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There is a well-known shortage of bus drivers in New Zealand. Here at Immigration Centre are often approached with inquiries regarding residence applications for bus drivers and their families. Is it possible?

Skills Shortage

MBIE confirmed that more jobs will open up in coming years. Careers NZ also say on their website that demand is expected to increase in the long term, because:

    • more people are using public transport, which has seen bus services expand – for instance, Auckland’s network is growing at about 10% a year
    • many bus drivers are nearing retirement age, with more than 60 percent over the age of 55.

Turnover among bus drivers is reasonably high, which also creates regular openings. New Zealand’s largest bus company NZBus, which employs some 1650 bus drivers, recruits about 200-220 new drivers each year.

INZ instructions

However, INZ are yet to put this occupation to any of the shortage lists, including the list of Skilled Occupations suitable for the Skilled Migrant Category. Hence, it is not currently possible to get residence based on employment being a bus driver. There are other options available such as Family Category.


If you wanted to get more information – please get in touch with us:

Kind regards,
Immigration Centre Team