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How to get PR after study in New Zealand?

New Zealand is one of the happiest countries in the world, according to many world rankings. This country is said to have the most satisfied citizens. The landscape of this country is beautiful, a mix of modern architecture with countryside vibes.

The overall atmosphere of this place is very pleasant and to say the least; it is a perfect place to live with safety and peace assured. It is emerging as one of the best countries to study and not only that it is also ranking higher and higher each year the way it is developing in the world ranking indexes.

Education in New Zealand is one of the best; it is based on the British system and is sufficiently successful in providing students with good and quality education along with exposure. However, once a student lands in New Zealand, there are high chances that they may not want o go back. It is very easy to fall in love with New Zealand and its beautiful environment.

However, what one must do to get to live in New Zealand? How is one supposed to get a PR (Permanent Residency) in New Zealand after they are done with their studies?

The following will answer such questions and more.

Is studying in New Zealand route to getting a PR?

The answer to this question is simply a No.

It is a common belief that if you apply for studies in New Zealand, especially, Masters, you will eventually get a Permanent Residency. However, that is no longer true, and there was not much truth in it earlier either. There were certain ways to get an easy win, however, now the government has closed off all loopholes, and it is not a breezy process anymore.

In recent times, New Zealand has witnessed a huge increase in the number of immigrants. Cities like Auckland have been suffering due to this increase in population. There have been employment gaps, housing problems, economic crises, etc. The government nowadays changes rules now and then to maintain a balance between the immigrants and the residents.

A student visa cannot be used to get PR directly. However, a qualification from New Zealand puts you in a situation of advantage. It cannot directly get you a PR, but it can surely pave the way for you. Certain courses like Medicine, etc. also put some additional, bonus points on your PR application. However, still, a student visa, a work visa and Permanent Residency in New Zealand are not at all connected.

Getting a PR in New Zealand is no longer as easy as it once used to be. However, it does not mean that it is simply impossible.

Once your student visa is over, you are expected to leave the country and return to your home country. However, if you want to continue living in New Zealand and you also aspire for a PR, it is necessary for you to work in there for at least five years. However, to work, one must have a suitable visa, i.e., the work visa.

How to get a work visa in New Zealand?

It is important for one to have a correct visa as soon as their student visa expires. Once a student completes their qualification from an acclaimed university in New Zealand, they can apply for a post-study work visa, there are two kinds of post-study work visas one may apply for, one is Open, and the other is employer-assisted.

Post-study work visa (Open) is for those who have finished their studies but have not yet landed a job and are still looking for one. It is a flexible visa which gives students a time of one year to find themselves a job and to support their livelihoods in New Zealand using that job. Students are allowed to work in any field, even if it is not related to their field of study.

Post-study work visa (Employer Assisted) is quite different. This visa is not at all flexible and demands a student to find a specific kind of job which is related to their area of study along with a specific type of employer. It is important to apply for this visa three months before one is completing their graduation. This visa is often chosen because it provides two years for finding a job and working on it.

However, a work visa is not the final destination. The final destination is the Permanent Residence Visa which is not that easy to procure as a work visa.

How to get a Permanent Residence Visa in New Zealand?

The ultimate goal to work is to get a PR; it is a well known and well-acknowledged fact. However, the goal of PR is also to establish a career in the field of your choice, for which it is important to work continuously and for that, a PR is very important.

A PR gets a person all the benefits locals get from the government and along with it also funding from the government for their projects. The visa also allows citizens to get better opportunities at the job, along with other factors like age, experience, etc.

It also allows the citizens to travel from New Zealand to any part of the world without any restrictions and fear of deporting.

There are many requirements for VISA acquirement as well:

  • English fluency and command over the language
  • Age below 55 years old
  • Good health
  • Good character
  • Proof of your intention to stay in the country
  • Proof of the job that you have gotten, like an offer letter

To apply for PR in New Zealand, there are few ways and types of visas which one can apply for:

  • Skilled Migrant Category Visa: This is the best one to apply for if you are an immigrant in New Zealand. You have to submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) after which within two weeks one can expect a notification from New Zealand immigration. After it, one may submit all the necessary documents and proofs and can expect to get a reply back within ten days.
  • Family Category Visa: If you are a brother/sister/wife/ dependent relative of a person already having PR in New Zealand, you can apply for this visa. However, one has to be sponsored by them to live with them and work in New Zealand.
  • Business and Investment Visa: One should apply for this visa if they are planning to invest in a firm based in New Zealand. If you are planning to build your own business, you can apply under the Entrepreneur category as well. The acceptance/rejection of the application lies solely on the discretion of New Zealand immigration.

However, just filling out an application and applying is not enough. To get the application accepted and an invitation to apply for a PR application and to finally get the PR. One needs to earn points for their application to be a success.

Points can be based on the following criteria:

  • Age: Maximum points for younger people. Thirty points for those who lie between the age of 20-29 years and 5 points for those around 50-55 years.
  • Work Experience: 10 points for two years to 30 points for 10+ years, one may get additional points for benefits, promotions, and appraisals one may have gotten at work.
  • Family Background: 10 points are also assigned to those who have close family ties in New Zealand.
  • Qualification: There are 50 points for graduation degree or a diploma and 55 points for a Masters degree.
  • Chances of getting employment/Employability: There are 60 points for those working a job for over a year and 50 points for those who are looking for a job for less than a year.

If someone has over 140 points, they get an invitation to apply (ITA) for the visa by the immigration office itself. The minimum criterion to apply is 100-135 marks. And the final decision rest with New Zealand immigration only.

Getting a PR in New Zealand is not exactly a walk in a park, but it is not an impossible task either. One needs to work hard and conform to many requirements before they can apply for a PR visa, but once these requirements are done, there is no turning back to one’s way towards a PR in New Zealand.

The procedures are not very complex, and there is assistance every step on the way. If one is smart and hardworking and can prove to be an asset to the country, their way to the PR may become easier.

New Zealand is a beautiful country with no dearth of opportunities. After studies, many opportunities are awaiting one and a PR is one of the best ways to get the advantage of them all.

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About the Author

I am a study abroad content expert, associated with the study abroad industry since years. I am a firm believer that study abroad is once a lifetime experience and everyone should get a chance of having this experience.

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