New citizens of Aotearoa New Zealand
Nau mai and congratulations on becoming a citizen of Aotearoa New Zealand!
We understand this is an exciting moment that is often many years in the making. This page provides resources, which may help as you take the next steps as an official New Zealander.
We also would like to take this opportunity to pay tribute to your journey to becoming a citizen and remember your whakapapa (lineage). We want to take a moment to celebrate your culture and your journey that is unique to you.
The many whānau who call the Western Bay home weave together like harakeke (flax) to form a rich tapestry of cultures, and we are excited to have you be a part of this.
When you become a New Zealand citizen, you are granted the same privileges as a person who was born here.
We’ve pulled together links for the key things you can now do:
- Getting your New Zealand passport
You can now travel overseas on a New Zealand passport. Apply and learn more about the process.
- Voting in local and central government elections
You are now able to vote in New Zealand. Enrol to vote on the Electoral Commission website.
- Standing for parliament or local government
To stand in elections, you must be enrolled to vote. Western Bay of Plenty is proud of its diverse residents, so if you’re interested in standing for local government, we’d love you to do so. Learn more about the District’s elections here or here.
You’re not alone in your citizenship journey either – around 35,000 people become New Zealand citizens each year. In the book Choice (whiriwhiria) - The New Zealand citizenship story, you can read stories of people who have chosen to become New Zealand citizens. It’s available for free as a PDF here on the Department of Internal Affairs’ website.
As a citizen, you also have:
- full access to education
- full economic and social rights
- you can represent New Zealand in sports
- you can live in New Zealand indefinitely.
More about the Western Bay
The Western Bay of Plenty is a wonderful District to call home. Head to our Newcomers Guide to the District page to learn more about our community and what Council does.