Moving to New Zealand: Things you should know before you immigrate to New Zealand.

Whether you look at the bustling scenery of the capital Wellington, or you lose yourself in the breathtaking views of the majestic nature, there is a lot to say for moving to New Zealand. With the high standard of living, great educational facilities and so many things to do outdoors, many people have a deep down wish to Immigrate to New Zealand. And who can disagree with them?

International removals to New Zealand with Eurosender

Moving to New Zealand is probably going to be one of the biggest adventures in your life. So, you better come prepared. Join the crowd when we set out to explore all the ins and outs of Moving to New Zealand from the USA or any other country in the world. With our guide, dipping into all the crucial areas for when you plan to relocate to New Zealand, you can set sail to your new destination.

It won’t come as a surprise that many things in New Zealand are way different from your home country. In the beginning, you will get by with just knowing the basics. When you are relocating from the USA to New Zealand, your first priority is to get your possessions safely across the ocean. With Eurosender you can be confident that your international removals to New Zealand will be smooth and hassle-free.

Every order starts with measuring the dimensions of your shipment. After that, you can contact us for an individual offer, which will be tailor-made to meet your individual requirements. Eurosender also offers storage facilities at convenient prices. Another service often used for removal is our dedicated van delivery. With this option we reserve an entire van for you alone, to transport all your items at once. You can contact our team of logistics experts, in 15 languages, by phone and email. We have already helped thousands of people relocate with ease and comfort.

When you are planning international removals to New Zealand it is vital that you know some basic info such what time it is and what currency you need for your payments. Let’s dive in the bare essentials for when you are relocating from the USA to New Zealand,
with the table below.

CapitalWellington is the capital of New Zealand. This city got its name due to the fact that its founder was the British Duke of Wellington. Home to 418.000 inhabitants, it is only outsized by Auckland, which is the biggest and most densely populated city of New Zealand.
TimezoneThere are 2 time-zones in New Zealand: UTC+12 and UTC+13.
CurrencyNew Zealand Dollar, also known as NZD or NZ$. The currency is also unofficially used in Fiji, New Caledonia, Zimbabwe, Samoa, and Tonga.
PopulationJust under 5 million, the number increases steadily year by year.
How do you call someone from New Zealand?The most common option is New Zealander. However, in informal situations, you may also refer to them as “Kiwi”.
Official languageNew Zealand has 3 official languages: English ( which is spoken by 99% of the people), Maori, which is spoken by the original inhabitants of New Zealand, and New Zealand sign language.
International dialing code+64
Emergency number111
DrivingOn the left side
TippingNot obligatory, but 10% for good service is common.
Unusual factAotearoa is the Maori name for New Zealand, meaning land of the big white cloud.

Living in New Zealand

For many people out there, living in New Zealand has been a lifetime wish. But even though it might be your dream location, not everything will be as idyllic as imagined. Let’s quickly have a look at the main differences:

  • Accent: Even though your English might be impeccable, you will still have a hard time understanding the specific New Zealand accent. On top of that, there is loads of NZ slang that is not used in any other English speaking country. Besides that, even the South island differs from the North Island.
  • Although the “Barefoot Bushman” (Rob Bredl) was from Australia, New Zealand is the actual leader when it comes to going barefoot. It’s common practice to go out to town without wearing any shoes. So, don’t be shocked when you see a shoeless person in the supermarket or a restaurant. They will be able to pay for themselves, they just don’t like wearing shoes.
  • The UV radiation in New Zealand is much higher than in many other countries, which is due to the hole in the ozone layer. The high UV radiation may lead to skin cancer (a disease that is diagnosed 67.000 times a year in NZ). So, whenever you go in the sun, use the proper protection, whether it be a hat, creme or anything else.
  • New Zealand wildlife is under constant threat of pests. Rats, stoats, and wasps are just a few examples of animals that are considered a threat in some areas. However, the most hated pest in New Zealand is the Possum. With over 30 million possums on the territory of New Zealand, it will be probably impossible to exterminate them, but New Zealanders will surely try.

Visa Regulations and work visa for New Zealand

Before you can try your luck, it is crucial to have the right visa for your stay in New Zealand. There multiple visas with different

Study Visa: When you want to study in New Zealand for more than 3 months, you need a student visa. These can be divided into two groups:

  • Visa less than 6 months
  • Visa’s more than 6 months

The kind of visa you can apply for depends on your age, nationality, and education. There are sponsored programs but there are also programs that allow working beside your education as well.

  • Work Visa: Just as with the student visas, there are several categories within this section as well. It starts with whether you already have a job offer or not. Your nationality and age also play a role. There are many different programs, the examples below are just to name a few.
  1. Skilled migrant program
  2. Long term skill shortage program
  3. Religious worker program
  4. Talent work visa
  • Permanent Visa: Permanent visas are usually issued after one or more temporary visas.
  • Join your family Visa: When you have family members already living in New Zealand it might be easier for you to get a visa. There is a whole `special range of visas when you want to join your children, parents or other family members.
  • Business/Investment Visa: To get a business visa for New Zealand you will need a minimum investment of NZ$100.000. But when you are an investor and you bring NZ$3 Million to the table, things will go a whole lot easier and you will be granted an investor visa.
  • There is also a working holiday program, where you can work odd jobs for a period of 6 to 12 months.



Healthcare in New Zealand

Private and public health care is top-notch in New Zealand, ranking as one of the best healthcare systems in the world. For which system you can apply depends on the status of your visa.

  • Public health care is funded by tax payments and gives free or heavy subsidized access to emergency and hospital treatment. Besides that, there is a whole range of other services that are free, including vaccinations, general medical tests, and many other things. However, it is only accessible if you have a permanent residence permit.
  • Private health care is the way to go when you don’t have a permanent residence permit. Get informed well about your status, because sometimes the employer will pay this for you. Though not cheap, its price compares well to other destinations such as the USA and Australia. You can also choose between international and national (NZ) coverage. It is also used by many natives to avoid the sometimes lengthy waiting lists in public health care.

School and education for New Zealanders

The education system in New Zealand can be split up in several phases.

  • Early Childhood Education (ECE): This can be compared with pre-school and a little under 97% of all children in New Zealand attends ECE. There are different kinds of structures for ECE, with some of them being led by teachers and some by parents. ECE ends at the age of 6 when school becomes compulsory.
  • Primary and Secondary school: This is the kind of school system that can be compared to most Western school systems. From 6-16 school is compulsory, but a child can start going to school aged 5. Primary school is from 5-12 years old and secondary from 13-17. For local school New Zealand uses zoning. This means that your child can automatically go to the school that belongs to your zone. When you want your child to attend a school outside your zone, you will have to apply and admittance depends on the result.
  • Technical and Vocational Education: There is a wide range of programmes to choose from such as the Technology, Trade, and many others.
  • University education: New Zealand has 8 universities, all of which are internationally recognized. They offer many different subjects and there are various scholarships available.

The job market in New Zealand

Before you start looking for a job, you should take into consideration that there is a fair chance that your salary in New Zealand is lower than that in your home country. This doesn’t have to be problematic, as the cost of living in New Zealand is probably lower as well.
The job market in New Zealand is quite competitive and it is not exactly easy to find a job. At the same time, you can find a job when you possess skills that are in demand, have a strong feeling of persistence and speak the local language.
You will have the best chances to find a job in Auckland or Wellington as no less than 90% of the population resides in those two cities. Unlike many other popular destinations for expats, New Zealand doesn’t have any fields that require huge amounts of foreign workers. Finding a job can, therefore, be difficult and time-consuming. So, here are a few tips to streamline the process of finding a job in New Zealand.

  • Slow but sure wins the race: Start your job-hunt well in advance and don’t give up. Like with everything in life, if you really want something there is always a way to get it.
  • Improve your skills before you leave: There are skilled migrant programmes in the fields of education, health care, and engineering. Finding a job and getting a proper visa will be a whole lot easier once you possess the skills that are in demand. A few other areas where it might be easier to find a job, are IT, science, forestry, and finance.
  • Check out the “New Kiwi” programmed, a government programme that helps people find job opportunities and prepare them for interviews in New Zealand.
  • When doing business, people tend to dress conservatively, which is in contrast with the overall relaxed lifestyle that most people in New Zealand adhere.

Property information for moving to New Zealand

Furnished apartments go for about NZ$40 p/m2 where unfurnished would cost you about NZ$30. Of course, it all depends on the exact location and the facilities. Auckland is by far the most expensive when it comes to rent and real estate prices, with Wellington coming not that far behind. Other cities such as Christchurch, Dunedin, and Hamilton are a bit cheaper and have similar price levels. Keep in mind that utility bills are not included in rental prices in New Zealand.

Cost of moving to New Zealand

When you decided to take the plunge to immigrate to NZ, you need to figure out what the cost of moving house to New Zealand is. Naturally, everything depends on where you come from. There is no such thing as an average moving costs New Zealand, as it all depends on distance, kind of transport (air or sea) and the number of goods you want to bring. However, Eurosender provides you with the cheapest way to move furniture to New Zealand. And that is not all, we help you ship everything up to 4.000 kg. So when you want to know: How much is shipping from the USA to New Zealand? Then use our online booking machine or, when your shipment exceeds the standard dimensions, as for an individual offer.

Cost of living in New Zealand

The cost of living in New Zealand is rather high compared to most countries in the world. You will spend the biggest chunk of your budget on rent. As lots of food is imported, grocery shopping can be an expensive hobby. Buy as much as you can local and buy in bulk when products are in season to easily save some money on food expenses. Don’t forget that when you don’t have a permanent residence yet, you also have to pay the insurance fees for private insurance. One of the things that compare favourably well globally is the car prices and the prices for public transport

Driving in New Zealand

Driving license
You can drive in New Zealand with your local driving license (when it is in English) or with an International Driving Permit (IDP, which is issued by your local driving authority) for 12 months. When your 12 months are up, you have 2 options. You can re-enter the country and you will have another 12 months, or you can get a driving license in New Zealand. When your local license is still valid (or has expired less than 12 months before) you can simply convert your license into a New Zealand license.

Road rules and tips

  • In New Zealand, people drive on the left. This is also something you have to take into consideration when you are thinking of taking a vehicle with you. Keep in mind that roundabouts also work the other way so you may feel a bit lost when you first enter one.
  • Due to the huge natural diversity, there are many routes and roads that can be a bit inconvenient to travel. Also, the duration of your trip may be a little longer than your navigator indicated. Due to all the twists and turns in the roads, one should also be careful when overtaking another car, as it might be unclear what is behind the corner.
  • Have your driving license present at all times.
  • Not all roads have asphalt. Be careful when you drive on a gravel or dirt road. Also be sure to bring a spare tire and have a healthy battery life on your cell phone, as it may take some time before someone else is taking the same path as you.
  • You may find a herd of sheep blocking or travelling the same road as you do. In that case, stay patient and be a gentleman.

See the most popular destination from where you can move


Many people are moving to New Zealand from Canada for a number of reasons:

  • New Zealand is much more compact and the distances different parts of the country much smaller
  • The weather by far not as extreme as in Canada with its harsh winters.
  • English is the main language in both countries
  • In New Zealand, people have the best work-life balance in the world

This list of benefits goes on and on. So when you are fascinated by this unique nation across the ocean, and you are thinking of moving to New Zealand from Canada, let Eurosender take care of your shipping. With our vast network of courier providers and our international experience, we know exactly how to get your possessions where you need them the most.



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Disclaimer: The materials provided in this article were collected from other credible resources to be used for general information purposes only. Given that the legislative basis of the country and its economic development have a changing nature, the information provided in the article could be subject to change. Whilst we endeavour to keep the information up-to-date and correct, Eurosender will not be liable for any inappropriate, incomplete, or inaccurate information. Certain links will lead to websites which are not under control of Eurosender. Thus, Eurosender accepts no liability in respect of materials, products or services being not under control of Eurosender.