New Zealand, like Australia, is still one of the sought after countries for job seekers and South Africans wanting to leave South Africa. A safer environment, laid back lifestyle and political stability are the main drawcards and South Africans are prepared to take a cut in salary in order to get a position in New Zealand. However, the economic slowdown has meant that New Zealand jobs are not as abundant and locals are given preference for job openings.

Salaries in New Zealand

Depending on your sector of industry, New Zealand salaries may vary from NZ$4,000 to NZ$7,000 per month. In South African rands, that equates to a monthly salary of R20,000 to R35,000 considering an average exchange rate of 5:1. While this may seem like a pretty tidy amount of money, it is important to remember that the lifestyle you can afford in New Zealand is significantly different from South Africa. The tax rate is not as low as many South Africans are led to believe by emigration agencies and even though services like health care are free, if you want a better life, you will need to earn in excess of NZ$60,000 per year.

Visas for New Zealand

Previously, many South Africans would apply for a permanent residence visa and if they qualified, even without a job, they could relocate to New Zealand and settle down. As of 2010, New Zealand tightened its immigration criteria. If you don’t have a guaranteed job in New Zealand and if you do not qualify on the Long Term Short Skills List, then chances are that you will be unsuccessful when applying for a permanent residence visa under the Skilled Migrant category. You may qualify for a Work-To-Residence (WTR) visa which gives you 9 months to find a job before you are reassessed.

Finding A Job In New Zealand

Going through an agency is still your best bet for finding a job in New Zealand and you will have a better chance if you are prepared to take a position outside of Auckland. Hopping over to New Zealand for three months to find a job is not  an easy task – jobs are scarce and without the proper paperwork, most employers will not even consider you. When applying for a work visa, having a guaranteed job and the relevant qualifications is essential so if you do get offered a job, make sure that the offer will be seen as legitimate by the New Zealand authorities. It is also important to ensure that your qualifications are recognized by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority or your application will be in vain.

You can use some of the big employment websites in New Zealand, like Seek, to find a suitable job but read the fine print at the bottom of each job posting. You will most likely require a work visa before the employer will even consider your application.

Jobs in New Zealand for South Africans

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