Planning a move overseas to live in New Zealand (Aotearoa) may seem a bit of a daunting task, particularly if you aren’t sure of the visa options available to you.   

In this informative guide, we’ll delve into the different visa pathways available to teachers looking to make a mark in New Zealand’s educational landscape. 

 *Please note that Australian nationals do not need a New Zealand visa and can move over to New Zealand based on their citizenship. In addition, Australian teachers with registration may be eligible for a practising certificate under the Trans-Tasman Mutual Recognition. *

As always, please remember that here at, we are not licenced immigration advisors and can only provide information sourced from Immigration New Zealand. 


Working Holiday Visa 

Working Holiday visas are available to young people, usually aged 18 to 30, but 18 to 35 in a select few countries, such as the UK and Canada. 

The Working Holiday visa allows you to travel and work in New Zealand for up to 12 months. If you are from Canada, the Working Holiday Visa allows you to travel and work for up to 23 months and up to 36 months if you are from the United Kingdom.  

This visa is an excellent option for teachers who want to experience life in New Zealand while also having the opportunity to work. We know how beautiful New Zealand is, so we understand that people want time to travel and see the country’s breathtaking landscapes.   

 *Please note that with this visa option, you cannot accept a permanent job and would only be able to get a fixed-term or relief (supply) position.   


Accredited Employer Work Visa

This visa requires a job offer from an accredited employer in New Zealand. With this visa, you can work in New Zealand for an accredited employer who has offered you full-time employment (at least 30 hours of work a week). This visa is a good option if you want to experience teaching in New Zealand, and those eligible can apply for a Work to Residence Visa (after a period of teaching in NZ).   

Please note that this visa ties you to the employer who offered you the visa application for the length of your visa – if your situation changes, you will need to vary the conditions of your visa or apply for a new visa type.

Partner of a New Zealand Resident Visa

For teachers with a partner or spouse who is a New Zealand citizen or resident, the Partnership Visa is a viable option. This visa allows you to join your partner and work in New Zealand. As a teacher, you can explore teaching opportunities while enjoying the support of your partner’s immigration status.  

Please note if your partner’s New Zealand residence is based on their Australian citizenship, Australian permanent residency or resident return visa, you can only apply for this visa if your partner lives in New Zealand. 


To recap…  

New Zealand offers a range of visa options for teachers looking to embark on a teaching journey in the land of the long white cloud. Whether you’re seeking a temporary experience through the Working Holiday Visa, a more long-term commitment with the Accredited Employer Work Visa, or the support of a partner’s immigration status through the Partnership Visa, there’s a pathway for every educator. 

 Only a licensed immigration advisor can give immigration advice. Several of our previous overseas teachers have used Migration Associates to assist them with the move to New Zealand. If you’d like to speak to someone who can assist you with your visa application, then please click here. 

For more information on all visa types, please refer to Immigration New Zealand. 


Next steps…  

If you’re interested to find out more about moving and teaching in New Zealand, we’ll be happy to answer any questions you may have.   

Our extensive network across New Zealand includes opportunities in Private, Faith, State and Academy settings, across regional and city locations.  

If you haven’t registered with yet, please click on the following link & we can chat further about your work preferences.