Things I wish someone had told me before I moved to New Zealand!


1 Dec 2021

It’s almost 7 years now, since I’ve been in New Zealand! Hey Bhagwan (Oh God), how am I still here? The first time I seriously asked my father if I can go overseas to study, he looked into my eyes and said “Are you ready to never come back home?”. I laughed and said, nah, I’ll obviously be back soon, but he knew better than me, still does (Ahh, miss him so much).

If you had asked me in 2014 how long am I going to NZ for I would have honestly responded to you as 2-3 years max! But look at me now, still here! Many people who came around the same time as me, went back to their countries. Not because they REALLY wanted to, but because, the job market is tight and not many employers want people with Work Visas, they want Residents, so they don’t have to worry about Visa trouble. I am super grateful and feel lucky that things worked how they did. 😊

Now, you maybe thinking

‘Why New Zealand and not anywhere else?’
To answer that question, there were a few factors but mainly because I had always wanted to travel overseas, I wanted to see the land in real life that I had seen in reel life in Lord of the Rings and also, partly because the person I was seeing at that time was in New Zealand. Well, that relationship didn’t last but my love for exploring this beautiful country only grew stronger! So, what are the things I wish someone had told me before I move to New Zealand?

First, be prepared to get a cultural shock. Even though you have seen many English films/series and you think you know things, you don’t! Well, that was the case with me. Even something so small like people holding hands in the Mall was bit much for me, ‘Wow! PDA (public display of affection)’ I would think. Coming for a conservative community where even a Husband and Wife won’t do that in front of the family, to here where people freely show love and affection, was a big jump. I still remember going to the beach for the first time and feeling so shy, just by looking at people in swimwear. Well, I have come long way from there.

Second and the most shocking for me, your rent is 33% of your salary. I did not anticipate so much living cost and it was shocking for me. I used to think your rent includes your groceries! Why would I think that? I don’t know, maybe because how could you pay so much only for a tiny room! There has to be other things included in it, right! Learnt the hard way, I was wrong and living costs are a constant money suckers.

Third, in most of the houses, there are NO LOCKS on doors inside the house! Not even on toilet and bathrooms! I REALLY struggled with this one, to be honest with you. Moving to a new country, living with people you have never met before and no locks anywhere. I learnt to have faith in people and just use the freaking toilet. Again, wasn’t used to it, got used to it.

Fourth, for finding a Part-Time job, do not just rely on job search websites like Seek, Trade me Jobs and Indeed, physically go to each store you want to work for and drop you CV. And just keep going, if you don’t hear back don’t loose hope and keep apply for more jobs. It will happen.

Fifth and SUPER important, make connection at University! Again, MAKE CONNECTIONS! This is going to help you out in the long run, finding internship opportunities, full-time work and making links in your relevant industries. Networking is the key!

Looking back at it 7 years feels like a lifetime now, lots of ups and downs, it’s been a crazy journey in context of people, places, and experiences. But it has brought me to this very moment in time, to write this, so YOU can read this and become a part of my life in an amazing way. So thanks for being here, I am super grateful.