Job Opportunities in New Zealand for International Students

Job Market for Foreign Students in New Zealand

With a stead economic growth of approx. 3% per year, New Zealand Job market has been strong over recent years. While Covid-19 has disrupted the economy and jobs across different sectors in the country, the government still hopes the workforce to grow at an annual rate of 1.8%, leading to 47,000 more workers per year in the near future.

Majority of jobs in highly-skilled occupations are expected to be filled by people from outside of New Zealand. Student visas in New Zealand let full-time international students work up to 20 hours per week during their academic year and up to 40 hours a week during holidays. The same applies to both tertiary and secondary school students. 

Postgraduate research and PhD students can work up to 40 hours a week throughout a given year.  However, it will depend on the programme of study one is pursuing at a university in New Zealand. All the information regarding one’s part-time work regulations will be mentioned in the student visa issued to the student. 

In case an international student is allowed to work while studying, they can work only as an employee. 

Also Read: Part-Time Jobs in New Zealand for International Students

How much will an International Student  in New Zealand be Paid?

An international student is paid a minimum wage of NZ$18.90 an hour, although one may earn more than this. He/she will also be paid for annual and public holidays, and for rest breaks.

Apply For New Zealand Work Permit Under the Guidance Of Visa Experts!

Does an International Student in New Zealand Need to Pay Tax?

An international student, like New Zealand residents, will have to pay tax on what they earn. The current tax rate is 10.5% if someone earns less than NZ$14,000 annually. Before anyone begins working, they would need to get an IRD number from New Zealand’s tax department, Inland Revenue for which they can apply online. 

How Can an International Student Find Part-time Work in New Zealand?

New Zealand offers a wide scope for international students to find part-time work in the country. This includes a good number of New  Zealand job websites such as Student Job Search, Seek, New Kiwis, Go With Tourism, Trade Me, Workhere, Do Good Jobs and more. 

The education provider may also help find work. However, the best way would be to talk to the university's student support services. 

Apart from that, it is best that students build relationships and network with professionals, develop their online presence and update their CVs and cover letters. 

Types of Work for an International Student in New Zealand

There are different kinds of work open to international students on a student visa in New Zealand. The most common of them are:

Casual work: Here one is not required to set work hours but works according to the needs of the employer. Also, the individual would be free to accept or decline the work offered.

Fixed-term agreements: This is the type of work where a set date is mentioned where the work will get over. 

Full-time and part-time employment: Full-time work usually means completing 35 to 40 hours a week and part-time work is fewer hours although both grant the same rights. A Master’s or PhD student can work for only up to 20 hours per week if they are on a student visa. 

Piece work: This type of work pays one for the number of ‘pieces’ they complete although he/she might still need to receive a minimum wage for every hour. 

Trial periods: Here, if the job is at a small to medium-sized organisation, then the employer may ask the employee to work for a trial period of up to 90 days. During this period they get paid and have the same rights as a full-time employee. 

Self-employment: Those on a student visa are not allowed to work for themselves. 

Also Read: Int’l Students Who Complete Higher Education Remotely Should Qualify for Post-Study Work Rights in New Zealand: NZ Tertiary Organisation

What Part-time Jobs Can an International Student in New Zealand Get?

Here is the list of part-time jobs that an international student is likely to get in New Zealand:

Retail Sales Assistant: He/she will be responsible to help customers choose products and take payment from them along with cleaning and stocking products in the store. Stores in New Zealand usually close by 6 pm. 

Seasonal Worker: Available in vineyards or orchards, seasonal workers harvest and prepare fruits and vegetables for sale. No specific skills are required to work as a seasonal worker in New Zealand. 

Supermarket Assistant: Usually students take up jobs at the supermarket to work on weekends or in the evenings. The job entails stacking shelves, working on the checkout, helping customers and more. 

Waiter/waitress: A lot of international students work in the hospitality industry to get easy money although there is no tipping culture in New Zealand. One may, nevertheless, be given a free meal during their shift. 

Kitchenhand: Kitchenhands wash dishes or do simple food preparation. Be prepared to work hard!

Bartender: Only if an international student is 18 or above, can he work as a bartender in New Zealand. He/she must also have good English communication skills who enjoys talking to strangers. 

Call Centre Worker: Most international students usually prefer taking up this job as it fits right around any academic schedule.

Working as Part of Studies in New Zealand

A lot of international students pursuing higher education in New Zealand find the opportunity to work as part of their studies which majorly includes a short internship. For the same, the student would require a permission from Immigration New Zealand. This will not affect any other work that one may already have. 

If the work as part of studies is not mentioned on the student visa, then it shall be obtained by applying to Immigration New Zealand. 

Jobs An International Student Cannot Do in New Zealand

As an international student in New Zealand, there are a few types of work that one will not be able to engage in. These are: 

  • Working for oneself. A foreign student in the country should be working for an employer and be participating as an employee. This means that the student cannot work as an independent contractor, establish their own business or company, or be self-employed.

  • A foreign student will also not be allowed to provide sexual services, run a business that offers sexual services or invest in one. 

Post-study Work Visa in New Zealand

For those international students in New Zealand who have a level 4 or higher qualification on the New Zealand Qualifications Framework (NZQF), then only they can apply for a post-study work visa. 

Based on the qualification that the student holds and from where he/she has pursued the qualification in New Zealand, they may be allowed to work in any field in New Zealand for around one to three years. 

It is advised that they check the eligibility criteria for the same, after meeting which they can apply online. 

Learn How to Find Post-Study Work Opportunities in New Zealand!

FAQs on Job Opportunities in New Zealand for International Students in 2022

Does the part-time work credit prove useful to an international student in New Zealand?

International students in New Zealand can apply for part-time jobs in the industry related to their course of study. This will help them in gaining ground level experience and an inside to the most minor and miniscule functions of their industry. While part-time job credit is not available in New Zealand, the grassroot-level experience can still help in deepening the impact on future recruiters.

What part-time jobs are available for international students in New Zealand?

There are a lot of part-time job options available for international students in New Zealand. These include Taxi Driving, Personal Driving, Sales Assistant, Tutor, HR Assistant, Receptionist, Babysitting, Personal Shopper, Beauty and Hair Consultant, Stylist, Medical Retail Sales, Client Services Assistant, etc.

Which are the highest paying part-time jobs in New Zealand?

The highest paying part-time jobs in New Zealand for international students include Freelancing, Furniture Sales, Driving, Receptionist, Tutoring, Assistant Administrator and HR Assistant or Coordinator. These jobs not only have selected applications but also offer comparatively higher wages.

Is part-time work income of international students taxable in New Zealand?

Yes, part-time work income of international students taxable in New Zealand. International students with an annual income from part-time jobs as less than NZD 14,000 are taxed at the rate of 10.5%. The students earning more shall be taxed as per normal tax slab rates. The students are required to apply for an IRD number from the Inland Revenue (New Zealand Tax Department) before they start working.

Is there a cap on maximum wages of a part-time international student in New Zealand?

No. There is no cap on maximum wages that international students can earn through their part-time job in New Zealand. There is a limit on working hours but none on income and hence, it is upon the student how much they earn during their week from their part-time job. It is so to ensure fairness for students with higher potential.

What is the minimum wage for an international student working part-time in New Zealand?

The minimum wage for international students working part-time in New Zealand is NZD 20 per hour. The students can negotiate their job opportunities at this rate and can demand easily over and above on the basis of their skill set, level and experience. The rate has been set to ensure secure working conditions and environment for international students.

How can an international student get a part-time job in New Zealand?

In order to bag a part-time job in New Zealand, international students can register on any job hunting site and upload their CV. They can also approach the institute's administration and apply for their help. The institute can help students to connect with reliable and secure sources of local part-time job industry. The student can also explore through newspapers or streets for random job hunting while looking for a part-time job in New Zealand.

How do part-time jobs benefit an international student in New Zealand?

Even though there are many provisions that can help the student cover varying expenses while studying in New Zealand, part-time jobs can help an international student cover entertainment and leisure expenses.

Do part-time jobs cover education or living expenses in New Zealand?

New Zealand has the provision of student allowance, scholarships and student living expenses loans and it hardly makes the student require part-time income to cover them. Moreover, the wages, in general, are not sufficient to cover the expensive education and/or living expenses. The part-time jobs in New Zealand can, however, allow students to experience financial independence to some extent.

Are international students allowed to work in New Zealand?

Yes, international students are allowed to work in New Zealand. They can work for 20 hours per week during their studies and for unlimited hours during their vacations.

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