As part of the bursary offered by the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS), students receive more than just tuition fees. They also qualify for NSFAS allowances for meals, accommodation, transport and learning materials.
During his recent press briefing, the Minister of Higher Education, Blade Nzimande, announced how much 2024 NSFAS allowances will be.
NSFAS Allowance 2024
Students either qualify for an accommodation allowance or a travel allowance, not both. This depends on whether the student is studying from home or not and the distance they are from their institution.
How Much Is NSFAS Allowance For 2024 Per Month?
NSFAS provides an annual amount that is paid over a period of ten months. The allowances received by students is often dependent on the type of accommodation they reside in.
If the private accommodation lacks certain services, NSFAS or the institution will determine the maximum amount payable for the accommodation.
When students live 10 km away from campus, they are eligible for a transportation allowance of R7,718. This allowance will be given directly to the student if the institution hasn't arranged travel on their behalf.
If the institution arranges travel for students residing 10 km away from campus, the travel allowance will be paid to the institution.
In cases where landlords do not provide internet access, students will receive a monthly allowance of R2,000 to cover data expenses.
For landlords unable to ensure consistent water and electricity, students will receive an annual utility allowance of R5,000 directly.
Unisa NSFAS Allowance 2024
The NSFAS allowances received by distance learning students such as Unisa NSFAS students depends on the number of modules registered for with a maximum of R5 460.
If students have a full-time course credit load, they then qualify for a personal care allowance at R3 045 per annum. This students need to have 120 course credits in one year.
Students with disabilities
- Assistive device allowance
- Students who are living with disabilities receive an assistive device allowance which is R50 000 once-off with students receiving NSFAS funding for repairs and maintenance to the value of R2 000 per year.
Students with disabilities do not automatically qualify for the allowance for assistive devices, or the repairs and maintenance thereof. The allowances are only granted if the student application for these allowances is approved, and all conditions and criteria are met as set out in this policy standard.
When NSFAS Allowances Will Be Paid For 2024
Nzimande revealed that R4.2 billion in upfront payments will be paid to universities and TVET Colleges for the 2024 academic year, on 31 January. R1 billion of this will be paid to TVET Colleges and the remaining R3.2 billion will be paid to universities.
This upfront payment will cover registration as well as first payments.
For January, NSFAS allowance payments will be made monthly with the Department saying, "monthly payments will be done at the end of each month".
As for February and March, payments will be made differently. Instead of monthly, students will receive bi-weekly payments.