Living in New Zealand

Life in New Zealand

Homestays

Living in a homestay means residing with a friendly New Zealand family in their home, where you’ll have your furnished room and meals provided. This arrangement offers a great chance to immerse yourself in New Zealand’s culture, improve your English skills through daily interactions, and experience the country’s way of life up close. Homestays provide a warm and supportive environment, helping you settle into your daily routine in New Zealand while building meaningful connections with local people.

Food

There are many options for eating and shopping in New Zealand.

Opening hours for local shops and shopping centres vary depending on where you live, but
most are open between 9:00am and 5:00pm, Monday to Friday; though you will be able to find
many open on the weekend as well.

If you’re after some groceries, most supermarkets in the major cities are open until at least
8:00pm every day. You can also find 24-hour convenience stores located in the cities, which are
open seven days a week.

  

New Zealand also offers an array of cuisines from around the world. Whether you prefer to go to
restaurants, takeaway shops, cafés, pubs or bars, you will find many options available in the
major cities to suit any budget.

New Zealand

Culture

New Zealand is a picturesque country consisting of two main islands – the North Island and the South Island. The majority of the population, over 90 percent, resides on the North Island, including the capital city, Wellington. Nestled in the Pacific Ocean, New Zealand’s landscape is incredibly diverse, featuring majestic mountains, winding rivers, vast plains, stunning coastlines, and expansive farmlands, providing a breathtaking backdrop for various lifestyle and leisure activities.

Population and cities

The nation, home to nearly 4.7 million people, is culturally rich, with two prominent groups: the Māori, descendants of Polynesian settlers, and people of European ancestry. More than half of the population lives in the four largest cities – Wellington, Auckland, Christchurch (located in the North Island), and Hamilton (in the South Island). New Zealand’s history is profoundly influenced by Māori, European, Pacific Island, and Asian cultures, creating a vibrant and multicultural community.

Weather

New Zealand is located in the Southern Hemisphere, making the seasons opposite to those living in the Northern Hemisphere

The weather seasons in New Zealand are:

Spring (September to November)

Winter (June to August)

Autumn (March to May)

Summer (December to February)

New Zealand

Weather

Regarding the weather, New Zealand experiences seasons opposite to those in the Northern Hemisphere. Summers (December to February) are warm, with daytime temperatures ranging from 16 to 25°C, while winters (June to August) are milder, averaging between 12 to 21°C. The climate varies, influenced by the country’s mountains and seas, and it’s advisable to be prepared for sudden weather changes, especially in the South Island’s alpine regions where temperatures can drop significantly.

New Zealand

Politics and Government

In terms of politics, New Zealand is a constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary system, being part of the British Commonwealth. The country holds general elections every three years, allowing the public to vote for their representatives in the House of Representatives.

New Zealand

Ethnicity and Religion

New Zealand is a melting pot of ethnicities, with the largest groups being New Zealand European, Māori, Chinese, Samoan, and Indian. The nation embraces a variety of religions, with Christianity being the predominant faith, although Hinduism, Buddhism, Islam, as well as indigenous Ringatū and Rātana practices, are also followed.

New Zealand

Indigenous People

The indigenous Māori people, known as ‘Tangata whenua’ (people of the land), have a deep-rooted connection with New Zealand’s heritage and culture. Māori is an official language alongside English, spoken by the indigenous community. New Zealanders, affectionately referred to as ‘kiwis,’ have a unique slang and accent, adding to the country’s distinctive cultural charm. Visitors often find the locals warm and welcoming, making it easy to connect and integrate into New Zealand’s diverse society.

Language and accents

As a former British colony, English is the main language of New Zealand and is spoken by 98
per cent of the population. Māori, is also an official language and is spoken by the indigenous
Māori people.

New Zealanders, or ‘kiwis’ as they are also known, have their own unique form of slang
language, so you’ll soon become familiar with words like ‘brekkie’ (breakfast), ‘cheers’ (thanks)
and ‘g’day’ (hello).

people in nz

New Zealand is a diverse country of many cultures, and home to migrants and international students from all over the world. Kiwis are easy going people by nature, and they embrace different lifestyles and opinions.

New Zealand is a diverse country of many cultures, and home to migrants and international students from all over the world. Kiwis are easy going people by nature, and they embrace different lifestyles and opinions.

All New Zealand schools and institutions abide by a Code of Practice for Pastoral Care that helps ensure the safety and well-being of their international students.