gaining the students authority to speak with their advocate, iStudent Complaints contacted the provider and shared the information that the advocate had forwarded.


The provider reviewed all the information and responded to the student advising that they would refund 100% of the course fees, acknowledging the original offer and the considerable time that had elapsed since the refund request. 

The feedback from the student to iStudent Complaints was “Thank you for you great work.”