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Expat New Zealand prospects

Old 28th Oct 2021, 20:26
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Expat New Zealand prospects

I posted something similar to this 2-3 years ago, but a lot has happened since then. And with travel to NZ likely opening up to vaccinated travellers next year I was wondering what prospects a US pilot might have to obtain employment and visa in NZ.

I’ve got some vacation in Jan. Was thinking of maybe flying down and converting my certificates. I’m a fairly experienced regional captain in the states, 10k plus hours and most of 4K PIC.

I figure I probably couldn’t go right to Air New Zealand, but maybe make a lateral or even downwards move to some place like Sounds Air?

I really dislike living in the US, the society is not on a good trajectory and I want to start over in NZ even if it’s lateral or a step back in my career progression.
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Old 29th Oct 2021, 00:39
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As above, your prospects are better in Oz than NZ right now. I think anyone in this part of the world would agree there are a lot more out of work pilots in NZ than Oz relative to the size of thier industries with at least some expansion taking place in the latter.
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Old 29th Oct 2021, 00:42
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Originally Posted by dctPub View Post
Lmao bro, what on EARTH are you wanting to come to this dump for.

The society in all western countries are "not on a good trajectory".

1) Unless you manage to marry a kiwi bird, you won't get residency to work here.
2) In the unlikely event you manage to get residency, no one is hiring. Air Nz canned 300 pilots last year, they all have to be hired back before any external recruitment begins. Not to mention the fact that there is practically ZERO chance of any of them going back to flying next year because of this governments covid response.
3) If you somehow manage to bypass the top two points and get a job, you will be absolutely shocked by the absolutely dismal wages and sky high cost of living. You might want to have a look at what kind of sh*thole 1 million dollars can buy here. Hint, it's not much. Paired with roughly 60k pay at sounds air, 60-70k pay at Air Nz links, and 120k Air Nz jet you won't get ahead unless you are bringing truckloads of cash from the states.

Everyone I know is trying to scramble to get a green card in the US, and you are willing to throw it all away for a pipe dream. If you come to New Zealand you WILL regret it, I guarantee it.

I honestly can't emphasise enough just how shit aviation and living in NZ is like compared to the States.

Edit: I would legit give my left nut to be in your shoes right now. If you are hell bent on getting out of the US, try Australia. Only better than NZ in every single way and Qantas tipped to be hiring next year.
I love a frank reply, no sugar coating!

While Australia may seem to be better than NZ in many ways, it’s far from utopia here. The million dollar shitbox syndrome is a reality here in most capital cities. Pay and conditions are constantly under attack from the elitist fools “running” the airlines. CAO48.1 went from a good bit of fatigue management law to a piss weak, watered down piece of legislation quite obviously tilted towards airlines and not pilots (or the travelling public). Thousands of pilots were thrown on the scrap heap following the very predictable breakdown of VA only to be bullied into taking sub standard pay and conditions in order to keep their houses. The FWC is anything but fair most of the time (disclaimer: I would never suggest they have close relations with some airline management), with many pretty clear cut cases swinging against staff.

Mate, for the first time in my career, I’m thinking of going to the US as OZ is a basket case.

Good luck
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Old 29th Oct 2021, 01:13
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I really dislike living in the US, the society is not on a good trajectory and I want to start over in NZ even if it’s lateral or a step back in my career progression.
You will find more Job prospects and better overall lifestyle opportunities by moving states within the US than you will moving to New Zealand.

If however you're determined to fly Caravans around some of the best landscapes in the world, with amazing snow capped mountains and fresh glacial lakes, where everyone you meet is incredibly friendly and good natured then that's a fine goal to pursue and I wish you luck with your move to Canada.
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Old 29th Oct 2021, 02:06
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Classic, El'
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Old 29th Oct 2021, 02:48
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Originally Posted by dctPub View Post
Lmao bro, what on EARTH are you wanting to come to this dump for.

The society in all western countries are "not on a good trajectory".

1) Unless you manage to marry a kiwi bird, you won't get residency to work here.
2) In the unlikely event you manage to get residency, no one is hiring. Air Nz canned 300 pilots last year, they all have to be hired back before any external recruitment begins. Not to mention the fact that there is practically ZERO chance of any of them going back to flying next year because of this governments covid response.
3) If you somehow manage to bypass the top two points and get a job, you will be absolutely shocked by the absolutely dismal wages and sky high cost of living. You might want to have a look at what kind of sh*thole 1 million dollars can buy here. Hint, it's not much. Paired with roughly 60k pay at sounds air, 60-70k pay at Air Nz links, and 120k Air Nz jet you won't get ahead unless you are bringing truckloads of cash from the states.

Everyone I know is trying to scramble to get a green card in the US, and you are willing to throw it all away for a pipe dream. If you come to New Zealand you WILL regret it, I guarantee it.

I honestly can't emphasise enough just how shit aviation and living in NZ is like compared to the States.

Edit: I would legit give my left nut to be in your shoes right now. If you are hell bent on getting out of the US, try Australia. Only better than NZ in every single way and Qantas tipped to be hiring next year.
However, you would get to live with hobbits.
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Old 29th Oct 2021, 04:10
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Originally Posted by DingdongClunk View Post
I posted something similar to this 2-3 years ago, but a lot has happened since then. And with travel to NZ likely opening up to vaccinated travellers next year I was wondering what prospects a US pilot might have to obtain employment and visa in NZ.

I’ve got some vacation in Jan. Was thinking of maybe flying down and converting my certificates. I’m a fairly experienced regional captain in the states, 10k plus hours and most of 4K PIC.

I figure I probably couldn’t go right to Air New Zealand, but maybe make a lateral or even downwards move to some place like Sounds Air?

I really dislike living in the US, the society is not on a good trajectory and I want to start over in NZ even if it’s lateral or a step back in my career progression.
Haven’t the US Pilots received massive pay increases in the last few years? Also don’t you have guaranteed flow through to the majors which arguably have the best pilot contracts in the world? These two things would be a massive reason to stay where you are and wait for your number to come up for flow through. Why you’d want to come to NZ is beyond me.

If you come to NZ there is one major player, progression is dead in the water and there is certainly no flow through to long haul jet jobs based on seniority. Your best bet is wait until Qantas mainline opens their books, you’ll have an ok lifestyle there.

Also at the moment we have the most divisive controlling government this country has ever seen.

Mate I’ll swap you passports, you can have mine and I’ll take your US citizenship off you in return.

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Old 29th Oct 2021, 04:54
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Hey Clunk

What you read here is true - to a certain extent. My dad is an airline pilot who immigrated from Russia. Ex captain like yourself and was a domestic pilot doing the usual Christchurch Wellington, Auckland milk runs. We both gained New Zealand citizenships; although over a decade ago. I trained to fly in New Zealand (Helicopters) and have had a successful career in Australia

I still fly around Queenstown, Wellington, Christchurch, Milford Sound in MSFS2020 in my spare time - in planks. I miss it. It is so ******* beautiful. I wish things were different so I could return and be part of the New Zealand community again. But this is unlikely to happen

The housing market is screwed and this will not improve. Yet opportunities are limited. Everyone wants to come there and are willing to accept conditions just to be able to live there. Sacrifices that are even too much for me - and this is a guy who during his studies, would make a Macca's run to steal tomato sauce to refill his bottle at home. I was broke af and I still loved it

The way Kiwis look after each other - after Christchurch earthquakes people were putting up their spare rooms to people affected, rent free. I can definitely see why anybody would want to live there. There is a reason why New Zealand came out of COVID so unscathed. As an overall community, Kiwis care for each other

The way I see New Zealand is the same way my passengers see what I do for a living. 'WOW! You must love it so much. You've never worked a day in your life. I would give everything to have what you do'.

- Well... you're looking at the highlight-reel, and you still need to compare it to the behind the scenes

Anyway, something to ponder. Maybe take couple month holiday and see what the day to day is really like. It's a tradeoff, and maybe for you - the tradeoff is worth it. Sadly for me it was not
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Old 29th Oct 2021, 07:54
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Maybe a lateral move to Hawaii or California might work. Could even maybe commute to NZ from the former.
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Old 29th Oct 2021, 09:02
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all the Aussies are trying to get to the US while you wanna come to this part of the world for a flying job? what's wrong with you really?
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Old 29th Oct 2021, 18:57
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I agree with the above sentiment and was going to give a diatribe on just how bad the lifestyle is rapidly becoming here but I won’t.

Instead, I’ll just touch on your point about considering visiting in January - HAHAHAHA. I’m sure you may find this hard to believe but NZ has locked out their own citizens from returning for the past 18+ months, even after vaccination. In January, even they will still not be allowed into the country without a lot of hoop-jumping and frankly luck.
The whole country has a one track covid mindset. That is the only thing that matters to this government. Perhaps if you have some more leave in August you MIGHT be allowed to visit.

Take your leave and your dollars elsewhere. I know I wish I could.

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Old 29th Oct 2021, 23:19
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Just to swim against the flow and be a little positive!

DingdongClunk You've had some fairly negative responses here, many focussing on financial and career issues in NZ.

However, from your brief note, it appears you may be more interested in lifestyle than $$ and job prospects? I can't directly compare NZ against the US but in terms of life and philosophy I suspect the natives of any country can find fault with it (I sure can - don't get me started on the profligate and totalitarian regime we currently have!), so I'd tend to take some of the comments you've had as the sort of thing you could get anywhere, not just NZ.

However what I can offer is something I was sent recently. This is from a youngish aviation couple who recently immigrated to NZ from Australia (this year), and who bought a couple of hundred acres in the country (identifying names removed). You could get something like their property for less than USD $500k:

We still look out the door feeling pretty lucky we are living the dream of many
people in this world who do not have the means nor time to do what we are doing. Some do have
the means and the time but lack the gigantic pair of nuts required to make the leap. Every now and
again x and I are reminded that WE are the ones people are reading and talking about just like we
used to read about others heading off to nowhere in particular and simply enjoying the journey. All
in all we think it is still pretty cool here and are taking the time to do things our way, on our time,
with our budget. Some days are fruitful and some are not. Does it matter? No.


Take of that what you will, if nothing else it might suggest it's not all bad here...

FP.
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Old 30th Oct 2021, 12:21
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Gees DingdongClunk you've got the haters all fired up. For perspective, yes we've been locked down for periods, but no more so than other places. That's resulted in 29 deaths in 18 months, unlike the 169 the UK had yesterday. We haven't had to deploy freezer trucks as temporary morgues, and yes, aviation is one of the hardest-hit sectors.

If you have other transferrable skills (could you drive a truck!), you could get residency (eventually). Yes, our housing market is absurd, but contrary to some of the comments, we don't live in a totalitarian state, we live in one where most people look out for each other, where healthcare is still, more or less, free (especially if it is accidental). Yes, we are traditionally a low-wage economy, and everyday items are more expensive, but it is still an amazing place to live. I wish you luck.
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Old 30th Oct 2021, 18:24
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Originally Posted by kiwipilot1 View Post
Haven’t the US Pilots received massive pay increases in the last few years? Also don’t you have guaranteed flow through to the majors which arguably have the best pilot contracts in the world? These two things would be a massive reason to stay where you are and wait for your number to come up for flow through. Why you’d want to come to NZ is beyond me.

If you come to NZ there is one major player, progression is dead in the water and there is certainly no flow through to long haul jet jobs based on seniority. Your best bet is wait until Qantas mainline opens their books, you’ll have an ok lifestyle there.

Also at the moment we have the most divisive controlling government this country has ever seen.

Mate I’ll swap you passports, you can have mine and I’ll take your US citizenship off you in return.
The airline prospects are better in the states for sure, and better in the states than about anywhere other than maybe China. I’m just absolutely sick of the shit show that is US government and society.

Sure your lockdowns probably suck, but as I understand it, things we’re actually pretty normal there between the first set of lockdowns, and the current one. Whereas here we were forced masked and restricted for many months, and some places are STILL forced masking. And people there seem to be largely rowing in the same direction. You’re approaching 90% of the eligible population with their first vaccine dose and I could be wrong but im fairly confident once most are vaccinated things will return to normal rapidly. In the states you have 30% of the population who think the vaccine is a new world order plot, or Bill Gates shoving trackers up their asses.

You also don’t have criminal lunatics getting “elected” thru an insane and archaic electoral college system despite the other candidate getting almost three million more votes.

lunatics also don’t walk into schools and gun down children every other week, you had one shooting, what? Three years ago? And the government cracked down on availability of murder tools. I get that it’s easy to fall for the grass is greener syndrome, but the US is in decline, it’s getting scary. We came really close to having a dictatorship on Jan 6th.
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Old 30th Oct 2021, 18:31
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Originally Posted by Anti Skid On View Post
Gees DingdongClunk you've got the haters all fired up. For perspective, yes we've been locked down for periods, but no more so than other places. That's resulted in 29 deaths in 18 months, unlike the 169 the UK had yesterday. We haven't had to deploy freezer trucks as temporary morgues, and yes, aviation is one of the hardest-hit sectors.

If you have other transferrable skills (could you drive a truck!), you could get residency (eventually). Yes, our housing market is absurd, but contrary to some of the comments, we don't live in a totalitarian state, we live in one where most people look out for each other, where healthcare is still, more or less, free (especially if it is accidental). Yes, we are traditionally a low-wage economy, and everyday items are more expensive, but it is still an amazing place to live. I wish you luck.
There’s demand for truck drivers? I can think of worse lines of work if the work life balance is ok.
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Old 30th Oct 2021, 21:27
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Move to California, they’ll love you there.
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Old 30th Oct 2021, 22:23
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Originally Posted by DingdongClunk View Post
. I get that it’s easy to fall for the grass is greener syndrome, but the US is in decline, it’s getting scary..
Thing about greener grass is that you don’t know what manure they’re using to make it greener until after you’ve jumped the fence.

All the preceding posts are telling you what that manure is.

Ive lived in the US and love the place and the people and would have retired there but for the cost and limitations of health insurance.
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Old 30th Oct 2021, 23:21
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Yes, our housing market is absurd, but contrary to some of the comments, we don't live in a totalitarian state, we live in one where most people look out for each other, where healthcare is still, more or less, free (especially if it is accidental). Yes, we are traditionally a low-wage economy, and everyday items are more expensive, but it is still an amazing place to live. I wish you luck.
If that's not a recipe for economic disaster I don't know what is. How can a society be sustainable if its a low wage economy but everything is expensive and health care is free? Who is paying the bill?
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Old 31st Oct 2021, 00:25
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Originally Posted by neville_nobody View Post
If that's not a recipe for economic disaster I don't know what is. How can a society be sustainable if its a low wage economy but everything is expensive and health care is free? Who is paying the bill?
The Sheep 🐑?😂😂😂😂
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Old 31st Oct 2021, 12:17
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Originally Posted by DingdongClunk View Post
The airline prospects are better in the states for sure, and better in the states than about anywhere other than maybe China. I’m just absolutely sick of the shit show that is US government and society.

Sure your lockdowns probably suck, but as I understand it, things we’re actually pretty normal there between the first set of lockdowns, and the current one. Whereas here we were forced masked and restricted for many months, and some places are STILL forced masking. And people there seem to be largely rowing in the same direction. You’re approaching 90% of the eligible population with their first vaccine dose and I could be wrong but im fairly confident once most are vaccinated things will return to normal rapidly. In the states you have 30% of the population who think the vaccine is a new world order plot, or Bill Gates shoving trackers up their asses.

You also don’t have criminal lunatics getting “elected” thru an insane and archaic electoral college system despite the other candidate getting almost three million more votes.

lunatics also don’t walk into schools and gun down children every other week, you had one shooting, what? Three years ago? And the government cracked down on availability of murder tools. I get that it’s easy to fall for the grass is greener syndrome, but the US is in decline, it’s getting scary. We came really close to having a dictatorship on Jan 6th.
We have mask mandates everywhere and very soon Vaccine passports.
We have plenty of Anti-Vax nutters here… pick your conspiracy and you’ll find someone pushing it.
Once we reach 90% Vaccinated we’re going to the Red Light of a new Traffic light system.
Returning Citizens are possibly going to have their MIQ stay reduced from 14 day to 7, If they’re Vaccinated and if they’ve come from certain countries. Maybe.
Our Schools are still closed.
No we don’t have the electoral college, we have MMP, which saw a party with 5% of the vote hold the country to ransom for several days while his ego decided which party he’d align with. In the end, we got a “coalition of losers” Government while the Majority party got kicked out.
Out current Government is just as “loony left” as your Democrats,
We don’t have School shootings yet. But Gun crime is sharply increasing as Australia deports its criminals to NZ if they were born here… regardless of how old they were when they moved to Australia.

Im not hating on NZ, but you’d be trading one declining Western nation for another one. The major difference being NZ has less jobs, lower wages and a vastly higher cost of living.
Sure, we have a taxpayer funded health system, which has some of the lowest number of ICU beds per capita in the developed world. Even without COVID, our ICU’s hover around 70% capacity most of the time.

New Zealand is a long way from being “back to normal”.
Even if we open the borders next year, and live with Delta, the health system will be entirely overrun and so we won’t see the “green light” for a long time yet.
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