Work is available all year round in the Bay of Plenty, it all depends on your timing and suitability for the job. We have many contacts for all types of seasonal jobs. If you have a particular skill which could be useful, you may find it easier to get work. Being able to commit for a longer period of time also helps as employers prefer not to have to train new people all the time, plus it evens out variations in work hours throughout the period you are working.
A good attitude and work ethic will help you find employment and stay employed. It helps to be prepared to give anything a go. You need to be aware that no one is guaranteed or owed a job. When you do have a job, the employer is not obliged to give you any number of hours or call you up for work. If you have little or no work experience or skills, you must understand that it may take longer to find something. You must be drug-free as most reputable employers carry out random drug testing.
As a condition of your entry to New Zealand, you are required to have sufficient funds to cover your living expenses in the first place and not depend solely on obtaining work here. Please ensure you have planned and budgeted enough for your trip.
Please remember that your attitude towards the job affects the chances of other backpackers long after you are gone, especially those from your own country. Employers are increasingly being selective about who they take on.
The kiwifruit industry is the biggest employer of casual labour in the Bay of Plenty.
The busiest times for seasonal work are during kiwifruit picking and packing, which start towards the end of March and ends around the first week of June. Repacking and CA Pack start July and continues till early November. For work in a kiwifruit orchard, you will need to be able to reach above the structures which may be as high as 2.2m, sometimes more.
Winter pruning and tying down, vine training, orchard establishment and grafting work begins in June and finishes around September.
Summer pruning starts around November and goes on till mid-February, with some occasional pre-harvest thinning in March before picking begins.
There are numerous other industries near us including a fish factory (20mins walk from us), recycling plants, timber processing, warehousing and various other job opportunities either through the job agencies or directly with the employers.
In the city centre and Mount CBD, there are cafes, restaurants and shops where you can find temporary employment.
Employment contracts and other work contracts are legal documents- you are legally bound to honour your commitments when you sign them.
We use several reliable and reputable contractors and have a long association with some of the major packhouses in the area.
You will need to have a Working Holiday Visa. If you only have a Visitor Visa, you may be able to apply to NZ Immigration Service for a Seasonal Work Permit. http://www.immigration.govt.nz
You will need a Tax Number (IRD Number) before you can get paid. We can assist you in your application or you can obtain an application form from our local Inland Revenue Office. Alternatively you can order an application form on line. http://www.ird.govt.nz
You will need a New Zealand bank account so that the money you earn can be paid directly into your account. This is the method that most employers will use. You will find many Kiwibank branches that are open on the weekends and often available in more remote locations, so this may be a good option if you are working long hours during the weekdays or are far away from a city. The other banks in New Zealand are ANZ, Westpac, ASB, Heartland, TSB and BNZ. These banks are usually present in the larger centres.
Having your own car is an advantage but not essential. Transport is provided by some contractors and packhouses. Sharing a fellow backpackers car is also a popular way to get to work and you will be expected to share fuel costs. While the onus is on you to organise your ride to work, the hostel can also help with transport wherever possible.
PLEASE NOTE: We assist our guests who stay with us in finding work but are NOT a job agency or employer. We are in regular contact with employers and businesses to obtain job opportunities as they become available.
Most employers prefer to see you in person to assess your suitability, so the best chance of getting a job is to come here and let us put you in touch with them. Many jobs are also taken up within minutes of being offered (some employers require an instant commitment as we speak to them over the phone), so you have to be here in order to secure work. In some cases, a commitment bond is required- this is only taken when there is a job secured for you.
You MUST understand that most seasonal work is dependant on factors beyond anybody's control. This may include the weather, conditions caused by weather, logistical/administrative issues and change of requirements of the employer. As such, no one (including the employer) is able to guarantee or reserve job positions, or guarantee job start dates/job hours.
IF YOU WANT WORK, YOU NEED TO BE HERE!
In most cases, we are unable to offer or arrange work for anyone over the phone. You will need to be here at the hostel before we can assist as the job situation changes very quickly. First-come-first-served applies at all times. We turn down job offers from employers frequently because we do not have enough people for them when they ring. They call at 8pm wanting people to start next morning at 7.30am- if you are not already here with us, it is simply not possible for you to get that job.
Please DO NOT call asking for jobs as a condition of coming here- that job may be given to someone walking in 10mins before you. We cannot commit workers to an employer when we have no certainty that they will turn up. In fact, many people have let down the employers by not turning up after the job has been reserved for them. If you turn up AFTER the work has started, you may need to wait a little while for your turn.
Remember also that a region at the peak of its season may have long queues of people on waiting lists because everyone has gone there at the same time while another place that is “out of season” may have job opportunities because everyone went elsewhere. Those people who are already working may have been there long before you. Job searching takes time, effort, strategy and sometimes a bit of luck- that’s reality. Most importantly, you have to be HERE if you want a job here!