Visas to work

You’re likely to need a job or job offer to apply for one of our resident or temporary work visas.

If you have specialist skills or work in an area of skills shortage, and have a qualification that is comparable to those that New Zealand employers are used to, you’ll find that there are great career opportunities for you here. For more information visit the Work in NZ section, which covers skill shortage areas, industry profiles, tips on job hunting and more.

Work in NZ

Choosing the right visa

There may be a number of visas you are eligible to apply for – each with its own criteria and application process.

Resident visas

Residency status, from our point of view, indicates they're making a considered choice to move to New Zealand for the longer-term

Resident visas generally allow you to live and work in New Zealand indefinitely and access most publicly funded services.

The Skilled Migrant Category uses a points system based on factors such as age, work experience, your qualifications, and an offer of skilled employment to determine eligibility. 

Another option is the Residence from Work visa. Once you’ve held a Work to Residence visa for at least 24 months, you may be able to eligible to apply.

Skilled Migrant visa

Residence from work visa

Temporary visas

Temporary visas allow you to live and work in New Zealand for a set period time. Working temporarily can be used as a step towards gaining residence and settling here permanently.

There are a range of work visas for people that work in a profession that is experiencing skill shortages or have a job offer from a New Zealand employer.

The Working holiday visa is designed for young people, usually aged 18-30, this option lets you travel and work in New Zealand for up to 12 months, or 23 months if you’re from the UK.

Work visas 

Working holiday visa

Other visas

There are a number of other New Zealand visas available for specific situations. Visit Immigration New Zealand's website for the full list.

Find a visa | Immigration New Zealand

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Page last updated: 27/10/2014

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