Working Holiday Requirements: Asia

All applicants for the New Zealand Working Holiday Visa must meet general requirements set out in the Generic Temporary Entry Policy, as well as be able to fulfil specific requirements based on their country of origin.

The following countries from Asia have Working Holiday Visa agreements with New Zealand:

China

New Zealand allocated 1,000 visas each year for young Chinese citizens to live and work in New Zealand for up to one year.

To be eligible for a Visa under this scheme, applicants must:

  • Be ordinarily resident in the People’s Republic of China (PRC) (this requirement is not met if you have been absent from the PRC for more than two years immediately preceding your application)
  • Be actually resident in the PRC at the time of applying
  • Have a passport from the PRC that is valid for at least three months after your planned departure from New Zealand
  • Be at least 18 and not more than 30 years old
  • Not be accompanied by any children
  • Be in possession of a return ticket, or sufficient funds to purchase such a ticket (you must hold sufficient funds for the duration of your visit and for the purchase of an outward ticket from New Zealand, and this evidence may be requested when you arrive at the border)
  • Have a minimum of NZ$4,200 available funds to meet your living costs while in New Zealand
  • Agree to hold medical and comprehensive hospitalisation insurance that will remain current throughout their stay in New Zealand.
  • Meet health and character requirements
  • Be travelling to New Zealand to holiday, with work or study being secondary intentions for your visit
  • Have (and have evidence of) a senior high school qualification (gao zhong xue li) granted in respect of a minimum of three years’ full-time study which has been verified by the China Academic Degrees and Graduate Education Development Centre (CDGDC)
  • Have a proficient level of English*
  • Not have been approved a Working Holiday Visa previously.

 

Hong Kong Special Administrative Region

This scheme allows 400 young residents of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) annually to be issued with multiple entry Work Visas, current for 12 months from the date of issue, authorising employment for a maximum of 12 months from the date of arrival.

To be eligible for a Work Visa under this scheme, applicants must:

  • Be residents of the HKSAR;
  • Satisfy an NZIS visa or immigration officer that their primary intention is to holiday in New Zealand, with employment being an incidental rather than a primary reason for the visit;
  • Have a British National Overseas or HKSAR passport which is valid for at least three motnhs;
  • Have a minimum of NZ$4,200 available funds for their maintenance during the period of stay in New Zealand; and
  • Agree to hold medical and comprehensive hospitalisation insurance that will remain current throughout their stay in New Zealand.

Participants must not work for the same employer for a period exceeding 3 months.

 

Japan

This scheme allows an unlimited number of young citizens of Japan to be issued with multiple entry Work Visas, current for 12 months from the date of issue, authorising employment for a maximum of 12 months from the date of arrival.

To be eligible for a Work Visa/Permit under this scheme, an applicant must:

  • Be citizens of Japan;
  • Satisfy an NZIS visa or immigration officer that their primary intention is to holiday in New Zealand, with employment being an incidental rather than a primary reason for the visit; and
  • Have a minimum of NZ$4,200 available funds for maintenance during their first 6 months in New Zealand.

Participants must not work for the same employer for a period exceeding 3 months.

 

Korea

This scheme allows 1,800 young citizens of the Republic of Korea annually:

  • To be issued a Work Visa valid for travel for 12 months from date of issue, and upon arrival in New Zealand to be granted a Work Permit for a maximum of 12 months; or
  • If applying from within New Zealand, to be granted a Work Permit valid for a maximum of 12 months.

To be eligible for a Work Visa/Permit under this scheme, applicants must:

  • Be citizens of the Republic of Korea;
  • Satisfy an NZIS visa or immigration officer that their primary intention is to holiday in New Zealand, with employment being an incidental rather than a primary reason for the visit;
  • Have a minimum of NZ$4,200 available funds for their maintenance during the period of stay in New Zealand; and
  • Agree to hold medical and comprehensive hospitalisation insurance that will remain current throughout their stay in New Zealand.

Participants must not work for the same employer for a period exceeding 3 months.

Malaysia

This scheme allows 1,150 young citizens of Malaysia annually:

  • To be issued a Work Visa valid for travel for 12 months from date of issue, and upon arrival in New Zealand to be granted a Work Permit for a maximum of 6 months; or
  • If applying from within New Zealand, to be granted a Work Permit valid for a maximum of 6 months.

To be eligible for a Work Visa/permit under this scheme, applicants must:

  • Be citizens of Malaysia at the time of applying; and
  • Have a minimum of NZ$2,250 available funds for their maintenance during the period of stay in New Zealand.

Philippines

This scheme allows 100 young citizens of the Philippines annually.

To be eligible for a Working Holiday Visa under this scheme, applicants must:

  • Be ordinarily resident in the People’s Republic of China (PRC) (this requirement is not met if you have been absent from the PRC for more than two years immediately preceding your application);
  • Be actually resident in the PRC at the time of applying;
  • Have a passport from the PRC that is valid for at least three months after your planned departure from New Zealand;
  • Be at least 18 and not more than 30 years old;
  • Not bring children with you;
  • Hold a return ticket, or sufficient funds to purchase such a ticket (you must hold sufficient funds for the duration of your visit and for the purchase of an outward ticket from New Zealand, and this evidence may be requested when you arrive at the border);
  • Have a minimum of NZ$4,200 available funds to meet your living costs while you are here;
  • Meet our health and character requirements;
  • Hold medical and comprehensive hospitalisation insurance for the length of your stay;
  • Be coming to New Zealand to holiday, with work or study being secondary intentions for your visit;
  • Have a senior high school qualification (gao zhong xue li) granted in respect of a minimum of three years’ full-time study which has been verified by the China Academic Degrees and Graduate Education Development Centre (CDGDC);
  • Have evidence of the CDGDC’s verification of your qualification;
  • Have a level of proficiency in English that is assessed as at least functional (see note below; AND
  • Not have been approved a visa under a working holiday scheme before.

Singapore

This programme allows 200 citizens of Singapore annually:

  • To be issued a Work Visa valid for travel for 12 months from date of issue, and upon arrival in New Zealand to be granted a Work Permit for a maximum of 6 months; or
  • If applying from within New Zealand, to be granted a Work Permit valid for a maximum of 6 months.

To be eligible for a Work Visa/Permit under this programme, undergraduate students who wish to gain work experience in New Zealand before completing their course of study in Singapore must:

  • Be registered with a Singapore university or polytechnic; and
  • Be participants on an agreed exchange between their university or polytechnic in Singapore and a New Zealand university or polytechnic; or
  • Arrange their own employment by applying directly to a New Zealand employer, in which case it is not necessary to have an offer of employment prior to going to New Zealand.

Graduates of Singapore universities or polytechnics are eligible for a Work Visa/Permit under this programme provided they apply within a period of 3 years from the date of their graduation and meet the same conditions for undergraduate students as set out above.

All applicants under this programme must:

  • Be a citizen of Singapore at the time of applying;
  • Have a minimum of NZ$2,250 available funds for their maintenance during the period of stay in New Zealand; and
  • Agree to hold medical and comprehensive hospitalisation insurance that will remain current throughout their stay in New Zealand.

Taiwan

This scheme allows 600 young people from Taiwan annually:

  • To be issued a Work Visa valid for travel for 12 months from date of issue, and upon arrival in New Zealand to be granted a Work Permit for a maximum of 12 months; or
  • If applying from within New Zealand, to be granted a Work Permit valid for a maximum of 12 months.

To be eligible for a Work Visa/Permit under this scheme, applicants must:

  • Hold a Taiwan passport at the time of applying and have household registration under the laws of Taiwan;
  • Satisfy an NZIS visa or immigration officer that their primary intention is to holiday in New Zealand, with employment being an incidental rather than a primary reason for the visit;
  • Have a minimum of NZ$4,200 available funds for their maintenance during the period of stay in New Zealand; and
  • Agree to hold medical and comprehensive hospitalisation insurance that will remain current throughout their stay in New Zealand.

Participants must not work for the same employer for a period exceeding 3 months.

 

Thailand

This scheme allows 100 young citizens of the Kingdom of Thailand annually:

  • To be issued a Work Visa valid for travel for 12 months from date of issue, and upon arrival in New Zealand to be granted a Work Permit for a maximum of 12 months; or
  • If applying from within New Zealand, to be granted a Work Permit valid for a maximum of 12 months.

To be eligible for a work visa/permit under this scheme, applicants must:

  • Be a citizen of the Kingdom of Thailand at the time of applying;
  • Satisfy an NZIS visa or immigration officer that their primary intention is to holiday in New Zealand, with employment being an incidental rather than a primary reason for the visit;
  • Have a minimum of NZ$7,000 available funds for their maintenance during the period of stay in New Zealand;
  • Agree to hold medical and comprehensive hospitalisation insurance to remain in force throughout their stay in New Zealand;
  • Have a tertiary qualification granted in respect of a minimum of 3 years' fulltime study; and
  • Have a level of proficiency in English that is assessed as at least functional.

For the purposes of this policy an applicant's proficiency in English is deemed to be functional if they:

  • Produce evidence of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS), showing they achieved an average level of 4.5 over the 4 components of the test;
  • Produce evidence of having completed all primary and at least 3 years' secondary education where all instruction was in English;
  • Produce evidence of having completed at least 5 years' secondary education where all instruction was in English;
  • Produce evidence of having gained a post-secondary qualification that required at least 2 years' fulltime study or training where all tuition was in English; or
  • Are assessed by way of an interview with an NZIS visa or immigration officer who speaks fluent English.

Participants must not work for the same employer for a period exceeding 3 months.

 

Vietnam

This scheme allows 100 young citizens of Vietnam annually:

To be eligible for a work visa/permit under this scheme, applicants must:

  • Have a passport from the Socialist Republic of Vietnam that is valid for at least three months after your planned departure from New Zealand
  • Hold a return ticket, or sufficient funds to purchase such a ticket
  • Have a minimum of NZ$4,200 available funds to meet your living costs while in New Zealand
  • Have an acceptable level of proficiency in English*
  • not have been approved a visa under a working holiday scheme before.

*An applicant's English proficiency level is determined to be at least an average level of 5.5 on the International English Language Testing System (IELTS).

 

Working Holiday Guide

The New Zealand Working Holiday Guide is given to all Visa Bureau WHV clients and features details on over NZ$700 worth of discounts available to New Zealand Visa Bureau clients, ranging from free nights of accommodation to extreme sports and discount camper van rental! 

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New Zealand Working Holiday Guide

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