Immigration New Zealand and us
As you’ve might have guessed, we are not born and bred Kiwi’s. we originate from the UK and moved to New Zealand in 2004.
In all honesty we had a torrid time when we first arrived and made a number of very expensive mistakes. While the forums dedicated to New Zealand gave some very good advice, the contradictory views confused us. Some people raved about NZ and said how cheap it was compared to the UK. Others complained bitterly about how expensive it was in NZ. Then there’s the other websites that give advice. Some are good and genuinely want to help, others are looking to sell you high priced consulting. The official Immigration New Zealand website has some excellent information but the navigation is confusing to say the least.
We came to NZ on a 3 week fact finding holiday, expensive yes, but just about the best way of finding out about New Zealand. We loved it, and in the last week of our holiday actually bought a house in Browns Bay on the North Shore. (We’d sold ours in the UK and the money was sitting in a bank account). I know it sounds madness, but we were so excited about starting a new life in New Zealand that we just went for it. At this stage we hadn’t been accepted by Immigration New Zealand, but our consultant back in the UK said we had no problems. Trouble is, we did. Immigration New Zealand refused my application, and so we were stuck. No home in the UK and a beautiful home with a stunning sea view sitting empty in NZ.
We made the decision that I would wait in the UK (I was dealing with Immigration New Zealand in London at the time) and Barb and our 3 sons would go to NZ on a visitors visa. 3 months of wrangling, and a great deal of stress later, Immigration New Zealand granted us our residency, how is such a long story I won’t relate it here but enough to say we were bruised by the experience.
Since then we’ve had a number of dealings with Immigration New Zealand, most of the time Immigration New Zealand officer’s treat you with respect and compassion.
However, be prepared to meet the occasional ‘robot’ who shows neither compassion or common sense. On the whole we have to say Immigration New Zealand do an excellent job. Looking at the sheer numbers of people who wish to settle in NZ, the country would be swamped if Immigration New Zealand was less strict.
Now we absolutely love it here and wished we’d moved to New Zealand years ago. Was it worth the stress and thousands of pounds it took to achieve it? Absolutely, this was the view from my bedroom window a few weeks ago.
If you’re thinking of moving to NZ, whatever stage you are at, this is the best advice I can give you, don’t give up, be determined and follow your dreams, it’s tough but anything worthwhile usually is. Best of luck!