In order to legally work in New Zealand, one must have a valid work visa or a working holiday visa. 🙂 The Malaysia Working Holiday Visa to New Zealand allows an individual to work for up to 6 months in any employment except permanent employment. Besides working, one can also study or train for up to 6 months in total.
Tax Obligations while Working in New Zealand
As mentioned before, I successfully secured a place among the lucky 1150 applicants for the Malaysia Working Holiday Visa to New Zealand for the year 2016 – yay! So, once I arrived in Auckland and checked-in to my hostel, the next thing I did was to set up a local bank account and apply for an IRD number.
For your information, an individual that is going to work in New Zealand will need a local bank account and an IRD number for tax purposes. Without it, one will not be able to work in New Zealand. Kindly take note that anyone that works in New Zealand will have to pay tax on his/her earnings.
The IRD number application form (IR742) can be downloaded from the New Zealand Inland Revenue official website here or obtained at any Inland Revenue office in New Zealand. The form has information on what supporting documentation one needs to provide.
Documents Needed to Set Up a Local Bank Account & Apply for an IRD Number
The following documents are needed in order to successfully open a local bank account* and apply for an IRD number** in New Zealand:
*Proof of photographic identity – Present original passport with at least 6 months validity
*Proof of current or most recent address – A letter with the letterhead of one’s accommodation (hostel, hotel, etc) stating that he/she is currently residing there in New Zealand
*A valid Working Holiday Visa
**IR742 form – IRD number application for non-resident/offshore individual
**Proof of a fully functional New Zealand back account or customer due diligence completed – A bank statement from a local bank showing at least one deposit and one withdrawal for differing amounts, or a letter from the back advising the account is fully functional, active or has had Anti Money Laundering checks completed.
Otherwise, complete the IR742 application form and get a personnel from your bank to answer, sign and stamp Question Number 10b. in the form.
Setting Up an ANZ Bank Account in Auckland
There are many banks in New Zealand, but the two common banks used by working holiday visa holders are ANZ or Kiwibank. I chose to open a bank account with ANZ for its reliability, convenience and reputable good customer service. 🙂
Good news is there are several ANZ bank branches locate in Auckland CBD or nearby areas. I went to the ANZ bank branch located on Queen St to secure an appointment date needed to set up a bank account with ANZ. Unfortunately, most of the appointment dates were fully booked because of the high number of people who are applying and the earliest appointment date I got was 2 weeks away – OMG!!
That news was about to put a delay in my schedule and extend my stay in Auckland which meant more expenses – something which I was unhappy about for things in Auckland is pretty expensive!
An Appointment with ANZ & Inland Revenue in Takapuna
Fortunately, a nice Korean friend whom I met at the backpackers hostel named Kim, taught me how to secure an earlier appointment date which is to phone ANZ at this toll free number 0800269296 and inquire on the earliest appointment date available for booking in Auckland. The catch is, the ANZ bank branch that one has to go is usually located outside of Auckland CBD area unless one is lucky. A friend of mine got his appointment date set within 2 days! Talk about good luck!
In my case, after talking to an ANZ personnel on the phone, I secured an appointment with ANZ in Takapuna, Auckland in 3 day’s time from the date I called. Good news is there is an Inland Revenue office nearby which means after I open a bank account, I can directly apply for an IRD number on the same day itself. Yay! 😀
Getting to ANZ and Inland Revenue office by public transport/bus is really easy. From Britomart or Queen St, make your way to Wellesley St and wait for the buses to Takapuna at Bus Stop Number 7086, outside The Civic (for North Shore destinations). Depending on the day of the week, there are several busses travelling from central city Auckland to Takapuna – 822 Castor Bay, 839 Long Bay, 858 Long Bay, 875 Browns Bay and 879 Torbay/Long Bay.
Takapuna is the third stop on the route/map. The bus stop is located in front of Shore City Shopping Centre. It costs $3.10 one way using my AT HOP card. From there, it is a short walk to ANZ Takapuna and Inland Revenue Office.
Of Picturesque Takapuna Beach, Seagulls & Rangitoto Island
Needless to say, with fewer people present, I had a swift and stress-free time setting up my ANZ back account and applying for my IRD number in Takapuna, Auckland. Once my bank account was set up, I was able to deposit/transfer any amount of cash into my account and use it in an instance.
And since I had the IR742 application form with me, I got the bank personnel to fill up, sign and stamp Question Number 10b. in the IR742 application form, so that I can apply for an IRD number immediately after that at the Inland Revenue Office nearby. Trust me, it saves much time and effort that way. 😉
After that, I handed in my IRD number application form with the supporting documents at the Inland Revenue Office and was told to wait for about 3-10 working days for my application to be processed. By the way, I received my IRD number via SMS (by request) and email within 5 days after the date of my application. Sweet!
With the free time I had, I took the opportunity to visit and had a relaxing stroll at the scenic Takapuna Beach which is a walking distance from the ANZ bank and Inland Revenue Office. Many big and fat seagulls were seen foraging for food in the sand as the waves combed the beach and the sight of Rangitoto Island in the background provides a picturesque scene. Indeed, I made the right decision to go to Takapuna instead of waiting in Auckland and had a wonderful time there. 😀
Up next: A visit to Mount Eden (Maungawhau), one of the region’s 48 volcanic cones and the highest natural point in Auckland