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Honest experiences of NZ life

Honest experiences of NZ life

Old Jul 23rd 2016, 5:02 am
  #46  
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Default Re: Honest experiences of NZ life

Originally Posted by barnsleymat View Post
I think it's important to highlight the difference. I bet we spend at the very minimum $120 more a week on groceries here, over a year that's more than $6000, about the price of a trip for the 3 of us back to the UK to see family.

I'm going to call it the Cucumber Effect.
Not sure what you eat then! To my sorrow French camembert is $17 in New World so thats for high days and holidays, but balanced by good NZ wine half the price of Waitrose. Good meat is cheaper.
Yes one tends to eat in season but probably no harm in that. Free range eggs from our chooks, currently trying to eat all the citrus fruit off our trees (mid winter).....
We live well, but our food bills are no higher than UK/Europe though we use local brands other than Marmite, Yorkshire tea and Hobnobs :-)
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Old Jul 23rd 2016, 5:04 am
  #47  
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Default Re: Honest experiences of NZ life

Hard work at first as i came on my own. But then i met my partner and things got easier.

I'd say i've made 1 real friend in 6 years here. He is a kiwi who used to live in the uk so not like other kiwis. Other kiwis i work with are nice, but very hipster, and constantly trying to save the world with their left leaning views. Very cliquey. You're either like them and conform or an outsider. I like having few friends and didn't come here for the social scene so doesn't bother me.

Wellington is a bit claustrophobic. You can't survive without a car. Domestic travel is expensive, especially at short notice. Summers are nice if you head up North. Lots of places to see over both islands. Not so much keeping up with the Jones' in Welly which is good.

Money doesn't go as far as you'd like it to without budgeting and making some sacrifices. Food is expensive and so is power. Water metres in places too. Sky is abysmal. And sky sports is all rugby. Repeats on all the time on sky. Cars are cheap to run but rip off to buy.

Some nice restaurants in Welly - but i always prefer Auckland but can never live there as it's too expensive. Only proper city. CHCH is still charming to me despite quakes.

NZ is close to Aus. So if you plan you can get a cheap flight or 2 and see some proper cities

But NZ is safe and comfortable. Something many places can't claim to be right now
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Old Jul 23rd 2016, 5:18 am
  #48  
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Default Re: Honest experiences of NZ life

Originally Posted by Stormer999 View Post
I think I did say expensive on post #2 and OP read the post hence answer post #3 without having to go on endlessly about different food costs. High cost comes with low population density FACT ! that is why NZ post introduced YouShop !
I'd agree with you about the higher costs if stuff was 20%-40% more but so many things are well beyond that. Like paying 7 times as much for medication from the chemist here, hayfever season here costs me a small fortune, there's no reason other than price gauging.
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Old Jul 23rd 2016, 6:50 am
  #49  
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Default Re: Honest experiences of NZ life

Originally Posted by DennisBergkamp View Post
Hard work at first as i came on my own. But then i met my partner and things got easier.

I'd say i've made 1 real friend in 6 years here. He is a kiwi who used to live in the uk so not like other kiwis. Other kiwis i work with are nice, but very hipster, and constantly trying to save the world with their left leaning views. Very cliquey. You're either like them and conform or an outsider. I like having few friends and didn't come here for the social scene so doesn't bother me.

Wellington is a bit claustrophobic. You can't survive without a car. Domestic travel is expensive, especially at short notice. Summers are nice if you head up North. Lots of places to see over both islands. Not so much keeping up with the Jones' in Welly which is good.

Money doesn't go as far as you'd like it to without budgeting and making some sacrifices. Food is expensive and so is power. Water metres in places too. Sky is abysmal. And sky sports is all rugby. Repeats on all the time on sky. Cars are cheap to run but rip off to buy.

Some nice restaurants in Welly - but i always prefer Auckland but can never live there as it's too expensive. Only proper city. CHCH is still charming to me despite quakes.

NZ is close to Aus. So if you plan you can get a cheap flight or 2 and see some proper cities

But NZ is safe and comfortable. Something many places can't claim to be right now
And how much of a cost could you put on that for your wife and children...
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Old Jul 23rd 2016, 7:38 am
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Default Re: Honest experiences of NZ life

Originally Posted by garethwm View Post
I looked up the first 4 items on Matts list at Countdown NZ and Tesco UK, taking the cheapest price from each, then converting NZ dollars to pounds at todays exchange rate. Dozen eggs £1.82 NZ £1.75 UK, Milk per litre £0.82 NZ £0.44 UK, Can Heinz baked beans £1.03 NZ £0.75 UK, 24 330ml cans Heineken £20.8 NZ £18 UK. Remembering that the pound has tanked 20% since Brexit. 2 weeks ago the total prices of these goods would be even stevens.
Also, don't forget with brexit farmers subsidies will be changing/removed so who knows what's going to happen to food prices here in the UK!
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Old Jul 23rd 2016, 7:45 am
  #51  
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Default Re: Honest experiences of NZ life

Originally Posted by garethwm View Post
Sparklyfrog, just be aware that if a beachy lifestyle is an objective, then Wellington doesnt really meet that criteria compared to other places. Its a nice city but I dont think many would describe it as beachy. Maybe Auckland, Tauranga or Napier would better fit that bill.
I thought this too, unfortunately the jobs we are looking at are mainly focused around welling (govt) so thought it would be good base to start from.
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Old Jul 23rd 2016, 7:55 am
  #52  
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Default Re: Honest experiences of NZ life

Originally Posted by sparklyfrog View Post
Also, don't forget with brexit farmers subsidies will be changing/removed so who knows what's going to happen to food prices here in the UK!
The Common Agricultural Policy and the taxing of imports from outside the EU has made Europe's food prices some of the highest in the world.

So in theory Brexit "should" make food prices lower.
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Old Jul 23rd 2016, 7:59 am
  #53  
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Default Re: Honest experiences of NZ life

Originally Posted by Stormer999 View Post
Why why when someone comes onto this forum to ask for info do we always seem to get down to arguing about the price of blood cucumbers. If they are investigating a major move to NZ then I give them the credit of being able to google the price of vegetables.....
Thank you, yes I'm quite capable of finding comparable prices and working out a potential family budget

I am interested in people's personal perspectives and if that are the major issues then it doesn't bother me so much. Unless these are masking deeper seated concerns.....

The things that people seem to miss we don't do much of here anyway (and we're lefties! ) . And if beaches and hills become boring to me that will be a very sad day! Nothing is forever and we'll always make sure we have a back up plan if we decide it's no longer right and we want to come back.

And if my son and any future children want to move to another country to get a better life and improve their view of the world, well that will be their prerogative. Those that have this opportunity are very privileged!
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Old Jul 23rd 2016, 8:30 am
  #54  
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Default Re: Honest experiences of NZ life

I love NZ.
fire your questions at me
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Old Jul 23rd 2016, 8:34 am
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Default Re: Honest experiences of NZ life

Originally Posted by sparklyfrog View Post
What is a good/decent wage in your opinion?
we live in Canterbury. not in the city. earn single income of around $87k and we have to budget a lot. wages and living costs vary over the country.
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Old Jul 23rd 2016, 11:10 am
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Default Re: Honest experiences of NZ life

Originally Posted by Kotare View Post
Unpolluted by people and much more more freedom in all areas, but this also includes the right to fall off mountains, drown in beach rips and get lost in the untracked bush (I think Kiwis consider this 'evolution in action).

Want a lifestyle block with animals, grow your own fruit veg? Want to go fishing (incl trout/salmon), skiing, boating, hunting (all very expensive in Europe). Into sport? NZ is for you.

Good restaurants, but no pub or nightlife outside the cities and Kiwis don't seem to do things like dinner parties (very family centred). Backyard BBQ's seem to be the main activity but then I don't remember my neighbours in UK being that sociable.
This sounds perfect for us!!!!!!!!!
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Old Jul 23rd 2016, 11:43 am
  #57  
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Default Re: Honest experiences of NZ life

I love the honesty and reading people's experiences.... I cant wait to come over and I'm lucky (well in a certain respect) that I'm not close with any of my family and as ex army (also ex army brat) I can settle anywhere, a trait I have passed on to my kids. I also have My Drag.....mother in law over there (raglan) and has done for 13 years so my good lady wife will be closer to the only relative she has that's worthwhile. I currently live in the south east just outside Windsor and can only afford to rent council here, wasn't my choice to settle here just where the army spat me back out. we don't have many friends as I find people here quite unfriendly and defiantly not sociable so we function as a single family unit and on a finance front I've worked out (on in comings) I will be £600 a month better off on just my wages but I know the Mrs wants to work as well so we shall see.

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Old Jul 23rd 2016, 12:19 pm
  #58  
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Default Re: Honest experiences of NZ life

I see from previous post that the job you may be interviewed for is in Wellington so perhaps your research may best being focused on that area
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Old Jul 23rd 2016, 12:57 pm
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Default Re: Honest experiences of NZ life

We live in Tauranga and currently on a single wage of approx. $125k while the Mrs has a few more months maternity leave. I'm looking forward to her returning to casual part-time work, but she's not taking the hint yet! Will just take the pressure off that little bit more.
We earned a lot more in the UK so in the 4.5 years we've been here we've had to curtail our spending and adapt to life in NZ as it soon disappears. One major part of the cost of living is accommodation which is pretty high. We currently get away with $475 a week here in rent but we've also bought a section and are on the verge of building so not only are we paying rent, we are also paying a mortgage on a footie field size of grass. We are trying so hard to not waste our cash on anything we don't need.

Don't read heaps in to this very high cost of living thing for NZ. Yes, on the whole it is more expensive to live here - I'd say 10%/15% if you consider recommended prices, BUT if you adapt to it, are careful and shop in the sales or promotions, you can make it work and not have to spend a whole heap more.
It's like going back in time here for groceries etc. Where in the UK you can just get absolutely everything in one shop, here you have to adapt back to the old ways to make the money work so go to the supermarket for the majority of the shop but for the likes of meat, go to the local Mad Butcher and for fruit and veg go to a weekly fruit and veg market or get out in the country and visit a farm shop. They are heaps cheaper and the quality of the produce much better. You can even buy fruit and veg at the roadside from an honesty cart by driving around a few country roads as people sell their produce outside their properties. I picked a huge tubtrug full of Avocado's this morning from one of 8 of our trees to sell at $1 each. They go for $5 each in the supermarket at the moment so the bargains are out there for sure, you just have to get off your arse, stop moaning about the prices and go find the deals.
With us ready to build our own home here we have been pretty busy ordering all manner of new furniture, tv's, other electricals and crockery etc etc for our new home. We really thought it was going to be a nightmare and very very expensive but we have been so surprised that in fact it hasn't been like that at all. There is so much more choice than we thought there would be and prices have certainly dropped. Virtually everything we have bought has been in a sale or some promotion or other so we've saved thousands. Sony 60" LED Smart TV with wifi, apps n all that jazz $2k. A similar 43" one for the family room $500. A $6k top quality lounge suite for $2.5k. Huge quality TV unit for the lounge with a matching hallway table $1k.
That is the key to surviving here. Don't ever pay full price as you just don't need to.

Also, if you want to maintain life in NZ as you do in the UK, so for example going to the pub often, weekly visit to the cinema and/or ten pin bowling, you are going to pay big time as those pastimes are expensive here. Just me and the boy 1 game Ten Pin bowling costs like $30. Just me for an adult ticket in to the movies with a drink and the mandatory bag of minstrels is around the same.
NZ is all about the outdoors so embrace it as it's free. Get out and about walking/cycling the trails. Go to the beach. Have a tramp in the bush or up the hills. There is so much to see and do out and about and it costs very little or nothing. You will find that the local parks are just so inviting without vandalism or graffiti or anti-social teenagers so you'll find you pass your time going to places that doesn't cost you anything to go. From late Spring to late Autumn you will find plenty of weekly events in one of the many local parks - from a weekly market to a night owl cinema or food festival. They are great things to do of a weekend and either free or just a gold coin donation to get in ($1 or $2 coin).

Don't listen to the comparison reports of the weather/climate between somewhere in the UK against somewhere in NZ as being similar. It is rubbish as they simply aren't comparing apples with apples and unless you have the personal experience of it, take it with a pinch of salt. The weather and climate in NZ really is better here no matter what the reports or studies suggest. I live the majority of the year in shorts. Mainly September through to June. We get way more sun than I ever saw in the UK and days never have that dismal dreary grey depressing feel to it. It is way more humid up North Auckland/Tauranga and there is virtually no wind chill factor to worry about, even when standing on the beach as the wind is generally a Northerly so from the Pacific islands so is warm. Yes it rains often which is also warm, but on the whole it won't be for long and the sun is never far away & so much stronger here than the UK. Just going out to the park with the kids needs factor 50 on your bonce so you don't burn. Nearly a month in to Winter now and the lowest temp we've seen at home has been +5 degrees at 5am then mid teens by 9am. We've yet to have a frost this year. If we want snow we have to go and find it by driving down to Mt. Ruapehu to the ski fields and when we do it's usually warm enough on a clear sunny wind free day to snowboard in a t shirt.
Really can't recommend it enough here.
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Old Jul 23rd 2016, 7:12 pm
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Default Re: Honest experiences of NZ life

Key is to enjoy the outdoors and have money. If you're paying 500=600 per week on rent you need a very good weekly family income to have a comfortable lifestyle. Really research the cost of living would be my advice.
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