Expats moving to Auckland can look forward to living in a modern, developed city with the charm and relaxed pace of a seaside community. Aptly nicknamed the 'City of Sails' owing to the many yachts sailing between Waitemata Harbour and Manukau Harbour, Auckland is well-situated on the north side of New Zealand's North Island.
With a population of just under 1.7 million, Auckland comprises four main areas: Auckland City in the centre, North Shore on a raised peninsula to the north, Waitakere City to the west, and Manukau City to the south.
Living in Auckland as an expat
Auckland is a culturally diverse city with a mix of locals, Western expats and Polynesian islanders. In fact, some countries in Polynesia have more citizens living as expats in Auckland than at home. This variety adds to the city's charm and ensures many cultural events and festivals yearly.
Although accommodation in Auckland is the most expensive in New Zealand, various housing options are available to expats. Expats will find that homes farther from the shore are generally cheaper than those in beach areas.
The city has several public transport options, such as ferries, buses, trains and taxis, but is still the most accessible and navigable by car.
As the economic capital, Auckland is the obvious choice for expats moving to New Zealand. As the largest commercial centre in the country, Auckland typically produces a third of New Zealand's GDP, nearly double that of the entire South Island. The average salaries in Auckland are significantly higher than elsewhere in New Zealand.
Cost of living in Auckland
The general cost of living in Auckland remains higher than in other parts of the country, even if it's relatively low globally. Most expats relocating to Auckland will find that they can live comfortably and even enjoy a few luxuries they might not be able to back home. Still, accommodation and food are likely to take a considerable chunk of expats' salaries.
Expat families and children in Auckland
For expat families with children, Auckland offers a wide range of options for education and healthcare. There are numerous public and private schools to choose from, providing a variety of curriculums and educational approaches to suit different needs and preferences. Additionally, both free or low-cost state healthcare facilities and private hospitals are available throughout the city, ensuring that families have access to quality healthcare services.
Climate in Auckland
The weather and climate are perfect incentives to select Auckland as a new home. Summers are warm, and the temperature averages 68°F (20°C), while winters are moderate, with a mean temperature of 51°F (11°C).
Auckland is an ideal expat destination, offering the perfect balance between maintaining a healthy lifestyle and pursuing business opportunities. Expats moving to Auckland will soon find themselves calling New Zealand's beautiful 'City of Sails' home.
►Learn more about the ups and downs of living in this city in our Pros and Cons of Moving to Auckland page
►Read Moving to New Zealand for an overview of the country
"It is crisp, clean and beautiful here. Our money goes a lot further, so we have a more comfortable home and a far better view. In general I would say New Zealand presents a more relaxed and healthier lifestyle." Rhonda Albom relocated to Auckland in 2003. She shares her experiences of Auckland here.
"As far as cities go, Auckland is pretty mellow. The people here have been fantastic and welcoming, and I can drive for just half an hour to an hour and be out in the wops again. It’s really great." Read American expat Jimmy's interview about his experiences of Auckland.
Are you an expat living in Auckland?
Expat Arrivals is looking for locals to contribute to this guide, and answer forum questions from others planning their move to Auckland. Please contact us if you'd like to contribute.
Expat Health Insurance
Cigna Global Health Insurance - 10% off any plans bought in November and December 2023
With Cigna, you won't have to rely on foreign public health care systems, which may not meet your needs. Cigna allows you to speak to a doctor on demand, for consultations or instant advice, wherever you are in the world. They also offer full cancer care across all levels of cover, and settle the cost of treatments directly with the provider. Cigna is currently offering a 10% discount for seniors (over 60) on their Silver package.
International Movers. Get Quotes. Compare Prices.
Sirelo has a network of more than 500 international removal companies that can move your furniture and possessions to your new home. By filling in a form, you’ll get up to 5 quotes from recommended movers. This service is free of charge and will help you select an international moving company that suits your needs and budget.