National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) 2021

NSFAS 2021

NSFAS officially opens applications for 2021 - Vaalweekblad

The National Student Financial Aid Scheme(NSFAS) is the government student bursary and loan scheme that receives its funding budget from, and reports to the Department of Higher Education and Training.
The scheme was established in terms of the National Student Financial Aid Scheme Act 56 of 1999. We provide financial assistance in the form of bursaries and loans to eligible students at public universities and
Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Colleges in South Africa.
We administer such bursaries and loans, and recover the loans from students once they have graduated and are employed.
NSFAS also raises funds in order to increase the funding pool for student
bursaries and loans.

You qualify to apply for a bursary if:

  • You are a South African citizen;
  • Your combined annual household income does not exceed R350 000 per annum;
  • You are a SASSA grant recipient;
  • You are registering for the first time for an undergraduate qualification at a public university or you are registered at a TVET college for one of the National Certificate Vocational or report 191 programme;
  • You are applying to study at a public university or TVET college for a qualification;
  • You are an already registered university student with an annual household income of less than R122 000 per year;
  • You have passed Grade 9 & 10 to receive NSFAS funding to study at a TVET college;
  • You have passed Grade 12 to receive NSFAS funding to study at a university.

NSFAS student loans are income-contingent, which means that repayment commences when you start working. NSFAS will send you statements to help you keep track of how much you owe. Your NSFAS loan must be paid back when you start working, and must be paid back in FULL, unless you qualify for a loan to bursary conversion

All NSFAS students qualify for a meal allowance of up to R15 000 for the year, except distance-learning students. The allowance for students registered for the full year will be paid over a period of 10 months (Feb–Nov)

Why the Student-Centred Model?
The Student-Centred Model aims to connect students directly with their funding, to ensure that the right amount is paid to the right student at the right time.

How to apply

Apply directly online through the NSFAS website ( or submit a manual application to NSFAS.

To apply online, applicants will be required to first register and create a MyNSFAS profile on the NSFAS website, which will serve as their personal account where they can log in for updates on their applications and funding throughout the year.

Manual application forms can be downloaded from the NSFAS website and posted to: NSFAS Loans & Bursaries Department, Private Bag X4, Plumstead, 7801; faxed to: 086644 2822;or scanned and emailed to: who receive NSFAS funding will not be required to reapply for the duration of their initial registered course.
NSFAS will be able to pay successful students’ registration fees effectively and without delays.

Do you pay back Nsfas?

All loans are only paid back to NSFAS after you have graduated or left university or college, found employment/ in business, and earning R30 000 or more per annum. If you are still studying or unemployed, you are not required to start making repayments.

Also unlike a bank loan, the NSFAS can potentially convert up to 40% of your loan into a bursary (so you don’t pay this amount back at all), depending on your academic results. NSFAS is not a place to get ‘free’ money, and not everyone in South Africa is entitled to the organisation’s loan or bursary.

Closing Date

The applications for NSFAS funding for the 2021 academic year is now open.

This year the NSFAS application window will run for a period of four months, starting from 3 August 2020, with the closing date being 30 November 2020.

Contact Details

Post: Private Bag X1, Plumstead 7801, South Africa
Address: 10 Brodie Road, House Vincent 2nd Floor, Wynberg, Cape Town 7700
Tel: 0860 067 327

Quick Links:

NSFAS Online Application

NSFAS Application Status

Nsfas banking details

Nsfas Bursaries for Teaching

Nsfas Address

Nsfas Application Forms

Nsfas Consent Form

Nsfas Requirements

Nsfas Contact Details

NSFAS Wallet account

NSFAS Registration for the academic year