Find the Best Visa for You: Living & Working in Aotearoa

With its pristine nature and chilled-out people, Aotearoa New Zealand is a sought-after destination for many globetrotters. In fact, many travellers fall so in love with this little antipodean country that they end up wanting to make a more permanent move.

The good news is that living and working in Aotearoa doesn’t have to be a pipe dream. The country is full of thriving expats who’ve successfully found jobs in New Zealand. However, there are some practicalities to consider before you go ahead with your New Zealand job search – not least your visa. Wanting to know what kind of visa you may be eligible for as a skilled worker? Keep on reading to learn more about the visa categories available in New Zealand, and you’ll be winging your way to the Land of the Long White Cloud in no time.

Skilled Migrant Category Resident Visa

The New Zealand government actively invites people with desired skills and qualifications to apply for this kind of visa. Skilled migrants take up technical New Zealand jobs which aren’t able to be staffed internally. Provided you’re 55 years or under, you could be able to live and work in New Zealand permanently and bring your partner and/or children along with you. All you need to do is send an Expression of Interest to New Zealand Immigration detailing your employment in NZ, work experience, and qualifications. To check that your skill is included under the Skilled Migrant category, check the NZ Immigration website.

Long Term Skill Shortage List Work Visa

Are you a construction project manager? A chemical engineer? A radiologist, psychiatrist, surgeon? Perhaps you work in IT, or in the electrical trade. If so, you’re in luck, because another pathway to NZ residence is offered by the Long Term Skill Shortage List Work Visa. You’ll need to already hold an offer of employment in the relevant occupation, but finding a job in New Zealand when you’ve got a sought-after skill won’t be a hard task. Once you’ve worked for two years in Aotearoa under the above visa, you’ll become eligible for the Long Term Skill Shortage List Resident Work Visa.

Talent (Accredited Employer) Work Visa

This visa category is for workers who may not qualify for the long term or skilled migrant categories, but who have been offered full-time work by an accredited employer. Your skill has to have been recognised as necessary by your employer, but once they vouch for you, you have every chance of acquiring this kind of hall-pass. Plus, work two years as a talent work visa holder, and you’ll become eligible for the Talent (Accredited Employer) Resident Visa.

Entrepreneur Resident Visa

If you’ve been working in your own business in New Zealand for at least six months, then you can apply for an Entrepreneur Resident Visa. It sounds as cool as it seems: if your application is granted, you can continue living in NZ indefinitely.

Living in New Zealand

Now that you know which visa category to apply under, and are choosing between jobs in New Zealand,  you’re sure to be thinking about how to settle in. And what better to get you excited about becoming an honorary Kiwi than to mention a few of the fantastic activities and entertainment options that NZ has to offer?

In terms of nature’s wonders, you’ll have the pick of New Zealand’s 15,000 kilometres of coastline, as well as its renowned national parks. Then there are the snow sports to be found in Queenstown, and the beautiful islands to sail around in the Hauraki Gulf. When it comes to entertainment, you’ll be able to enjoy Aotearoa’s many food festivals, cycle around the world-famous vineyards, try an adrenaline sport, or head to a local theatre to soak up some of the arts and culture. And the rest – well, the rest you’ll have to see for yourself!

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