Australian car loan advice for international students

Rapid Finance on 4 January 2022

  • Yes, it may be possible to get a car loan while studying in Australia
  • However, not all lenders offer car loans to international students
  • To find a lender who may be able to help you, speak with a loan specialist
students in lecture

Monash University Clayton lecture. Image Courtesy of Nils Versemann /

Australia is a big place and without a car getting around can be difficult.

Public transport and alternatives such as bicycles and taxi services can help. However, there's nothing quite like a car for freedom and ease of getting around.

Whether it's for getting to class, part-time work, or the homes of friends and fellow students, a car makes traversing this country's cities and towns simple.

Unfortunately, getting a car and a car loan as an international student isn't always straight-forward. Still, it may be possible. Read on for more information.

Not all lenders will offer car loans to international students.

Not all lenders provide car loans for international students living in Australia.

Similarly, lenders that do offer car loans to international residents may only offer car loans to those on selected visa types. They will also likely specify numerous conditions.

Here's what a few of the big banks say regarding loans for people on Australian visas.

BankWhat they saySource


ANZ Secured Car Loan - eligibility
To be eligible you must be a permanent Australian
resident or valid work visa holder (457 or other
diplomatic visas)


Westpac Car Loan - eligibility
Non-residents need: to hold an acceptable visa
and have confirmed employment in Australia.

National Australia Bank

Check that you’re eligible to apply
You need to: Hold Australian citizenship or permanent
residency (or be a New Zealand citizen or holding a 457 Visa)

In short, not all lenders offer car loans to international students, and those that do will place certain restrictions on applicants. However, depending on your situation, you may be eligible.

How can I find a lender that offers car loans for international students?

To find a lender that may provide loans to international students, start by speaking with a loan specialist.

Loan specialists, such as the team at Rapid Finance, are experienced in finding car loans for those in a wide range of situations. They could potentially help, even when others can't (or won't).

They have access to a variety of lenders and car loan products, and therefore they can seek out car finance options that may be suitable for international students.

If you're unsure of the finance process in Australia, they can also provide you with car loan advice, as well as recommendations on how to build your case for finance.

How can I increase my chances of getting approved?

Lenders will likely perceive international students as higher risk applicants.

To increase your chances of loan success, you'll need to prove to them otherwise. You can do this by demonstrating your stability and capacity to meet financial commitments.

You can achieve this with the following.

  1. Regular income: a consistent salary can be ideal for demonstrating financial independence. Casual or part time employment can be acceptable, as long as the income is regular.
  2. Cash deposit: the more you pay at the beginning of your loan, the less financial risk for the lender. Therefore, the larger the deposit, the more likely you are to get approved.
  3. Loan guarantor: typically a parent or close relative, a guarantor is responsible for your loan should you default. A guarantor could greatly improve your loan potential.

Important: visa expiry and loan terms

It is extremely unlikely that a lender will provide an international student with a car loan if that car loan's term exceeds the length of the student's visa.

If you are to receive a car loan, the car loan's term will almost certainly need to conclude prior to the expiration of your student visa.

For example:

Visa startVisa expiryPotential car loan term



3 years or less



5 years or less

Note: Lenders will only consider the visa you have now. They will not take into account pending visas.

student sitting on desk

"Yes, it may be possible to get a car loan while studying in Australia."

Talk about your car loan potential today

Getting a car loan on a study visa can be difficult, but it may be possible. To give yourself the best chance of loan success, speak with a Rapid Finance loan specialist today.

At Rapid Finance, we've been helping our customers to find car finance for more than 17 years, and we may be able to help you too.

Find out more on our car loans page or call 1300 467 274