Brian Heron and Amy Hudson arrived in New Zealand in the middle of February 2013. The couple packed up their belongings and said goodbye to their life in Portsmouth, United Kingdom in search of a better lifestyle that complimented their ‘work to live’ philosophy. Choosing New Zealand as their new home was a no brainer for Brian and Amy; the couple had been to the country on three week long holiday in 2012 and had fallen in love with the relaxed pace of living.
Getting to New Zealand
The immigration process happened quickly for Brian and Amy, from their initial decision to immigrate to obtaining residence status in New Zealand. Brian secured thepermanent full time position of Service Advisor for a well-known automotive dealership in New Plymouth and was later promoted to the role of Automotive Service Manager. Amy began working as a Retail Shop Manager and was also later promoted to Retail Department Manager.
“All has happened very quickly, we moved in February 2013, Amy found employment reasonably easily a couple of months after getting settled; a few months after that I was promoted at work and in August 2013 we were awarded residency!” says Brian. “The process was simple enough providing you do a little groundwork first to answer the basics. Silver Fern Immigration was faultless! Communication was good, costs were reasonable; everyone at Silver Fern was always chirpy and helpful. The residency process being looked after by silver Fern gave us the time to focus on the whole relocation process overall instead of having another thing to worry about.”
For Brian and Amy, the beautiful coastal town of New Plymouth is now home. The couple have settled into a two bedroom apartment in a 1920’s building, directly across the road from the beach with nice views of the ocean.
“New Plymouth is an up and coming town with a wide variety of cafes, bars and restaurants. We certainly have no problems in finding great places to eat or place to have a beer or two!” says Brian.
The move has changed their lives for the better, “We have a more positive outlook, there’s less stress and more time to relax,” says Brian.
“The outdoor activities here are more numerous and some we have not even experienced in the UK,” says Brian. “Food and eateries are in abundance with no shortage of variety; nightlife is all within walking distance and feels very safe unlike a lot of UK nightlife. Leisure activities are primarily water based from surfing, fishing, swimming, wakeboarding, boating, etc. The regional council and town thrive on giving 110% to events and shows to make sure no weekend is boring.”
“Winter weather are much milder than in the UK, we have not spent a summer here yet but summers on its way so we’re are now looking forward to having light evenings to go enjoy coastal life after work,” says Brian.
For Brian and Amy one of the hardest aspects of their immigration experience was having no family and friends around.
“One of the downsides of living in New Zealand is the time difference to the UK. All communication via Skype has to be planned,” says Brian.
Other downsides are the price of milk and bread which are costly compared to the UK, also internet costs are limited and expensive, and for people living in smaller towns, it is a long drive to large cities for niche shopping.
Currently, Brian and Amy are saving a deposit for a house and are preparing to purchase their first property in New Zealand. “We are still renting though there is a lot more available land here than our hometown in the UK. Plenty of variety in terms of costs and styles of homes, a lot of modernisation seems to be required on the majority of properties on the market however. The locals say they believe property to be expensive though for us it’s comparably cheap,” says Brian.
|Words of Wisdom
“Do your research before deciding where to emigrate, things can be quite different here from the UK and it may not be to some peoples liking, we would recommend you have a holiday and travel round before deciding or committing,” says Brian.
Brian and Amy on Silver Fern Immigration
We were very happy with the way Silver Fern conducted the Visa process and were astounded at the short timescale involved from the very beginning to actually getting residency – less than 6 months! Even though our residency process is now complete, I still keep in touch with Erica. We would highly recommend Silver Fern to others.