Getting ready for your move to New Zealand? If you need more information before you leave then read our expat guide and find out how Barclays can help.




As of December 2015, the population of New Zealand is 4.4 million

Source: CIA World Factbook

Main languages

English (official) 89.8%, Maori (official) 3.5%, Samoan 2%, Hindi 1.6%, French 1.2%, Northern Chinese 1.2%, Yue 1%, Other or not stated 20.5%, New Zealand Sign Language (official)

Source: CIA World Factbook


Christian 44.3% (Catholic 11.6%, Anglican 10.8%, Presbyterian and Congregational 7.8%, Methodist, 2.4%, Pentecostal 1.8%, other 9.9%), Hindu 2.1%, Buddhist 1.4%, Maori Christian 1.3%, Islam 1.1%, other religion 1.4% (includes Judaism, Spiritualism and New Age religions, Baha'i, Asian religions other than Buddhism), no religion 38.5%, not stated or unidentified 8.2%, objected to answering 4.1%

Source: CIA World Factbook

Time zone

New Zealand's time zone is GMT +12:00

Popular employment sectors

Tourism is one of New Zealand's largest export industries, employing one in 11 Kiwis. It is second only to the dairy industry in terms of foreign exchange earnings.

Expats may also be interested in the sectors in which New Zealand has long and short-term skills shortages, as a qualification or experience in these may help your application for a visa. These include construction, healthcare, agriculture and forestry.

Source: New Zealand Now


If you’re moving to New Zealand, or if you plan to work, visit or study, you will need a visa. Each type of visa has a different application process – the easiest to obtain is a working holiday visa, which can possibly be extended, for under-30s.

Source: Immigration New Zealand

Political system

New Zealand's political system is a constitutional monarchy.

Source: New Zealand Government


230v Type 1 plugs (three flat pins, two in a v shape). Mostly renewable.

Source: CIA World Factbook


The currency of New Zealand is NZ$

International dialing code

The international dialing code for New Zealand is +64

Internet domain

The internet domain for New Zealand is

Social media

While more than 94% of Kiwis have accessed a social media site, Facebook is the most popular with 1.95 million users. LinkedIn follows a close second with 789,000 unique visitors. Twitter lags behind Tumblr in terms of popularity.

Source: comScore


The National Broadband Map shows the availability of Broadband services. Most residential areas have access to broadband via DSL.

Source: National Broadband Map

Mobile network coverage

Nearly all of the population is covered by mobile reception plus 3G mobile broadband, with 4G available widely in large cities.

Source: Ministry of Business, Innovation & Employment

Emergency numbers

The emergency number within New Zealand is 111


New Zealand has a comprehensive public health system which residents and many work visa holders moving here can take advantage of. Non-residents can also use healthcare services at a cost, but many take health insurance cover.

Source: New Zealand Now


Dress codes are usually relatively informal across New Zealand, and suited to extreme temperatures, depending on season. Business dress is conservative, although jackets can be removed and shirtsleeves rolled up.

Source: FourCorners


Tipping is rare in New Zealand – 10% in restaurants and round up the fare in taxis.

Source: Business Insider


New Zealand is multi-cultural and the food landscape reflects that, with many international cuisines on offer. Moving to New Zealand, you should be able to find most of the foods you are used to in the UK, plus many more Asian influences.

Source: New Zealand Travel and New Zealand Business

Education system

New Zealand follows a three-tier education system. School is mandatory from 6 years of age until 16. There are three types of school – state, state-integrated (such as faith, Steiner or Montessori schools) and private.

Source: New Zealand Now

Cost of private education

Around $20,000 per year.

Top universities

  1. University of Auckland
  2. University of Otago
  3. University of Canterbury
  4. Victoria University of Wellington
  5. Massey University


Cost of a nanny

An average hourly rate is around $15 and $20 in the provinces or $18 to $26 in Auckland.

Source: Kiwi Families

Family activities

A family pass to the cinema is around $50.

Source: New Zealand Now


Vehicles drive on the left. Cars must have a valid Warranty of Fitness, and, on older cars, this must be less than 6 months old. Cars also need registration tax, which can be obtained in a Post Office. Diesel cars also incur Road User Charges.

Source: NZ Transport Agency

Train ticket costs

Train connections are not comprehensive in New Zealand, but are also not expensive. Auckland to Wellington can cost from around $150 to $200.

Source: Rail New Zealand

Cost of a taxi journey

Taxi costs vary by city. In Auckland, a typical city-centre trip will cost $20 to $30.

Source: Taxi Fare Finder

Main airports

Auckland Airport; Christchurch Airport

Home insurance

Around $600p/a

Source: Housing New Zealand

Car insurance

Car insurance is not compulsory. Insurance costs are completely dependent on the value of the car and driving history of the individual.

Source: NZ Transport Agency [Word doc, 457KB]

Utility bills

One month for two people: $320 (in Auckland)

Source: Expatistan

National Insurance Contributions

When you live and work in the UK, you make National Insurance Contributions (NICS), which mean you’re entitled to claim a state pension at retirement and other benefits. If are moving to New Zealand, or abroad, and stop paying UK NICS, the amount of state pension and other benefits you can claim when you return to the UK could be affected. However, you can make voluntary payments to top up you contributions. There are two types of contribution that you can make, either Class 2 or Class 3.

Source: GOV.UK

The information above has been collated from a range of reputable sources. Some of the lifestyle information may be anecdotal or the opinion of the source and is therefore a guide only. If living abroad and planning to return to the UK, you may want to continue making National Insurance payments in the UK to contribute to a state pension. Visit for more information.

What's next?

If you are thinking of moving to New Zealand then Barclays can offer you the following services: Banking, Savings, Foreign Exchange and our Relationship service.

If you would like to discuss these services further, please call us on +44 (0)1624 684316*

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