Government announces student allowance, loan living costs increases for 2018

The Government has announced the first details of its package aimed at providing more financial support for those undertaking tertiary study.

From 1 January, student allowance base rates will rise by a net $50 a week. Where the allowance rate reflects the living costs of 2 adults, the increase will be $100 net a week.

For example, allowance payments for single students aged under 24 and living away from home will rise from $177.03 to $227.03 a week, while the rate for single students with children will go up from $329.57 to $379.57 a week, and the rate for couples with children (where one partner is not enrolled in more than half of a full-time course) will go from $379.34 to $479.34 a week.

The maximum amount students can borrow through the Student Loan System to help pay for living costs will also rise by $50 a week – from $178.81 to $228.81 a week.

The increases are part of the Government’s first 100 days programme, which also includes making the first year of tertiary education fees-free from 1 January 2018.

Final decisions around details of the fees-free policy are currently under consideration.

Students can find further information on the StudyLink website

StudyLink is encouraging students to apply by 16 December and to provide their supporting documents promptly to ensure their applications are sorted for the start of the 2018 academic year. Go to the apply online page on the studylink website.

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