What is PTPTN and why does it matter to you?

By Jocelyn | Last modified 01 Apr 2022
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Students with their PTPTN loans.

Image source: Pexels

What is PTPTN?

PTPTN, or Perbadanan Tabung Pendidikan Tinggi Nasional is an agency of the Ministry of Education (MOE) that offers financial assistance in the form of a loan to students pursuing higher education in public and private institutions.

Who is eligible to apply for PTPTN?

Generally, you must be a Diploma or Bachelor’s degree student in order to qualify for the PTPTN loan application.

  • You must be a Malaysian citizen.
  • You must be below the age of 45.
  • You must be offered a place in an IPTA/IPTS recognised by MOE/MQA.
  • Your course must be approved by the MOE / have a valid Certificate of Accreditation from MQA (for private universities).
  • You must not have any other sponsors.
  • You must have an SSPN-i account.

Additionally, the PTPTN loan covers professional courses such as ACCA and ICAEW, as well as Postgraduate studies offered by public institutions only.

Check out how to open an SSPN-i account and apply for PTPTN online.

Why does PTPTN matter to you?

You may feel wary about getting a loan for your higher education as there is always the concern of not being able to repay the loan.

With PTPTN, you can be assured that the government has your best interests at heart. 

Below are 5 reasons why you should apply for a PTPTN loan.

1. Ease your financial burden.

Tuition fees can be quite burdensome. It is heartbreaking to see students hold back their passion due to financial difficulties. Imagine the potential they could unleash with a little bit of help!

The PTPTN loan enables you to pursue better higher education opportunities without worrying about not being able to pay for tuition. This way, you can study the course of your dreams, graduate, and kickstart a great career.

2. Low interest rate puts less strain on your finances.

Compared to loans from external parties (banks/credit facilities), PTPTN has a very low interest rate of only 1%. This makes it easier for you to pay back the loan in small amounts after you graduate. Refer to the example in the image below:

Total PTPTN repayment.

3. You can choose how to settle your payments.

You have a 12-month grace period before you are required to start paying back your loan. Don’t stress yourself out with this matter!

You have two options to settle your payments:

a) Monthly payment

This is the common method that most students opt for. You can slowly repay your loan with the money that you earn from your first job.

The interest rate is also low, so the amount will not heavily affect your savings. Slowly and steadily, you will notice the decrease in the amount of loan left to repay!

b) Repay in full

If you have extra cash in your hands, or your parents are able to help you repay in full, by all means, go for it.

Why? 

Simply because the interest rate remains as 1%, and you no longer have to think about the loan! Besides, the government offers rebates for early settlements and/or single sum payments.

You can always monitor updates on the PTPTN website.

4. You can be exempted from repaying.

Studying hard can help you with your finances quite literally.

By getting first-class honours, you will be exempted from repaying your PTPTN. I was exempted myself, and I could tell you how liberating it feels when you have zero worries over the loan! Plus, I get to save more money from the salaries of my first job.

Keep in mind that there are still certain criteria that you must achieve despite graduating with first-class honours:

  • Your course must be full-time.
  • You must complete your studies within the duration stated in the loan agreement. You might not enjoy this benefit even if you extend one semester!
  • You must not be a recipient of another sponsorship.
  • You must submit the exemption application within twelve months from the date of your convocation.
  • Your course must be accredited by the MQA.

5. You can negotiate with PTPTN for more time. 

It is understandable if you struggle to repay your PTPTN loans when you just started your first job.

Student stressed about PTPTN repayment.

Image source: Pexels

While they don’t force you to immediately repay in a limited period of time, there is still a duration of repayment according to your PTPTN loan amount:

  • <RM 10,000: 5 years
  • RM 10,000 - RM 20,000: 10 years
  • RM 22,000 - RM 50,000: 15 years
  • >RM50,000: 20 years

The good news is, you can negotiate with PTPTN to extend your repayment duration if you could give a valid reason.

As long as you pay back your loans, you are good to go. Otherwise, you might get barred from leaving the country and have troubles getting a loan for your house or car in the future!


Want to know more? Here are 7 additional information about PTPTN you might need to know.

Posted on 01 Apr 2022
Useful Tips, Useful information