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So You're Moving To New Zealand?

May 24, 2008
New Zealand is split into two main areas, the North of the Island and the South of the Island. Both the North and South contain main cities and smaller towns. The main cities are always the most popular places to relocate to; however if you do decide that you would rather reside in a smaller town you should be aware that the quaint villages within New Zealand are a lot different to the villages in your home country and they often have lower living standards.

Two other aspects that are at home in New Zealand that many of us may not be used to are earthquakes and volcanoes. There are still a few active volcanoes in New Zealand such as White Island. This is located east off the east coast in the bay of plenty. White Island steams and erupts continuously. As where earthquakes are concerned, no matter where you settle in New Zealand earthquakes are a real possibility and many small ones occur each year but they rarely cause damage. Due to this many people opt for earthquake cover when they are taking out their home insurance. Napier in the Hawke's Bay region experienced one of New Zealand's worst disasters in 1931, when an earthquake virtually destroyed the town with the loss of life totalling around 500.

Like Australia New Zealand is very much a part of the UK Commonwealth with its close ties to the UK. It is also very well known for the various Maori tribes, which have been a long part of the country's ancestry. New Zealand is also now seeing a large increase in the number of visitors it is receiving from Southern Asia, which gives the country a truly multi-cultural feel.

When it comes to the economy of the country New Zealand has a well developed economy even if it is dependent on a small number of areas it has proved to be very prosperous over the last decade. Also unemployment rates are fairly low at 3.8%, which ranks New Zealand in the top 50 employment hot spots of the world.

Moving onto healthcare within the country, it is funded mainly through general taxation and treatments are usually free and the medical treatment that you will receive is generally very good. Provided you are a resident of New Zealand and are classed as a citizen then you will be eligible for free healthcare. There are however a few exceptions as to what is free within your healthcare; for example you will have to pay for prescription items and visits to general practitioners as well as any visits to physiotherapists, chiropractors or osteopaths to name just a few.

In order for you to be able to register with a GP you will need to have your passport and visa/permit with you. Once you are registered with your GP you are free to make appointments whenever you need to but, as previously mentioned, a visit to your GP with cost you. The amount that you will have to pay is roughly between $45 and $55 and your GP will usually see you between 8am and 6pm; it should be noted that visits to your GP at weekends or at night will cost you between 10 and $15 more.

Paying for your prescriptions can also be pricey as you will pay $15 per item; however if you are prescribed more than 21 items your prescription costs you nothing meaning if you are having on going treatment you won't be hit by prescription costs.
About the Author
Helen is the web master of Overs International, specialists in Moving to New Zealand and Shipping to New Zealand.
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