The Expat Community In New Zealand

Due to the global economy and difficulty in obtaining a visa, the expat community in New Zealand is dwindling. The number of residence approvals have steadily declined since 2008.

New Visa Laws and the Expat Community

Since 2005, a few new and very specific visas have been introduced to foreigners living in New Zealand.
In 2010, a new visa was introduced to attract young workers with tertiary skills to New Zealand. The new Silver Fern Visa gives young people the opportunity to search for work in the country and even undertake temporary work, then move to a two year working visa once they secure a full time position.
Another visa was introduced in 2010 especially for retirees. The Silver Fern Visa makes it significantly easier for young, highly skilled workers to move to New Zealand, while the retirement visa makes it difficult for anyone but the independently wealthy to retire to New Zealand.
In the wake of a global economic crisis, New Zealand is taking steps to ensure that those moving to New Zealand can make a significant contribution to the economy. This means that retirees will be a part of an American expat community that consists largely of young adults just starting out in the workforce, or college students, with the occasional wealthy American expat retiree wealthy enough to make a significant investment in New Zealand’s economy.
New Zealand is an incredibly popular destination for American students studying abroad, and many expat communities tend to cater to students and other young people as a result.

Common Complaints in Expat Communities in New Zealand

Many expats complain about increasing racism and anti-immigration sentiment throughout New Zealand, particularly against immigrants of Asian descent. In fact, the problem is so widespread that it’s a common topic of discussion among the New Zealand Human Rights Commission.
Although language doesn’t pose a barrier, Americans may feel more comfortable reaching out to their expat community, especially as frustrations rise. As in any foreign country, expats often benefit from the comfort they’re afforded in communities that provide solidarity and understanding.
If you’re looking for an active expat community, consider joining groups like the American Club of New Zealand. The main mission of the American Club of New Zealand is to promote positive relations between Americans and New Zealanders. An expat community can help you with healthcare, taxes and housing options in New Zealand.