Managing your currency payments when moving to New Zealand


If you’re planning to move to New Zealand, you’ll need to make a number of international payments. From initial visa applications to accommodation, you’ll need to manage a range of currency costs as part of the transition. Currency experts moneycorp show how to manage those costs and achieve great exchange rates without high transfer fees.

Understanding the cost of international payments and how expert guidance can help you to manage currency costs

Once you’ve made the decision to move to New Zealand, fulfilled the immigration requirements and received your visa, you can start packing and organising the logistics of your big move. Most New Zealand banks won’t allow you to open an account until you arrive and have a fixed address, so an international payments account can be a great way to manage the transition.

Understanding New Zealand’s currency

The New Zealand dollar (NZD) is used across the North and South islands. Known as the “kiwi” after the country’s national bird, the New Zealand dollar often mirrors the performance of the Australian dollar in the foreign exchange market but there are no official links and there are some variations due to economic performance in each country. Both currencies are currently being impacted by the knock-on effect of the US-China trade war, for example, but Australia is being hit harder due to makeup of the economy and reliance on trade routes.

From August to September 2019, the New Zealand dollar has been the worst performing of the G10 currencies overall, but that doesn’t mean that the weakness will continue. There is a considerable amount of global uncertainty – economic and political factors in the UK, including the uncertainty of Brexit, are putting pressure on the pound. Elsewhere, political uncertainty in the US could have an impact on the dollar and the economic slowdown across Europe is causing volatility in the euro. Currency values shift in relation to each other and in such changeable times, there could be sudden fluctuations in either direction due to new economic and political developments.

How do fluctuations in the FX market impact the cost of international payments?

When you initially make the move, one of your priorities will be securing accommodation so that you have an address which allows you to set up a local bank account and organise various utilities. This means that you’ll need to transfer some funds from the UK to New Zealand for the deposit and rent as well as some money to get your bank account started and cover your early expenses until you start work. The exchange rate will determine how many New Zealand dollars you’ll receive from your sterling funds and even a fraction of a percentage point can make a difference to how much you receive.

You can’t predict or control the exchange rate, but a currency specialist can help you make the most of your money. If you have some time to spare, you can track the exchange rate to choose the time that works best for you with automated email and text alerts. You can also set up a market order which allows you to set upper and lower limits within the exchange rate so that you can be reasonably sure of your budget; the exchange is made when either specified limits are reached. If your transfer is more urgent, a specialist can offer great rates and low fees, which allows you to make the most of your money.

Managing international payments in the long term

Even once you’re settled in New Zealand, it’s likely you’ll still have connections at home. If you are living on a UK pension, you’ll have monthly transfers to make. A Regular Payment Plan allows you to set up an automated transfer which collects the funds by direct debit and exchanges it for New Zealand dollars. You can specify the amount of sterling leaving your account, the amount of New Zealand dollars you will receive, or you can fix the exchange rate to secure both. You may also use a Regular Payment Plan to send money back home to support property maintenance or support a family member studying or receiving care in the UK. In addition to such financial obligations, you may on occasion need to send funds to loved ones in the UK and an international payments account provides access to a range of specialist currency tools that allows you to get great value from every transaction.

Currency specialist moneycorp can help with all your international payments

As well as expert guidance and specialist currency tools which help you manage your funds across borders, with moneycorp you will have a secure online account that allows you to set up, track and manage all your international payments. If you’ve got a major sum to transfer, the team is on the end of the phone to provide guidance and support throughout the process. If you’re concerned about the impact of currency fluctuations or the cost of transfer fees, moneycorp can offer great rates and low fees for every transaction. Some UK high street banks may charge up to £40 in fees per transfer and over time this could start to add up, so it’s worth finding out the total cost of each transaction to understand how a currency specialist can help you make the most of your money.

Next steps

It’s important to consider the fluctuating exchange rates before you move as this can have an impact on the value of your savings when you come to send your money to New Zealand. Migration Associates have partnered with moneycorp for over 20 years to help our customers by getting competitive exchange rates, as well as guidance on when and how best to send their money. Register today for a free moneycorp account.