Frequently Asked Questions About New Zealand
Can I extend the visa in New Zealand?
If you’re from Canada Ireland or the USA the working holiday visa cannot be extended. You can apply for a standard tourist visa to extend your stay but you will be unable to work with that visa. You can apply for a different work visa if your job/company is willing to sponsor you to stay. This type of visa is quite common and not too difficult to obtain if you’re planning to work outside of Auckland. There is also the option of a partner visa if you are dating a New Zealand citizen or a student visa is you wished to attend a university in the country.
If you’re from the UK you can apply for a second working holiday visa after completing a medical exam.
How much does the visa cost?
The working holiday scheme visa for New Zealand is $165 NZD for residents of Canada, Ireland, and the UK. The visa is free (online) for residents of the USA.
How long do I have to enter the country once my visa is granted?
You have an entire year from the date your visa is granted to enter the country.
How much is a flight?
Flight prices vary greatly depending on the departure and arrival cities, as well as the date of departure. Travel Hooligan will help you in finding the best flight available. We’ve seen flights range in price from $500 USD to £3000 GBP. Travel Hooligan also recommends a one way ticket or at the very least a flexible round trip ticket as your departure city and date to come back will almost certainly change once you’re in the country. You may even want hold off coming back so that you can hop across the Tasman Sea and start a second adventure in the country next door.
What type of jobs can I get?
Job options vary dramatically, and half the fun of the search process is that you never know where you will end up! We’ve met working holiday visa holders teaching kids to ski or snowboard, driving trucks at a mine, conducting surf lessons, doing accounting work, cooking in a restaurant, guiding multiple day treks, and everything in between. Try something new! There are endless opportunities for working holiday visa holders.
Do I need any vaccinations?
For travel to both Australia and New Zealand only the routine vaccines are recommended by the WHO. However, based on specific countries you may have visited in the past few years, Australia and New Zealand may request a medical exam or chest Xray before approval of a working holiday visa.
Do I need insurance?
There are a number of great insurance options available and Travel Hooligan can recommend what is best for your trip and help you through the process. Insurance for travel to New Zealand as it is a mandate on the visa application. New Zealand has a reciprocal health agreement with the UK so you’re covered. If you’re from Canada, Ireland or the USA you’ll need insurance. Keep in mind that New Zealand has accident and personal injury coverage free of charge to everyone currently residing in the country called the ACC (The Accident Compensation Corporation). You can find more information about that program at www.acc.co.nz
Can I leave and come back on the same visa?
Yes. The working holiday visa allows you to enter the country within 12 months from the date your application is approved, and then you are free to come and go until the expiry date of your visa, which is one year from the date of entry.
What is the weather like in New Zealand?
New Zealand has a temperate climate. While the far north has subtropical weather during the summer, inland alpine areas of the south island can be easily below freezing during the winter. Most of the country lies close to the coast, which means mild temperatures. The average New Zealand temperature decreases as you travel south. As a general rule, the summer is comfortable on the beach while the winter is chilly and great for skiing and snowboarding. Like all countries in the southern hemisphere, New Zealand’s seasons are opposite to those in the northern hemisphere. December to February is summer; March to May is fall/autumn; June to August is winter; and September to November is spring.
What is the cost of living?
The cost of living is very similar to Canada, Ireland, UK and USA. Cigarettes and alcohol are generally more expensive due to a higher tax rate than other goods.
Where can I live and how do I find a place?
There are a number of housing options throughout Australia and New Zealand and Travel Hooligan will help you with the process. Housing arrangements can actually be much easier to find in Australia and New Zealand than back home due to the fact that there are thousands of working holiday visa holders from all over the world looking for shared or temporary housing throughout these countries. There are ample opportunities for permanent housing, as well as communal hostels for those looking for a more social housing option.
What is the minimum wage?
The minimum wage in Australia is $17.70/hr AUD (Australian Dollars) and $15.25/hr NZD (New Zealand Dollars) in New Zealand. The website XE.com is very helpful in finding the up to date conversion rate.
Is it easy to find a job?
Jobs can be found in a number of different fields and all over each country. With Travel Hooligan, we’ll talk to you about your skills and work history and tailor our advice and directions so that you can find work as quickly as possible once you land.
How do I meet people when I’m there?
Meeting people during your working holiday visa is quite easy. Hostels are cheap accommodation scattered throughout both countries that provide dorm style rooms as well as private rooms, and their clientele are almost exclusively young foreign travelers. With common rooms, and shared dining areas, it’s hard not to meet other travelers and strike up friendly conversation. You can also meet new people at your new job or while traveling. The process is especially easy because you’ll notice in each country that you’re surrounded by like minded people looking for a great adventure in a new place to call home.
Do I need a job or job offer before I go?
No, it’s actually better if you arrive in Australia or New Zealand and then look for a job. Job options vary dramatically, and half the fun of the search process is that you never know where you will end up! We’ve met working holiday visa holders teaching kids to ski or snowboard, driving trucks at a mine, conducting surf lessons, doing accounting work, cooking in a restaurant, guiding multiple day treks, and everything in between. Try something new!
Is it easier to get a job before I leave?
It is not easier to find a job before you leave. The majority of the jobs available for those with the working holiday visa are temporary and staff are not hired very far in advance. The position may also require you to have an interview or trial in person.
Can I still apply if I’m 30, but will be 31 when I go?
Yes, you can apply up to the day before you turn 31 and you have one year to enter the country once the visa is approved.
Do I have to stay for 12 months?
Your visa is valid for 12 months from the date of entry. You can come and go as long as you would like until the expiry date of the visa.
Will I be able to save money while I’m there?
Short answer, yes. Obviously a budget is needed to save money, but with the minimum wage currently at $15.25/hr NZD, it is very possible to save money during your stay in New Zealand. Prices don’t differ much from the prices you’d encounter at home for most goods. Cities are more expensive to live in, as are popular tourist destinations such as Queenstown in the south island, but saving while living in even the most expensive locations is still very possible.
I’m going with my partner. Do we need separate visas or can we just apply for one?
Each person will need to apply for their own working holiday visa.
Is this visa like study abroad?
No. Study abroad is generally through a cooperative program with two universities, one of which is in your home country. A working holiday visa is available for those who want to travel and work abroad.
Can you use your visa from New Zealand in Australia and vice versa?
No. You need to apply for a separate working holiday visa for each country.
Is your fee refundable if I choose not to use the visa?
Unfortunately not. Our fee is non-refundable and we hope that you will take advantage of the working holiday visa as it is a great opportunity!