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Cycling in New Zealand not friendly
Hi, we are two guys from Germany and we are here in New Zealand since August. I planned to have a gap year after school years ago, but I actually started to plan how to do it one year before we wanted to come to New Zealand. First I checked out some organisations which sent me free material.
But when I talked to one of their employees, she told me that you can do it on yourself easily. So we booked our flight, luckily a relative works in the business, so we get it very cheap, but it is always an advantage if you can book it very early. The next step was our working holiday visa, but there is a very easy online application, where they tell you everything you have to know and as soon as you has completed the application form and paid the visa via credit card, you get your visa in ca one week.
Once we were in Auckland, we found out that the taxis are quite expensive, but we were glad to be here, so we didnt mind. We did not book the hostel in advance, but it is essential to do that, when you arrive in tourist season (thats the German winter). The three things to do first, getting an IRD number, opening a New Zealand bank account and buying a phone card are very easy, too. For the IRD number just ask in the local New Zealand post shop with two ids e. g. passport and international drivers license, for the bank account just walk into a bank (e.g. westpec) with your passport and a current address and for the phone card, dont search for cheap offerer as they are available in Germany, because mobile phoning is expensive anyway. (http://www.vodafone.co.nz/ )
We started with bicycles but we found out quickly that New Zealand is not the right country for travelling by bike, because it is very hilly and there are no seperate roads, so you always have to cycle on the main road. Additionally, when you start searching for jobs you will be glad about a car as many employers want you to have your own transport. The cheapest way is to buy a car privatly and buying a car is really easy in New Zealand. But a secure way is e.g the backpackers carmarket in Auckland (http://www.backpackerscarmarket.co.nz/), because they have German speaking employees and you can understand everything you sign. Once we started our trip, we had no problems finding jobs for accommodation and food as there are serveral websites.(see above) We had to do gardening, cutting firewood, painting, weeding and other easy jobs, mostly they find you something that fits your skills. But after two month of travelling through New Zealand, we decided to search for a real job. Everybody we asked before coming into the country told us that finding a job would be easy. But we had to sent almost 30 applications to different places before we found a company which was searching for temporary workers. Benni, a carpenter could work full time and got paid very well, while I worked part time doing every job that was around and was paid 15$. So just sent your CV to every possibility you can find, the worst thing that could happen is that they say no. (http://www.backpackerboard.co.nz/work_jobs/index.php;http://www.seek.co.nz/;http://www.trademe.co.nz/jobs; ) It is also worth it to have a look in the local newspapers and at the boards of hostels and supermarkets. I have been to hundreds of websites and I think the best advice is to start searching for a job early enough, not when the money is already gone. Furthermore it is easier to find work for about three month than shorter and, of course their are more jobs in summer when more tourists are around. But just keep trying!
Cheers Franzi and Benni
Submitted by: Franzi and Benni Date submitted: 18/10/2011 9:41:15 a.m.