Leaving Europe and moving to New Zealand can be an exciting adventure in a country full of natural beauty and diverse scenery. We looked at just some of the reasons why people are moving to New Zealand from Europe. Cost of living The cost of living varies according to location, with the bigger cities such as Auckland and Wellington being more expensive than some of the rural areas. There are affordable apartments and riverside condos to buy or rent in the city and spacious houses with land in the suburbs and villages. People who live and work in New Zealand can generally expect their salaries to be lower than their home country. However, the cost of living may also be considerably lower. Job and career prospects Qualifications, training, and a good knowledge and understanding of the English language are essential for living and working in New Zealand. Finding a job in New Zealand, like anywhere else, can take a while – so if you are considering moving it’s a good idea to spend some time applying beforehand to give yourself a head start. Schools The education system in New Zealand ranks as one of the best in the world and you have the right to enrol your children at the state school that is nearest to your home. However some schools have a “home-zone” so spaces are allocated to those who live the closest, first. The four-term New Zealand school year begins in late January, after a six-week school holiday, and ends in December. The New Zealand government meets the cost of state schooling but parents are expected to contribute towards textbooks and materials. Schools follow the New Zealand curriculum and the study of the Maori language may be included. Climate The climate in New Zealand is generally warm and sunny for most of the year. Outdoor BBQs and cocktail gardens are popular across the region and it’s not uncommon for people to wear shorts all year round. Rainfall in the mountainous areas of the North Island and the lower half of the South Island can be common. Language English and Maori are the official languages of New Zealand, however, Maori is very rarely used.