What Are The Benefits Of NSFAS Mastercard?

By Klenam JU •  Updated: 03/23/24 •  5 min read

The National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) has developed a reputation for its ability to adapt innovative solutions, particularly in the aspect of payment systems, over the years. 

This has produced services such as the Wallet system and partnership with merchant stores and Celbux. In the second quarter of this year, the scheme announced plans to introduce a Mastercard system to facilitate direct payments of allowances to bursary beneficiaries. 

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According to the NSFAS, this payment system was part of the scheme’s efforts to create a system full of value-added benefits for students benefitting from the scheme. With the introduction of the payment system, beneficiaries of financial aid from the NSFAS will receive NSFAS Mastercard beginning with the 2024/2024 academic year. 

The Mastercard system will be jointly managed by the NSFAS itself, Coinvest, eZaga, Norraco, and Tenet Technology.

According to NSFAS, as NSFAS Mastercard beneficiary, you get to enjoy a number of benefits, including:

The benefits and features built into the Mastercard system/card are ultimately designed to afford a cardholder greater control over finances and an increased sense of financial responsibility, according to the NSFAS.

Who Qualifies for NSFAS Mastercard?

As long as you are a beneficiary of financial aid from the NSFAS, you will receive NSFAS Mastercard. However, due to the large number of recipients of aid from the scheme, not everyone will get the card at the initial launch of the NSFAS Mastercard system. 

In a statement published on its website, the NSFAS has indicated that it will first pilot the Mastercard payment system with a set number of students, following which the full roll-out will occur in a phased-in approach. 

While the NSFAS has not yet announced any concrete timeframe for the implementation of the pilot and full roll-out, it is projected that an estimated 900,000 students who are currently enjoying funding support from the NSFAS will be able to receive allowances using NSFAS Mastercard in the end. The card will be issued in physical and virtual copies to eligible students.

Can I Buy With NSFAS Mastercard?

There are many things you can do with NSFAS Mastercard. The card allows you to perform transactions like buying mobile internet data, recharge vouchers and making payments for electricity bills and other utilities. You can also withdraw funds at merchant store locations accredited by the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS).

To be able to use the NSFAS Mastercard and enjoy its many benefits and features, you must own it first of all. The first step in that direction is to sign up by downloading the eZaga app to your device. 

Also, upon taking receipt of your NSFAS Mastercard, you must make sure that you activate it by following procedures and steps as specified by the National Student Financial Aid Scheme. You can also link your NSFAS Mastercard to your bank account.

How Do I Know I Have Funds on my NSFAS Mastercard?

Once your NSFAS Mastercard is activated, you will be able to receive your allowances directly from the NSFAS. You can use the card consequently to make payments for transactions or perform cash withdrawals with it at any designated point. Whenever the NSFAS pays you or you make any transaction, you will receive a notification through text message.

Frequently Asked Questions

When will NSFAS commence direct payments of allowances through the NSFAS Mastercard system?

The NSFAS commenced direct payments of allowances through the NSFAS Mastercard system in September 2024. However, these payments were made to selected sets of beneficiaries. With the payment system set to be rolled out gradually, more beneficiaries will be onboarded subsequently.

I am eligible for NSFAS Mastercard; how do I get it?

If you want to get your NSFAS Mastercard, you are going to have to apply for it by downloading the eZaga App or going through the link, www.ezaga.co.za/nsfas

After opening the site or setting up the app, you will be required to provide the following: your identity number, password, a one-time password that will be sent to your email, and a picture of your identity card. 

You will also be required to submit your biodata. Once you have provided these details, you will be sent a notification of approval through text message. With these steps completed, you should be able to take delivery of your NSFAS Mastercard at your campus.

Does NSFAS Mastercard expire?

You can use your NSFAS Mastercard as far as you register for studies and are still a recipient of funding from the NSFAS. Once you complete your studies or lose your funding, the NSFAS will automatically deactivate your Mastercard.  

I have received my NSFAS Mastercard; what should I do next?

If you have received your NSFAS Mastercard already, what you need to do next is to activate it for use. To activate, simply text the word ‘Activate’ along with the last four digits of your NSFAS Mastercard to the short code 31571. 

You will receive a text message which contains your PIN. Once this is done, your card will be activated, and you will be able to use it for transactions. 

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