Salaries In New Zealand


Comparing Salaries in New Zealand


Salaries in New Zealand can differ significantly depending on the industry, and we also observe regional variations. Generally, salaries are higher in areas where the cost of living and housing is more expensive.

As of mid-2021, the median income in New Zealand is slightly below NZ$27 per hour (which equates to NZD$56,160 per year based on a 40-hour workweek). Moreover, there is a minimum wage in New Zealand that must be legally adhered to, and you cannot be paid below this threshold.

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Impact of Qualification Level on Salary in New Zealand

In New Zealand, your level of qualification can significantly affect your potential salary. Individuals with a Bachelor's degree can earn up to 40% more than the average income. The higher your qualification level, the higher your earning potential. However, factors such as the subject of your degree, work experience, demand for your skills in New Zealand, and negotiation skills can also impact your salary. For instance, in 2016, individuals with the highest-paid Bachelor's degrees were in medical fields, while the most successful diploma holders were in engineering. Additionally, obtaining a New Zealand qualification may give you an advantage in finding skilled employment.

Determining Salary Expectations and Cost of Living in New Zealand

Before moving to New Zealand for work, it is crucial to conduct thorough research on the expected salary rates based on your skills and work experience. Additionally, it is essential to consider the high cost of living in New Zealand compared to the offered salaries. However, many people find the trade-off worthwhile due to the quality of life and environment for raising children. Generally, the average salary in New Zealand is lower than that of the US and UK, with a 2012 survey indicating an average salary of $2,283 (based on the Purchasing Power Parity scale) compared to $3,263 for the US and $3,065 for the UK. Nonetheless, some sectors may offer comparable salary rates.

Exploring Additional Perks: Looking Beyond Just Salary When Considering Job Offers


Your job proposal might encompass non-financial perks.


In New Zealand, companies often provide non-monetary benefits to their employees such as company cars, phones, and fitness club memberships as part of their remuneration packages. However, paid annual leave may be less than what is typical in the UK, with an average of 20 days per year. It's worth noting that salaries can be negotiated up to a certain extent and are often not advertised in job postings, so doing prior research on expected rates can be helpful. Derrick Jones Immigration can provide guidance on likely salaries and additional benefits that can be negotiated for each position.

Top-paying Industries in New Zealand and Lowest-paid Jobs

Over the past five years, the industries with the highest-paying jobs in New Zealand are mining, electricity, gas, and water supply, finance, and information technology. In particular, positions in IT sales, digital architecture, financial controlling, and doctors are among the highest paid in the country. Conversely, jobs in the services sector such as hotel receptionists, waiters/waitresses, and bar staff are consistently rated as the lowest paid jobs in New Zealand, considering the qualifications and experience required.

  • Accounting $82k
  • Agriculture, fishing & forestry $60k
  • Architecture $81k
  • Automotive $65k
  • Banking, finance & insurance $85k
  • Construction & roading $72k
  • Customer service $53k
  • Education $62k
  • Engineering $80k
  • Executive & general management $116k
  • Government & council $82k
  • Healthcare $64k
  • Hospitality & tourism $54k
  • HR & recruitment $83k
  • IT $124k
  • Legal $81k
  • Manufacturing & operations $54k
  • Marketing, media & communications $80k
  • Office & administration $57k
  • Property $80k
  • Retail $54k
  • Sales $71k
  • Science & technology $84k
  • Trades & services $61k
  • Transport & logistics $58k

To obtain additional information, please consult the Government’s Careers website, MBIE, as well as job search platforms such as Trademe and Seek.

Education Counts
Careers Website (Salary Guide)
Careers Website (Salary by Field of Study)