Hong Kong to New Zealand – Claire’s story and moving tips
Picking up Claire’s belongings in Discovery Bay
Earlier this year, our client Claire had the chance to fulfill a dream by moving to New Zealand from Hong Kong. The move stemmed from a job offer. This meant she had to move fast, as well as negotiate the entry requirements for NZ. It wasn’t straightforward – Claire looked at five different global moving companies before finding the one that met her needs.
Now she’s settled in, she’s sharing her experience and moving tips.
Job opportunities and lifestyle
Claire is almost a professional expat. Born in South Africa, she moved to the UK at 21. Three years later she headed to Hong Kong. For the last several years she’s had the urge to move again, looking for a change of pace and a healthier lifestyle. When she was offered a teaching job in New Zealand, she decided it was the perfect opportunity.
It’s a big move – over 9,000 kms with 5 hours difference between the countries, and a completely different culture and environment. There was lots to organise. What’s more, it all happened in just four months.
“It’s emotionally challenging, wrapping up all loose ends in the country that you are leaving – as well as having to plan ahead for the place you’re moving to,” Claire says. “And on top of all of that, having to say goodbye and then start over.”
Claire enjoying the outdoors in New Zealand
Choosing the right moving company
The tight time frame, and the surprise of New Zealand’s complex paperwork, made it important for Claire to find the right moving company. Simply organising getting herself into the country was stressful enough without thinking about moving her belongings too.
“For example, applying for police clearance certificates and other documentation for visa purposes took time,” Claire says. “I could only start this once I was registered to teach here in NZ, which was itself a very long and in-depth process. They required an awful lot of paperwork.”
Because she’s done this before, she knew what she was looking for to help her with shipping to NZ.
“I was looking for cost, efficiency, delivery time, and knowledge about NZ processes when it came to a moving company.
“Links kept the paperwork minimal. They were very knowledgeable about NZ processes and ensured I was aware of all the costs involved. They were particularly incredible for this stressful time. The professional service they offered was so easy, informative and streamlined compared to everything else that was going on. The packing day was amazing and the Links team were super efficient, professional and very friendly.
“Because of my need to move quickly for the job, it was all very last minute. Patrick (the CEO) and his team were so supportive, reassuring and accommodating, despite it being such a busy time for them. Their correspondence was so quick and no question was too much trouble.”
A more relaxed lifestyle
Claire’s now settled into her new teaching job in Auckland, the country’s largest city. It’s a big adjustment from Hong Kong in many ways – including the paycheck – but there’s such a lift in her quality of life. She wouldn’t change it.
“I am in a decile 8 school, working with wonderful people and students. It’s so friendly and supportive. In my current school, there is a lot more laughter, genuine warmth, and care – despite the incredible increase in paperwork. The major difference for me is space and nature. Watching children play outside in the grass and the gardens, climbing in the trees, is such a blessing.”
She’s enjoying nature herself, spending plenty of her time doing outdoor activities and enjoying the scenery. Claire also says the friendliness of people gives it a “homey” feel that reminds her of her original home in Johannesburg.
“I should have moved here years ago. I absolutely love it, it felt like home from the minute I arrived. My only regret is not moving here sooner.”