Most travelers are content with spending a 3D2N weekend visiting a new country or a city; and traveling for a week is considered “lengthy” already. But there are some incredible places in the world where a week, nor a month will not suffice to fully grasp all the beauty they possess. One of them is New Zealand, aka The Middle Earth, or the breathtaking setting for all-time favorite fantasy movies such as The Lord of the Rings and The Chronicles of Narnia. This country and all its snow-capped mountains, mirror lakes, hiking trails, picturesque coasts, extreme outdoor adventures (hello, bungee jumping!) deserve a full year of your time!
If you are 18-30 years old without savings that lets you travel in New Zealand for 1 year, then try vying for a New Zealand Working Holiday Visa for Filipinos. This post will share my experience of applying for it. If you want to know the step by step guide so you can apply for it yourself, you can subscribe to my blog because that is the topic of my next post!
Why New Zealand Working Holiday Visa for Filipino?
There are other visas that will let you enter New Zealand but for me, Working Holiday Visa was the best option. Here’s why:
Reason 1: I will not qualify for a Tourist Visa (up to 60 days stay) because I am not employed (I’m self-employed) and I have no family (yet). Immigration thinks I will not go back to PH! (Believe me, I tried applying for this visa yet failed)
Reason 2: It’s difficult to get a Work Permit to stay longer in New Zealand since I don’t practice my profession as an engineer anymore; and I don’t want long term commitments with an employer!
Reason 3:New Zealand Working Holiday Visa for Filipino lets me work seasonal jobs that don’t require professional expertise such as fruit-picking, dairy farm assistance, hostel help, au pair, etc, while traveling around the country.
Getting a Slot for the New Zealand Holiday Visa for Filipinos
I started dreaming of New Zealand 3 years ago (Oct 2016) when I was living in Vietnam. I did a lot of research and decided I will go there after my Vietnam teaching contract was done. However the requirement for applying for a New Zealand Holiday Visa for Filipinos is not very easy such as having at least P150,000 pocket money and having an IELTS certification. Yet, the most difficult of all is getting a slot out of the 100 slots available for Filipinos. Yes, there are only 100 fortunate dreamers who can go to NZ with this visa every year.
For Filipinos, the New Zealand Working Holiday Visa opens once a year only at 10am NZ time (or 5am PH time) of a specific day in February, and only the first 100 people to successfully process their online applications will be entertained to submit their requirements! It’s extremely a game of speed! I tried to get a slot thrice, first when I was 28 years old (Feb 2017) in Vietnam which has faster internet connection than Philippines; yet, I failed. The slots were all taken within just 10 minutes after the online application opened!
Then a second time when I was 29 years old (Feb 2018) when I was already back in Philippines. However, internet speed here did not work in my favor, so I failed to get a slot again. The 100 slots finished at around 5:05am.
Then finally, on my last chance this year when I was already 30 years old (Feb 2019), I finally got the slot! But I knew that I had to do something different! Because if I had just done the same things I did for my first 2 attempts, I was 100% sure I will lose my chance forever!
Getting Help from a Friend
For my last and final chance, I asked a friend whom I met in Vietnam who was doing his 1 year working holiday in NZ at that time. He has a program that makes things faster, and he has done this service for other people who wants a sure slot for the Working Holiday Visa. I “hired” him to do it for me and thank God I did! I finally got my slot during the Feb 2019 WHV online application. All I did was send him all information and he did everything else. I should have just hired him from the beginning instead of wasting 2 years trying to do it on my own. The fee he charges will be earned easily in NZ anyway!
Submitting the Requirements
So after I got the confirmation that I have a slot, I received an email listing all the requirement which I was given only 15 days to comply with. I only sent scanned copied of the required documents including the evidences of the following:
My good health:
Chest Xray certificate sent via eMedical from St. Lukes Hospital Taguig City
Passport biographical data page
Diploma for Degree in Bachelor of Science in Electronics and Communications Engineering
Certificate of Graduation
Transcript of Records
My English ability:
IELTS certificate Band 8 (I already took the IELTS before I applied for the slot)
My funds are sufficient:
BPI bank certificate and statement for the last 3 months
BDO bank certificate and statement for the last 3 months
Metrobank Credit card statement
Letter of undertaking to take medical insurance.
Letter of authorization for verification of documents.
I submitted the requirements Feb 15 and got the approval of my visa May 13. I’m not sure why it took 3 months, because others got it within 2 weeks after they have submitted their requirements. But regardless of how short or long it took, I was confident that everything was in God’s timing!
I received my visa May 15, and I should travel to NZ within one year from that date. Then once I enter New Zealand, I can stay for 12 months starting from my arrival date. I arrived Oct 3, 2019 and expect to go back to the Philippines by end of September 2020 🙂
If you are a risk-taking wanderlust (aged 18-30 years old) who wants to do something extraordinary with your life, I highly suggest you to try applying for a New Zealand Working Holiday Visa! The minimum wage here is 17.7NZd per hour! You will easily earn back all your expenses in achieving the visa if you are hard working, and you’ll have a lot of opportunity to travel! As I am writing this, I am in Te Puke town doing Kiwi Orchard work and I am about to receive my first salary 🙂 I suggest that you don’t do it on your own! Hire the service of an expert! If you want me to connect you to someone who got me my visa, just message my FB page! You can also join this FB Group community where we can have a forum about working holiday visa!