Over the years, many New Zealanders have decided to make the giant leap and move to Australia. There many reasons why Kiwis have “crossed the ditch” including warmer weather, a change in scenery or new job opportunities. This article will provide a quick demographic overview of New Zealanders living in Australia and will include key statistics. It’ll also provide you with some key tips that may help you if you’re thinking of moving from New Zealand to Australia.  

The Kiwi Profile

As of June 2018, approximately 570,000 New Zealanders were living in Australia, this is an increase of 17.5% since June 2008. The median age of a NZ-born migrant is 43 years old, and this individual is most likely a male, with 51% of males compared to 49% of females moving to Australia*. Queensland is the most popular state for Kiwis with 39% of them residing in Australia’s Sunshine State, followed by NSW with 23% and VIC with 18%±. In Queensland, the Pacific Pines-Gave, Surfers Paradise, Coombabah, Kingholme-Upper Coomera, Broadbeach-Mermaid Beach and Robina regions are the go-to areas for NZ-born residents.

A study by the Australian Bureau of Statistics± also found that New Zealanders are more eager to seek full-time employment compared to their Australian counterparts with 90% of male Kiwis being employed compared to 83% of Australians. The most common industries among working New Zealanders includes Constructions, Manufacturing, Health Care and Hospitality.  

Relationship wise, approximately 62% of Kiwis have partnered up since moving to Australia. However, they’re more likely to retain their NZ citizenship with only 37% of New Zealand migrants forfeiting their passports for an Australian one.

Moving  from NZ to Australia

If you’re one of the Kiwis who are thinking of moving to Australia from New Zealand, we have collected a few migration tips that may help you.

Passports and Social Security


You’ll need a valid and current New Zealand passport to enter Australia. If you need to renew your passport visit the New Zealand Passport. They can also help you’re in a hurry and require an urgent passport, with a convenient 3 day turn-around time.

Social Security

To be eligible for Australia’s social security system, NZ citizens must hold a Special Category visa. This visa allows you to live, study and work in Australia for as long you wish. For non-NZ citizens, you’ll need to apply for an Australian Visa. The visa you need depends on what you’re planning to do when you arrive, so visit the Australian Home Affairs  to find the right visa for you.

Working and Studying in Australia

If you’re thinking of working in Australia, make sure you open an Australian bank account before you leave New Zealand, as this will ensure that your EFTPOS card is ready to be picked up when you arrive. Remember, you need to provide a proof of address document when setting up a bank account. Also, if you want to reduce the amount of tax you pay in Australia, you can apply for an Australian Tax File Number (TFN) which is equivalent to the NZ IRD number. The TFN will allow you to attain a PAYG (Pay As You Go) income scheme which means that your Aussie employer will withhold and report your tax under your TFN, as they would in NZ.

If you have children who are NZ citizens, they’ll be considered as local Australian students and therefore are entitled to free public schooling in Australia. This applies to both primary and high school. If your children are older and want to enrol in an Australian university or Tertiary education provider, they may be entitled to financial assistance through the Higher Education Loan Program (HELP). Check out federation.edu.au for more info.

Australian Healthcare System

The Australian Healthcare System is split into two − publicly funded and privately funded. The public system includes Medicare, public hospitals and the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS). The PBS allows Australians to purchase medicines at a Government-subsidised price. Meanwhile, the private system consists of private hospital treatments and procedures not covered by Medicare, which is usually covered through private health insurance. Kiwis who live in Australia are eligible for Medicare, provided they present a document proving their residence. In saying this, NZ-born migrants will need to pay the Medicare levy and Medicare levy surcharge.

Location, location, location

There are plenty of cities to choose from when you’re moving to Australia from New Zealand. Sydney is the financial hub of Australia, and it’s also the oldest and most populous city. This is closely followed by Melbourne which is usually referred to as the coolest city in the country. Brisbane, in the Sunshine State receives 280 days of sun annually, and as mentioned earlier is a popular destination for Kiwis. Canberra is the nation’s capital and although it’s smaller than Sydney and Melbourne, it’s an ideal city for middle-class families looking for a fresh start. If you’d like more information about each city, make sure you check out the articles below:

Book a professional moving company

If you’d like more information or would like to speak to a relocation specialist, contact Grace Removals. We can take the stress out of moving. We’ve been moving generations of Aussies and Kiwis back and forth across the ditch and delighting them with our complete door-to-door service. We have over 40 branches across Australia and New Zealand, so we’re confident that we can help you relocate to Australia. To learn more about our services call us on 0800 472 2369 or visit our Moving to Australia. 


±Stats available in ABS.
*Home Affairs website

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