Thursday, May 1, 2008

Living in Christchurch, NZ

The City of Christchurch, NZ is known as the "Garden City", and for good reasons. When I first came to New Zealand, I have no idea what to expect really. I have pre-conceived idea that maybe it'll look like Holland or Switzerland where you can find lots of green plains, wind mills, cows and sheeps. I can't even begin to imagine if their were buildings, how would it look like?

When I finally arrive, I told myself with absolute satisfaction, this I can live with!!!

Anyway, I find that the city of Christchurch is comparable to Lexington City in Kentucky. It's a very progressive and well-developed city but with lots of green gardens around, well adorned with flowers and huge trees. It's pretty calm and relatively quite. There are a lot of businesses around and food abound.

You can find a lot of information from the City Council's website: and the Christchurch website:

As regards to housing rates in terms of buying and renting, a descent house for 4 would normally cost around $250,000. As for apartments, here in NZ they call it flats, the weekly rental for a fully furnished house with 2 bedrooms usually costs around $300. If you're alone, a descent fully furnished room can be around $100 or even less. It's popular here for singles to share a house thus bringing down the weekly rental to just $50-$80 and some of which already include electricity and phone bills -- water is free. You can find more information here:

You can also check out a very informative site regarding money matters at You can use the calculator tool to calculate the house mortgage payments.

Regarding food or grocery; it's relatively cheap here in Christchurch. Some Kiwis from Auckland and Wellington do find that it's quite cheaper here -- maybe some but not all. At any rate, in relation to your income here, food is really not that expensive. You can get some idea by shopping online at, of course, you don't actually want to buy something, just browse around for the prices. The prices here might be a bit higher than the actual price and other stores like Pak n Save and Countdown, have even lower prices.

Our weekly budget for grocery, including baby food for our daughter, is $150. We really rarely exceed or even reach this limit. Mostly we just spend around $90 weekly. I can tell you, we're not really living that frugal. We usually buy Chinese take-away (take-out) or Subway or Pizza or Burger King meals every weekend. We also have fruits, veges, meat, milk and ginger beer ;-) all the time.


hayley said...

Hi there,

just saw this blog when i was browsing for pinoys here in christchurch..we are also here in chch and we also have a yahoo might want to look into it and join :)..thanks


hayley said...

oops..forgot the yahoo grp's name..hehe

Anniebelle said...

Have you been to Dunedin? I like living in NZ, very simple life.


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