When Does NSFAS Make Allowance Payments Every Month?



The NSFAS bursary scheme supports thousands of deserving students on their tertiary education journey. These students receive several allowances that aim to cover costs associated with their studies.



The National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) provides comprehensive bursaries to students from poor and working-class households. For the 2023 academic year, the bursary scheme is set to fund over one million students with a budget of more than R40 billion. 

Students funded by NSFAS receive comprehensive funding, which includes the payment of their tuition and registration fees.

In addition to covering a student's tuition and registration fees, NSFAS also provides students with several NSFAS allowances to cover the costs of accommodation, meals and learning materials. 

NSFAS Payment Delays

Over the years, NSFAS has received tons of backlash stemming from allowance payment delays and this has highlighted the need for improved communication and efficiency in the disbursement process.

According to the scheme, student allowance payments are made after the 25th of every month. However, payment dates may vary according to the respective service providers.

In 2022, NSFAS announced it would be paying allowances directly to students. This direct payment of allowances would be facilitated by financial technology service providers. These service providers include Tenet Technology, Coinvest Africa, Ezaga Holdings and Norraco Corporation.

Meanwhile, it has been suggested that the introduction of a new allowance payment system has led to delays in students receiving their allowances. 

NSFAS has revealed:

We have been processing payments via service providers, please note that we only pay based on the registration templates we have received from the institution. We will pay to NSFAS beneficiaries whose allowances are still due to them.

They added, “The timeframe cannot be confirmed as it differs for each student depending on registration data. If your registration data was received after or not verified before the last pay run, then you should wait for the next."

New Direct Payment System

The new direct allowances payment system was first implemented at Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) colleges in 2022 and was finally extended to include university students in 2023. 

In May 2023 NSFAS-funded University students around the country were instructed to onboard themselves onto the system to begin receiving their allowances directly from June 2023.

Since the introduction of the direct payment system, students have complained about exorbitant bank charges and the inability to access their allowances

NSFAS Board Chairperson Ernest Khosa acknowledged that, as with any introduction of new systems, there have been some teething issues and genuine cases of students who have not been able to access their allowances via the new solution.

We have also noted that closer to payment dates, the system experiences technical glitches caused by high internet traffic due to students registering at the same time. Onboarding for TVET college students continues on an ongoing basis as new students enrol.

He said this can be mainly attributed to issues of data integration with institutions and system glitches caused by too many students/traffic seeking to register onto the system at the same time. 

“We have also had reports of students struggling with the authentication process and requiring assistance, hence we swiftly deployed officials across various campuses,” said Khosa.

NSFAS is calling on students and stakeholders not to be disheartened by or impatient with “teething problems” that arise with the introduction of a system. The aim of the new system is to use automotive technological solutions that serve students on time and at scale. 


Suggested Article:

Minister discusses direct payment issues

The government’s bursary scheme has received tons of backlash from students across the country over several challenges involving student allowances. These concerns have resulted in calls for government intervention.




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