24 November 2010

Silver Fern Job Search Visa

Note: This is in the series of blog posts I wrote about my preparation to move to New Zealand. The original date stamps will give you an idea of how time-consuming migration takes. At the end of each post, I will add in new details. The 'New Zealand' tag will bring up all related posts.

[Originally written on 30/3/2010]

I was already eyeing this new visa type when it was announced late last year. Now that more details are out, I'm considering applying for the Silver Fern Job Search Visa instead of a Working Holiday. The online application opens from 27 April, and the main impediment is the quota of 300 places annually. 300 places for the whole wide world?! I expect it to run out by the first month...

The reason why I couldn't apply immediately on 27th April is because my degree has not been assessed by NZQA. It will take at least 2 months to get the results back. I will courier everything over to NZQA by early April and hopefully I'll get a favourable result from NZQA while there are still spots for the visa.

Fingers crossed...

[End of original post]

[Originally written on  27/4/2010]

The Silver Fern Visa is a new group of visas introduced in 2010 to attract highly skilled workers to NZ. Only 300 places are allocated a year, and they were offered beginning 27 April 2010, 10am. All 300 slots were snapped up in half an hour, and I'm really thankful I'm one of them.

I set my alarm to go off at 5.55am. Pulled myself off the bed and logged-in, and was pleased to find that there were still slots available despite my initial fears. I have been waiting for this since end-2009, after all!

The form is pretty basic and simplified from the residency application. Thanks to my earlier practice run, I could fill up the form very quickly. I had a minor shock when my MasterCard wasn't accepted for the NZ$200 application fee. I might have been a bit blur in that ungodly hour and mis-typed a number. Anyway, I quickly whipped out my Visa card and it managed to go through with a receipt number of #22. Phew!

I now have 3 months to submit all the required documents (more on that next time) to the Bangkok receiving branch. My main concern now is my NZQA assessment of my Bachelor Degree. By default I qualify for Level 7 but if there's something the assessor doesn't like and she downgrades me to Level 6, I can kiss my NZ dreams goodbye.


Well, not goodbye but it will be very very difficult.

[End of original post]

I consider myself very lucky to have obtained a spot on this visa program. It is very rare for countries to offer open work visas when one does not have a job offer. Since this visa was just introduced, awareness is still low. While I was surprised that all 300 were taken within half an hour, I expect next year's response to be stronger once people learn of this great visa.


Twilight said...

Congratulations and Good Luck! I am sure you won't work in the mines!

simply me said...

Hello Zemien..i came across your blog while researching on my NZ plans. good luck on ur venture..Thanks for the info..was quite helpful..i juz got my nz working holiday visa n m planning to go in December. i'm a biotech grad but rite now working in IT field..any advise on wer to start lookin for job in nz once m der.m hoping to get a chance to secure a permanent employment in nz in tat 6 months that i'll be there...do you have any suggestions..appreciate it.thx