Find paid work, earn, travel and explore New Zealand!
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Duration: Up to 12 months
Trip code: NZAK
Want to work and travel in New Zealand? This exceptional Kiwi work and travel package offers a fun-packed week in Auckland and the Bay of Islands followed by 12 months of assistance and support to find the perfect paid job - plus an awesome, flexible hop-on-hop-off Kiwi Discovery bus pass around both NZ islands, valid for a whole year! Get the ideal balance between work and travel: Earn some money with paid work and see New Zealand's famous landscapes. Enjoy the best of both worlds on our work and travel experience!
Absolute NZ Jobs: Group sizes vary. Kiwi Discovery Pass: Average group size 20-30.
Absolute NZ Jobs
Kiwi Discovery Pass
Combine paid work and adventure travel in New Zealand on this incredible work and travel package. Kick off with an awesome week of fun, guided group adventures in Auckland and the Bay of Islands and then get 12 months of job advice and support so you can find paid work and earn some money abroad. You will also enjoy up to 12 months of travel around New Zealand with our inclusive bus pass – amazing!
Before you begin your job search you’ll enjoy 7 days focused on fun, settling in and making new friends, which includes amazing guided activities & sightseeing in Auckland and the Bay of Islands area. Once your first week of fun is over you can kick-start your job search with the expert advice and assistance of our Auckland jobs team.
Week 1: Fun, Culture and Adventure in Auckland and the Bay of Islands
Day 1, Sunday: Arrive in Auckland. Arrive into Auckland Airport at any time today, a shuttle transfer will be arranged to take you to your buzzing city centre hostel. If you arrive early in the day, why not head out and explore some of Auckland’s sights at your own pace as you get ready for a whole week of fun and adventure!
Day 2, Monday: Job orientation in Auckland. After an inclusive breakfast you will get your first introduction to the world of work in New Zealand. Join a welcome work and travel orientation session in the morning and then get assistance applying for your tax file number. In the afternoon you will be given a comprehensive job presentation and learn all about finding paid work in New Zealand. In the evening, you will tuck in to a delicious group pizza dinner with a free drink included!
Day 3, Tuesday: Auckland city tour. Another hearty inclusive breakfast will set you up for a morning of appointments at the bank, where you’ll finalise all your bank account details. After that, you’ll head out on a guided tour of Auckland. See all the highlights, including the Harbour area and bridge, Mt Eden Volcano and The Domain. Spend another evening bonding with your new group of friends, enjoying a BBQ dinner and another free drink, followed by an epic Auckland pub crawl!
Day 4, Wednesday: Paihia, Bay of Islands. After an early breakfast, depart by private bus with your group and guide from your Auckland hostel at 7.30am, bound for the gorgeous Bay of Islands. There will be plenty of photo opportunities en route as you stop off to see some of New Zealand’s stunning scenery. Arriving in picturesque Paihia around 12 noon/1pm a whole afternoon of fun lies ahead as you take part in some great activities, including a hike to the gorgeous Harura Falls, a horseshoe waterfall. Enjoy a tasty burger dinner after dark.
Day 5, Thursday: Maori cultural day. Have a full day’s cultural immersion experience today as you visit a traditional Waitangi Maori land and learn about Maori culture from a local indigenous tour guide. Your day kicks off with a 10am tour of the Maori Treaty Grounds, followed by an amazing Maori cultural show which includes:
In the afternoon, you’ll take a ferry to explore the first ever capital of New Zealand, Russel. Tonight, enjoy a movie night with your group, complete with hot tub and board games!
Day 6, Friday: Cape Reinga day tour. Depart at 7am for a day’s guided bus tour, bound for New Zealand’s northernmost point, breathtaking Cape Reinga. Listen to some unique Maori stories while you travel. En route you’ll stop off at Te Paki Stream to try some dune surfing and sandboarding (weather permitting), before arriving at Cape Reinga to see the sensational views over the place where the Pacific meets the Tasman Sea. You’ll return to Paihia around 6p.m, where you can visit one of the best pubs in the area. Dance long into the night!
Day 7, Saturday: Return to Auckland. Spend a free morning making the most of your final moments in the beautiful Bay of Islands. Your private bus departs at 12pm and you will arrive back in Auckland around 4:30pm, where your scheduled itinerary ends. Please note that accommodation for tonight is not included but you can book this either before you travel or during your first few days in Auckland. You’re now ready to begin your job hunt!
Please note: The itinerary is subject to change and activities may be done in a different order than stated.
Let the job search begin!
Once your first week of fun is over, you will get 12 months of personal job support from our team in Auckland, including job consultations, a local 24 hour emergency hotline, and unlimited access to an exclusive online jobs database, so you can begin looking for the perfect paid job! As part of the package you get…
Kiwi Discovery Pass
Valid for 12 months, your bus pass allows you to spend up to a year exploring New Zealand, or if you prefer you can complete the entire tour route in a minimum of 28 days (although we recommend you allow around 38 days to make the most of your travel pass experience).
Please note: You should arrange your arrival into Auckland the day before the tour begins, as there is an early start in the morning!
Please note: Following the earthquake on New Zealand’s South Island on the 14th November 2016, there have been a few minor changes to the Kiwi Discovery Pass route until further notice. Days 24-26 will now run as follows:
Day 24: Mt Cook – Christchurch. Discover tranquil Hagley Park and the spectacular Botanic Gardens in the vibrant city of Christchurch.
Day 25: Christchurch – Nelson. Visit Nelson, the Sunshine Capital on New Zealand! Enjoy some time on the city’s golden beaches and take to the seas for some optional water-based activities!
Day 26: Nelson to Wellington (via Picton). Leave the sandy beaches of Nelson behind and head across the water to the North Island. Here the original itinerary resumes.
These changes have been made with the safety of our customers in mind, and to support the recovery of those areas affected by the earthquake. Please contact us for more information.
You don't have to start in Auckland! You can start and end at any stop along the route!
Day 1: Auckland to Paihia, Bay of Islands. Your flexible, hop-on-hop-off tour begins today at 7am in the lively city of Auckland. Your destination is the relaxing seaside town of Paihia, known as the ‘gateway to the Bay of Islands’. In summer, swim at Waipu Cove. In winter, visit Parry Kauri Forest Park.
Day 2: Paihia to Cape Reinga and Back. Stop off at Te Paki Stream to try some inclusive dune surfing and sandboarding, before arriving at Cape Reinga. Please note: Today is a round day trip from Paihia and you cannot hop off the bus today.
Day 3: Paihia to Auckland. Today is a free day to relax and enjoy Paihia at your leisure. Join a boat cruise, sign up to swim with dolphins, laze on the beach or hike to the famous Harura Falls. In the afternoon the bus will take you back to the bright lights of Auckland.
Day 4: Auckland to Hahei. Travel south to the stunning Coromandel Peninsula and settle into your beachfront accommodation. Head over to Hot Water Beach to dig and relax in your own personal hot water pool! (weather & tide dependent)
Day 5: Hahei. Free day to relax and soak up the beautiful surroundings and awesome optional activities of Hahei.
Day 6: Hahei to Raglan. Visit the amazing Bridal Veil Falls en route to Raglan. Chill out in this cool surfer town.
Day 7: Raglan (via Waitomo) to Rotorua. Visit Waitomo Caves, famous for their glow-worms. Optional activities include visiting The Lord of the Rings Hobbiton set.
Day 8: Rotorua to Lake Aniwhenua. Maori guided tour, activities, meals and stay at Lake Aniwhenua (compulsory extra cost of NZD95). Optional activities include: traditional fishing, eeling, weaving lessons, cooking classes and kayaking (cost NZD10-20).
Day 9: Lake Aniwhenua (via Taupo) to Whakahoro. See the stunning Huka Falls then visit Lake Taupo. Optional skydiving (approx NZD250). Rural country farm visit and overnight stay.
Day 10: Whakahoro. Explore the countryside around the rural country farm. Optional activities include a 4x4 tour, a horse trek or kayaking.
Day 11: Whakahoro to Tongariro National Park. Explore the Tongariro National Park. Option to do legendary 1-day Tongariro Crossing Alpine Walk (extra cost).
Day 12: Tongariro National Park to Wellington. Travel to Wellington. Free time to explore New Zealand’s capital city.
Day 13: Wellington to Marahau (Abel Tasman National Park). 8am ferry to South Island (extra cost of approx. NZD55). Visit to Marlborough wine-making region (optional wine tasting). Final destination of the day is Marahau, on the edge of Abel Tasman National Park.
Day 14: Marahau (Abel Tasman National Park). Explore Abel Tasman National Park. Optional activities on offer include sailing, kayaking, skydiving, stand up paddleboarding or hang gliding. All optional activities are at an extra cost.
Day 15: Marahau to Westport. Leave a legacy behind you as you plant your very own tree! Stop at Cape Foulwind to see the amazing fur seal colony. Your final destination of the day is the historic coal mining town of Westport.
Day 16: Westport to Franz Josef. See the unusual Punakaiki Pancake Rocks with their impressive blowholes. Stop off at the mining town of Greymouth and Hokitika en route to Franz Josef.
Day 17: Franz Josef. Free day to explore the area around the fantastic Franz Josef Glacier. Join a guided bush hike, or enjoy a heli-hop and tour of the unique icy area, including entry to hot pools (extra cost of NZD250).
Day 18: Franz Josef to Wanaka. See Lake Matheson, travel through Haast Pass and Makarora, see Lake Hawea then end up in Wanaka in the late afternoon.
Day 19: Wanaka to Queenstown. Early walk up Mount Iron or skydive (skydive extra cost). On to Queenstown, the adventure capital of the world!
Day 20: Queenstown to Gunn’s Camp. Start early for a scenic drive past Lake Wakatipu, before arriving in magical Milford Sound. Opt to do a Milford Sound boat cruise (extra cost) before travelling on to Gunn’s Camp.
Day 21: Gunn’s Camp to Invercargill/Stewart Island. Take a leisurely stroll through beautiful beech forests on a Viewing Gantry walk. Travel South to Invercargill. Hop across to Stewart Island (ferry at own cost) or stay in Invercargill overnight instead.
Day 22: Invercargill/Stewart Island to Queenstown. If you stayed on Stewart Island, enjoy a free morning before travelling back to the mainland (ferry at own cost). If you chose to stay in Invercargill overnight, you’ll head out on a tour sea-lion, penguin and dolphin spotting. Travel back to Queenstown.
Day 23: Queenstown to Aoraki/Mt Cook. Arrive at the base of New Zealand’s highest mountain Aoraki/ Mt Cook in the early afternoon. Take a short walk, join a 4WD tour or visit the Sir Edmund Hillary Alpine Centre.
Day 24: Mount Cook to Rangitata. Visit Lake Tekapo, where you can try optional activities such as ice-skating, snow tubing or swimming at hot springs (winter months only). In Geraldine you can try white water rafting! Spend the night on an original sheep station in Rangitata.
Day 25: Rangitata (via Christchurch) to Kaikoura. Set off early across the Canterbury Plains to the city of Christchurch and then on to Kaikoura. Spot seals, soak up the spectacular views, swim with dolphins or go whale-spotting (seasonal).
Day 26: Kaikoura (via Picton) to Wellington. Travel along the wild coast, stopping at a seal colony en route to Picton. You can choose to stop off here, or catch a ferry (extra cost of NZD51-75) across the Cook Strait to Wellington.
Day 27: Wellington to Auckland. Leaving at 6.40am, you’ll zip back to your starting point in Auckland today, arriving in the late afternoon. Here your epic hop-on-hop-off adventures come to an end!
Don’t forget, you can hop on and off along the route for up to a year!
Please Note: This itinerary is for guidance only and is subject to change. There are lots of extra, optional activities on offer all along the tour route and all optional activities are at your own, extra cost. Ferry costs are not included in your trip price.
Please note: You can travel the loop as many times as you like. Travellers on their first loop will be given priority. If you are travelling a section of the loop again, you must book this journey in advance through the local team. Travel between Auckland and Cape Reinga, and Christchurch and Greymouth cannot be travelled more than once. Please contact us for more information.
Absolute NZ Jobs
6 nights’ of dorm-share accommodation in 4-star hostels is included. This includes 3 nights in a centrally-located hostel in the lively city of Auckland. Facilities at this hostel include:
At busy times of year it is possible you may stay in a different 4-star hostel in Auckland with similar facilities.
You will spend your final 3 nights based in a hostel in Paihia in the Bay of Islands. Facilities at this hostel include:
6 breakfasts and 3 dinners are also included on this trip. Other meals are at your own cost, but with loads of great restaurants on your doorstep and even facilities to cook your own meals on offer at the hostel in Auckland, you can eat cheaply and easily while in New Zealand.
Please note: Accommodation for your final night of the first week (day 7, Saturday) is not included but you can book this either before you travel to New Zealand or during your first few days in Auckland.
Long-term accommodation options
Our jobs team in New Zealand can give you great advice and assistance in finding long term accommodation for your time in New Zealand. Most travellers who head out to New Zealand end up either sharing an apartment with other Working Holiday travellers or extend their stay in a hostel. The advantage of renting is that it works out cheaply, especially if you share, and you get your own private room. Our customers often end up renting a place with the friends they meet in their first week on the programme.
Alternatively you can extend your stay in a hostel. This is a great option for those that want to travel around quite a lot. Hostels offer cheaper rates for those that want a long term stay, for example for one month or more. It is really easy to book accommodation in hostels; you can often walk in and get a room that day but we recommend that you make a reservation the night before.
Your wages will cover any living expenses such as rent, food and bills. If you would like any more information about costs and accommodation please contact us for more details.
Kiwi Discovery Bus Pass
Accommodation and meals are not included as part of the Kiwi Discovery hop-on-hop-off bus pass. Each stop-off on the bus route offers unique accommodation options, which we offer our travellers at a reasonable cost, with a typical night costing about NZD25-30 for a dorm room and NZD60-80 for a twin or double room*. We reserve accommodation in all our overnight stops so you’ll be guaranteed one night’s accommodation in each overnight stop if you want it. If you wish to take advantage of this offer, tell your guide/driver and they will book it for you, and you pay as you go.
If you wish to choose your own accommodation, or want to stay longer in any of the locations along the route, to make the most of your 12 months flexible bus pass, then you are free to select your own accommodation and your guide can help you with advice and booking.
Our reserved choice of accommodation along the route is exclusive to this tour, and offers unique and amazing places to stay. These include a variety of hostels, wilderness lodges and cabins in amazing off the beaten track locations as well as on a sheep station, a country farm, rainforest lodges and in a Marae (a Maori meeting house)!
*Please note: in peak season twins and double rooms may have limited availability.
Most of the recommended accommodation en route offers self-catering facilities, and the tour stops off at supermarkets so you can stock up on supplies. Group meal options are sometimes offered and the Maori cultural experience includes meals. Vegetarian options are readily available.
Due to the Working Holiday Visa age restrictions, this trip is only available to 18-30 year olds. As you are planning to work in New Zealand whilst you’re here, you’ll need to apply for a Working Holiday Visa, which gives you twelve months eligibility to live and work in New Zealand. This can be done online through the New Zealand Immigration website. Feel free to contact us for further information.
To be eligible for a Work Visa/Permit applicants must:
The NZ Working Holiday Visa is available to passport holders from: