Life in Wellington, New Zealand

What were your reasons for emigrating?

The UK has become an oppressed, state-controlled, CCTV, Speed-camera obsessed place to live. My wife and I found that we were lucky if we made enough to even stand still financially and the life we were living was making us both ill.

Name: Marcus Bell
Age: 40
Occupation: Photographer
Number Emigrating: 2
Emigrated from: High Wycombe, Bucks, UK
Moved to: Thorndon, Wellington
Daily Commute Time: I work from home
What were your reasons for choosing New Zealand?

As a photographer, Canada would have suited me better because I specialise in Wildlife and Canada has that in spades – as well as the huge market of the USA right next door.It was deemed “too cold” by my wife when I took her on a photo shoot in the Rockies in winter and it hit minus 40 centigrade!

What differences have you noticed between your NZ town and your home town?

Much more relaxed, lower crime rates, more sunny people, politeness, school children in uniform, safer (except on the roads!). Access to fishing, walking, hunting etc is cheap and easy in comparison to the UK.

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Thorndon, Wellington
What do you like best about New Zealand?

That you can have a go and get on – you can be who you are rather than what you are.

What don’t you like about New Zealand?

I think that too much money has been spent fixing alleged grievances of minorities. That money could have better benefited ALL New Zealanders by creating opportunity for all and helping better the economy. NZ suffers from “Small Man Syndrome” as well and I would like to see it being happier to be what it is. The parochial nature of the news media is hilarious as well. Also, 1080 poisoning is a shameful disgrace. My friend’s 7 year old son also observed when visiting from the UK that “they all live in wooden sheds, Daddy!”

What do you miss from your home country?

Choice in supermarkets, decent roads, safe drivers, proper rail services.

How easily did you find work in New Zealand?

My wife found it very easily. I have found that it is hard to get people to spend money here on anything they think (often mistakenly) that they can do themselves – in my case, they frequently do not see the value a professional brings to the project, thinking that they can do just as well with a $300 camera from Harvey Norman as I can with 10 years experience and $50,000 worth of kit!

How does your working life in New Zealand compare with your previous work experiences?

For me it is much the same. My wife has adapted well to the office environment – although she finds the frequent obscene language and impolitenesses such as leaving mobiles on in meetings, being late and not apologising and so on quite rude.

How does your standard of living in New Zealand compare with your previous country?

Better – much! We were fortunate to get a boost from the exchange rate. We earn over $200,000 a year, so we can live well.

How does your quality of life now compare with your previous country?

Again, much better.

Do you have any other personal experiences or observations that would be useful for people considering immigrating to New Zealand?

If you are English, don’t believe that this is the UK with a funny accent! It isn’t. It can appear like that on a short visit but you will soon learn that the thought processes and culture are quite different. Get used to flying – driving between major cities is not a realistic option and there are almost no rail services.

Should I Move to New Zealand?

8 must-knows before you even THINK about moving to New Zealand

Would you like to share your own experiences of living in New Zealand? You can do this at My Story. Or you can read more more personal experiences.

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