New Zealand Visa Guide

New Zealand is an incredibly interesting and diverse English-speaking destination for those seeking new cultural and work experience. Situated near Australia and the beautiful south pacific islands, it’s an island paradise with exciting cities, beautiful beaches, and some of the most distinct green landscapes in the world.

Unlike many other nations, New Zealand has an unbelievable amount of visa options for just about anyone. There are visas for every level of experience from any home state. Additionally, the government of New Zealand has created some new programs to help push innovation and business growth, meaning they’re looking for foreign professionals to help with their efforts now. There are plenty of companies hiring and sponsoring visas in New Zealand right now. Search job openings here.

Here we’ve compiled the top visas for professionals wanting to work and live in New Zealand. There are quite a few options to choose from. The greatest part is after two years generally of many of these visas, you are able to apply for full residency!

 

Skilled Migrant Resident Visa:

If you’re educated with some work experience and you’d like to add New Zealand to your resume, this is the option for you. You will need to first submit an Expression of Interest to be invited to apply. You can do this online. This visa is also on a points based system. After being invited, you must earn at least 160 points to qualify. Test your score here.

 

Here are the basic qualifications:

  • Find a job within 3 months (recommended to have a contract before)
  • Be under 55
  • Have a clean background check
  • Be in good health
  • Knowledge of the English language
  • Your job must be considered “skilled”: check here
  • You must have credentials for your skill and work experience

 

Process:

  1. Submit your Expression of Interest
  2. Receive an invitation to apply
  3. You send in an Application of Residence
  4. You hear back and plan your move

 

Once you’ve submitted an Expression of Interest online and it’s been approved, you will then be invited to apply for the visa. You will receive the form from the government after your approval. Then you can gather your documents to submit to an embassy.

 

Here is what you will submit during the process:

 

Once you’ve submitted all documentation, the process could take up to six months to completely process. You and your employer are able to check your status online at anytime.

 

Essential Skills Work Visa:

This visa means that your worker has advertised this job to New Zealanders for a period of time but you are the best candidate for the job. You will need a work contract prior to applying. You can search for open positions waiting to be taken in New Zealand here. This visa can be valid up to 5 years with extension depending on what position you take.

 

Here are the basic qualifications:

  • Find a job within 3 months (recommended to have a contract before)
  • Have a clean background check
  • Be in good health
  • Knowledge of the English language
  • You must be the best option ahead of New Zealanders for the job
  • You must have credentials for your skill and work experience
  • You may need to register your occupation

 

Process:

  1. Submit your Expression of Interest
  2. Receive an invitation to apply
  3. You send in an Application of Residence
  4. You hear back and plan your move

 

Once you’ve submitted an Expression of Interest online and it’s been approved, you will then be invited to apply for the visa. You will receive the form from the government after your approval. Your employer will submit the documents required on their end. Then you can gather your documents to submit to an embassy.

 

Here is what you will submit during the process:

 

Your employer will be required to submit other documents to prove that you were the best choice outside of New Zealand for the job. Once you’ve submitted all documentation, the process could take up to six months to completely process. You and your employer are able to check your status online using the same portal.

 

Long Term Skill Shortage Work Visa:

To apply for this visa, you must fill fill a occupation on the Skill Shortage list and have a job offer using that skill. The visa is for 30 months but once you’ve been in New Zealand for two years, you can apply for a residence visa, so it is possibly indefinite!

 

Here are the basic qualifications:

  • Find a job within 3 months (recommended to have a contract before)
  • Have a clean background check
  • Be in good health
  • Knowledge of the English language
  • Full fill a role on the Skills Shortage list
  • You must have credentials for your skill and work experience
  • You may need to register your occupation

 

Here is the process:

  1. Submit your Expression of Interest
  2. Receive an invitation to apply
  3. You send in an Application of Residence
  4. You hear back and plan your move

 

Once you’ve submitted an Expression of Interest online and it’s been approved, you will receive another application form from the government to fill out and turn in with the following documents. Your employer will submit the documents required on their end. Then you can gather your documents to submit to an embassy.

 

Here is what you will submit during the process:

 

Your employer will be required to submit an application and other documents to prove that your skills are required for their company and you are the best for the job. The more evidence, the better. This visa may take 6 months to process.

 

Silver Fern Job Search Work Visa:

This visa is for highly qualified recent graduates who want to develop their resumes through work experience in New Zealand. You must be between the ages of 20-35. You are able to come in to New Zealand without a job offer on this visa and search once you get there. Once you have a job, you are able to apply for residency later on. This visa is highly competitive. There are only 300 given out per year (2017 is filled) and you have 9 months to find a job once you arrive.

 

Here are the basic qualifications:

  • You must be between 20-35
  • Have a clean background check
  • Be in good health
  • Knowledge of the English language
  • You must have at least a Bachelor’s degree or two years trade experience
  • You must explain what your intentions are
  • You must prove financial stability
  • You must have enough to buy a ticket to leave
  • You may need to register your occupation

 

Here is the process:

  1. Submit your Expression of Interest
  2. Receive an invitation to apply
  3. You send in an Application of Residence
  4. You hear back and plan your move

 

Once you’ve submitted an Expression of Interest online and it’s been approved, you will receive another application form from the government to fill out and turn in with the following documents.

 

Here is what you will submit during the process:

 

This could take some time to process (up to 6 months) especially with a quota. Once approved, you will have 9 months to search for a job in New Zealand through which you can apply for a residence visa.

 

Entrepreneur Work Visa:

This visa is for anyone who plans on setting up a startup in New Zealand. There are two phases. First, if accepted, you will be given a 12 month visa. After this, once you prove you’ve established your business, you can apply for two years.

 

Here are the requirements:

  • $100,000 NZ investment
  • 120 or more points on the point evaluation
  • A clear business plan
  • A clean record of business fraud
  • Have a clean background check
  • Be in good health
  • Knowledge of the English language

 

Here is the process:

  1. Submit your Expression of Interest
  2. Receive an invitation to apply
  3. You send in an Application of Residence
  4. You hear back and plan your move

 

Once you’ve submitted an Expression of Interest online and it’s been approved, you will receive another application form from the government to fill out and turn in with the following documents. There may be more requested as your business plan and viability are analyzed.

 

Here is what you will submit during the process:

  • Valid passport
  • Your complete business plan
  • Personal and business financial statements
  • Any licenses required for your business
  • 2 passport sized photos
  • Copy of your qualification – qualify your skills here
  • Evidence of your work experience and education

 

This visa may take longer and require some more back and forth due to the analyzation of your business plan and finances. Visa processing is about 6 months. Once approved, you will be permitted to move and begin setting up your business before your check-in at the 12 month mark!

As you can see, New Zealand is quite open to foreign professionals enhancing their business environment. There are so many options for you to find work and a long term residence visa in New Zealand. The best way, of course, is to have an employer ahead of time to help you with the process and qualification. Search for companies hiring and sponsoring in New Zealand now.

 

Write your comment