New Zealand - Frequently Asked Questions

We collected the most frequently asked questions below

Q. What fees do Canstaff charge?

None, there are no charges or fees for any services provided by Canstaff.

Q.Do Canstaff offer Sponsorship/Job offers?

Yes, Canstaff operates a large contracting division and offers permanent contracts/sponsorships in many situations.

Q.Will my relocation costs be paid for by my employer in New Zealand?

No, unless your occupation is in a very specialised area. In most cases relocation costs are paid by the individual, ie flights, immigration etc.

Q.Do Canstaff have any Relocation Packages?

Yes, you can find out more information at this link Canstaff Relocation Package.

Included in this is the comprehensive Canstaff Orientation Package that will help make your move to New Zealand stress free and give you peace of mind.

Flights – Arranging flights via our Trusted Business Partner for Travel
Meet and Greet at the airport upon arrival and transfer to your accommodation
Suitable accommodation arranged
Finalising a bank account
Arranging a tax number
Tour around Christchurch City
Information Pack – Includes information regarding Support Organisations, Christchurch maps, transport, housing, brochures and much, much more.
Invite to the monthly Newcomer Networking Evening, which includes drinks and nibbles and a chance to meet up with other new arrivals.

Q.What does it cost to fly to NZ?

As these vary with seasonal fluctuations we are unable to give an exact cost. When a job offer is given, we provide contact details for our Trusted Business Partner in travel, as they are able to provide competitive, flexible flights, extra baggage allowance and free personalised assistance.

Q.How do I find accommodation?

We are able to assist with arranging initial accommodation, ie Digs, to help you get settled when you first land in Christchurch. This can be either part board or full board with a host. This means you are not having to find somewhere to live while settling in to a new city and work. You can decide with your host if you choose to stay long or short term. You are free to find your own accommodation if you wish to move on.

Q.How old can my Police Certificate be?

Your police certificate must be less than 6 months old.

Q.Can I bring my tools?

Depending on your trade you will need to provide your own tools ie. carpenters, joiners, plasterers, painters. You can either bring them with you, freight them, or alternatively you can buy them in New Zealand. A tool list is provided once a job offer is in place. Most tools are universal and can be used here, however with electrical tools you will need to buy a New Zealand adaptor.

Q.Can I buy a property in New Zealand, and if I do, will it entitle me to New Zealand residency?

As a non-resident, a person may buy property in New Zealand up to 1.25 hectares in area size. Over that size, Overseas Investment Commission approval must be obtained, before the purchase will be allowed. As a New Zealand resident, there are no restrictions on property purchases. Please note that the owning of property as an overseas citizen, does not entitle the owner to any exemptions for meeting residence policy. On its own, ownership of land in New Zealand does not qualify a person for residence.

Q.Immigrants - Where Have They Come From?

According to a recent census, about one in four residents of New Zealand was born overseas. The top ten countries represented in New Zealand's current immigrant population are:

  • England: 202,401*
  • China: 78,117
  • Australia: 62,634
  • Samoa: 50,649
  • India: 43,344
  • South Africa: 41,676
  • Fiji: 37,746
  • Scotland: 29,000*
  • Korea, Republic of: 28,806
  • Netherlands: 22,101
  • *British citizens consist of English, Scots, Welsh and Northern Irish. The New Zealand census form requests British people to enter their individual country of birth within the UK.

Q.Police Force

In general, the New Zealand Police Force is honest, free of corruption and enjoys a great deal of respect from ordinary New Zealanders. Police officers normally carry a baton but no fire-arms. Trained, armed response teams are available if needed.

Q.Population Density

As you might expect, New Zealand is hardly over-populated. There are currently about 16 people per square kilometre in New Zealand. By comparison, in terms of people per USA, 30; The Irish Republic, 54; UK, 252; India, 380; Japan, 335; The Netherlands, 490; South Korea, 490; and Singapore, 6669.

Q.Population Size

New Zealand’s population reached four million early in 2003 and in 2010 it reached 4.4 million. In 2017 it was estimated to be 4,829,330.

Q.How do I open a bank account in New Zealand?

You can, as a foreign national, open a bank account in New Zealand, and transfer funds in and out of the country, unimpeded by Government authorities. You will need to provide your passport, a second form of ID, ie drivers licence and confirmation of an address, in order to open the account. When a job offer is given, we provide contact details for our Trusted Business Partner in Banking.

Q.I don't know anyone in NZ, what to do?

There are a number of fun social activities that have been arranged by other new arrivals and we can provide contact details so you can meet up with them.

Q.Can I bring my dog?

Yes, however you must comply by the rules and regulations concerning the import of live animals. There is a mandatory quarantine period. Any costs involved are to be paid by the immigrant.

Q.Tell me more about Retirement in NZ.

By law, you can work to any age you want to in New Zealand. If you live here continuously for at least ten years, five of them after the age of 50, you get state superannuation at the age of 65. This is currently worth $357 per week after tax if you're single and living alone or $549 per week after tax for married couples. New Zealand Superannuation is maintained between 65% and 72.5% of average full-time net earnings. Any pension you get from an overseas government will probably be deducted from your NZ pension. If you're hoping for a more comfortable retirement than the state-pension provides, there is a government-run Kiwisaver scheme, there are plenty of private plans you can save with and many employers also offer contributory superannuation plans.


New Zealand is 12 hours ahead of GMT, so it is the first major country to greet the dawn of each new day. New Zealand's Chatham Islands, several hundred kilometres east of the South Island, are the first part of the country to be bathed in sunlight each morning.

Q.Do New Zealand employers take Workplace Health & Safety seriously?

New Zealand law aims to prevent harm to workers and others in places of work. It does this by setting out the responsibilities of all people involved in the workplace to make sure it is safe.

Employers are responsible for:

  • making sure their employees are safe at work
  • identifying all hazards in the workplace
  • eliminating, isolating or minimising their employees’ exposure to any hazards
  • having procedures for dealing with emergencies at work.

If you are an employee, you must not do anything at work that will harm yourself or other people. The Health and Safety in Employment Act 1992 governs safety in the workplace.

The Occupational Safety and Health Service of the Department of Labour can give you more information on health and safety in employment.

All New Zealand workplaces must have areas that are designated “smokefree” in which no smoking is allowed. These include shared space, such as lifts and reception areas. Some organisations have designated rooms or areas where people can go to smoke.

The Smoke-free Environments Act 1990 requires every employer to have a written policy on smoking in the workplace.

These policies are to be based on the principle that employees who do not smoke, or do not wish to smoke in the workplace, should be protected from exposure to tobacco smoke in the workplace.

Q.Immigration Guidelines regarding References for Self-Employed Applicants

If you are self-employed, you will need to provide contact details for two client referees you have done recent and relevant work for. You can also provide contact details for your Accountant as they can confirm the amount of time you have been self-employed.

When we have decided to move forward by offering you a contract, as part of the immigration process you will need to complete a Statutory Declaration stating you were self employed for ‘X’ amount of years doing ‘X Trade’. This will need to be witnessed & signed by an authorised person (a list of authorised people will be on the form). You do not need to do this now but you need to be aware of this for later on. You will be given further information and helped with this when the time arrives.