1 January changes to ABSTUDY

31 October 2018

What you need to know if you get ABSTUDY, are in secondary school and need to study away from home.

Changes at a glance

  1. Payment rate changes.
  2. More flexible travel.
  3. Safe Travel Plans.

1. Payment rate changes

Your payment rate might increase if you:

  • are under 16 and in secondary school
  • study away from home, and
  • get ABSTUDY Living Allowance at the away from home rate.

From 1 January, you may get the Living Allowance away from home rate we pay students over 16.
You don’t need to do anything to get paid the higher rate. If you’re eligible, we’ll change your payment rate.
If your boarding provider gets the payment on your behalf, this will continue at the higher rate.

2. More flexible travel

If you get ABSTUDY Fares Allowance, from 1 January 2019 you may get:

  • more visits from family or community members paid under the allowance
  • to travel to places other than school and home if they’re on your usual travel route
  • reduced penalties for missed travel without a valid reason.

3. Safe Travel Plans

If you’re a secondary student under 18 and get ABSTUDY Fares Allowance, you’ll need a Safe Travel Plan. You can ask your school about putting one in place.
You need this plan by 1 July 2019. If you don’t, you won’t be able to get ABSTUDY Fares Allowance for pre-booked travel.

Next steps

Read more about:

Ask us questions about the changes on our Student Update Facebook and Twitter.

Read more news for students and trainees.

Page last updated: 31 October 2018