Jobs in New Zealand

Introduction: Who needs a visa to come to New Zealand?

Here is your ultimate guide to live, work or study in New Zealand. As a country that welcomes new migrants, New Zealand welcomes people who will contribute to their country by bringing valuable skills, businesses or who make financial investments.; however before we move in to that, it is important to understand who needs a visa to enter New Zealand.

Australian people do not need a visa to enter New Zealand.

Almost all people belonging to other nationalities (with a few exceptions) should obtain a valid visa prior to entering the country.

The Visa type you need varies depending on your intention and requirements. While the visa process for tourists may take a couple of days, the visa process for those who apply for residency may take longer.

Working holiday visa: requirements and application procedure:

However in the case of New Zealand, the working holiday visa program is restricted to young people (aged 18 to 30) from only 22 countries. So if you are a national of Argentina, Belgium, Canada, Chile, Czech, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Ireland, Italy, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, Malta, Mexico, Netherlands, Norway, Singapore, Sweden, Taiwan, Thailand, the United Kingdom or the United States, you are in luck!

However it is important to remember that there will be country specific requirements apart from the general requirements to fulfill when you apply for this visa type. For example, students from the U.S.A. can spend up to six months working in New Zealand and get in to any casual job as they please. On another level, the application procedure itself changes according to the country you belong to. For example if you are from Canada, Malaysia, Netherlands or Singapore you could apply for the visa at any NZIS branch in New Zealand. All other applicants should follow the respective procedures through their local high commissions.

Work visas and permits: Who needs them and how to apply?

Work visas are usually intended for people who seek temporary employment in New Zealand. However, this category is often mistaken by people who seek permanent residency. People who'd need work visas to New Zealand are all other nationals except Australians who are contract workers and similar short term employees. Obtaining a visa in this category can be a tough call since work visa is granted to foreigners only if there is sufficient proof to show that no New Zealand citizen or resident is able to fulfill the job requirements.

Furthermore, the application process will not start if you do not have a job firm offering you employment with evidence in writing. Once you have this vital document ready, you can begin the application process at NZIS, while you are inside New Zealand (in case, you have entered the country as a tourist etc.) or while you are abroad. Once you arrive in New Zealand after being granted the visa, your work permit will be handed over to you. However the down side of it is that the visa is restricted to that particular job for only a specified period of time. You will also probably have to spend a non-refundable fee of to for the application process.

Student Visa: Requirements for a student visa

Once you have been accepted by a university for a course of study, you will have to prove that you have sufficient finances to continue paying fees or you have already paid the course fee. They will also want to see that you have enough funds for maintenance. Usually this means to have at least disposable money per month. If your accommodation is set by the university the amount may go down to or so.

The financial stability however, can be proven through a sponsorship as well. Therefore, if you can present documents to support the idea that your expenses are being looked after by someone else living in New Zealand or abroad, you will still become eligible for a student visa. It is important to bear in mind that the student visa too is a temporary visa which is valid only as long as the course of study lasts. However, if you are requesting visas for a long term course such as a four year degree, you will be granted permission to work up to 15 hours a week or full time during vacation, to support yourself.

Once you are done with the course of study, if you are able to find employment under the specifications laid out by the government, you most certainly will be granted a work visa.

Categories of Residence: The New Zealand Immigration Program

Categories for residency within New Zealand can be broken down as follows:

  • Skilled/Business stream
  • Family sponsored stream
  • International/Humanitarian stream

Skilled/business stream is for professionals and entrepreneurs who would like to settle down in New Zealand for shorter periods of time. This category can be further broken down in to skilled migrant, business investor, Entrepreneur and Employee of a Relocating Business or as Residence from Work.

Family sponsor visas are eligible for immediate family members of New Zealand citizens while there is also another system called 'family quota' which can be applicable to relatives who will not qualify under any other category. It is important to bear in mind that these streams demand basic requirements such as good health and character certificates in order to accept applications.

The international and humanitarian stream is open for United Nation mandated refugees and asylum seekers who claim refuge status in New Zealand. According to the New Zealand government, the purpose of this stream is to fulfill New Zealand's obligations as a good international citizen. However, if you need further information on the procedure and the process, it is best to contact the New Zealand consulates or embassies or simply visit