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Moving to New Zealand from South Africa

Costs, Lifestyle and Moving Checklist

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Whether you’re moving to New Zealand for the relaxed way of life or the amazing scenery, there are some things that you need to know. Read on for advice on visas, living costs, how to move and some tips.

Immigrating to New Zealand from South Africa

If you’re planning to relocate to New Zealand, you’ll be grateful to learn about the many reasons to live in this country. Its safety, stable political environment, high-quality education and work-life balance are only a few. However, one of the most important things to get sorted before is your visa.

Visas for New Zealand

As a South African, you can apply for a variety of visas. Find the most common ones in the table below:

Visa Basic Information
Accredited Employer Work Visa Temporary (5 Years). You must have a job offer with the demanding skills and experience for it.
Skilled Migrant Category Resident Visa Indefinitely. You must have a job offer with the demanding skills and experience for it.
Entrepreneur Resident Visa Indefinitely. You must be self-employed in your own business for at least 6 months or 2 years on another visa.

In addition to these work visas, there are some other visas that you can apply for:

  • Partner Visa: You must be in a genuine and stable relationship with your partner, and you must meet certain other requirements.
  • Parent Visa: Your child must be a New Zealand citizen or permanent resident, and you must meet certain other requirements.
  • Student Visa: You must have been accepted into a full-time course of study at a New Zealand educational institution, and you must be able to support yourself financially while you are here.

😲 To be eligible for a permanent resident visa, you must have held a resident visa for at least 24 months. For more information on visas and their criteria, visit the website of the New Zealand Visas Page.

Documents Needed for New Zealand Visa

Each visa can require different specific documents. However, in general, they include:

  • Passport
  • Visa application form
  • Proof of identity – birth certificate or passport
  • Financial proof – bank statement, letter of sponsorship, etc.

New Zealand Removal Companies

Are you searching for movers to New Zealand? You’re in the right place. Take a look at our page with the best international removal companies from South Africa to New Zealand.

Discover the top removal companies to New Zealand and compare their services.

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Living in New Zealand

It’s a good idea to know what living in New Zealand is like to avoid any culture shock when you get there. This section goes through what it is like to live in New Zealand and how to find work and housing.

Cost of living in New Zealand

According to Numbeo, living costs are 118% higher in New Zealand. This is due to the stronger New Zealand dollar, housing, transportation and leisure costs. Nevertheless, this is counteracted by much higher salaries and wages.

Below should give you an idea as to the difference in living costs:

Cost of Living in New Zealand vs South Africa

Item Average Price in South Africa Average Price in New Zealand
One Litre of Milk 12.94R 25.81R
Meal, Inexpensive Restaurant 120.00R 151.67R
Average Monthly Net Salary 16,315R 36,213R
Domestic Beer (0.5 litre bottle) 21.30R 50.88R

All of these prices were taken from Numbeo. If you want a better idea of how much your move may cost you, read our international moving costs page for more information.

Working in New Zealand

If you don’t have a job, then you won’t be able to apply for a work visa. So, that should be your top priority. Some sectors that have been labelled as having skills shortages, such as medicine, engineering, IT, construction and trades.

There are some good online portals to find work, for example, Seek or Traderme. However, to secure the job of your dreams, there are some things to consider. Emigration New Zealand has summed up some tips on how to apply for jobs in New Zealand.

Housing in New Zealand

Buying a house in New Zealand is relatively easy and is mostly done through estate agents. Despite it not being complicated, we still advise people planning on moving to New Zealand to first rent a place to live rather than buy.

For rental, you can expect around 16,950R for a one-bedroom apartment in the centre of Auckland, compared to 10,800R in Cape Town. Prices are higher, however, they do vary depending on size, quality and location.

Below are some good online portals to find places to rent:

For more advice on renting in New Zealand, justlanded has a page explaining more about rental costs in Auckland and Wellington.

Culture in New Zealand

The work-life balance in New Zealand is probably one of the things that drew you to thinking of moving to New Zealand. The country has a lot to offer: amazing landscapes, low crime rates, an abundance of jobs and the friendly Kiwis.

For more information on what New Zealand is like, this article explains what the New Zealand Culture is like. The New Zealand government website has a lot of information that you can use to get a better idea of what New Zealand is like. They also have an online planning tool to plan your move.

Things to Know About New Zealand Before Moving

This section goes through everything that you need to think about and prepare for when moving to New Zealand, even the things that you may not have thought of.

Cost of Moving to New Zealand from South Africa

Size of Household Time it takes to Move Cost of Move
1-bed flat 6-10 weeks 34,800R-59,200R
2-bed house 4-7 weeks 46,900R-78,200R
3-bed house 4-7 weeks 83,400R-137,200R

Above you can find the cost of moving to New Zealand via sea. Several factors influence the cost of your move: maybe you’re only moving a few boxes, some furniture or the entire contents of your home. If you need any more information on the costs of moving, read our container shipping prices page for tips and advice.

Discover the top removal companies to New Zealand and compare their services.

👉 Estimating the volume of your belongings will help you get a realistic price, saving you time and comparing accurate quotes!

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Cost of Moving Pets to New Zealand From South Africa

Moving a pet to New Zealand can range from 1,400 NZD to 2,000 NZD. This includes inspections made in the border clearance, veterinary and the inspectors themselves.

You’ll also be required to bring some documentation with you on the customs, such as evidence of the ownership, veterinary certificates and a permit to import the animal.

  • Evidence of ownership
  • Veterinary certificates
  • Permit to import the animal
  • ID Copy
  • Air Waybill – proof of the shipment

Read all the requirements in detail on Bringing pets and animals into NZ on the Customs Service or Travelling Pets to NZ on the Ministry for Primary Industries page.

Healthcare in New Zealand

If you’re planning on moving to another country, then making sure that your healthcare is covered is very important. New Zealand has both a public and private healthcare system and their standards of care are high. Under their public healthcare system, most services are free including standard medical tests, and children’s immunisations and most medication is subsidised by the government. However, some things aren’t covered by the government e.g. dental care and other non-emergency procedures.

Education in New Zealand

There are three types of schools: state-run, state-integrated and private schools. No matter which school you attend, it is compulsory from the ages of six until sixteen.

State-run schools are free for citizens and permanent residents of New Zealand. Between the ages of three and five, a child can go to Early Childhood Education (ECE) service after which they attend primary school from the age of five until twelve. Then from the age of thirteen to seventeen, children attend secondary school.

Education in New Zealand is regarded to be of a high quality, so it’s no wonder that attending university there is popular for international students. Some of the best universities in New Zealand include the University of Auckland, University of Otago and the University of Christchurch.

Moving to New Zealand Checklist

To summarise everything we talked about in this article, make sure to take into account the following things when moving to New Zealand:

  1. Gather the documents and apply for the necessary visa and permits.
  2. Find accommodation, temporary or permanent if possible.
  3. Plan your finances. Familiarize yourself with the living costs and think about your options when opening a New Zealand bank account.
  4. Ensure you have the right healthcare coverage. Even though New Zealand has a public healthcare system, you may want to be cautious.
  5. Hire a moving company to ship your belongings. You can request free quotes through our form.
  6. Learn about the culture to start immersing yourself in your new home!

Find out more about Moving to and settling in New Zealand from New Zealand’s Immigration page or our Moving Abroad page for tips.

Ready to Move to New Zealand?

Overall, we hope that this page has helped you become better informed about moving to New Zealand. Request quotes through Sirelo today to get started on your moving process. Keep scrolling to find out the FAQ section and other resources that may be helpful.

Frequently asked questions

What Is the Cost of Living in New Zealand?

What Can I Move to New Zealand?

What Furniture Can I Move to New Zealand?

How to Move to New Zealand From South Africa?

Do You Need a Visa for New Zealand?