Picking jobs in NZ

Your Guide To Finding The Best Fruit Picking Jobs In New Zealand

Are you hoping to find fruit picking jobs in New Zealand to cover your expenses on your next trip there?

New Zealand is a wonderful place to visit and you can earn some extra money to fund your time there with a fruit picking job.

If you have always wanted to know more about picking fruits in New Zealand, this article has you covered.

Summary of the best places to find fruit picking jobs in New Zealand 

  1. Facebook Groups
  2. Online Job Seach Platforms 
  3. Contact Employers Directly
  4. Ask At Hostels

DISCLOSURE

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All The Best Places To Find Fruit Picking Jobs In NZ 

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1. Facebook Groups

Facebook groups are an amazing place to find picking jobs in NZ. 

Employers and recruiters will post available jobs and you can contact them to apply for the jobs.

Check out these Facebook groups to find your next fruit picking job in New Zealand.

fruit picking jobs new zealand

Members in Facebook groups will usually be other people who are looking for fruit picking jobs as well as those who have experience with these jobs.

This makes these groups a good place to get answers to the questions that you may have about fruit picking.

2. Online Job Search Platforms 

Like most other jobs, employers have taken to job boards and online job search platforms to find the workers that they need for picking jobs in New Zealand.

You can often narrow down your search if you prefer to find work in a particular region. 

Here are some popular online job search platforms to find fruit picking jobs in NZ:

fruit picking jobs new zealand

3. Contact Employers Directly

One of the best ways to find jobs that aren’t advertised on other online platforms is by going to orchards, fruit farms, and vineyards and enquiring if they have job openings. 

This can be less competitive than applying for jobs that are posted online and are quickly filled up. 

Another way to contact employers directly is through websites and lists. Here are a few websites that you can check out.

fruit farms in New Zealand

4. Ask At Hostels

Hostels can be a great place to learn about fruit picking jobs in New Zealand as hostels often have direct contact with employers and can help you find vacancies. 

Some hostels will help with all the arrangements if you agree to stay at their hostel. You can also get better long-term rates by staying at the same hostel for an extended period.

Look for hotels in the regions that have more fruit picking jobs to increase the likelihood that your hostel will be able to help you find a fruit picking job.

Here is a list of hostels you can check out:

fruit picking jobs with accommodation in New Zealand

What Is Fruit Picking In New Zealand?

There are a lot of orchards, vineyards, and fruit farms in New Zealand. 

Due to the climate, fruit trees in New Zealand grow well and bear a lot of different types of fruit. 

Horticulture is one of the primary industries in New Zealand and is important for the economy.

fruit picking jobs in New Zealand

Fruit growers need to ensure that they have enough workers to pick the fruits when they are ready for picking. If fruits are not picked in time, they can rot on the fruit trees. 

If this happens, fruit growers will not be able to sell their fruits and will experience a loss of income.

Farmers and fruit growers depend on fruit pickers to ensure that this does not happen. 

As a result, a lot of fruit picking jobs are available during the harvest season. 

Different types of fruits are planted in different regions and the best time to get the fruit picking jobs in each region will depend on the type of fruit that is grown there. 

Whether you prefer to do fruit picking in New Zealand, South Island or North Island, you will be able to find jobs on both islands.

Here are the main regions that have fruit picking jobs in North Island NZ:

Here are the main regions that have fruit picking jobs in South Island NZ:

Outside of the harvest season, you might still be able to get jobs to care for the fruit trees and plants.

 These jobs include planting, pruning, and other related plant maintenance.

You may be able to find some fruit picking jobs with accommodation in New Zealand. Otherwise, you can always stay at backpacker hostels, camping sites, or even get a short-term rental house.

What Are The Requirements To Get A Fruit Picking Job In New Zealand

I’m sure you are wondering what requirements you will need to fulfill to get a fruit picking job in New Zealand. 

1. Visas

fruit picking jobs in New Zealand

You will not need a visa if you are a citizen of New Zealand or Australia or if you have a New Zealand residence visa. 

You will have the right to work in New Zealand if you fulfill these criteria.

Even if you do not meet these requirements, there are still other ways that you can find fruit picking jobs in New Zealand for foreigners.

A lot of people who get fruit picking jobs in New Zealand are there on a working holiday visa.

A New Zealand working holiday visa is a temporary visa that allows you to work while you are there as long as your primary intention for coming to New Zealand is for a holiday.

You are eligible to apply for a working holiday visa if you hold a passport from one of these countries:

If you are aged 18-30 (35 for some countries), you will be able to get a visa to work and travel in New Zealand for 6-12 months (23 months for Canada and the UK).

The visa application costs around NZ$245 (US$175). The exact cost may differ based on the country that you are from. 

You will be able to see the exact cost as you start working through the application process.

The exact period for your visa will depend on the country that you are from.

There are quotas for some countries so be sure to check the specific details for your country. 

If your country has a quota be sure to put in your application at the beginning of the application period to increase your chance of getting approved!

Based on the agreement that New Zealand has with your country, there may be some special requirements for the working holiday visa.

 Be sure to check if your country is on the list and make sure that you meet all the requirements.

Here are some requirements that everyone who wants to apply for the working holiday visa has to fulfill:

  • Passport has to be valid for at least 3 months after you plan to leave New Zealand
  • Need a return ticket or enough funds to buy one at the end of the trip
  • Need to have enough funds for your trip, at least NZ$350 (US$250) a month (NZ$4,200 (US$3,000) for a year)
  • Cannot bring your children with you
  • Must meet New Zealand health and character requirements 

If you don’t qualify to apply for a working holiday visa because of your age or nationality, you can explore options like the Supplementary Seasonal Employment Work Visa or the Recognised Seasonal Employer Limited Visa.

The New Zealand Immigration website also has an interactive page to help you explore other visa options. 

You can input your details and it will show the visas that match your specific situation.

2. Qualifications

Fruit picking jobs in New Zealand are one of the jobs that don’t require you to have any qualifications to apply for the job.

3. Skills & Experience

Prior experience with fruit picking will always be an advantage when looking for a new job. 

But even if you don’t have any experience, employers are always on the lookout for people who are eager to learn and willing to work hard.

Be honest with employers about your level of experience while highlighting other transferable skills that you may have.

Having the right attitude, being motivated, and being reliable will go far in employers giving you a fruit picking job in New Zealand.

How Much Do Fruit Pickers Get Paid In New Zealand?

fruit picking jobs in New Zealand

I’m sure this is one of the most important questions that you need to be answered before you get a fruit picking job in New Zealand.

Most fruit picking jobs will pay you:

  •  hourly or
  •  by piece/bin

The hourly rate for fruit picking in New Zealand is between NZ$18.90-25 (US$13.50-18)

The exact amount will depend on the type of fruit, time of year, and employer. Your salary will depend on the number of hours that you worked for the payment period.

If you are paid by piece, your daily salary will depend on the quantity of fruit that you pick within the payment period. This is generally measured by the number of bins that you fill or the kilograms of fruit that you pick.

You need to know which method will be used for calculating your wages before you sign your employment contract with your employer.

Fruit pickers will get paid at least NZ$20 (US$14) an hour which is the current minimum wage in New Zealand. 

If you are being paid by piece/bin, you will still need to be paid an amount that is equivalent to NZ$20 (US$14) an hour even if you do not pick enough fruits to meet that amount. 

Why Should You Get A Fruit Picking Job In New Zealand?

There are so many benefits to getting fruit picking jobs in New Zealand.

1. Opportunity To Explore

fruit picking jobs in New Zealand

New Zealand is such an amazing country and you will have the opportunity to explore this beautiful country. 

There are so many different places to visit and things to do and you will have a lot of time to check out the many things that New Zealand has to offer

2. Be Able To Afford Your Travel

By getting a job fruit picking in NZ South Island or North Island, you will be able to earn some money to fund your travels. 

With this extra income, you will be able to stay longer in New Zealand or enjoy your experience more without using up all your savings.

3. Meet People

Fruit picking jobs are a great way to meet and get to know people from diverse backgrounds. 

Not only will you have the opportunity to interact with local employers and workers, but you will also be able to work alongside people from all over the world. 

Working the whole day picking apples in New Zealand with someone is a great way to develop friendships and find people to travel around New Zealand with.

4. Overseas Work Experience

fruit picking jobs in South Island NZ

Having overseas work experience can be a highlight on your resume when you are looking for other jobs in the future.

It can usually be quite difficult to get a job overseas if you are fairly new to your career as there are a lot of different requirements and often involve high costs. 

A job as a fruit picker in New Zealand can help you get this overseas experience without too much hassle. 

5.Extend Your Working Holiday Visa 

If you have an existing Working Holiday visa and you worked for at least 3 months in a horticulture or viticulture (growing grapes) job such as apple picking in New Zealand, you are eligible to apply for a one-time extension.

This extension will allow you to stay an additional 3 months so that you have the opportunity to spend a bit more time in this beautiful country.

6. No Creepy Crawlies

Not a fan of creepy crawlies and avoid the outdoors and jobs that require you to work outside?

You won’t have to worry about this if you are a fruit picker in New Zealand because there aren’t any poisonous spiders or snakes there!

Fruit Picking Jobs In New Zealand FAQs

fruit trees in New Zealand

How Much Do You Get Paid For Kiwifruit Picking In NZ?

Green kiwifruit picking is usually paid by bin while gold kiwifruit picking is usually paid hourly. 

This is because gold kiwifruit is more fragile and needs to be picked very carefully to avoid damaging them.

The rate for green kiwifruit is between NZ$20-26 (US$14-19) per bin and most people can fill about 8 bins a day.

If you are picking gold kiwifruit, you will be paid an hourly rate of NZ$2025 (US$14-18).

2. How Much Do You Get Paid For Apple Picking In NZ?

Apple picking jobs in New Zealand are usually paid by bin. An apple picker in New Zealand usually gets paid NZ$24.50-32 (US$18-23) per bin. 

The average apple picker can usually pick enough fruit to fill about 5-7 bins a day. If you are good at your apple picking job in New Zealand, you could fill up to 8-10 bins a day.

3. How Much Do You Get Paid For Strawberry Picking In NZ?

A strawberry picking job will often pay a piece rate based on the number of kilograms that you can pick in a day.

You will get paid between NZ$2024 (US$14-17) per kilogram for strawberry picking in New Zealand. 

Important Things To Know About Fruit Picking Wages In New Zealand

fruit picking jobs new zealand

1. Taxes 

Before you start working in New Zealand, you should get an Inland Revenue Department (IRD) number. 

You will need this for taxes to be deducted from your salary and for you to claim any tax returns before you leave.

You can apply for an IRD number once your working holiday visa has been approved.

Your employer will automatically deduct the appropriate amount of tax from your salary. You can check whether the right amount is being deducted using this calculator.

You are entitled to a tax return before you leave New Zealand and should be able to get back some or all of the tax that you paid while you were working in New Zealand. You will need to file a tax return to get your money back.

2. Bank Account

Since you will need a New Zealand bank account to apply for an IRD number, you will need to open a bank account if you don’t already have one. 

For most people with a working holiday visa, you will only be able to open a bank account once you have arrived in New Zealand. 

On a case-by-case basis, some banks may allow you to open a bank account before your arrival. You will need to check with individual banks to see what their policy is.

There are some alternatives to having a traditional bank account. You could look into financial technology companies like Wise and Revolut.

These can often be easier to navigate and may even be cheaper as they have less fees compared to traditional banks.

Previously known as the borderless account, Wise has a Multi-Currency Account that would is perfect for those of us that travel. The best thing about this account is that it has New Zealand currency and you can share your account details with your employer for them to pay your wages.

What Types Of Fruits Can You Pick In New Zealand?

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1. Kiwifruit

picking jobs in NZ

When you think of fruits in New Zealand, the kiwifruit is probably one of the first that pops into your mind.

The first commercially viable kiwifruit was developed by New Zealand and is a well-known export for the country.

Two types of kiwifruit are grown in New Zealand, namely green kiwifruit and gold kiwifruit.

Kiwifruit is grown in Northland, Waikato, Bay of Plenty, and Nelson.

2. Stonefruits

picking jobs in NZ

Stonefruits or summer fruit are fruits that have thin skins and a pit or “stone” in the center. 

Stonefruits that are grown in New Zealand include cherries, apricots, peaches, nectarines, and plums.

Cherry picking in New Zealand has a reputation for being a fairly easy fruit picking job to do. 

Hawkes Bay and Central Otago are known for their production of stone fruits. 

3. Apples

fruit trees in New Zealand

There are many varieties of apples grown in New Zealand such as Braeburn, Gala, and Queen Apples.

Apples are grown in Waikato, Hawkes Bay, Nelson, and Central Otago.

Picking apples in New Zealand is a great job as you will be able to find fruit picking jobs in NZ South Island and North Island. 

4. Grapes

picking jobs in NZ

New Zealand produces some amazing wines that are well-known all over the world, especially Sauvignon Blanc

The climate as you head south is great for grapes. If you are looking to do fruit picking in the South Island of New Zealand, you’ll definitely be able to find grape picking jobs.

A lot of vineyards can be found in Hawkes Bay, Nelson, Marlborough, and Central Otago. 

5. Berries

fruit trees in New Zealand

A large variety of berries grow in New Zealand such as strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, and gooseberries.

If you think that blueberry picking in New Zealand is the right job for you, you should look for fruit picking jobs in Hamilton NZ as it is the center for the blueberry industry in New Zealand.

Apart from Hamilton, berries also grow well in Nelson and other areas of Waikato.

6. Avocados

fruit trees in New Zealand

You might not have expected to find avocados on a list of fruits but science confirms that avocado is a fruit.

New Zealand is the 9th largest international avocado supplier although only 2% of the global supply is grown here.

Avocados are mostly grown on the North Island and you can find picking jobs in Northland and Bay of Plenty.

When Is The Fruit Picking Season In New Zealand?

The fruit season in New Zealand will differ depending on the type of fruit that you will be picking. 

The highest demand for fruit picking jobs is usually from December to April, during summer and early fall in New Zealand.

Here is the fruit picking season in NZ for each type of fruit:

  • Kiwifruit: April to June
  • Stonefruit: November to April
  • Apples: January to June
  • Grapes: February to June
  • Berries: November to March
  • Avocado: September to April

Conclusion

I hope that all the questions that you had about fruit picking jobs in New Zealand have been answered. 

New Zealand is such a great country to visit and I hope that you will be able to make the best of your time there by finding the best fruit picking jobs in New Zealand!

Your Guide To Finding The Best Fruit Picking Jobs In New Zealand

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