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How does the phone system in New Zealand work? - HOW DO I / International students / Settling in - NMIT Support

How does the phone system in New Zealand work?

The country calling code for New Zealand is +64.

Mobile phones

Mobile numbers in New Zealand usually have a prefix of 021, 022, or 027. Mobile coverage is good in the main urban areas but can be patchy in remote or rural areas. If you are looking to use a mobile phone in New Zealand, here are some of the major providers:

You can bring your mobile phone from overseas, but you will have to have it modified with the addition of a SIM card. If your phone currently uses a SIM card, a New Zealand SIM card can most likely replace your current one to use your mobile phone on either of New Zealand’s Spark, 2Degrees, or Vodafone networks. Any Spark or Vodafone shop (found in most centres) will be able to assist. The cost is about $35 plus a prepaid system that can be topped up at any post office or newsagent. Spark does not modify other phones and requires you to purchase a phone from them. 

New Zealand has many wilderness areas so when you are travelling around, you may not always have good mobile phone coverage. New Zealand has a relatively small population so the price for data on your phone can be higher than you are used to. Remember to make use of the free Wifi on campus.

Using a landline phone

There are a number of fixed-line operators to choose from if you are looking to use a landline (including the Internet) in your own house.  Here are some of the major providers:

Freephone numbers

Numbers starting with the prefix 0800 or 0508 are usually free of charge and can be made from anywhere in the country.

Using pre-paid phone cards

There are a number of pre-paid telephone cards available in New Zealand. They can be purchased from post offices, supermarkets, news agencies and hostels. They vary in value from $5.00-$50.00 and can be used from any private or public telephone. 

Costs vary, so it pays to shop around (both Spark and Vodafone have cards). To make a call, you first dial the local or toll-free access number, followed by the PIN (Personal Identification Number) on the card. Recorded messages will tell you how much money remains on the card.