Settling into Life in New Zealand

Settling into the “Kiwi” way of life will be challenging! Meeting new people will be key to your happiness once you arrive, there are many different ways to meet new people. Over the coming months there will be lots of different emotions you will be going through, firstly there is the fun aspect, visiting and exploring a whole new country and new people! Then comes the fright, the question in the back of your mind that will no doubt come; “Did I do the right thing?” Many flight at this point (head back to the UK) but it is important that you FIGHT!

By making a list of 5 reasons why you left your home country before you leave will help. Make the list, hide it somewhere and get it out on that rainy day when you are missing a good English cup of tea.

Make a list...This will remind you to fight for what you have created in NZ.
Make a list…This will remind you to fight for what you have created in NZ.

Here are a few more tips to make things easier for you when you first arrive:

Making Friends:

Building friendships in your new country will be important. The New Zealand people are some of the helpful and caring people you will ever meet. There is this saying in New Zealand that goes “Tato Tato” It simply means, what is mine is yours. Go on introduce your self to your neighbour ask them to borrow a lawn mower you will be surprised by the response!

Get involved in the local community that you live in, if you got kids get the kids involved in after school activities, join a fitness centre, follow up on that interest in Kayaking that you have always had, join a evening art class. You will soon find friendships forming, it won’t be instant but it will work.

Having a “Feed” (having dinner) and sharing food is a popular way of bringing people together in New Zealand. In these articles we don’t usually share our personal experiences but this time I believe it to be necessary:

“It was mid week in Auckland and we decided to head away camping for the weekend, we asked a relative where is a great get away spot, not too long a drive, just a few hours and near the coast, we were recommended Raglan a surfing spot on the west coast not to far from Hamilton. On the Friday we headed down there, on the Saturday we were sat in the park overlooking the bay minding our own business, a Maori couple approached us and asked if the spare seat on the bench was free, we said it was and they asked us if they could join us. We said it was fine, next thing we knew the whole tribe was around us! Brothers, sisters, cousins, aunts, uncles along with a whole load of food enough to feed the five thousand! We were invited to eat with them, not that we really had a choose but it didn’t matter! We spent the next 4 hours with them chatting about life, family and good times. We played frisbee on the lawn and had a blast. Everytime I think of the people and the culture of the NZ people I think of that occasion. Casual, fun, helpful, caring and sharing the good times, even if they are strangers!”

Working Life in New Zealand:

Socializing at work is also very important, celebrating someones birthday is a must and after work drinks are very common. As with any other social event keep talk about work to a minimum, for more information on working life in New Zealand check out our article here!

Organizations that can help:

Having some people to talk to and for them to understand what you are going through will help. There are support networks that can help you settle in and make friends as well as help with any practical issues that you may have.

You may also find that your partner or child may become home sick there are also organizations that can help there was well. To read more about how local community organisations can help you when you arrive click here!

We would love to hear about your struggles settling into New Zealand and how you over come them…please comment below!



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