Before we begin, if you’ve just touched down in NZ. This previous post might help you! It gives you the ultimate guide for how to set yourself up for a great International Student experience.
Part 2: Different culture, different experience
Regardless of where you’re from, you’re in New Zealand now. So to get started, learn to 'Blend In'.
Kiwis are some of the most down-to-earth, work-hard-play-hard and genuine people that I have ever been with. I encourage you to mingle and get to know them personally. A quick guide on cozying up and making friends is right here.
Confused with new terms? Click right here for a quick intro or if you wanna really delve into slang click right here - far out! Don’t worry if you don’t get it initially, you’ll get the hang of it the more you talk to Kiwis!
What I’ve learnt is that every teacher, every professor genuinely wants to help. And they genuinely want you to succeed. If you have a question, shoot up that hand and ask away. The only thing holding you back from getting your doubt answered is yourself!
Having a Good Time:
Leaving an entire section for this because it’s so important. Kiwis are all about work-life balance and love spending time in the great outdoors. So expect yourself to get active! Here are my top 7 resources for free/cheap events to get to know people and enjoy yourself:
1. Study Auckland
Study Auckland was recently developed (lucky you!) by Auckland Council. It’s a department entirely dedicated to making the experience of international students as kick-ass as possible.
Hit them with a like and keep an eye out for fantastic giveaways! Recently, I just got a FREE ticket to hop on the Dolphin and Whale Safari cruise. We learnt dolphin conservation in an all-natural habitat with no cages, and no enclosure environment!
2. Free Auckland Walking Tours
This is a personal favourite! The Walking Tours were my first introduction into beautiful Auckland and the tour guides are absolutely amazing. Feel free to drop a koha (donation) if you had a great time (and I assure you, you will)!
Tours usually start at 10am usually and they depart near the Ferry Building. Look out for their iconic blue umbrellas and click here for more information!
3. Got to Get Out
Got to Get Out is a social enterprise all about getting everyone to embrace physical, outdoorsy activities. Since you’re in green and beautiful New Zealand, always make it a point to head out. 100/10 recommend the hike.
If you’re aren’t that fit, keep an eye out for some simple hikes and climbs! If you’re adventurous and want a challenge, keep an eye out for rock-climbing and even skiing trips. Make sure you Get Out!
4. Local Councils
Auckland Council is always up to something exciting and often announce festivals and events such as Lantern Festivals, Māori Language Week and more!
5. Sustainable Coastlines
Part of New Zealand’s culture is adopting a low-waste lifestyle, as well as educating ourselves on how to better take care of our environment. I cannot emphasize enough the amazing work Sustainable Coastlines does. They’re described as a charity enabling “people to look after the waterways and coastlines they love”.
Sustainable Coastlines organises plenty of events on beach cleanups and tree planting - get great views of New Zealand’s astounding scenery while doing good and making friends!
Meetup, as its name suggests is dedicated entirely for meeting like-minded people. Regardless of whether you like anime or unicycling, there is something quirky and fun for everyone. If you want a crash course on Kiwi living, why not just head for an outing with people that love the same things as you do? Don’t be shy and head out!
7. Heart of the City
Heart of the City combines all the best cultural, dining and scenic experiences in Auckland all in one elegant website. Here’s some free events to check out!
If you want to see more on certain topics, leave a comment! What do you think we need to talk more on? Let us know!