What made you decide on New Zealand as a destination to live and work?
We have two sons, both in their late 30's and they have been residents of NZ for some years. We had been finding it increasingly hard making the journey to see them and have been six times in the last 10 years. In November 2013 following a family discussion we decided to seek approval for a Parent Category Visa.
Tell us about your Visa process.
There is a strict annual quota for this category of visa and in order to stand the best chance we decided to seek professional assistance. Migration Associates seemed best suited, particularly with Borey Chum's NZ qualification and his intimate knowledge of the procedures. Through the process Borey took a keen personal interest and was backed up by his staff. There were some NZ Immigration health queries which following MA advice were quickly resolved.
How are you settling into life in New Zealand and what is like to be close to your NZ family?
We have been to New Zealand a number of times involving lengthy stays with family and were therefore already acquainted with the Kiwi's attitude. We have not been disappointed with everyone being very welcoming including dog walkers, (yes we took 2 dogs!) local professionals (including the GP) and even strangers in the shops. And of course we speak most days to our sons and they come to stay in our new home in Waikanae when appropriate.
What is the key difference between life in the UK and life in NZ which is so attractive?
People here seem so much more relaxed and friendly with an interest in you. Some years ago a Dutch B&B proprietor said to me when we were discussing emigration "we're all immigrants here". We certainly have been most welcomed and do not feel out of place.
What advice would you give to those looking to live & work in NZ in the future?
My advice to anyone thinking of emigrating to New Zealand is don't concern yourself with the emigration process but employ a good experienced agent. The cost is minimal in the scheme of things. But get here as it's different, but not that different!