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Tips for Settling in NZ as a Migrant

Whether you’ve recently moved to New Zealand or are planning to do so in the future, it’s important to prepare for what lies ahead. Moving to a new country is a daunting experience and settling in is a journey that takes time.

25/02/20223 min read
Tips for Settling in NZ as a Migrant

Whether you’ve recently moved to New Zealand or are planning to do so in the future, it’s important to prepare for what lies ahead. Moving to a new country is a daunting experience and settling in is a journey that takes time. As licensed immigration advisers in NZ, we understand this challenge and are here to provide advice for NZ migrants. Follow our tips below for a smooth transition.

Finding your Home

Finding a comfortable place to settle down is the priority for new migrants in New Zealand. Most migrants start by renting a property. If you want to buy a home in New Zealand, you will need to be a resident or a citizen.

You can find rental properties online through Trade Me or local real estate agencies. Prices and availability vary in different areas of the country, so you’ll need to do a fair amount of research before settling on a property. When you find the right property for you, you will usually have to pay rent in advance and a bond.

Many different types of rental properties are available in New Zealand, including studio apartments, houses, townhouses, and units. Flat sharing, also known as “flatting,” is a popular option for young people; share a house with other people and split the rental costs with your flatmates. This is a great way to both save money and form new friendships.

Make sure you take legal advice before signing any documents, especially when buying a home.

Getting Job-Ready

If you are beginning your job search when you arrive in New Zealand, you can maximise your chances of success by taking advantage of local resources. Plenty of NZ programmes and organisations provide new migrant workers with employment assistance, advice, and support.

One of the most popular national programmes in New Zealand is “New Kiwis”—an online recruitment program designed for skilled migrants who have become residents. Funded by Immigration New Zealand, this programme connects new migrants with employers that require their skills. The programme also offers special courses that help migrants improve their job search skills.

“Work Connect” is another great programme that helps migrants prepare for their job search. Run by the Tertiary Education Commission (TEC), this programme offers workshops and one-on-one coaching to new job seekers in New Zealand. is also run by the TEC, and has everything you need to know about working in New Zealand.

The job search process in New Zealand can be time-consuming and frustrating, but it’s important to stay persistent and proactive. If you’re having trouble finding a job, be sure to write to (or visit) companies directly, even if they’re not advertising. This will show your positive attitude, determination, and initiative; NZ employers highly value these qualities.

Where to Meet People

Meeting new people and making friends is certainly one of the most daunting parts of moving to a new country. Fortunately, Kiwis are welcoming to new migrants, which makes this process easier. But where do you meet people?

The workplace is one of the first places where you’ll get to meet new people and form relationships. New Zealand workplaces are generally quite social and offer many opportunities for employees to socialise outside of work hours.

But it’s important not to limit yourself; the workplace is not the only place to meet people. Getting involved in newcomer networks, volunteering and fundraising events, community events, sports, and school activities is a great way to get to know people. The more you socialise with people, the quicker you will settle in.

Adapting to NZ Culture

New Zealand is a diverse nation, made up of people from all backgrounds and cultures. But generally, New Zealanders are laidback, open-minded, and welcoming individuals. The relaxed Kiwi mindset makes it easy for new migrants to adapt to life in New Zealand. A love of the outdoors and a passion for sport are staples of New Zealand's lifestyle & culture.

As you spend time in New Zealand, you’ll quickly realise the influence of Māori culture. Māori culture plays a significant role in everyday life in New Zealand, from the language to the local customs. Learning Māori phrases and greetings early on is a great way to familiarise yourself with the culture. You can also educate yourself by watching local NZ television, joining Te Reo classes (Māori language), visiting museums, and participating in Māori tourism experiences.

Need Advice? Get in Touch with Malcolm Pacific Immigration Today

Whether you need a temporary NZ work visa or general immigration advice, Malcolm Pacific Immigration is here to help. Our goal is to remove uncertainties and manage the process for you. Get in touch with us today for advice and support.

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Work Visa Categories Closing

The work visa categories set to close are:

  • Essential Skills Work Visa
  • Essential Skills Work Visa – approval in principle
  • Work to Residence (Talent – Accredited Employer)
  • Work to Residence (Long Term Skills Shortage)
  • Silver Fern Job Search Work Visa (closed October 2019)
  • Silver Fern Practical Experience Work Visa.
10 Feb 22

Policy Decision Key Dates in 2022

  • February 13. Fully vaccinated Kiwis plus certain other travellers entering NZ from the rest of the world* can skip MIQ.
  • April 30. The border starts a phased reopen to fully vaccinated foreign nationals.
  • April 30. The Productivity Commission reports back to the government on immigration settings.
  • May 9. Applications open for mandatory Employer Accreditation.

*Excludes high-risk countries.

16 Dec 21

Policy Decision Key Dates in 2022

  • July 4. Applications open for the new Accredited Employer Work Visa.
  • July 31. Applications for the 2021 Resident Visa close.
  • August. Skilled Migrant Residence category scheduled to reopen.
  • August. A new pathway to residence for people earning 200% or more of the median wage.

*Excludes high-risk countries.

16 Dec 21