Emigrate to New Zealand

⇒ New Zealand culture

⇒ Climate

⇒ Language

⇒ New Zealand School System

⇒ Health care system

⇒ Vaccinations and medical certificates

⇒ Tax system

⇒ Economy

⇒ Prices by index

⇒ Real estate

⇒ Company foundation

⇒ Visa

⇒ Safety

⇒ Back to overview Oceania ⇐

New Zealand culture

The culture of New Zealand is diverse and is shaped by a combination of Maori culture, European influences and modern developments. Here are some of the characteristics that distinguish the culture of New Zealand:

  1. Maori culture: Maori culture is an integral part of New Zealand’s identity. The Maori, the indigenous people of New Zealand, have their own rich cultural heritage, including the Te Reo Maori language, arts and crafts, songs (Waiata) and traditional dances (Kapa Haka). Maori culture and traditions are widespread in New Zealand and are maintained in schools, at events and in the community.
  2. Multiculturalism: In recent decades, New Zealand has developed an increasingly multicultural society. Immigrants from different parts of the world have contributed to the cultural diversity of the country. This is reflected in cuisine, music, art and everyday life.
  3. Sports: Sports are very important in New Zealand. Rugby, especially the All Blacks, New Zealand’s national rugby team, enjoy immense popularity. Cricket, soccer, rugby league and other sports are also widely played.
  4. Arts and creativity: New Zealand has a thriving arts and culture scene. The country has produced many talented artists, filmmakers, writers and musicians. The impressive natural scenery of New Zealand has inspired many artists.
  5. Close to nature: The breathtaking nature of New Zealand shapes the life and culture of the country. New Zealanders are proud of their landscapes, including mountains, beaches, forests and lakes. Outdoor activities such as hiking, skiing, surfing and fishing are very popular.
  6. Hospitality: New Zealanders are known for their hospitality and friendliness. The so-called “Kiwi spirit” refers to the laid-back, friendly and relaxed way of life of many New Zealanders.
  7. Traditional festivals and events: New Zealand has a variety of traditional festivals and events, including Waitangi Day (the national holiday), Matariki (the Maori New Year), and the New Zealand International Film Festival.
  8. Environmental awareness: New Zealand places great emphasis on environmental protection and sustainability. The uniqueness of New Zealand’s wildlife and plants, including the Kiwi bird and the national symbol, the Silver Fern, will be protected and preserved.

Climate

The climate in New Zealand is diverse and varies from subtropical regions in the north to temperate and subantarctic climates in the south. Its location in the southern hemisphere means that the seasons in New Zealand are opposite to those in Europe. Here is an overview of the different climate zones in New Zealand:

  1. Northern Regions (Northland, Auckland, Waikato): These regions in the north of the North Island have a subtropical climate with mild, wet winters and warm, humid summers. The average temperatures in summer are usually between 20°C and 30°C.
  2. Central regions (Wellington, Taranaki, Manawatu): Here, the climate is temperate with mild to warm summers and cool winters. Wellington, the capital, is known for its windy conditions.
  3. Southern regions (Canterbury, Otago, Southland): The south of the South Island has a temperate to sub-Antarctic climate with cool summers and cold winters. In the higher altitudes there is snow in winter.
  4. Highland regions (Central Otago, Fiordland): These areas have an alpine climate with cold winters and mild summers. Fiordland in the southwest of the South Island is one of the rainiest regions in the world.
  5. West Coast (West Coast): The West Coast of the South Island is known for its high rainfall. There is plenty of rain here throughout the year, which supports lush forests and rivers.
  6. Bay of Plenty: This region on the northeast coast of the North Island has a mild, sunny climate and is known for its long, sunny summers.
  7. New Zealand Alps: The Southern Alps run the length of the South Island and influence the climate of the entire region. In the alpine areas there are cold winters with snow, which can be all year round.

Language

The official languages of New Zealand are English and Maori. Here is some information about the languages spoken in New Zealand:

  1. English: English is the predominant language in New Zealand and is spoken by virtually all New Zealanders. New Zealand English has some regional variations and peculiarities in pronunciation and vocabulary that distinguish it from other English-speaking countries.
  2. Maori (Te Reo Maori): Maori is the language of the indigenous Maori people of New Zealand. Although English is more widely spoken, Maori is still an important cultural and historical language in New Zealand. In some parts of the country, there are efforts to preserve and promote the Maori language.
  3. New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL): NZSL is the sign language used by the deaf community in New Zealand. It has official language status and is used by thousands of people in New Zealand.
  4. Other languages: Due to the diversity of the population in New Zealand, many other languages are also spoken by immigrants and their descendants. This includes languages such as Samoan, Mandarin, Hindi, French and many others.

In New Zealand, great emphasis is placed on the preservation of Maori culture and the Maori language. Maori is widely used in schools, and efforts are underway to revive the language and promote its use in the broader society. Nevertheless, English is the most widespread and common language in New Zealand, especially in business and official contexts.

New Zealand School System

For emigrating to New Zealand with your family, the school system can be very important:

The school system in New Zealand is primarily public and based on the British education system. It is divided into several educational levels and offers students a wide range of educational opportunities. Here is an overview of the school system in New Zealand:

  1. Early Childhood Education (ECE): Early childhood education in New Zealand begins with day care centers (kindergartens) and preschools. This is for children ages 0-5 and focuses on learning through play and social development.
  2. Primary School: Primary education in New Zealand is for students aged about 5 to 12 and usually lasts six years. Students are taught math, English, science, social studies, art, physical education and more.
  3. Secondary School: Secondary education in New Zealand is for students aged about 13 to 18 and usually lasts six years. In the later years of secondary school, students can choose from a broader range of subjects and focus on their interests and strengths. The high school diploma is the National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA).
  4. Tertiary Education: After secondary school, students have the opportunity to enroll in tertiary educational institutions such as universities, technical colleges (polytechnics) and institutes of technology. New Zealand offers a wide range of fields of study for students seeking academic degrees.
  5. Māori Schools: There are also special Māori schools that focus on Maori culture and language and provide students with bilingual or immersion-based education.
  6. Private Schools: In addition to private schools, there are also many private schools in New Zealand that provide an alternative educational option. These schools charge tuition and often provide specialized education.

The school year in New Zealand starts in January or February and ends in November or December, depending on which part of the country you are in. There are four school semesters per year.

The education system in New Zealand is designed to foster students’ individual abilities and interests and to provide a diverse educational experience. Schooling is generally compulsory until the age of 16, although most students continue their schooling until the age of 18.

Healthcare system

The health care system in New Zealand is largely publicly funded and provides comprehensive health care to its citizens and legal residents. The health system is overseen and managed by the New Zealand Ministry of Health. Here are some important features of the health care system in New Zealand:

  1. Universal access: In New Zealand, all citizens and legal residents have access to basic health services, regardless of their income or social status. This includes doctor visits, hospitalizations, and many prescription medications.
  2. Primary Health Organizations (PHOs): Primary health care is coordinated through Primary Health Organizations (PHOs). These organizations manage networks of general practitioners (GPs) and provide basic medical care and preventive health services.
  3. Hospitals: New Zealand has a number of public hospitals operated by District Health Boards (DHBs). DHBs are responsible for providing health care in their respective counties.
  4. Fees: Patients treated in public hospitals typically pay low fees or no fees at all. Fees may apply for visits to primary care physicians, especially if the patient is not registered with a PHO.
  5. Insurance: Although there is a public health care system, some New Zealanders opt for private health insurance to gain access to additional health care services and shorter waiting times at public hospitals.
  6. Pharmaceuticals: The cost of many prescription drugs is partially or fully covered by the public health care system. Patients may have to pay a small fee for prescription medications.
  7. Health promotion and prevention: The healthcare system places great emphasis on health promotion and disease prevention. Healthy lifestyle education and early disease detection programs are offered.
  8. Mental Health Services: The New Zealand health system also provides mental health services, including counseling and support for people with mental health problems.

New Zealand has a high level of health and is internationally recognized for its quality health care and quality of life.

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Vaccinations and medical certificates

Certain vaccinations are required to emigrate to New Zealand, especially if you are applying for a visa.

Generally, the following vaccinations are often part of the immigration requirements for New Zealand:

  1. Tuberculosis (TB): People who come from or have lived in countries with a high risk of TB for more than three months may need to have a lung x-ray or tuberculosis skin test.
  2. Mumps, measles and rubella (MMR): MMR vaccination is often recommended for immigrants and long-term visa applicants.
  3. Diphtheria, Tetanus and Pertussis (DTaP): proof of vaccination protection against these diseases may be required.
  4. Polio: Proof of immunization against polio may be required.
  5. Hepatitis B: Proof of vaccination protection against hepatitis B may be required.
  6. Varicella (chickenpox): Varicella vaccination may be recommended for certain visa categories.

Tax system

The tax system in New Zealand is relatively simple and transparent. It finances the country’s public services and health and education systems. Here are some important features of the tax system in New Zealand:

  1. Income tax: Income tax is the main source of tax revenue in New Zealand. It is levied on the income of individuals and companies. The tax system is progressive, which means that people with higher incomes pay a higher tax rate.
  2. Goods and Services Tax (GST): The GST is an indirect consumption tax levied on most goods and services. Currently, the GST rate is 15 percent. Companies and individuals that reach more than a certain sales threshold are required to pay GST to the tax authorities.
  3. Capital gains tax: New Zealand does not levy capital gains tax on gains from the sale of personal property such as shares or real estate. However, there is an exception for gains from trading in real estate, if they are considered “Frequent sale of real estate”, then these gains may be taxable.
  4. Corporate tax: Corporate tax in New Zealand is currently a fixed rate. Companies pay taxes on their profits, and there are various tax rules and deductions that companies can take advantage of.
  5. Payment deadlines: taxpayers must file regular tax returns and pay taxes according to the deadlines established by the Inland Revenue Department (IRD).
  6. Social benefits: The tax system in New Zealand also funds a range of social benefits, including health care, education, and support payments such as pensions and unemployment benefits.

Tax tricks

In New Zealand, there are legal ways to optimize or minimize taxes. Here are some legal ways to save taxes in New Zealand:

  1. Use of tax benefits: New Zealand offers certain tax benefits and incentives for certain activities and investments. For example, there are incentives for research and development, investment in certain regions and the real estate market, and tax incentives for charities.
  2. Retirement Savings Plans (KiwiSaver): KiwiSaver is a retirement savings program in New Zealand that allows participants to put money into mutual funds. There are tax benefits for KiwiSaver contributions that encourage retirement savings.
  3. Tax deductions for the self-employed: Self-employed individuals can generally deduct certain business expenses from their income to reduce their tax burden.
  4. Tax-exempt income sources: In some cases, sources of income may be tax-exempt. For example, gains from the sale of personal property (except for frequent sales of real estate) are generally not taxable.
  5. Real Estate Tax Benefits: In New Zealand, there are tax benefits for certain types of real estate investments, such as renting out property. This may include the use of depreciation methods and other tax benefits.

Economy

The economy of New Zealand is stable and continues to develop. It is based on a mix of agricultural production, services, tourism and export-oriented industries. Here are some important features of the New Zealand economy:

  1. Agriculture: Agriculture plays a central role in the New Zealand economy. The country is known for the production of dairy products (especially milk powder and dairy products), meat (beef and lamb), fruits and vegetables. New Zealand agriculture is internationally respected for the quality of its products.
  2. Tourism: Tourism is an important industry in New Zealand. The country attracts millions of tourists every year who enjoy the breathtaking natural scenery, variety of outdoor activities and cultural attractions. The tourism sector provides jobs and contributes significantly to economic performance.
  3. Export-oriented industries: New Zealand exports a wide range of products to countries around the world. These include agricultural products, food and beverages, wood products, dairy products, meat, fish and seafood. China, Australia and the United States are important trading partners.
  4. Services sector: The services sector, which includes areas such as financial services, information technology, education and healthcare, plays a growing role in the New Zealand economy. Auckland is a major center for financial and business services.
  5. High technology and innovation: New Zealand is seeking to develop its capabilities in the areas of high technology and innovation. There is a growing community of startups and technology companies targeting global markets.
  6. Oil and gas production: New Zealand has limited reserves of oil and gas, which contribute to the country’s energy supply. The extraction of raw materials is an important industry.
  7. Trade: New Zealand has an open trade policy and is a member of trade agreements such as the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), which promotes trade with Asian and Pacific Rim countries.

Prices by index

Even in a stable economy like New Zealand’s, prices can change quickly during these times. We therefore refer you to the Cost of Living website, it updates its information regularly to keep you informed.

Real Estate

As an immigrant in New Zealand, you have the option to buy or rent property depending on your financial capabilities and preferences. New Zealand has a well-developed real estate market that allows both locals and foreigners to buy and rent property. Here is some important information about it:

  1. Buying property: As an immigrant, you can buy property in New Zealand, regardless of your citizenship. However, there are certain rules and procedures that you must follow. Foreign buyers usually need to submit an application to the Overseas Investment Office (OIO) if they want to buy certain types of real estate, such as agricultural land or residential land of more than 5 hectares. No special permits normally apply to the purchase of residential real estate in urban areas.
  2. Renting: If you don’t want to buy a property right away, there is also a wide range of rental properties available in New Zealand. Rental rates vary depending on the location and type of property. It is common to sign leases for one year, and rent is usually paid monthly.
  3. Costs when buying real estate: When buying a property in New Zealand, in addition to the purchase price, there are also additional costs, such as legal fees, fees for the real estate agent and, if applicable, the government transaction tax (Stamp Duty).
  4. Regional differences: Real estate prices and rental costs can vary greatly from region to region in New Zealand. Urban centers such as Auckland and Wellington tend to have higher property prices than rural areas.
Company foundation

As an immigrant in New Zealand, you have the option of starting a business or investing in an existing business. The New Zealand business environment is friendly to entrepreneurs, and there are several visa categories and programs that make it easier for immigrants to start or operate a business. Here is some important information about it:

  1. Business Plan: When applying for an entrepreneur or investor visa, you are usually required to submit a detailed business plan. This plan should include information about your proposed business, your investments, and your business goals.
  2. Company Formation: Incorporating a business in New Zealand is relatively simple and requires registering your company with the New Zealand Companies Office. There are different types of companies, including sole proprietorships, limited liability companies, and partnerships.
  3. Support: New Zealand offers support services for entrepreneurs and investors, including New Zealand Trade and Enterprise (NZTE), which provides business advice and training, and Business Mentors New Zealand, which connects startups with experienced mentors.
  4. Business environment: New Zealand has a good business environment with a low corruption rate and a stable economy. The country also offers access to regional and international markets.

Company forms

Immigrants in New Zealand have the option of setting up different types of businesses, depending on the requirements and goals of their business. Here are some common business forms available in New Zealand:

  1. Sole Proprietorship: A sole proprietorship is the simplest form of business in New Zealand. It is operated by an individual who is responsible for all business affairs. This form of business does not require complex registration procedures, and the owner is personally responsible for the debts and obligations of the company.
  2. Limited Liability Company (LLC): An LLC is one of the most common business forms in New Zealand. It offers the advantage of limited liability, which means that the owners (shareholders) are generally not personally liable for the debts of the company. The formation of an LLC requires registration with the Companies Office and compliance with certain legal requirements.
  3. Partnership (Partnership): A partnership is a business operated by two or more people. Each partner is personally responsible for the debts and obligations of the company. It is advisable to draw up a partnership agreement to clarify the rights and obligations of the partners.
  4. Limited Partnership: A limited partnership is a special type of partnership in which there are both general partners (who have full liability) and limited partners (who have limited liability). This type of company is often suitable for investment and equity investments.
  5. Cooperative (Cooperative): A cooperative is a business that is operated collectively by its members. As a rule, each member has one vote, irrespective of its equity interest. Cooperatives are particularly widespread in New Zealand in agricultural and agriculture-related sectors.
Visa

There are several visa categories for emigrating to New Zealand, which vary depending on their individual circumstances, goals and qualifications. Here are some of the main immigrant visa categories for New Zealand:

  1. Skilled Migrant Category (SMC): This visa is for highly skilled professionals who wish to work in New Zealand. It is based on a point system that takes into account age, professional qualifications, work experience and other factors. To qualify, applicants typically must achieve a certain minimum point score.
  2. Entrepreneur Work Visa: This visa is for people who intend to start a new business in New Zealand or invest in an existing business. It usually requires the submission of a detailed business plan.
  3. Investor Visa: The Investor Visa is for people who intend to invest in New Zealand companies or funds. There are different classes of this visa, depending on the amount of investment.
  4. Family Category Visas: This visa category allows family members of New Zealand citizens or residents to live in New Zealand. This may include spouses, partners, children and other family members.
  5. Work Visas: There are several types of work visas, including the Essential Skills Visa for skilled workers, the Post-Study Work Visa for graduates of New Zealand educational institutions, and the Silver Fern Job Search Visa for young professionals.
  6. Resident Visa: The Resident Visa allows immigrants to live and work permanently in New Zealand. This can be achieved in a number of ways, including the Skilled Migrant Resident Visa and the Investor Plus Resident Visa.
  7. Refugee and Humanitarian Visas: This visa category is for refugees and asylum seekers seeking protection in New Zealand.
  8. Parent Retirement Category Visas: This visa category allows parents of New Zealand citizens or residents to live in New Zealand if they meet certain financial requirements.
Security in the country

New Zealand is generally considered one of the safest countries in the world. The crime rate in New Zealand is relatively low compared to many other countries, and the country offers a high quality of life and a well-developed social infrastructure. Here are some reasons why New Zealand is considered safe:

  1. Low crime rate: New Zealand has a low crime rate compared to many other countries. Serious crimes are rare, and the likelihood of being a victim of violent crime is low.
  2. Stable political environment: New Zealand has a stable democratic government and political environment. The country is often praised for its political stability and rule of law.
  3. Natural Security: Due to its geographic location, secluded from most other countries, New Zealand is inherently protected from many global security threats.
  4. Environmentally friendly: New Zealand has a rich natural environment with breathtaking scenery and environmental protection is a high priority. The air and water quality are good, which contributes to the general health and safety of the population.
  5. Good health care: New Zealand has a high-quality healthcare system that promotes the health and well-being of the population.
  6. Low corruption: New Zealand has a low corruption rate and is often ranked as one of the least corrupt countries in the world.

Despite the general safety, official travel advice and warnings should be consulted before taking the step of emigrating. We refer here to the information of the Foreign Office: Safety Information New Zealand.

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