AN EMIGRATION adviser decided to practice what she preached and has upped sticks for a new life in New Zealand.
Wrexham-born Mandy Mitten, her husband Colin and boys Ben and Daniel, emigrated to Coatesville, a village on the North Shore of Auckland.
Mandy worked for The Emigration Group, based in Chester.
She said: “Telling people about the wonderful new life they could have overseas got me thinking myself. I wanted a slower pace of life, a better climate and a safe environment for my children and I realised that emigrating could be a way of achieving these things.
“Obviously I had a good starting point working as an emigration specialist. I also already had a place in mind to emigrate to.
“I knew the area had good schools and employment opportunities and this, combined with the fact that the North Shore has some of the most beautiful beaches, made it an obvious choice.
“I am now living on a five-acre lifestyle block. Our home is ideal, close to all the modern amenities but only 10 minutes from the nearest beach.”
Mandy now works with The Emigration Group in their New Zealand office and can’t believe the difference the move has made.
“The work-life balance here is far better and my husband in particular has more flexibility in his hours and generally works less hours so he has more time to spend with the family.”
She added: “The climate also makes a huge difference, the sun shines fairly consistently for much of the year and the summers last much longer than in the UK.
“We spend a lot more time outdoors and the children participate in more sports than they ever used to. We feel safe and relaxed and able to try most things we want to do, walking, sailing, tennis, golf and horse riding.”
Mandy warns anyone considering emigrating to plan carefully and get professional advice.
She says: “Moving to another country was a big step, with lots of factors to consider. The process can also be quite stressful particularly if you’re not prepared and don’t have the help you need. I would certainly recommend researching the area you want to emigrate to and if possible visiting the area first. ”
She added: “New Zealand has lived up to everything I was looking for, but I would still urge people thinking about emigrating to be realistic.
“ If you are looking for an outdoor life, a more relaxed approach and possibly a less materialistic existence, then New Zealand is a great place to be. If you want to earn lots of money, live in a fancy house and drive a flash car then perhaps this is not the place for you.”