Moving to Christchurch: Your Complete Guide to Relocating and Thriving in New Zealand’s Garden City

When thinking about moving to a new city or country, it’s important to think about the pros and cons and learn as much as you can about the place. Christchurch is the largest city on New Zealand’s South Island. It is a busy, diverse metropolis that is becoming more and more popular with expats and adventurers. Christchurch is a fascinating place to live because it has a unique mix of natural beauty, a long history, and modern conveniences.

In this detailed guide, we’ll look at all the things you need to know about moving to Christchurch, New Zealand. We’ll tell you everything you need to know about the city, from its vibrant culture and beautiful landscapes to its housing, education, and job opportunities, so you can make an informed decision about your move.

Come with us as we explore the ins and outs of life in Christchurch and find out what makes this part of the world so special. We hope this guide will give you the information and confidence you need to make the most of your move to Christchurch, whether it’s for a short time or for good.


Key Facts:

Key FactDescription
LocationSouth Island, New Zealand
PopulationApproximately 405,000 (as of 2023)
Time ZoneNew Zealand Standard Time (NZST), UTC+12
ClimateOceanic climate with mild winters and warm, dry summers
Main IndustriesAgriculture, Manufacturing, Tourism, Technology, Education
CurrencyNew Zealand Dollar (NZD)
Official LanguageEnglish, Māori, New Zealand Sign Language
Driving SideLeft
Public TransportationBus, Tram, Bike, Limited Train Services
Major AttractionsCanterbury Museum, Christchurch Botanic Gardens, Hagley Park, Cardboard Cathedral, International Antarctic Centre
EducationUniversity of Canterbury, Ara Institute of Canterbury
Healthcare SystemPublic and Private Healthcare Facilities
Cost of LivingModerate (compared to other major cities in New Zealand)
Employment OpportunitiesAgriculture, Tourism, Construction, Information Technology, Education, Health Services

The Charm of Christchurch: Culture and Lifestyle

Christchurch is a city in New Zealand that is between the Pacific Ocean and the Southern Alps. It has a rich cultural history and a modern, creative spirit. In this section, we’ll look at the many different parts of Christchurch’s culture and way of life to give you an idea of what it’s like to live in this one-of-a-kind city.

The Rebuild: Rising from the Ruble

In 2010 and 2011, Christchurch was hit by two big earthquakes that did a lot of damage to the city’s buildings and infrastructure. But instead of being stuck in the past, the city has taken the chance to rebuild and start over. The result is a dynamic urban landscape with cutting-edge architecture, creative public spaces, and programs to help people live in a more environmentally friendly way.

Culture and the Arts

Christchurch has a lively arts scene, with a wide variety of galleries, museums, and theaters to suit different tastes. There are also a lot of public art installations in the city. Many of these were made as part of the rebuilding after the earthquake. The Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhet, The Court Theatre, and the Centre of Contemporary Art are all places that people like to go (CoCA).

Sports and Recreation

People who like being outside will find a lot to do in Christchurch. The city is surrounded by beautiful parks, rivers, and beaches, which make it a great place for hiking, biking, and water sports, among other things. Also, skiing and snowboarding are popular winter activities because the Southern Alps are close by. For people who like organized sports, Christchurch has professional and amateur teams for rugby, cricket, and netball, among others.

Eating and Cooking

The food scene in Christchurch is varied and always changing, with a focus on farm-to-table and fresh, locally grown ingredients. There is food from all over the world, as well as traditional Kiwi food, so everyone can find something they like. There are also many craft breweries and wineries in the city, as well as a thriving café scene. Don’t miss the chance to go to the Christchurch Farmers’ Market, which is a busy place to find handmade goods and tasty treats.

Family-Friendly Living

Christchurch is a great place for families to live because it has a lot of green areas, good schools, and a strong sense of community. There is always something to do, since there are a lot of activities and attractions for both kids and adults. The city is great for families because it has a low crime rate and tries to live in a way that is good for the environment.

In the next section, we’ll talk more about the practical side of moving to Christchurch. We’ll cover things like housing, jobs, and schools.

Cost of Living in Christchurch: Expenses and Budgeting

In the following table, we provide a detailed breakdown of the average costs associated with various aspects of living in Christchurch. These figures are intended to serve as a helpful reference for those considering a move to the city, enabling a better understanding of expenses related to accommodation, utilities, groceries, transportation, healthcare, and leisure activities. It is important to note that these costs are approximate and may vary depending on individual circumstances, preferences, and lifestyle choices.

Expense CategoryAverage Cost
2-bedroom apartmentNZD 350-600 per week (rental)
3-bedroom houseNZD 450-750 per week (rental)
Median house priceNZD 500,000 (purchase)
ElectricityNZD 150-200 per month
WaterVaries depending on usage
GasVaries depending on usage
Groceries and Food
Weekly groceriesNZD 100-150 per week (single person)
Casual mealNZD 10-15
Mid-range restaurantNZD 40-60 (three-course meal)
Public transportNZD 4.00 per one-zone adult fare
Metrocard discount25% discount on public transport fares
PetrolAround NZD 2.00 per liter
Car insuranceVaries depending on coverage and provider
Car maintenanceVaries depending on service requirements
Public systemFree or subsidized for residents
Prescription medicationsVaries depending on medication and subsidy
Dental careVaries depending on treatment
Optometry servicesVaries depending on service
Leisure & Entertainment
Movie ticketNZD 15-20
Gym membershipNZD 50-100 per month
Sports club feesVaries depending on sport and club
HobbiesVaries depending on activity
Based on data as of March 2023

Practical Aspects of Moving to Christchurch: Housing, Employment, and Education


Whether you’re looking to rent or buy, Christchurch offers a diverse range of housing options to suit various budgets and preferences. The city is divided into several suburbs, each with its own unique character and amenities. Some popular areas include Riccarton, Merivale, Fendalton, and Sumner.

Rental prices vary depending on the location and type of property. As of 2023, the median rent for a three-bedroom house in Christchurch was around NZD 450 per week. If you’re looking to buy, the median house price was approximately NZD 495,000. It’s important to note that these figures may have changed since, so always consult current market data when making housing decisions.


Christchurch has a diverse economy, with opportunities available across various industries. Some of the city’s key sectors include agriculture, manufacturing, tourism, technology, and education. In recent years, the city has also experienced growth in the construction and information technology sectors, driven by the post-earthquake rebuild and the development of a thriving tech hub.

The unemployment rate in Christchurch is relatively low, with most residents able to secure stable employment. However, job seekers are advised to secure employment before moving to the city, as this will make the transition smoother and increase the chances of obtaining a visa (if required).


Christchurch offers a high standard of education, with numerous public and private schools catering to students from early childhood through to secondary level. The city is also home to several tertiary institutions, including the University of Canterbury, Ara Institute of Canterbury, and Lincoln University.

New Zealand’s education system is well-regarded internationally, and students consistently perform well in global rankings. For expats, it’s important to research the different school options available in Christchurch to determine which best suits your child’s needs.

In the next section, we will discuss transportation options and getting around in Christchurch, as well as some tips for settling in and embracing your new life in this vibrant city.

Transportation and Settling in Christchurch: Getting Around and Embracing Your New Life

Once you get to Christchurch, it’s important to learn about the different ways to get around so you can start living your new life in the city. In this section, we’ll tell you how to get around Christchurch and give you advice on how to get settled and make the most of your time in this exciting city.


Residents and visitors alike have a number of ways to get around Christchurch. Even though having a car can be helpful, it’s not necessary in the city because there are good ways to get around on public transportation. Here is a quick rundown of the different ways to get around:

  • Buses: Metro runs a large bus system in Christchurch, with services that go all over the city and its suburbs. Buses are a cheap and easy way to get around, and they run frequently during rush hours.
  • Tram: The Christchurch Tramway is a popular place for tourists to visit, and it’s also a good way to get around the city center. Even though the tram network is small, it is a charming and easy way to get around the city center.
  • Biking: There are many bike lanes and bike paths in Christchurch, which makes it a good place to ride a bike. Because the city is mostly flat, cycling is an easy and fun way to get around or see the sights.
  • Trains: There aren’t many train stops in the city, but if you want to see more of the South Island, you can take trips like the TranzAlpine and Coastal Pacific.

Settling In

Moving to a new city can be both fun and hard, but if you have the right attitude and do your homework, you can make the move easier. Here are some things you can do to get settled in Christchurch:

  • Join groups and clubs in your area: There are a lot of social and recreational clubs in Christchurch, which is a great way to meet new people and make friends. Whether you’re into sports, the arts, or helping the community, there’s probably a group for you.
  • Go to local events and festivals: Christchurch has a full calendar of events, with many cultural and artistic festivals happening all year long. By going to these events, you’ll not only learn about the city’s culture, but you’ll also have the chance to meet people with similar interests.
  • Learn about local customs and etiquette: New Zealand culture may be similar to yours in many ways, but it’s important to learn about local customs and etiquette to avoid misunderstandings and get along with your new neighbors.
  • Be patient and willing to listen: It takes time to get used to a new city, and it’s normal to sometimes feel overwhelmed or homesick. Give yourself time to change, and go into each new situation with an open mind.

Essential Services and Healthcare: Navigating Christchurch’s Public Services and Medical Facilities

When moving to a new city, it’s important to know what kinds of public services and medical facilities are there. In this section, we’ll talk about the most important services in Christchurch and give you an overview of the health care system to help you get around your new home.

Essential Services

There are many public services in Christchurch to meet the needs of its people. Here are some important services you need to know about:

  • Utilities: There are different companies in Christchurch that provide electricity, gas, and water. You will need to set up accounts with the utility companies when you move into your new home. Compare prices to make sure you’re getting the best deal.
  • Waste Management: The Christchurch City Council is in charge of picking up the city’s trash. This means that trash, recycling, and organic waste will be picked up regularly. On the council’s website, you can find detailed information about collection times and recycling rules.
  • Emergency Services: If you need police, fire, or ambulance services in an emergency, you can call 111. In case of an emergency, it’s important to know where your nearest police station, fire station, and hospital are.

Healthcare System

The public healthcare system in New Zealand is well-known and gives residents free or low-cost healthcare. Here’s a quick look at the Christchurch healthcare system:

  • Public Healthcare: New Zealand’s public healthcare system is paid for by taxes and includes hospital care, primary healthcare, and emergency care. Some of these services are subsidized or even free. Residents can use these services if they have a valid work visa that is good for at least two years or a permanent resident visa.
  • Private Healthcare: In addition to the public system, Christchurch has a number of private healthcare facilities that offer a range of services, such as specialist consultations, diagnostic tests, and elective surgeries. Private healthcare can cost more than public healthcare, but it may have shorter wait times and more services.
  • General Practitioners (GPs): Most health problems start with a visit to a GP. They can give you general medical advice, give you prescriptions, and, if necessary, refer you to a specialist. When you get to Christchurch, you must sign up with a local GP clinic.
  • Pharmacies: You can find pharmacies, which are also called chemists, all over Christchurch. They sell both prescription and over-the-counter drugs, as well as a variety of health and beauty products. Pharmacists can also give advice about minor health problems and how to take medications.

The Christchurch Community: Building Connections and Giving Back

One of the most important aspects of moving to a new city is building connections and becoming an active member of your new community. In this section, we will discuss ways to get involved in Christchurch’s community life, meet new people, and give back to the city you now call home.

Volunteering Opportunities

Volunteering is a great way to get to know new people, learn new skills, and help your community. Christchurch has a lot of volunteer opportunities in many different fields, such as:

  • Community Support: Help out your community by giving your time and skills to local organizations. There may be chances to work with older people, kids, or people with disabilities.
  • Conservation of the environment: Help protect and restore Christchurch’s unique natural environment by taking part in conservation efforts. This could include things like planting trees, keeping an eye on wildlife, or cleaning up the area.
  • Arts and culture: Volunteer at galleries, museums, or cultural festivals to help the city’s thriving arts scene.

You can find volunteer opportunities in Christchurch by going to websites like Volunteering Canterbury, which has a list of local groups that need help.

Networking and Social Groups

When you move to a new city, you need to make friends right away. There are many networking and social groups in Christchurch for people with different interests and backgrounds. Here are a few ways to find groups and activities that match your interests:

  • a website where people with similar interests can find local groups and events, such as outdoor activities, technology, or language exchange.
  • Facebook Groups: Look on Facebook for local groups that fit your interests or needs, like expat groups, groups for parents, or sports clubs.
  • Professional Networks: Join professional groups or go to events for your field to meet other professionals.

Cultural Integration

Adopting the local culture and habits is an important part of fitting in with a new group. Here are some tips to help you get to know the unique cultural landscape of Christchurch:

  • Learn the local language: Most people in Christchurch speak English, but learning Maori, New Zealand’s native language, can help you learn more about the country’s history and culture.
  • Attend cultural events and festivals: Throughout the year, Christchurch hosts many cultural events that give people a chance to learn about the city’s many communities and ways of life.
  • Be willing to try new things: Embrace local traditions, try new foods, and talk with locals to learn more about your new home.

Exploring the Region: Day Trips and Weekend Getaways from Christchurch

Some of New Zealand’s most beautiful natural sights are close to Christchurch, which is one of its many benefits. In this section, we’ll talk about some of the best day trips and weekend trips you can take from Christchurch. This will give you a chance to see different parts of the area and do different things.

Day Trips

  • Akaroa: Located just 90 minutes from Christchurch, Akaroa is a charming French-inspired town situated on the picturesque Banks Peninsula. This coastal gem is a great place for a day trip because you can do things like watch dolphins, go hiking, and learn about the town’s history.
  • Hanmer Springs: is a popular alpine resort town that is about two hours by car from Christchurch. It is known for its hot springs, adventure activities, and beautiful scenery. People can take a relaxing dip in the thermal pools or walk or ride their bikes through the nearby forests and mountains.
  • Kaikoura: about two and a half hours north of Christchurch. It is famous for its marine wildlife and beautiful scenery along the coast. This coastal town is a must-see for nature lovers because it is a great place to see whales, dolphins, and a wide range of seabirds.

Weekend Getaways

  • Arthur’s Pass National Park: About two hours from Christchurch, Arthur’s Pass National Park is a paradise for people who love the outdoors. It has rough mountain terrain, lush forests, and beautiful waterfalls. People can hike on the park’s many trails, which range from easy short walks to difficult multi-day treks.
  • Nelson and Abel Tasman National Parks: Nelson is a lively city that is four hours by car from Christchurch. It is known for its arts scene, craft breweries, and beautiful beaches. Nearby Abel Tasman National Park has golden sand beaches, lush native forests, and clear water, making it a great place to spend a weekend hiking, kayaking, and looking for wildlife.
  • Mount Cook National Park: about a four-hour drive from Christchurch. It is home to Aoraki/Mount Cook, which is New Zealand’s tallest mountain. The park has activities for people of all fitness levels, such as scenic flights, walks on glaciers, and hard mountain treks. The clear skies in the area also make it a great place to look at the stars.

Preparing for Life in Christchurch: Tips and Resources

As you get ready to leave for Christchurch, it’s important to find out as much as you can to make sure everything goes smoothly. In this section, we’ll give you some more tips and links to websites that will help you get ready for your new life in Christchurch.

Weather and Climate

Christchurch has a temperate oceanic climate, which means that the summers are mild and the winters are cool. The average summer temperature is about 22°C (72°F), and the average winter temperature is about 11°C (52°F). The city gets about the same amount of rain every month, so it’s important to keep an umbrella and rain jacket on hand at all times.

Christchurch Gondola

Resources for Expats and Newcomers

  • Immigration New Zealand: This official website of the government has information about visa requirements, work permits, and applications for residency.
  • Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB): The CAB gives free, private advice on a wide range of topics, such as housing, jobs, and the law. They can also help you find services and resources in your area.
  • New Zealand Now: This government-run website has useful information about living and working in New Zealand, like how to find a job, where to live, and how to get settled.
  • Join online forums and groups for expats to meet other people who have moved to Christchurch.

Enjoying Your Leisure Time: Sports, Recreation, and Entertainment in Christchurch

Christchurch has a wide range of sports, hobbies, and entertainment options for people with different interests and ways of life. In this section, we’ll talk about some of the best ways to spend your free time in Christchurch, so you can get the most out of your new home.

Sports and Recreation

  • Hagley Park: the largest and most well-known park in Christchurch. It has sports fields, walking and biking paths, and botanical gardens, among other things. The park is also the site of many events and festivals all year long.
  • Golf: There are many golf courses in Christchurch for people of all skill levels. The Christchurch Golf Club, the Clearwater Golf Club, and the Russley Golf Club are all popular places to play.
  • Adventure Sports: People who like to get a rush can try bungee jumping, jet boating, and white-water rafting in Christchurch and the areas around it.

Arts and Culture

  • Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetū: This contemporary art gallery features a diverse collection of New Zealand and international art, as well as regular exhibitions and events.
  • The Arts Centre: This historic complex, located in the heart of the city, is home to a variety of art studios, galleries, and performance spaces, making it a hub for the local arts scene.
  • Theatre and Music: Christchurch has a vibrant theatre and music scene, with numerous venues hosting local and international performances. Popular venues include the Isaac Theatre Royal, The Piano, and the Christchurch Town Hall.

Dining and Nightlife

There are many different kinds of places to eat in Christchurch, from casual cafes to fancy restaurants. The city’s diverse food culture is shaped by its European and Maori roots as well as the tastes of Asia and the Pacific.

Christchurch has a wide range of bars, clubs, and other places to go out at night, so everyone can find something they like. Victoria Street, The Terrace, and the central city are all popular places to go out at night.

In conclusion, this detailed guide has talked about a lot of different things about moving to and living in Christchurch, New Zealand. From the city’s culture and way of life to practical things like transportation, essential services, healthcare, community involvement, exploring the surrounding area, and fun things to do, living in Christchurch is a unique and rewarding experience.

You can make sure your move goes smoothly and get the most out of your new life in this exciting and interesting city if you do a lot of research and plan ahead.

Education in Christchurch: Schools, Universities, and Lifelong Learning Opportunities

When moving to a new city, it’s important to know about the school system and educational options. In this section, we’ll talk about education in Christchurch, including elementary and high schools, colleges and universities, and ways to keep learning throughout your life.

Primary and Secondary Education

There are three levels of education in New Zealand: early childhood education, primary education (Years 1–8), and secondary education (Years 9-13). Christchurch has both public and private schools, as well as schools for one gender and schools for both.

The government pays for public schools in Christchurch, and most of them are zoned, so students go to the school closest to where they live. Most public schools in Christchurch are of a high quality, and they offer a well-rounded curriculum with academic, athletic, and cultural activities.

Private schools, which are also called independent schools, do not get money from the government and charge tuition. These schools often have smaller class sizes and more resources and may offer alternative curriculums or specialized programs.

Tertiary Education

There are a number of universities, polytechnics, and vocational colleges in Christchurch. These schools offer a wide range of academic and vocational programs.

  • University of Canterbury: One of New Zealand’s leading research universities, the University of Canterbury offers undergraduate and postgraduate programs across a range of disciplines, including arts, commerce, engineering, and science.
  • Lincoln University: This university specializes in agriculture, environmental science, and land-based industries, offering a range of undergraduate and postgraduate programs.
  • Ara Institute of Canterbury: As one of New Zealand’s largest polytechnics, Ara offers a variety of vocational programs, including trades, business, and creative arts.

Lifelong Learning Opportunities

Different institutions and groups in Christchurch offer short courses, workshops, and community education programs that can help people learn and grow throughout their lives. Some of the most popular choices are:

  • Community Education Centres: These centres offer a wide range of courses and workshops, covering topics such as language learning, arts and crafts, and personal development. Check with your local community centre for course listings and schedules.
  • Adult and Community Education (ACE) Aotearoa: ACE Aotearoa is a national organization that supports adult and community education programs throughout New Zealand. Visit their website to find courses and learning opportunities in Christchurch.
  • Libraries: Christchurch’s public libraries offer a range of resources and services, including free computer access, workshops, and events that cater to various interests and age groups.

Preparing for the Unexpected: Emergencies and Natural Disasters in Christchurch

While Christchurch is a safe and welcoming city, it’s essential to be prepared for emergencies and natural disasters. In this section, we will provide some essential information and resources to help you plan for the unexpected.

Christchurch is located in a seismically active region, which means earthquakes are a natural part of life in the city. To prepare for earthquakes, it’s essential to:

  • Develop an emergency plan: Familiarize yourself with the city’s evacuation routes and safe zones, and establish a communication plan with your family and friends.
  • Assemble an emergency kit: This kit should include essential items such as water, non-perishable food, a first aid kit, a battery-powered radio, and a torch.
  • Secure your home: Ensure that heavy items and furniture are securely fastened to walls, and avoid placing heavy objects on high shelves.

Other Natural Disasters

In addition to earthquakes, other natural disasters, such as floods and wildfires, can occasionally occur in and around Christchurch. To prepare for these events, it’s crucial to stay informed about local weather conditions and follow any advice or instructions provided by emergency services.

Emergency Services

In the event of an emergency, dial 111 to connect with police, fire, or ambulance services. It’s essential to familiarize yourself with the location of your nearest hospital, police station, and fire station.

Staying Informed

Keep up to date with local news and weather forecasts to stay informed about potential hazards or emergency situations. You can also sign up for emergency alerts through platforms such as the Red Cross Hazard App or New Zealand’s Emergency Mobile Alert system.

Embracing Sustainability: Eco-friendly Living in Christchurch

As a city that cares about protecting the environment, Christchurch gives its residents many chances to adopt eco-friendly habits and help build a better future. In this section, we’ll talk about some ways you can live in Christchurch in a way that is good for the environment.

Sustainable Transportation

Christchurch encourages people to use green ways to get around, like walking, biking, and public transportation. There are a lot of bike lanes and walking paths in the city, making it easy to get around without a car. Also, charging stations for electric cars are becoming more common in the city, which encourages people to drive electric cars.

Waste Management and Recycling

Christchurch has a well-run system for getting rid of trash, which includes recycling and composting services at curbside. Residents in the city have separate trash cans for regular trash, recyclable trash, and organic trash. This encourages responsible trash disposal and cuts down on the amount of trash that ends up in landfills.

Supporting Local and Sustainable Businesses

You can help keep Christchurch’s economy going by buying from local businesses and choosing eco-friendly products. Consider shopping at local farmer’s markets, supporting businesses that use sustainable practices, and choosing products made from renewable materials or with little packaging.

Community Gardens and Urban Agriculture

In Christchurch, community gardens and projects to grow food in cities are becoming more and more popular. Residents can grow their own food, get to know their neighbors, and learn how to farm in a way that is good for the environment through these programs. To help, look for community gardens in your area or think about starting your own with the help of your neighbors.

Celebrating Diversity: Embracing Christchurch’s Multiculturalism

People from many different cultures, ethnicities, and backgrounds live in Christchurch, which makes it a diverse and multicultural city. In this section, we’ll talk about how to celebrate and take advantage of Christchurch’s diversity.

Cultural Festivals and Events

Christchurch has many cultural festivals and events all year long that show off the city’s rich cultural tapestry. The Christchurch Lantern Festival, the Diwali Festival, and the Pasifika Festival are all examples of well-known events. By going to these events, you can learn about other cultures, try foods from those cultures, and watch and listen to live music and performances.

Language Learning

Language is an important part of understanding other cultures, and Christchurch has many ways to learn a language. You could join a conversation group, take a language class, or join a language exchange program to improve your language skills and meet people from different backgrounds.

Cultural Organizations and Community Groups

Christchurch is home to a number of cultural organizations and community groups that help people from different backgrounds and encourage cultural exchange. People can connect with their cultural roots and feel like they belong in the city by going to events, workshops, and getting help from these groups.

Navigating the Job Market: Employment Opportunities in Christchurch

One of the critical factors for successfully settling in Christchurch is finding suitable employment. In this section, we’ll talk about the job market in Christchurch and give you some tips on how to find work there.

Major Industries

Christchurch’s economy is diverse, with several key industries driving growth and providing employment opportunities. Some of the major sectors include:

  • Agriculture and Horticulture: As a significant contributor to New Zealand’s agricultural production, the Canterbury region offers numerous opportunities in farming, food production, and related services.
  • Construction and Engineering: With ongoing infrastructure projects and post-earthquake reconstruction efforts, there is a demand for skilled professionals in construction, engineering, and related fields.
  • Technology and Innovation: Christchurch is an emerging hub for technology and innovation, with a growing number of startups and established companies in fields such as software development, electronics, and aerospace.

Job Search Tips

To increase your chances of finding employment in Christchurch, consider the following tips:

  • Tailor your CV and cover letter: Make sure your CV and cover letter are tailored to the specific job and industry you are applying for, highlighting relevant skills and experience.
  • Network: Attend industry events, join professional organizations, and connect with local business groups to expand your professional network and uncover job opportunities.
  • Utilize online job boards: Popular job boards in New Zealand include Seek, Trade Me Jobs, and Indeed. Register on these platforms and set up job alerts to receive notifications about new opportunities in your field.
  • Engage with recruitment agencies: Recruitment agencies can help match you with suitable job opportunities and provide guidance on navigating the local job market.

Working Conditions and Employee Rights

New Zealand has a range of laws and regulations in place to protect employees’ rights and ensure fair working conditions. Some key aspects of employment law include:

  • Minimum wage: New Zealand has a national minimum wage, which is updated annually. As of 1 April 2023, the minimum wage was NZD 22.70 per hour for adult workers.
  • Working hours: The standard workweek in New Zealand is 40 hours, with most employees entitled to at least two days off per week.
  • Annual leave: Employees are entitled to a minimum of four weeks of paid annual leave per year, in addition to public holidays.
  • Parental leave: Eligible employees can take up to 26 weeks of paid parental leave, with an additional 26 weeks of unpaid leave available

Staying Connected: Communication and Internet Access in Christchurch

In today’s digital age, staying connected is essential, whether for work, socializing, or accessing essential services. In this section, we will provide information on communication and internet access in Christchurch.

Internet Access

High-speed internet is widely available in Christchurch, with most homes and businesses connected to either fiber-optic or VDSL broadband. Various internet service providers (ISPs) offer a range of plans, so it’s essential to compare options and choose a plan that suits your needs and budget.

Mobile Phones

Christchurch is well-served by New Zealand’s major mobile network operators, including Spark, Vodafone, and 2degrees. When choosing a mobile plan, consider factors such as coverage, data allowance, and call and text inclusions. Prepaid and monthly plans are available, depending on your needs and preferences.

Public Wi-Fi

Free public Wi-Fi is available in various locations throughout Christchurch, including libraries, parks, and some cafés and restaurants. The Christchurch City Council also provides a free Wi-Fi network called ‘CCC City Wi-Fi’ in selected areas of the central city.

Postal Services

New Zealand Post operates postal services in Christchurch, with post offices and post shops located throughout the city. These facilities offer mail and parcel services, as well as bill payments and other essential services.

Making Friends and Building Connections: Socialising in Christchurch

Establishing a social network is an essential aspect of settling into a new city. In this section, we will provide tips for making friends and building connections in Christchurch.

Join Clubs and Groups

Christchurch is home to numerous clubs and groups catering to a wide range of interests, including sports, hobbies, and social activities. Joining a club or group is a great way to meet like-minded individuals and build connections in your new community.

Attend Events and Festivals

As mentioned earlier, Christchurch hosts various events and festivals throughout the year. Attending these events provides an opportunity to socialize, learn about local culture, and meet new people.


Volunteering is an excellent way to give back to your community, develop new skills, and make connections with others who share your values. There are many volunteer opportunities available in Christchurch, ranging from environmental conservation to community support and event organization.

Online Communities

Online communities and social networking platforms can also help you connect with others in Christchurch. Consider joining local Facebook groups, Meetup groups, or other online forums where you can engage with others, ask questions, and share experiences related to living in Christchurch.

Staying Healthy: Fitness and Wellness in Christchurch

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is essential for overall well-being and quality of life. In this section, we will explore some fitness and wellness opportunities available in Christchurch.

Fitness Facilities

Christchurch offers a wide range of fitness facilities, including gyms, swimming pools, and sports centers. Some popular gyms in the city include Les Mills, CityFitness, and Snap Fitness. Additionally, the Christchurch City Council operates several recreation centers and swimming pools throughout the city.

Outdoor Activities

With its extensive parks, gardens, and natural attractions, Christchurch provides ample opportunities for outdoor fitness and recreation. Some popular outdoor activities include walking, cycling, and running in parks like Hagley Park and the Port Hills, or enjoying water sports such as kayaking and paddleboarding on the Avon River.

Mindfulness and Relaxation

For those seeking mindfulness and relaxation, Christchurch is home to various yoga studios, meditation centers, and wellness retreats. These facilities offer classes and workshops in disciplines such as yoga, meditation, and mindfulness, helping you cultivate a sense of balance and well-being in your daily life.

Shipping Your Belongings To Christchurch: Choosing a Reliable Moving Company

When relocating to Christchurch, one crucial aspect to consider is the transportation of your personal belongings. This section will provide guidance on shipping your possessions and selecting a reliable international moving company to ensure a smooth and hassle-free move.

Assessing Your Belongings

Before deciding on a moving company, it is essential to assess your belongings and determine which items you want to bring with you, which to store, and which to sell or donate. This process will help you estimate the volume of your shipment, allowing you to obtain more accurate quotes from moving companies and better plan your move.

When selecting a moving company, it is important to consider several factors:

  1. Experience and Reputation: Look for a moving company with a proven track record and positive customer reviews. This information can be found on their website or through online review platforms.
  2. Services Offered: Ensure that the moving company provides the services you require, such as packing, storage, or specialized handling for fragile or valuable items.
  3. Insurance Coverage: Verify that the moving company offers comprehensive insurance coverage to protect your belongings during transit.
  4. Accreditation: Check for membership in reputable industry associations, such as the International Association of Movers (IAM) or the Federation of International Movers (FIDI). These accreditations are an indication of the company’s commitment to high standards and professionalism.
  5. Quotes and Pricing: Obtain quotes from at least three different moving companies to compare prices and services. Be cautious of quotes that seem too low, as they may indicate hidden fees or subpar service.

Preparing for Shipment

Once you have chosen a moving company, follow these steps to prepare your belongings for shipment:

  1. Inventory: Create a detailed inventory of all items to be shipped, including descriptions, quantities, and estimated values. This document will be crucial for insurance purposes and tracking your belongings during transit.
  2. Packing: Properly pack your belongings to minimize the risk of damage during transport. Utilize high-quality packing materials such as sturdy boxes, bubble wrap, and packing tape. If you’re unsure how to pack certain items, consider hiring professional packing services through your moving company.
  3. Labeling: Clearly label each box with its contents and the room in which it belongs. This will make unpacking in your new home more manageable and efficient.
  4. Documentation: Ensure that you have all necessary documentation for customs clearance, including a copy of your inventory, receipts for high-value items, and any required permits or licenses.

Arrival and Unpacking

Upon arrival in Christchurch, your moving company should assist with customs clearance, delivery of your belongings to your new home, and any unpacking or assembly services you have requested. Be sure to inspect all items for damage and report any issues to the moving company promptly.


In the end, this complete guide to moving to and living in Christchurch has covered a wide range of topics and given you useful information to help you get through the process of moving and getting used to your new life. From practical things like housing and transportation to lifestyle choices, getting involved in the community, and the cost of living, this guide has tried to give a full picture of what to expect when moving to Christchurch. Taking all of these things into account and making plans for them will help you live a full life in this busy, diverse, and friendly city. You’ll be able to enjoy everything it has to offer while making lasting connections with your new neighbours.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it safe to live in Christchurch?

Yes, it is safe to live in Christchurch most of the time. Like any city, it has its share of crime, but compared to other cities, the overall crime rate is low. People who live in the city and people who come to visit can both feel safe while enjoying the city’s amenities and attractions. But it’s important to use common sense and take basic safety precautions, just like you would anywhere else.

by Maiane Cassanego
Maiane is the Founder of Expat Frontier. She is fluent in English, Portuguese and Spanish. Maiane has an extensive background in international moving, freight forwarding and logistics.