Saturday, January 5, 2013

Day 5: When should I go to New Zealand?

I've been debating this for a while. I am 100% certain I am going to New Zealand this year, the problem is deciding when. I'm such a flip-flopper!

At first, I wanted to go straight from France to New Zealand. Then, I got it in my head that actually I really want to go home this summer. I still do want to go home, as I'd love to visit my friends and family, but my problem is money. It is SO much cheaper to go straight to New Zealand.

Why is money is the root of all evil?? I just wanna go do stuff without worrying about it!

A flight from Paris to Auckland (one-way) is currently floating under $700. If I go home first, it will be at least $500 to get home, and then $1000+ to get from the eastern US to NZ. That's more than double the price. If I go home, I'll also have to get a temporary job for 5-6 months, for living expenses, and all the job prospects at home don't look too bright for saving any additional money to make up the extra plane costs.

Mainly the reason why I am worried about money so much is because for the working holiday, you are supposed to have $4200 NZD available to you when you arrive for start-up costs, plus enough money for a flight out of NZ if you don't have a return ticket. Right now I have just about that much money, but if I go home, I'm afraid I'll need to use alot of it while I'm home for living expenses if I can't find a job right away, and get stuck at home longer than I want to be.

So basically, the soundest idea financially is to go directly to New Zealand, even though I'd really love to go home and visit people first, that just doesn't look likely to happen due to money. However, I'm a little worried about going to New Zealand in winter too. I'm scared I won't be able to find a job very easily at that time of year. I feel like that's an irrational fear, but can someone verify that for me at all? After all, I'm worried I won't find a job very fast at home, either, and I guess if I have to be broke and/or working a crappy job for a while, I'd rather be doing it in the natural beauty of New Zealand instead!

I mean look at this freakin' place! Who wouldn't want to live there?

I'm also a little put off about going from French winter/spring to NZ fall/winter and not having a summer until November, although I understand northern New Zealand weather is pretty mild, so maybe it won't be too bad if I stay on the North Island.

This is not a decision to be made lightly, I'm well aware of that. I've gone back and forth several times in trying to make one. But, for now, I'm going to say I think the best choice is going directly there. I discussed it  with a friend yesterday and her response was,

"Home will be there when you get back." 

Wise words, I hope.

Now, I just have to submit my working holiday application online. This is where it gets even more complicated. The online part is all finished, but I am going to have to have (yet another) chest x-ray, since I've spent several months in the past five years in countries with medium-high risk for tuberculosis. Of course my most recent x-ray that I had done for France just a couple months ago won't count, because it has to be checked by a special "panel doctor" picked out by NZ Immigration (the nearest one to me is in Paris). We all know how slow French administration is, so I am going to try and get an appointment at the doctor's first before I submit the application, because the results are supposed to be submitted 15 days or less after submitting the online application. The only good thing about this is that it will surely be cheaper than having to get these x-rays done in the US, since I wouldn't have insurance at home.

So, what do you think? Am I making the right decision??? I need reassurance, people!


(photos from 1. and 2. via zach.hodgson)

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