Monthly Archives: December 2012

INTERNeX New Zealand: Merry Christmas

The team here at INTERNeX New Zealand would like to wish everyone a very merry Christmas and best wishes for the new year 🙂

INTERNeX New Zealand: Photos of the Telecom Christmas Tree

More photos of the Telecom Christmas Tree as promised 🙂

INTERNeX New Zealand: Customs and Etiquette in New Zealand

Here’s a few notes about the Kiwi customs and etiquitte to consider when coming to live in New Zealand,

The Kiwi Demeanor:

New Zealanders are friendly and outgoing people. We are somewhat reserved, initially polite and enjoy showing people our hospitality. It is common to say hello to strangers and offer assistance without being asked, which makes Kiwis people who are easy to get to know.

Dress codes are casual, but neat. Most restaurants don’t have dress codes and business dress is conservative.


There is a very strong awareness of the environment in New Zealand, as it is our stunning landscapes and nature that make us unique. One of the major environmental concerns is the threat of animal predators such as stoats, rats, etc, which threaten our unique wildlife. Because of this, there are very strict quarantine regulations and there are huge fines for bringing prohibited food, natural products or animals into the country.

The Maori people greatly influence Kiwi’s attitude to the environment. Maori believe that everything has a life force or ‘mauri’.

Etiquette and Customs

Casual greetings- handshake and smile.

Maori meeting and greeting.

There are some distinct protocols with regards to welcoming people in the Maori culture. A Powhiri is a formal Maori welcome that takes place on a Marae. It can take from 30 minutes to 2-3 hours depending on how important the event is.
The Powhiri process begins by welcoming visitors onto the area infront of the Marae. Visitors are expected to walk towards the marae as a group in silence (unless they have a responding caller). The Powhiri dictates where the people will sit, usually men are at the front and women at the back. It is only usually men who speak. Speeches are given in Maori and the visitors are expected to have a speaker to respond on their behalf. After the speakers have spoken, visitors  come forward and shake hands and hongi (touch noses). After this, a meal is shared.

Hopefully this provides a bit of insight into the way things are done in NZ 🙂

INTERNeX New Zealand: Picture of the Week

This week’s picture of the week is of two of our Farmstay Participants. Such a cool photo of them enjoying their time on the Farm 🙂

INTERNeX New Zealand: Quote of the week

This week’s quote of the week is:

“What you’ve done becomes the judge of what you’re going to do – especially in other people’s minds. When you’re traveling, you are what you are right there and then. People don’t have your past to hold against you. No yesterdays on the road.” – William Least Heat Moon

When you go travelling you have the opportunity for a fresh start, to be whoever you want to be.

INTERNeX New Zealand: Christmas Kiwi Style

Christmas Traditions in NZ:

Christmas Eve and Boxing Day: Christmas is preceded by Christmas Eve on the 24th of December, followed by Boxing Day on the 26th of December. In New Zealand Christmas Eve often includes attending a midnight church mass, while Boxing day is traditionally a day to spend with family and continue the festivities of Christmas. Many Kiwis like to go to the Boxing Day Horse Races.

Gifts and gift giving: Gifts are usually wrapped in red, green or festive coloured wrapping paper and placed under the Christmas tree to be opened on Christmas morning. The Christmas stocking tradition is popular with children. This is a small sack (shaped often like a boot), which is filled with small gifts from Father Christmas (Santa) and opened on Christmas morning.

Christmas Cards: Cards are another popular aspect of the Kiwi Christmas. For family and friends that can’t be near, seasons greeting are sent in the form of Christmas cards.

Family: Family is the key element to Christmas not just in New Zealand, but all around the world.

Christmas Trees: Putting up and decorating a Christmas tree in a home is part of almost every kiwi family’s Christmas traditions. Both real and artificial trees are popular.

Food: Christmas lunch/dinner in New Zealand consists of the traditional roast with ham, vegetable, potatoes, gravy and desert of Christmas cake or pudding or other traditional Kiwi desserts such as Pavlova. Because Christmas is during summer in NZ, many families prefer a lighter Christmas Day meal of a BBQ, often enjoyed at the beach, outdoors or by the pool.

Summer holidays: Family’s spend time at a Bach (holiday home), or relaxing at the beach. Many businesses close for two weeks during Christmas.

Upcoming Christmas events in Auckland City

Britomart Christmas Markets.

Takutai Square: Britomart Christmas Markets, local seasonal produce (strawberries, plums and asparagus) festive Christmas goodies, cakes cookies, etc.

Complimentary gift wrapping service available at the Atrium and The Pavillions.

When/Where: Britomart (Gore Street & Atrium on Takutai), 15/12/2012, entry is free.

Christmas Decorations around the city:

Keep a look out for these festive decorations

Queen Street Christmas Lights, Telecom Christmas Tree, Santa on Whitcoulls Corner, Smith and Caughey’s Windows, Doves on Durham Lane, Angels in Elliott Street, Christmas Chains on High Street.

I’ve attached a photo of the lights on the Telecom Christmas Tree which I visited on Tuesday night, more photos to come. A great place to go and sit on the beanbags underneath the tree and look at the lights.


INTERNeX New Zealand: Christmas Lights ★

Only 2 weeks until Christmas!! Here are some places to view beautiful Christmas light displays:

Franklin Road: Franklin Road in Ponsonby puts on an annual display of Christmas lights in the weeks leading up to Christmas. This attraction brings thousands of onlookers to the street to see the beautifully decorated homes. The display is free to view. Walk from Franklin Road down to the Telecom Christmas Tree:

The Telecom Christmas Tree: The Telecom Christmas Tree will be lighting up the city this Christmas in Victoria Park. There are a total of 375,000 lights on this tree, which will be lit from December 1st from dusk till dawn until Boxing Day evening.

Telecom is also encouraging those visiting the tree to bring Christmas presents for children in need. These gifts will be distributed to the Auckland City Mission and Kidz First Children’s Hospital in Manakau.

Where/When: Victoria Park, Auckland CBD, 1/12/2012-26-12-2012

INTERNeX New Zealand: Picture of the Week

This week’s picture of the week is a photo I took on Saturday when I was at the Sky Tower. The Sky Tower is the perfect place to go to find the best view of Auckland city. Standing at 328m tall (taller that the Eiffel Tower!) , it is the 28th tallest tower in the world.

View of Auckland from the Sky Tower

INTERNeX New Zealand: Quote of the Week

I’ve decided to start up a quote of the week, most quotes will be related to travel 🙂 Here’s the first:

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” Mark Twain

INTERNeX New Zealand: Mercer Quality of Living Survey

Just a short note to mention that both Auckland and Vancouver have been voted in the top 15 most livable cities in the world according to a survey conducted by global human resources consulting firm Mercer.

The Mercer Quality of Living Survey is conducted annually, comparing 221 cities using 39 criteria. Criteria that are considered include education, hygiene, health care, safety, environment, recreation, public transport and economic stability.

Auckland was ranked 3rd most livable city in the world 🙂

This year first place was taken out by Vienna, Austria.