New Zealand is a beautiful country with unlimited destinations and endless of different landscapes. It is also a relatively new country which houses people from all over the world. When I first thought of going to New Zealand I was still in school. I wanted to see the land of the hobbits and the remarkable sceneries that the kiwi country has to offer. I wanted to do this as a part of my trip around the world that I did in 2016, however, I was told that New Zealand was very expensive and that I should do this at another time. So after 5 months in Australia, the Philippines and Bali I went back to tiny Denmark and started planning my trip to New Zealand. But I wasn’t just going to travel the country: I wanted the full kiwi experience New Zealand. Therefore I applied for a working holiday visa and not long after I was on my way!
After a couple of weeks in New Zealand I got a job in Milford Sound where I settled down for the rest of the season. The job was at Milford Sound Lodge where I was doing housekeeping and working in the café, PioPio. Getting a job in a sweet location wasn’t the only pro about this job; on top of that my colleagues and I got a lot of cruises and other activities around the area for free and we got discounts for accommodation, discounts at outdoor stores etc., and if the lucky ones even got a scenic flight or a helicopter trip with glacier landing free of charge. What I didn’t know when I started the job was the best part of it all: I was going to get a new family.
Getting a working holiday visa in New Zealand is one of the best things I’ve done and I feel like I have definitely gotten the full kiwi experience. I wouldn’t change it for a thing!
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So why should you get a working holiday visa for KIWI Experience New Zealand?
Well first of all you should get it because you wanna experience this amazing country and you don’t just wanna experience some of it – you want all of it. Second of all being on a working holiday visa is waaaay different than just travelling around the country.
Here are a few reasons why:
- You will most likely meet more locals and get some great kiwi friends
- You will become very independent and learn to be on your own
- You don’t need to have a big saving account from back home since you will be working for a part (or most) of your trip
- You get to know and understand how another country’s tax- and bank system work
- You will soon realise that even if a country seems to be a lot like yours, it is nothing like it. Every country works differently and you only realise this if you are a part of another country than the one you call home.
- You will get friends for life who share the same passion as you: travelling!
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Your best friends in New Zealand:
There are a lot of websites, apps and discount cards that can make your trip easier, better and cheaper – you just gotta know them. So here are a few:
www.tripadvisor.com to figure out where to go (and where not to go)
www.bookme.co.nz to find discounts and get inspiration on where to go
www.grabone.co.nz to find discounts and get inspiration on where to go
www.trademe.co.nz to buy stuff second hand and avoid paying full price
www.metservice.com or your weather app on your phone to check out the weather forecast
www.hostelworld.com to find and compare places to stay (a good tip is to find a hostel on hostelworld and after that go to the hostels website since the price can be cheaper if you buy accommodation via the hostel itself – this happens rarely, but it does happen)
Campermate (app) to find campsites (including free ones) , gasstations, free wifi and much more.
The AA One Card to save on fuel (BP and Caltex) and groceries (Countdown). You can get the card at any of these stores.
New World Card to save on groceries in New World and to get the member discounts.
Your thumb! One of the best and easiest ways to save money in NZ is by hitch hiking.
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When is the best time to go?
If you wanna go on a working holiday visa the best thing to do is to go for a full year. If you don’t have 12 months you can spend overseas the best time to go is during the New Zealand summer (which is during the northern hemisphere’s winter – WIN). So if you wanna go for 6 months the best time to go is from the end of September/beginning of October to sometime in April/May. This is when the weather is best which makes this the high season (especially December to February/March). There will be more job opportunities, more travellers and warmer weather. However this is also when New Zealand is packed and when “everyone” else applies for jobs. Accommodation and activities are also more expensive at this point (the only thing more expensive in winter is fruit and vegetables. True story). If you choose to go during the kiwi summer you can apply for a seasonal job for example in Taupo, at the glaciers, in one of the sounds or even become a seasonal fruit picker! If you do wanna stay longer than just a summer season this is when you can apply for a winter season in Mount Ruapehu, Wanaka or Queenstown.
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What not to miss out on for a full KIWI experience New Zealand?
Mt Cook Village: A tiny town surrounded by the highest mountain(s) in the country
Clay Cliffs, Omarama: Be surrounded my fascinating limestones that are 2 million years old
Milford Sound: The unofficial 8th wonder of the world – do I need to say more?
Tongariro Crossing: The most popular day hike in New Zealand famous from LOTR!
Franz Josef Glacier and Fox Glacier: Beautiful glacier villages with the opportunity to heli over and walk on a glacier!
Raglan: One of the most popular surf locations in New Zealand with amazing waves in a hippie-like environment with cute cafés, good coffee and a lot of recycling (wuhuu!)
The Hobbiton: No need to explain 😉
So what are you waiting for? Get going!
Find out more about working holiday visa in New Zealand and apply for your visa here: https://www.immigration.govt.nz/new-zealand-visas/options/work
Here’s a beautiful video made about Kiwi experience New Zealand!
About the Traveler
My name is Josefine and I am a 22 year old girl from Denmark. I currently live in New Zealand where I have been for the past 6 months on a working holiday visa and I love it! Travelling is my biggest passion! I love meeting new people, learning about new cultures and seeing new places, and my goals in life are to see as much as possible and to inspire other people to do the same. Travelling is amazing because you get to see all of these wonderful places and you learn to be on your own and to make the world your home. I have basically been travelling on/off my entire life but I have been on the go since I graduated two years ago and so far I have been to 21 countries and 9 states (2 more coming up soon). Before I started travelling (in 2015) I had a really hard time but experiencing the world has made me happier than ever!
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