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Working Holiday Visa numbers for NZ Summer 2023

Wondering about the migrant labour or overseas workers coming into the country for this summer season, particularly now with the borders open? So have we!

We’re using the numbers from MBIE’s Migrant Data Explorer to see how the current migrant worker population compares with pre-Covid trends. We've just published an update with the December numbers and our November version included a longer-term look back at trends since 2016. Download the full charts below 📈

We'll post an update as the numbers are published each month from MBIE. Also, keep an eye out for our analysis on the Recognised Seasonal Employer (RSE) numbers that we are doing as a follow up.

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NZ Working Holiday Visa stats—update 31 Dec 2022

Here's what we can see from the data:

🌱 Our migrant worker population has been steadily increasing since the borders re-opened in March 2022.

🌱 We still only have about 60% of the pre-Covid working holiday-makers in NZ.

🌱 In the latest December numbers, we can see that the rate of increase has dropped off, but this is typical of pre-Covid December numbers.

🌱 The positive news is that the numbers did not drop-off as sharply as they did in pre-Covid years.

PICMI—Working Holiday Visa data Aug 2018 to 31 Dec 2022
Download PDF • 318KB

NZ Working Holiday Visa stats—longer term trends, Jan 2016 to 30 Nov 2022

Here's what we can see from the data:

🌱 Covid border closures dramatically affected the number of workers who could be attracted to horticultural seasonal work in NZ.

🌱 The borders reopened in March 2022 for people on Working Holiday Visas (WHV) and the Government has taken steps to significantly increase caps and re-issue visas.

🌱 The current number of working holiday-makers in New Zealand is only half of pre-Covid numbers.

🌱 If there is not a sharp increase in the numbers in the next couple of months, we will be about 3-4 months behind the pre-Covid trend of peak numbers.

PICMI—Working Holiday Visa data Jan 2016 to 30 Nov 2022
Download PDF • 338KB

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