As Infantry, you are a front line soldier, and the backbone of Army service.

  • Service
  • Specialisation
  • Location
    Palmerston North and Christchurch
  • Starting Salary
  • Upcoming Intake
    12 July, 2021
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About the role

As Infantry, you are a front line soldier, and the backbone of Army service. You will be expected to be physically fit and will have to maintain a high level of both physical and mental stamina throughout your career. You will be trained and expected to operate in a range of different environments around the world and will receive advanced training in combat skills. You will become proficient in navigation, weapon handling, field-craft, survival and marksmanship throughout your career. You will be expected to carry out your duties regardless of weather, season or terrain.

Job on base

As Infantry, you will spend a vast majority of your time transitioning between a camp and field environment. While in camp you will continue to enhance your infantry core skills such as fieldcraft, weapon training, navigation, communications, marksmanship and physical fitness. When you move into the field environment you will put all your skills into practice during realistic training scenarios in a variety of different environments.

Job on deployment

A deployment is when you travel to another country to assist them in a variety of roles. These can either be combat or non-combat deployments and as Infantry you will deploy in your primary role. Your main focus will providing security by conducting patrols within your area of operations. As you move through the ranks this focus can shift towards a training, advisory and or an observatory role. The Infantry have a vast and proud history of serving overseas and currently they deploy on a variety of overseas operations.

My main areas of expertise are pretty much the weapons side of the military. We might get new recruits into the units and then have to teach them another level up of training.

Malua Tapai'i


Career progression and training

Career Progression

Basic Training

Job Training

As Infantry you will spend your initial years developing your infantry skills within a Rifle Company. You may then have the opportunity of working within a Specialist Infantry Platoon where you will develop some advanced infantry skills such as reconnaissance, sniping, crewing heavy weapons, or advanced communications. Over time you may promote in rank and hold different command positions within an Infantry Battalion. As your career progresses, you will work towards being an Infantry Instructor. In this capacity, you could be posted to the Combat School, based in Linton Military Camp, Palmerston North, tutoring on advanced combat courses, or to Waiouru Military Camp working at either The Army Depot providing initial training to recruits or The Army Command School (ACS) where you would train future leaders during initial training and promotion courses. 

Upon successful enlistment into the Army you will be posted to Waiouru Military Camp. Here you will conduct 16 weeks of basic military training to find out if you have what it takes to be in the New Zealand Army. Here you will learn various skills and subjects including:

  • Army Customs and Protocol,
  • Physical Fitness,

  • Drill and Parades,
  • Military Field Skills and Weapon Training,
  • First Aid, and
  • Organisation and Administration


This course is more physically and mentally challenging than the recruit course. The aim is to prepare you to operate as an effective member of a rifle section.

You will be trained in the use of specialist weapons that are capable of engaging a wide range of selective targets. You will hone your field craft and physical fitness and will learn to apply first aid to a combat casualty. Other skills learnt on this course may include working with military armoured vehicles and Air Force helicopters, navigation, operating combat radios, and learning the detailed organisation of an infantry battalion. Once you have successfully completed your combat corps training you will be posted to one of the Infantry Rifle Battalions which will either be the 1st Battalion of the Royal New Zealand Infantry Regiment (1 RNZIR) based in Linton Military Camp, Palmerston North. Or you will be posted to 2nd 1st Battalion of the Royal New Zealand Infantry Regiment (2/1 RNZIR) which is based in Burnham Military camp, Christchurch.

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Salary and benefits

Careers in the Army are well-rewarded, diverse and exciting. As you become more experienced and move up through the ranks, gaining additional skills and qualifications, your salary will rise accordingly.




Starting Salary


Higher Rank

Benefits and allowances

There are many additional benefits to being in the Defence Force, that will make your money go further.

For example, on top of your basic salary you can expect ‘Military Factor’. This provides you with significant extra financial rewards because of the commitment you’ve made to serve your country.

Free medical and dental

Access to subsidised equipment on base

Subsidised food on base

Competitive superannuation, up to 4% with KiwiSaver

Sponsored tertiary study programmes at all levels

Entry requirements



Fitness and Medical


Period of Service

  • You must be at least 17 years of age.
  • Meet the citizenship and security requirements to gain CV security clearance for this trade.

You must have 10 NCEA Level 1 credits in each Literacy and Numeracy.

Find out more about the NCEA levels and certificate requirements

  • You must be medically fit for service.
  • Colour perception restrictions may apply.

There are strict citizenship and security requirements to gain the required CV security clearance for this trade.

Find out if you’re eligible here.

There may be a return of service period for this trade.

Please contact our 0800 number or talk to your Candidate Experience Facilitator for more information.


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