15 Best Backpacker Jobs


What Jobs Can Backpackers Get in New Zealand?

Armed with a working holiday visa and a desire to fund your travels, you are ready to find a job! Backpackers are able to choose from a variety of jobs in New Zealand. Some land their dream job on the slopes or sailing the seas. Others can experience New Zealand culture through WWOOFing, farm work and au pair.

Build on skills you learned at home (and of course learn new skills) in retail and hospitality. Every job has their perks, so read our TOP list to see why some backpacker jobs are simply excellent.

And remember, we have heaps of advice on how to get a job in New Zealand starting here and we have hundreds of live job listings for backpackers on our Job Listings page.

1. Ski Field Staff

It’s the dream, right? Get a lift pass for free so you can ski or snowboard all season! Find out more at What it is Like to Work on a New Zealand Ski Field.

Pixabay© Pixabay

2. Construction Worker

Make a difference by rebuilding Christchurch! A great way to get one of these jobs in Christchurch is with a recruitment agency. They work closely with construction companies to pair works and jobs as quickly as possible.

Pexels© Pexels

3. Au Pair

Be part of the family and gain valuable experience in childcare. Save loads of dollars by working for accommodation.

Pixabay© Pixabay

4. Hospitality

Get socialising by being a waiter/waitress, barista or bartender. Get qualified to be a barista or bartender in New Zealand with Barista Academy in Auckland.

15 Excellent Backpacker Jobs© Barista Academy

5. Fruit and Veggie Picking

Work as a team and make loads of cash, especially if you are paid per piece, plus, this work will help you extend your working holiday visa. Check out the picking seasons here.©

6. Sailor

Being part of a boat crew is an awesome way to explore New Zealand’s waters. There are some work for accommodation opportunities also on sailboats.©

7. Farm Work

Be part of a true New Zealand lifestyle. Find out more in Seasonal Work in New Zealand’s Dairy Industry.

15 Excellent Backpacker Jobs©

8. Hostel Worker

Be the one in charge over your fellow backpackers! It’s also another way to work for accommodation.

Pixabay© Pixabay

9. Tourism Industry Jobs

Be the one pushing people from bridges… (in bungy jumping, obviously). Also, enjoy perks such as free activities and trips!©

10. Sheep Shearer

There are so many sheep in New Zealand, we need all the help we can get!©

11. DOC Volunteer

Not exactly a job but you give back to New Zealand while staying in beautiful locations. Check out how you can work for the DOC in How to Volunteer for the Department of Conservation of New Zealand.©

12. Retail

Learn and develop skills to bring back home with you.

Pexels© Pexels

13. WWOOFing

An exchange, rather than working for a wage. Work 3-6 hours a day for food and accommodation, while experiencing an authentic New Zealand lifestyle. More information can be found at Everything You Need to Know About WWOOFing in New Zealand.©

14. Movie Extra

Be an extra in New Zealand’s next big blockbuster!©

15. Sales and Face-to-face Marketing

If your English is top-notch, the commission will help you get back on the road in no time. We list the 9 Reasons Why Charity Fundraising is an Awesome Backpacker Job.

Unicef New Zealand© Unicef


Robin C.

This article was reviewed and published by Robin, the co-founder of NZ Pocket Guide. He has lived, worked and travelled across 16 different countries before calling New Zealand home. He has now spent over a decade in the New Zealand tourism industry, clocking in more than 600 activities across the country. He is passionate about sharing those experiences and advice on NZ Pocket Guide and its YouTube channel. Robin is also the co-founder of several other South Pacific travel guides.

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