BYE BYE CULTURAL CRINGE: EXPAT KIWIS CONFIDENT AND CONNECTED WITH HOME   9 Jul 2008

EXPAT SURVEY: New Zealanders remain confident about their country and strongly committed to its destiny even while living and working overseas, a survey of Kiwi expats in Europe has found.

"I want to experience and travel the world before coming home to settle down"; "I am planning to return [to New Zealand] and build a business there," were typical comments received in the survey by global network Kea New Zealand and national airline Air New Zealand. "New Zealand is the best, but as a Kiwi you need to see the rest of the world to appreciate it," echoed another respondent.

While 35% of the expats in the survey left home to take advantage of global economic opportunities, this does not mean they lack confidence in New Zealand. More than two-thirds (69%) say New Zealand has made great progress over the last ten years, and 59% are confident about New Zealand’s economic future.

Another factor influencing some to leave home is the ability to pay off their student loans faster when earning in sterling.

Of more than 3000 expats who responded to the survey, more than four in ten (42%) travel to New Zealand at least once a year, and more than two-thirds (69%) get home at least every two years. About 98% maintain family or social connections with New Zealand, and around 95% see New Zealand as a great place to raise kids and to retire.

"The picture that emerges is of talented Kiwis curious about what lies outside their doorstep venturing out and gaining experience and connections they can use for New Zealand’s benefit in the future," says Anna Groot, Kea’s Regional Manager in the UK.

"Most Kiwi expats are broadening their horizons, but without in anyway taking New Zealand out of the picture," she says.

"I have a desire to understand where my roots are from," was one respondent’s reply when asked why they left New Zealand. Travel and the opportunity to earn better money overseas were consistently cited as reasons for moving abroad. For example, one respondent had "[a] desire to see the world and travel, and there is better remuneration overseas in [my] specific employment area."

"Let’s sip sauvignon blanc during the rugby, eh?"

The lure of enhanced lifestyle and culture overseas is the biggest single factor (44%) in expats’ decision to leave New Zealand, the survey found.

Yet there is little sign of old-fashioned cultural cringe among Kiwi expats: more than 70% say Kiwi arts & culture is among the world’s best.

Half of respondents agreed with the statement "When I think of New Zealand, I think more of good food and wine than having a beer with my mates", and less than a quarter disagreed.

Well over half of the expats in the survey say that Kiwis overseas tend to rely too much on New Zealand’s sporting success for their sense of national identity. And by a two-to-one margin, respondents say they personally still identify more with New Zealand rugby than with its arts and culture.

Still the world’s greatest travellers

Most Europe-based New Zealanders travel outside their current country of residence at least once every three months, the survey found. Nearly half (48%) have lived in at least three countries, and a quarter have lived in four countries or more.

"Er, we’re the other down-under"

Kiwi expats see their nationality as having a good image around the world (94%) and say their country promotes itself well globally (84%).

Yet 26% of the Kiwis in the sample report that foreigners confuse New Zealanders with Australians, and 82% say most people overseas tend to lump Kiwis and Aussies together.

Claire Byrom from Air New Zealand in London said that the positive results from the survey also strongly support the airline’s involvement with ‘Track Me Back’, a New Zealand initiative lead by a number of New Zealand employers to support Kiwis thinking of returning home to work at some stage.

"Since its launch in November more than 2700 Kiwis with an interest of returning home have registered at trackmeback.co.nz . Track Me Back puts employers in direct contact with Kiwis, building communication as to what they can offer in terms of career and opportunity and providing compelling reasons for New Zealanders to return home

"The results of the survey show that Kiwis do and will always call New Zealand home even when 12,000 miles away."

 

Add a comment

Bookmark and Share

News

Climate action plan with China

28 Mar 2017 Environment
27 March 2017 Minister for Climate Change Issues Paula Bennett has announced details of a climate change action plan to be put in... more

McCully welcomes cooperation with China on Pacific fisheries and development

28 Mar 2017 Environment
27 Mar 2017 Foreign Minister Murray McCully has today signed two arrangements with China aimed at strengthening cooperation in the... more

Business

Positive step forward for pay equity

1 Mar 2017 Business News
28 Feb 2017 State Services Minister Paula Bennett has welcomed an agreement with unions which will see the Government’s new pay... more

New Zealand companies impress at Dubai tradeshow

1 Mar 2017 Business News
1 March 2017 Minister for Primary Industries Nathan Guy has attended the world’s largest food tradeshow in Dubai today, as... more

Living

3rd Position, Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series

21 Nov 2016 Lifestyle
Emirates Team New Zealand EMIRATES TEAM NEW ZEALAND CLOSES IN 3rd POSITION THE LOUIS VUITTON AMERICA’S CUP WORLD SERIES more

Arts Foundation Award recipients for 2016

14 Nov 2016 Lifestyle
The Arts Foundation Next generation of internationally acclaimed talent among the Arts Foundation Award recipients for 2016Under ... more

Property

NZ house prices gain 11% in October

14 Nov 2016 Property
Article - BusinessDesk Monday 14 November 2016 10:28 AM NZ house prices gain 11% in October, driven by sales of higher value homes By... more

RBNZ sees pressures building in Auckland construction sector

11 Nov 2016 Property By Paul McBeth
Article - BusinessDesk Thursday 10 November 2016 04:04 PM RBNZ sees pressures building in Auckland construction sector By Paul ... more

Migration

Recognised Seasonal Employers employ more Kiwis

8 Feb 2017 Migration
7 Feb 2017 Immigration Minister Michael Woodhouse welcomes a report showing the vast majority of employers who take on seasonal... more

Good progress on investment attraction strategy

8 Dec 2016 Migration
Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce has welcomed news that New Zealand is attracting a higher level of quality international... more

Travel

New Zealand commits to Fiji border security

28 Mar 2017 Travel & Tourism
27 March 2017 Customs Minister Nicky Wagner is welcoming a commitment to help strengthen Fiji’s border security. New Zealand... more

Weirdest things visitors Google before coming

6 Feb 2017 NZ Tourism
8 Feb 2017 Does New Zealand celebrate halloween?  Is Auckland a dangerous town- these are some of the subjects visitors Google... more

Sport

VALE: Tania Dalton 1971-2017

1 Mar 2017 Netball
VALE: Tania Dalton 1971-2017 March 1, 2017   The Netball community is deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Silver Fern... more

Silver Ferns wrap up Quad Series with big win

6 Feb 2017 Netball
6 Feb 2017 The Silver Ferns finished runners-up in the Netball Quad Series after completing a well-crafted 70-39 win over the SPAR... more

Columns

Gordon Campbell on the Gareth Morgan crusade

11 Nov 2016 Opinion
Column - Gordon Campbell   Gordon Campbell on the Gareth Morgan crusade First published on Werewolf more

Gordon Campbell on the US election outcome

10 Nov 2016 Opinion
Column - Gordon Campbell   Gordon Campbell on the US election outcome more

Kiwi Success

Spencer to be Acting Governor of Reserve Bank

8 Feb 2017 Appointments
7 Feb 2017 Finance Minister Steven Joyce will appoint current Deputy Reserve Bank Governor Grant Spencer as the Acting Governor of... more

Temporary Chairs appointed to Canterbury and South Canterbury DHB

1 Feb 2017 Appointments
30 January 2017 Health Minister Jonathan Coleman has today appointed temporary Chairs to the boards of Canterbury and South... more

Recruitment

New employment resource for young people

1 Mar 2017 Recruitment
28 Feb 2017 Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment Minister Paul Goldsmith and Associate Education Minister Louise Upston have... more

Record number of people in employment

1 Feb 2017 Recruitment
1 Feb 2017 Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment Minister Paul Goldsmith has welcomed the record number of New Zealanders now in... more

s