Why International Students Choose NZ?


New Zealand is privileged to receive thousands of students each year that enjoy a safe, multi-cultural environment in which to study. New Zealand is a very unique, modern, technologically advanced country with world famous, breath taking scenery and it continues to be an affordable place to study and live.

Auckland is New Zealand’s largest city with a population of 1.5 million. Situated in the upper North Island the city is engulfed by scenic harbours, volcanic islands, stunning beaches, vineyards and rain forests. Exciting international events, festivals, concerts and exhibitions are hosted in Auckland throughout the year.

Heliflite Charter and Training school is based at Ardmore Aerodrome, a 20 minute drive from the Airport and 30 minute drive from Auckland’s city centre. Ardmore is a uniquely situated aerodrome that enhances both private and commercial training by exposing students a variety of terrain and airspace challenges. Ardmore is home to many of New Zealand’s historical Warbirds and hosts many flight shows and exhibitions each year.

Ardmore is surrounded by pastoral farmland, populated towns and also nestled between the Hunua Mountain Ranges and Whitford Forests offering real bush flying experiences. The Aerodrome neighbours the beautiful Gulf of Thames and Manukau Harbour and also adjoins Auckland international airport giving students valuable experience flying into ATC controlled airspace.



Heliflite Charter & Training Facilities


HCAT’s flight school and charter operation are based on Ardmore Airfield, Papakura and Auckland. Our new, modern facilities include; lecture room, operations area, briefing room, administration office, reception and hangar which have all been assessed by the Civil Aviation Authority of New Zealand as being suitable premises for an Air Transport Operation under CAR Part 135 and Training Organisation CAR Part 141. The facility further meets the requirements of the Resource Management Act 1991 and the New Zealand Building Code 1991, and the building holds a current Code of Compliance as issued by the Auckland District Council Building Services Department.

HCAT operates Robinson R22, R44 and R66 helicopters with access to multiple other helicopters for type ratings.

HCAT sister company Heliflite Pacific Ltd is a long standing CAA Approved 145 Maintenance Facility and the Australasian Distributor and Service Provider of Robinson Helicopters. Heliflite is conveniently located next door to HCAT and Heliflite services and maintained our fleet thus reduces maintenance downtime and ensure exceptional maintenance standards.


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Our Course


Heliflite Charter & Training prides itself on being a New Zealand Qualification Authority certificated and registered private training establishment. This allows us to deliver a NZQA registered training programme for International Students. This in turn enables you as the student to apply and gain a study visa to enable you to study and live in New Zealand for the duration of your course.

Heliflite Charter and Training follows the flight training syllabus as established by the New Zealand Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). Full time theory classes are taught by our experienced flight instructors in our state of the art facilities right on the aerodrome. Flying lessons are preceded by a classroom briefing, conducted on a whiteboard or power point by the instructor.

NZQA Approved Training Schemes available are;

Certificate in Aviation:

  • Helicopter Private Pilot’s Licence PPL
  • Helicopter Commercial Pilot’s Licence CPL

We also offer a range of other CAA approved courses;

  • Helicopter Instructor Rating (C Cat)
  • Basic Gas Turbine
  • Ratings and endorsements
  • Hour Building
  • Mountain Flying
  • Long Lining

Course Costs: View Courses


Entry Requirements


  • Be at least 18 years of age
  • Be eligible to hold a New Zealand Student Visa. Please refer to the NZ Immigration website for more details http://www.immigration.govt.nz
  • Have medical and travel insurance
  • Complete the ADAPT pilot pre-screening tool on the ATTO Skills Connect www.nzskillsconnect.co.nz. Follow the aviation link to complete the pilot pre-screening test. You need to score “Average” or above. A grade of “Below Average” will only be acceptable in individually assessed special circumstances.
  • Four years secondary schooling in a country where the first language is English, or an IELTS overall score of 6.0, with no sub-part (reading, writing, listening, or speaking) below 6.0
  • Hold a New Zealand Civil Aviation Authority Medical Certificate, Class 1
  • Valid passport
  • CAA fit and proper person status applies and students are required to produce  a character reference and 2 referees
  • The criteria for the fit and proper person test are:
    • The applicant’s conviction record for transport safety offences.
    • The applicant’s experience in the transport industry.
    • The applicant’s knowledge of aviation regulatory requirements.
    • The applicant’s history of compliance with transport safety regulatory requirements.
    • The applicant’s history of physical or mental health or behavioural problems.
  • Produce a criminal history report for all countries in which you resided in for 5 years or more.
  • Produce a land transport offence history report for all countries in which you resided in for 5 years or more.
  • Copy of CV


Enrolment Process


  • Complete HCAT Application form and attach all supporting documents >> (Application for Admission as an International Student)
  • If your application is successful you will receive a of Offer of a Place
  • Advise HCAT of your decision to accept or decline the offer
  • Meet Immigration requirements and obtain your Student Visa
  • Pay Administration instalment of course fees to ensure your place on the course
  • Arrange accommodation prior to entering New Zealand
  • Advise HCAT of arrival date
  • On arrival receive training equipment, documentation and complete an orientation with one of our friendly staff


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Student Information



HCAT requires all students to complete an ADAPT assessment for flight training suitability through the NZ Skills Connect. The assessment tests whether you have the physical and personality to be successfully trained as a pilot. The assessment fee is $80.50 to be pay online by credit card. For further information or to take the test please see about the test please visit www.nzskillsconnect.co.nz


Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students


HCAT has agreed to observe and be bound by the Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students published by the NZ Ministry of Education. Copies of the Code are available on request from HCAT or from the NZ Ministry of Education website at www.minedu.govt.nz. Complying with this code signifies that HCAT’s training programs and staff are obliged to meet certain conditions prior to enrolling you and we are also required to provide you with pertinent information.


Student Visa


All international students require a student visa from Immigration New Zealand to enable study to be undertaken in New Zealand.  All applications need to be made through a New Zealand embassy. The visa process usually takes between 6 – 8 weeks, please allow enough time to for this to be processed.

Full details of visa and permit requirements, advice on rights to employment in New Zealand while studying, and reporting requirements are available through the New Zealand Immigration Service, and can be viewed on their website at www.immigration.govt.nz

Applications for student visas must include:

  • Application for visa can be found on the immigration website by following this link www.immigration.govt.nz/migrant/stream/study/application/
  • Offer of Place letter from Heliflite Charter and Training
  • Copy of tuition fee receipt
  • NZ $200 Visa fee (this cost may change)
  • Passport photograph
  • Evidence that you are able to meet your living cost during your stay
  • Return plane ticket, or the fund to buy a ticket
  • Passport, your passport must be valid for a minimum or 3 months after your course finish date
  • As the aviation course is longer than 6 months, you are required to provide a temporary chest x-ray certificate to New Zealand Immigration Services

Any student who does not keep within the conditions of their visa can be sent home by the New Zealand Immigration Service on behalf of the New Zealand Government


Living Costs


In addition to tuition and non-tuition fees, you will need to plan to have sufficient money for living expenses. Immigration New Zealand requires that international students have a minimum of NZ$15,000 per year to cover their living expenses while studying in New Zealand. International students will need to make sure that they have sufficient funds to cover accommodation, food, telephone, transport, recreation and other costs. Altogether, it is estimated that students will need between NZ$350-NZ$500 per person per week to ensure a comfortable lifestyle while studying.

How much money do I need for living costs?

It is recommended that you allow for approximately NZ$15,000 – $18,000 for living expenses per year, but the actual costs will vary depending on your lifestyle and type of accommodation. In general, the cost of living is typically higher closer to Auckland Central.




Flatting situations are very popular with aviation students. In most cases a room in a flat (2,3,4 bedroom house) can cost anywhere between $100 – $200 per person a week. This varies due to house and room size, parking availability etc. Other costs to be mindful of are electricity, internet and phone, food bills. Some costs are shared and others are not. Some houses may be furnished and others may require the purchase of white goods such as refrigerators and washing machines.

When a house is leased a bond payment is required to financially protect the house owner from any damages caused by the tenants. The amount is paid prior to moving in and once the property has been inspected and no damage is report prior to moving out, the bond will be returned to you. The bond payment is usually 4 weeks rent and possibly a ‘letting’ fee charged by the real estate agent.

Here are some websites to assist you in becoming more familiar with the flatting market in Auckland




HCAT understands how overwhelming moving to a new country can be so please don’t hesitate to contact us for any assistance you may need. HCAT does not inspect properties on behalf of students




HCAT offers free airport pick-up service from Auckland Airport to your accommodation. You’ll need to provide us with your flight details, time of arrival and your accommodation location.

Transport arrangements to get to class and flying lessons are your own responsibility.

Below are some helpful links for public transport or vehicle purchasing.




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