When you arrive

Moving to a new country is a big change. Things will be different and it will take time to feel at home and know your way around.

Migrant stories

The Newman family, United Kingdom

Get involved in the community, and become part of your new country.

Read their story

Try to avoid big long-term commitments until you understand what is available, and what there is to choose from.

The planning you have done will reduce stress and make it easier to relax, and do some of the things you have been looking forward to.

Here are a few things you should do when you first arrive to help you settle in quickly.


Find schools for your children

If you have children, finding a good school and getting them settled in should be a priority. Early Childhood Education for younger children is optional but children aged 6-16 yrs must go to school.

Education & schooling


Get an IRD number

It is a good idea to apply for an IRD number as soon as you arrive so you are taxed at the right rate, right from when you start work.

About taxes in New Zealand


Continue looking for a job

If you are looking for a job once you arrive in New Zealand, check out our helpful tips. They can help you prepare for New Zealand workplaces and can make the process of finding a job easier.

Tips for success


Apply for a New Zealand driver's licence

You can generally drive in New Zealand on your overseas driver’s licence for the first 12 months but following this you will need to convert your license to a New Zealand driver’s licence. It's also important to get to know the New Zealand road rules if you plan on driving here.

Driving in New Zealand | NZTA


Find a doctor

Once you know where you will be living, you’ll need to find a doctor (General Practitioner - or GP) for you and your family. You will also need to enrol with the local Primary Health Organisation (PHO). Their contact details are listed on the health page for each region.




More information

For more information on things to do when you first arrive check out the Getting started section of this website.

Getting Started

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