Pros And Cons Of Moving To New Zealand – that will be the topic of today’s article.
Before introducing this article, if you are interested in our core services which are expat financial, insurance and mortgages, you can contact me here.
The best time to consider your financial situation is when you are moving to a new country.
There’s more to explore in New Zealand! It’s a popular expat destination, and those moving to the country will inevitably enjoy its benefits and drawbacks. That’s why expat moving to this country should prepare themselves for the reality of the transition to ensure that their stay in New Zealand is fulfilling.
In terms of natural scenery, New Zealand is one of the most beautiful countries in the world to live in. For such a small country, it has an amazing range of mountains, glaciers, landscapes, plains, deserts, and various coastlines. Also, the climate is a temperate one, and it rarely gets cold or too hot.
However, research made it known that the country has more sunshine than rain. While winters are warm on the North Island, the South Island can experience some snow. Meanwhile, New Zealand is one of the countries in the world where one could, theoretically, swim at the beach and ski down a mountain on the same day.
In addition, there are many reasons to move to New Zealand in today’s twenty-first century. You might be looking for education opportunities, a new job, or even a place to retire, guess what! You’re on the right track, as New Zealand is a popular destination for UK expats because it’s an English-speaking country with stunning natural scenery and relaxed culture.
And don’t forget, we have compiled this article to explain in detail about the concept of living in New Zealand. Not only that, but we will walk you through the pros and cons of living here as an expat. Are you considering living in New Zealand? If YES, we’ve got you covered with the right tips. Read further!
Expat Guide to New Zealand Way of Life
As we’ve always mentioned, living in a new country may seem somehow complicated. More so, living in this country means immersing in the friendly Kiwi and Maori ways while you enjoy the efficient and dynamic working culture. Have you been wondering what it is like to live in New Zealand? We, there are many pros and cons.
Aside from this fact, nature, weather, friendliness, extremely low crime rates, and many others are all positive aspects. Yet, expats need to be aware that relocating to the country has its downsides. Besides, the different time zone (GMT+12) can make it hard to keep in touch with loved ones in the country, and expensive long-distance flights will make it more difficult to visit you loved ones.
Again, you may also find driving to be different from what you are used to. This is because driving on the left side, tackling the narrow and winding roads in the country adds other layers of difficulty to your journeys. Anyway, this guide will help you decide if you need to exchange your current driver’s license or take a theory and practical driving test to get the right driving sense.
Talking about the New Zealander’s way of life, they enjoy a balanced lifestyle with great career opportunities and plenty of recreational activities. Not only that, but outdoor activities are abundant, including water sports, extreme sports, snow sports, and some of the most beautiful walks in the world.
Working as an Expats in New Zealand
It’s no doubt that New Zealand has a burgeoning economy, which creates an environment of work opportunities for expats. As of today, the country is at the forefront in many areas of information technology and biological and medical research, making employers recognize the importance of work-life balance in the country.
Relocating, as aforementioned, might be quite challenging. However, there’s a lot to learn about life in the country. These go well with their long White Mountains and fantastic creatures in the cities. Informal and relaxed, the locals have an open and friendly personality, making it easier for expat to work.
Besides, the country has no rigid class system, and its people uphold their belief in each person’s equal status. However, passports and visas are required to work in the country as expat. To understand this concept better, let’s quickly walk you through the top seven tips for expats in New Zealand.
- New Zealand is one of the popular expat destinations suitable for jobs and a relaxed lifestyle
- The country has a much milder climate than its neighbor Australia, and in the winter months, the temperature can drop below freezing level
- English is the main language spoken in New Zealand, but the use of slang can confuse new emigrants
- With just about 4.5 million inhabitants, New Zealand is a small country made up of two main islands. And there are also an estimated 31 million sheep in the country, nearly 10 for every human.
- The New Zealand currency is the New Zealand dollar, which is also known as the Kiwi dollar.
- The country has a low risk of global terrorism as with all destinations globally, but crime is generally low in major cities but can be a problem in popular areas.
7 interesting facts about New Zealand’s Culture
Before we dive into the pros and cons of moving to New Zealand, you must understand the interesting facts about their cultures and traditions. While culture is a very subjective term, most expat agree that culture is a melting pot of influence with various ancient founding histories. Culturally, New Zealand is known for its strong Maori heritage. But, let’s explore more!
1. Integral Maori Culture
I don’t think you can mention New Zealand as a country without stating the Maori culture. This is because; they are known as the original inhabitants of the ‘Land of The Long White Cloud.’ Aside from this fact, they are responsible for many of New Zealand’s culture and traditions, including folkways, dance, war dance, and their language is one of the country’s official languages.
2. A Prominent Rugby Culture
New Zealand’s culture is one of the most significant and prominent binding and divisive factors in the modern-day NZ game of Rugby. Although we all know the All Blacks as one nation but when it comes to domestic Rugby, there can be sworn rivalry between two regions that will almost cause blows in a pub.
3. Indigenous Cultural Foods are Delicious
One of the most common food that you’ll likely experience in New Zealand is Hangi food. This food is commonly done in an underground pit called an umu, and the Maori practice of cooking food is a complete cultural tradition. Meanwhile, the food is delicious because of its simplicity in allowing fresh and local ingredients to shine through.
4. Famous Diaries in the Country
We will tell you with confidence that we’ve not seen the equivalent of New Zealand’s dairies in any of our international travels. Perhaps, we can best describe it as little mom-and-pop businesses you’ll find on every other street corner; dairies are lifesavers for us, Kiwis. Moreover, they sell everything from freshly made milkshakes to handmade sausage rolls and delicious savoury pies. So, if you’re going on a trip through New Zealand, you can stop at a diary and load up at the beginning of your journey.
5. Kiwi Use Slangs
This is common among the inhabitants of New Zealand. Why some expats may argue that these slangs have nothing to do with culture, we’ll tell you that it has a greater advantage. This means, if you genuinely want to learn the language and culture of a place, it would be better to learn the slang first to sound like a native. Now, let’s quickly explore some of the language/slang in New Zealand.
- Chur, Bro: This slang in New Zealand simply means Thank You and bro in the Kiwi language. However, the ‘Bro’ here entails the kiwi’s equivalent of dude, unlike bro in other Western countries.
- Bob’s your Uncle: The Bob’s your Uncle is slang translated to ‘well, there you go.’ This phrase is also used in Britain and Ireland, and all parts of the Commonwealth countries.
- Choka: The choka is one of the simplest and common slang that means ‘full’ in the Kiwi’s language. And it’s the shortened version of the phrase ‘chock-a-block.’
- Eh in Kiwi: The Eh slang is probably the most used in New Zealand. On the flip side, it is pronounced as ‘Ay’ instead of ‘Ehh,’ and it’s a standard filler used at the end of a sentence. For instance, ‘you know you’ve gotta do this, eh.’
6. They Take Their Coffee Seriously
It’s no doubt that New Zealand takes their coffee seriously. Also, they have begun to take their coffee very seriously over the last few decades. While New Zealand does not grow its beans, it’s up there in terms of innovation. So, coffee is a massive part of the tradition of morning and afternoon tea.
7. New Zealand Has a Unique Wizard
Yes! In case you’re hearing this for the first time, New Zealand has its wizard. While originally born in England, Ian Brackenbury Channell moved to New Zealand and soon became a popular figure, especially in the city of Christchurch. Back to history, he’s an activist, comedian, and politician known as The Wizard of New Zealand or simply as The Wizard.
Pros and Cons of Moving to New Zealand
There are so many reasons to consider moving to a new country like New Zealand. Maybe you’re ready to retire, ready to look for a job, or even looking for a really exciting job; a home in this country can provide all of these and more. Meanwhile, you’ll need to consider the cons as well. Check it out now!
Low Cost of Living
Foreigners enjoy a high quality of life because of a relatively low cost of living. In New Zealand, housing and rent prices are much lower than in London and New York City. Of course, many things may seem more expensive in the country, but the locals and expats still enjoy living here. In summary, if you’ve been traveling to an expensive destination, life in New Zealand could give your wallet a break.
Expats Enjoy a Taste of Quiet Life
If you’ve ever been craving a quiet lifestyle, New Zealand is a peaceful country to explore. In this country, no one takes life too seriously, and a good work-life balance is encouraged. On the flip side, very few people are expected to work after hours in the country. Not only that but there’s less pressure to be successful in your field of work. And overall, you’ll enjoy a traffic-free and quiet city than in many other countries.
Plenty of Opportunities for Entrepreneurs
New Zealand’s economy is growing, and its market isn’t totally saturated by entrepreneurs; that is why you can explore new business ideas in the New Zealand market. In fact, it’s also a market that opens rooms for new restaurants, coffee shops, and many other business ideas in the country, to mention a few.
In addition, entrepreneurs will also find plenty of opportunities to start new businesses in the country. This is because; it has shortages of skilled workers in certain fields, including accountancy, healthcare, IT, manufacturing industry, and many others.
Easy Access to Bank Account
As an emigrant moving to New Zealand for the first time, you’ll always find it easy to open a bank account. In fact, you can even open an account from your home country, as long as you have the right documentation and the process to open a bank account before you arrive in the country.
Adequate Healthcare System
New Zealand healthcare systems are of high quality, and they are accessible to both locals and the emigrant. Aside from this, the standard of care is high, and non-residents can access healthcare, though they may have to pay a certain fee to use the healthcare facilities.
Top-Notch Educational System
If you’ve been looking for one of the best expat destinations for a top-notch educational system, look no further, as New Zealand remains one of the best in today’s digital world. Also, they are known for being some of the best in the world. Plus, for citizens and permanent residents, the educational system is free.
Excellent and Delicious Cuisines
Apparently, New Zealand is known for a few really great things; coffee and honey. Both are abundant in the country, and since importing food and goods can get expensive, there’s a real culture of eating what’s fresh, local, and in season. Not only that, but farm-to-table food is trendy in many countries, but in New Zealand, it’s known as a way of life.
Cons of Living in New Zealand
While there are many amazing benefits of living in New Zealand, expats should also consider the disadvantages. This is because; there are some reasons the country may not be the best fit for you, depending on your home country or other factors. Check out the cons as stated below.
Considered Pretty Isolated Nation
New Zealand isn’t a huge island, and it’s known to be far from nearly everything around the globe. Besides, if you relocated from the US, Canada, or the UK, you may be far from your family and friends and in a vastly different time zone. With that being said, you can feel lonely and isolated when you’re far from everything familiar.
Imported Goods Are Expensive
Unlike other countries where you can get imported goods for a fair price, New Zealand is totally different. This means a lot of goods, from electronics to clothes, will be imported, and buying these goods in local shops can be expensive. So, you may need to have it shipped from somewhere else in the world to get it at a reasonable price.
Non-Existent Public Transportation
It would be best if you always believed it when we tell you that public transportation in New Zealand does really not exist. As an expat, if you rely on public transportation to get around in the country, you may struggle. This is because; the railway system is just beginning to flourish, and the trains are slow.
Poor Housing Standards
As of today’s digital world, New Zealand has a reputation for poor housing standards. Surprisingly, if you purchase an older home in the country, then there is an excellent chance that you will need to spend some cash on insulation upgrades, installation of a heating system, and even better wiring in the house.
Skin Protection Is a Major Priority in New Zealand
If you’re moving to this country for the first time, you should understand that skin protection is needed. This is because; there’s a lot of sunshine waiting for you when living in New Zealand as an expat. Meanwhile, if you don’t like to wear sunblock, then you might enjoy an increased risk of developing skin cancer. This way, sunburns are more common when living in the country.
Expensive Dental Care in New Zealand
Of course, you can benefit from the universal healthcare system when living in New Zealand, but that does not include dental care. A basic check-up in the country might cost you much. So, if you come to the country to get your teeth clean, prepare for a high price and understand that dental insurance is separate in the country.
Mosquitoes and Sandflies Problem
Maybe it’s better to bring along mosquitoes protection while relocating to New Zealand because you’ll definitely experience one. Since you live in a temperate area where standing water is normal, there will be many mosquitoes and sand flies. In fact, many people say their country’s first summer is the worst and with this disadvantage they didn’t know what to do. So, prepare for this factor coming to New Zealand.
Best Places to Live in New Zealand as an Expat
Moving to New Zealand for many is a dream of making a life on Middle Earth comes to reality. While the country also boasts a low population density, there are many things to explore as an expat. Are you planning to move to the city but you don’t know the right destination? We’ve got you covered here!
Living in North Island (Auckland)
This is one of the best locations suitable for expats to live. Auckland is viewed as the economic capital of the country and is a favorite place meant for expat. With more than 1.6 million inhabitants, it’s the most attractive place for newcomers to settle in, despite the higher cost of living compared to other cities.
Living in Wellington (North Island)
As the potential center of the country, Wellington tends to have a more formal atmosphere. Still, with surrounding seas and hills, the benefits of living in this city cannot be overemphasized. Aside from this fact, Wellington is cheaper to live in than Auckland, and it also offers a quality lifestyle for expats.
Living in Hamilton (North Island)
Hamilton has about 170,000 inhabitants, and it’s an inland agglomeration that sits on the Waikato River. Traditionally an agricultural area, Hamilton is now diversifying, and its economy is thriving. This city is also home to a large student population; therefore expats moving to this city can expect a more reasonable price in food and transportation.
Living in Queenstown (South Island)
If you’re an expat wanting to consider constant adrenaline, Queenstown is one of the right places. Also, you’ll enjoy sky diving and other outdoor activities while living in this city. Therefore, it’s a better fit for expats who plan to live solo in the country. Besides, you’ll enjoy a great Bike festival and more.
Living in Dunedin (South Island)
Dunedin is also a coastal city, with about 131,000 residents as of today. Not only that, but it sits on the Otago Peninsula, walled by gorgeous hills and valleys around the world. Like most towns in this country, it is a place that’s perfectly picturesque. Again, it’s home to the oldest university with a UNESCO Creative City of Literature since 2014.
Are you thinking of moving to New Zealand as soon as possible? Getting your visa, saving money, and picking a place to land should be in your budget. We have compiled the pros and cons of living in New Zealand today. Nonetheless, you can check this platform for relevant updates regarding expat guides.