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Employment in New Zealand

Work while Studying:

International students enrolled in a three year programme of study are entitled to work up to 20 hours per week during the academic year. Students can work 40 hrs a week only during the summer holidays. The average wage for part time jobs is between NZ$ 9 – NZ$ 12 per hour.

Work Permit:

Under Immigration New Zealand’s Study to Work policy, international students who successfully complete at least three years of study in New Zealand may be eligible for a work visa and/or permit for up to three years following completion of their studies.

If you are offered a job relevant to your recent New Zealand qualification you can apply for a two-year work permit. Eligibility for the permit depends upon the whether your job qualifies for points under the Skilled Migrant Category of the New Zealand Immigration Residence Policy.

If the purpose of your employment in New Zealand is to meet the requirements for membership or registration within a professional association (i.e. the New Zealand Institute of Chartered Accountants) you are eligible for a three year work permit provided that:

• Membership or registration of an association is required in your field of employment
• The professional association or your employer can verify that your employment meets the requirements for registration or membership of the professional association.
• Your New Zealand qualification meets the requirements for registration or membership in the professional association.

You will need to apply for a work visa and/or permit within three months of expiry date of your student permit for the related course or qualification. If you are not offered a job after completing your qualification in New Zealand, you may be eligible for a Graduate Job Search work visa and/or permit. This permit is valid for up to 12 months. After securing a job, you can apply for a working permit for either two or three years, provided you meet the requirements of the Study to Work policy outlined above.

Eligibility for the Graduate Job Search work visa is dependent on you completing a New Zealand qualification in a field of work qualifying for points under the Skilled Migrant Category of the New Zealand immigration Residence Policy.