Kind to backpackers, drop dead gorgeous and with good job prospects. No, not our JENZA dating profile – but the reasons why you should do a New Zealand working holiday.
Age AND beauty. Brits can now work in NZ until they’re 35!
Home to giant-carved landscapes, laid-back surf beaches and arty cities, Aeoteroa (New Zealand) is a show stealer. And Kiwis know it (the people, not the birds). New Zealanders belong to one of the proudest nations in the world – fiercely protective over their environment, their Māori culture and their beloved rugby team. Inventors of the phrase 'too easy', they're also some of the friendliest to working holidaymakers – making it an all-round win for travellers wanting to build real ‘home away from home’ connections on their working holiday.
Need to know before you go
Where to go
When the travel gods were thinking ahead to #vanlife hashtags, they were thinking of New Zealand. Small and manageable but with scenery that will blow up your Insta, it’s our number one place in the world to roadtrip. On a straight run, you can see both the North and South Islands of New Zealand in around 6-8 weeks. Giving you the option to travel the country before settling down to do casual, career or trade jobs in Auckland, Christchurch, Wellington or Queenstown. Or buy a car, van or hop-on hop-off bus pass, and pick up casual and seasonal work on the go to fund your time out there.
What it pays
New Zealand has one of the highest minimum wages, currently NZD $22.70/hour. The cost of living can be high, especially in the cities. So if you’re needing to save, it’s a good idea to target seasonal fruit picking, vineyard or hospitality jobs – such as working in resorts, hotels, camp grounds and hostels as these often include subsidised staff accommodation. If you're looking to do professional or trade work, your earning potential will be much higher – especially as you can work for the same employer for the whole time and extend your visa to three years if you’re a UK passport holder.
When to go
New Zealand is the ultimate year rounder, with ski season winters and beach barbecue summers. The summer (Dec-Feb) is high season, bringing with it seasonal hospitality and tourism jobs to help with the crowds. By May, it’s gearing up for ski season (mid-Jun to Oct give or take on the conditions) with resort work on both islands selling out fast if you’re wanting to work in Queenstown, Wanaka, Mt Ruapehu or any of New Zealand’s 30+ ski resorts. Shoulder season (Mar-May, Sep-Nov) are great times to explore between jobs – with cheaper accommodation and fewer campervans on the roads and in the DOC (Department of Conservation) sites.