Advice for moving to NZ - Page 3

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New Zealand Expat Forum for Expats Living in New Zealand Have you moved to New Zealand from another country? Or are you thinking about making New Zealand your new home? Want to meet others like you and discuss Real Estate, sport, socialising, food, cars, insurance, laws, taxes and anything related to New Zealand?

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Advice for moving to NZ - Page 3


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  #21 (permalink)  
Old 21st July 2010, 11:44 PM
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I think there's been some good balanced posts here. New Zealand isn't Utopia but it does have some wonderful benefits.

There is always a flip side to anywhere you live. Coming from the UK there just isn't the same amount of choice in food, clothing etc. I did find this quite hard to start with but in time accepted that there isn't as much choice because there are only just over 4 million people living here as compared to some 76 million in the UK. As I keep on saying in my posts a lot is down to supply & demand.

I have always found the medical system to be really good here. I recently went through something and I have to say they couldn't have helped me enough - I couldn't fault my GP and the excellent service of St Georges hospital in CHCH. I have regular blood tests and these generally are taken one day and I get the results the next (posted to my home!). This outstrips, in my opinion, any medical service I had in the UK (sorry can't speak for the US).

As for fitting in, it takes time - I agree with Top Cat that the Kiwi's and the Brits are more alike than the Kiwi's and the Americans. However even as a Brit coming to live here it is a different culture than that of the UK so I would envisage (having had many holidays to the US) that as an American you would find it a bit more of a culture shock.

In my humble opinion I do believe that Americans are a positive nation and very much promote themselves far more than a Brit or a Kiwi would. This might be seen as being 'too big for their boots', which for some, might have caused them not to have fitted in. Kiwi's (again in my humble opinion), are not show off'y people nor do they like to brag about something good they have done - so all of us foreigners with or different ways has been a culture shock to them and they probably are trying to protect the New Zealand that they remembered.

Having said that I do now have a wide circle of friends of all nationalities which is great and we all get on! You have to work at blending in, it does take time and I still, after 5 years of being here miss my friends and family, but I do feel now I have made some good friends here as well.

New Zealand could learn a lot from other cultures but it also still needs to protect its heritage as well. With more people choosing to migrate to New Zealand it will start to expand its culture (hopefully in a good way and not being taken over by us foreigners!).

So I guess what I am trying to say is come and try living in New Zealand and hopefully it will work out well for you & I for one do like Americans so you have at least you'll have 1 ally here :-)

Good luck

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  #22 (permalink)  
Old 27th December 2010, 06:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Kea View Post
2. Cost of living - be prepared to pay A LOT more for every day stuff. I'm also in IT, and I find that my salary doesn't go quite as far as it did in North America. Shoes, books and makeup/skin care is close to tripled in price. Food and groceries, gas... they still make me flinch. My husband and I averaged $200 a week at the supermarket before we started changing our shopping habits. We now go to a separate butcher, grocers, and supermarket and average $160 a week. Electricity bill for a 1 bedroom apartment averages $130 (summer) and $180 (winter) per month! Going to a movie costs $15.50 for adults, a tall latte and a muffin costs $9 at Starbucks, a Wendy's baconator meal costs around $12. An oil change costs $90. Although gas prices are higher, you'll probably end up driving a lot less. Wellington is tiny compared to Atlanta...you may experience more culture shock from moving to a smaller town than from actually moving to a different country. However, Wellington has its appeal. It's vibrant for it's size, and has the most amount of public art (and free museums/exhibits) I've ever seen in a city.
Kea: Thank you for a very informative post. It is exactly the kind of information I have been looking for. A good breakdown of the costs for basic needs. I guess the question I have is are your amounts in NZD, CAD, or USD?

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  #23 (permalink)  
Old 1st January 2011, 10:33 AM
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Originally Posted by Chris&Denise View Post
Have an open mind and come with a sense of adventure and you'll be fine. It is my personal opinion that living in one place all your life is like having a large wonderful book and reading just one page....
Why do people also say "Have an open mind and come with a sense of adventure..." when they really mean "Are you out of your mind! Come but be prepared to take some ****!"

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  #24 (permalink)  
Old 1st January 2011, 10:36 AM
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Originally Posted by stellachiara View Post
I have lived here for nearly a year. Don't do it.

1) It is cheap to live here on US dollars, it is expensive to live here in NZ dollars, particularly compared to the costs/wages we are used to in the US.

2) Tall poppy syndrome is rampant, and it's not just for people who have a superior attitude. It includes anyone who is energetic, outgoing, expressive, overtly happy, or thinks that improving the way things are done is a good thing. If you are not a quiet, introverted person who tends toward depression (and likes it that way), don't even try to live here.

3) Things here are of low quality, from the houses (which for reasons unknown are built without insulation) to the food you buy at the grocery to the appliances you buy at the homewares store. Things are expensive, and then they fall apart, and if you have a problem with that YOU will be considered the unreasonable one. The one place where NZ is absolutely superior to the US, though, is in its meat. Grass-fed beef on a regular basis -- awesome. I will miss that a lot.

4) I have never heard so many just plain wrong and ignorant things about the US as I have here, and I'm not just talking about uninformed private citizens, I'm talking about in the newspapers and editorials. The last two doozies I read was that McCain was the darling of the Republicans during the 2008 elections, and that liberals love to shop at Wal Mart. There is nothing wrong with not knowing things, but it is always delivered in a sneering fashion, usually pointing out how inferior and crazy America is. Really, really annoying.

5) There is a kind of low self-esteem/arrogance thing going on, where as a culture they feel inferior, but then they get mad and try to say they are superior. They are insecure about their place in the world and it sometimes gets in the way of having a simple interaction.

Overall, there is just an attitude of be quiet, don't cause trouble, don't try to puff yourself up by coming up with any new ideas, and if something goes wrong, it's probably your fault.

If you think you can live with that, by all means, move to New Zealand. But I am counting down the days until I can go home -- 56 days, 3 hours, 20 minutes and counting...
Can't agree more especially No.5.

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  #25 (permalink)  
Old 2nd January 2011, 04:44 AM
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Originally Posted by Gimme5 View Post
Why do people also say "Have an open mind and come with a sense of adventure..." when they really mean "Are you out of your mind! Come but be prepared to take some ****!"
Your interpretation, Gimme5. Not the interpretation i'd put on it at all....

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  #26 (permalink)  
Old 2nd January 2011, 08:20 PM
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Originally Posted by topcat83 View Post
Not a problem - Kiwis are very welcoming to most nationalities. However (and I'm sure we'd be the same if someone tried the same in our own countries) they don't take too kindly to people coming in and telling them that 'other countries do it better'.

Come with an open mind, play it cool when you first arrive and let the locals get to know you before you try and tell them what to do. They're much more likely to accept you then....

And I hope you'll find that crime and low education are not an issue. We certainly haven't found them to be a problem, and neither have any of our friends.
"Kiwis are very welcoming to most nationalities".

Care to enlighten which are the few nationalities Kiwis are not welcoming to?

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Old 2nd January 2011, 10:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Gimme5 View Post
"Kiwis are very welcoming to most nationalities".

Care to enlighten which are the few nationalities Kiwis are not welcoming to?
Methinks you're nit-picking, Gimme5. It's a figure of speech...

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  #28 (permalink)  
Old 3rd January 2011, 03:24 AM
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Methinks you're nit-picking, Gimme5. It's a figure of speech...
Just that I beg to differ on your assessment and since you're always saying how great it is that this country is so un-PC and you can say anything you want without worry that it might be taken the wrong way so thought I'll just give you the chance.

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  #29 (permalink)  
Old 3rd January 2011, 03:40 AM
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"Kiwis are very welcoming to most nationalities".
That is a very broad generalisation, it also depends on what you mean by "very welcoming. "

It does depend on where you go, who you associate with and how much money you're spending. I remember some places in NZ where I daren't speak for fear of giving away my non-Kiwi status

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