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Why South African Expats choose New Zealand

South Africans immigrating to New Zealand typically do so in search of a better quality of life for them and their family.

Why South African Expats Choose New Zealand

New Zealand is one of the world’s most peaceful, politically and economically stable countries in the world and what’s more; expats and migrants are welcome too!


An almost crime free and clean environment supported by a strong infrastructure means that the country is a great place for families and is considered one of the best nations within which to raise children.

Great quality of family life

Securing a better future for themselves and their children is one of the main reasons South Africans choose New Zealand says the governmental website www.newzealandnow.

“One of the most important things we [New Zealand]can offer families from South Africa is the luxury of feeling safe. Of course we have crime, but we’re also a remarkably tolerant and easy-going society.

“In fact, the 2015 Global Peace Index which compares 158 countries for the risk of personal violence rated us the world’s fourth safest country, just after Iceland, Denmark and Austria. South Africa came in 136th. We count ourselves very lucky.”

The website adds that the quality of education offered in New Zealand is another attraction for South African families.

“A 2015 OECD report ranked New Zealand one of the world’s top 20 countries for ‘Average performance on international student achievement tests’ (measuring 15 year olds' competence with maths and science). And all eight of New Zealand’s universities appeared in the top 500 QS World University Rankings 2015/16 (50% of them in the top 250).”
Healthcare and public services is also top notch.

South Africans enjoy New Zealand’s outdoors – although it takes some getting used to!
Like South Africa, New Zealand has a temperate climate which is very influenced by the seas that surround this large island. But being such a long and skinny country, the weather you can expect depends very much on where in New Zealand you are.

“The north is sub-tropical with temperatures probably very near to what you’re used to in South Africa but you can expect more rain than you are used to. In New Zealand’s south, it is cooler and many areas get winter snow and great skiing (although summertime temperatures in these parts can soar). The great mountains of the South Island also help ensure reliable rainfall and snowmelt for the hydroelectric plants that provide much of our energy,” explains www.newzealandnow

South African nature lovers do not have to sacrifice their love of the outdoors. New Zealand has lots of spectacular scenery including glorious sandy surf beaches, great native forests, snow-clad, mountains, lakes, rivers and fjords.

Because they’re all in a country less than a quarter the size of South Africa they’re easy to get to.

The housing issue

Most South African’s choose to rent property when they first arrive in the country while they plan to purchase a home.

In New Zealand the national median price for a house reached NZ$ 465,000 in August 2015 while median rent for a three-four bedroom house was around NZ$ 460 per week. Auckland is considerably more expensive while rural areas are much cheaper.

Cost of living

“As a general rule, the costs of living here are comparable to other western-style OECD countries. Some things will cost less than you’re used to, others (particularly items that have had to be imported from long distances) will cost more,” claims www.newzealandnow.

Career opportunities

The Kiwi government identified that in order for the country to grow skilled migrants, who can contribute to this growth, must be welcomed in to their society.

New Zealand is one of the only countries not affected by the global recession showing an annual growth of 3.3% at December 2014.

The country also boasts the fastest rate of expansion, and naturally more job opportunities, in six years. According to the New Zealand Treasury the country exhibited one of the strongest performances in the OECD while growth for 2015 is expected to be around 3%, falling back a little in 2016 and 2017.

In comparison, Statistics South Africa reported the Republic’s growth rate to June 2015 was 1.2%.

But New Zealand is looking for skilled, experienced and qualified migrants. South Africans normally find that their qualifications and experience are generally recognised and there are several areas of the country where the job market is particularly strong.

If your skills are among those covered by the New Zealand skill shortages lists posted by Immigration New Zealand, your chances of finding work (and getting a visa) will be better. Even if your occupation isn’t on the list, there are lots of opportunities in New Zealand for skilled migrants.

South Africans need a visa to work in New Zealand

South Africans must obtain a visa to be eligible to work in New Zealand it can be a complicated and time consuming process if you are inexperienced.


Inexperienced and unassisted applicants run the risk of having their applications rejected – sometimes for something as obvious as not completing the application correctly or failing to submit sufficient and correct supporting documents for this reason it is best to approach a recognized and accredited New Zealand Immigration Consultant.

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