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Wellington CityCommunity profile

Wellington City

Languages spoken

In Wellington City, French was the commonly spoken language after English in 2018.

Wellington City's language statistics show the proportion of the population that speaks and understands a language other than English. They are indicative of how culturally diverse a population is and the degree to which different ethnic groups and nationalities are retaining their language. Language statistics also provide an indicator for the monitoring of language education programs.

Wellington City's language data should be analysed in conjunction with Ethnicity statistics, Māori Descent, Country of Birth, and Religion statistics to assist in identifying specific cultural and ethnic groups in the area.

Q:

Derived from the Census question:

'In which language(s) could you have a conversation about a lot of everyday things?'.

Multi-response

Note: This page includes data from the 2018 Census. Between 2013 and 2018, the geographical classification was changed, and with it many boundaries were altered. As a result, you may see different small area options when comparing to pages that do not yet show 2018 data. Learn more.

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Languages spoken - Summary
Wellington City20182013Change
Languages spoken - SummaryNumber% of total populationWellington Region %Number% of total populationWellington Region %2013 to 2018
English only144,96371.575.5132,11469.272.8+12,849
Māori only1050.10.11290.10.1-24
Māori and English3,5221.72.92,9311.52.5+591
No language (too young to talk)3,9842.02.13,3361.71.6+648
Not stated / included------9,8195.15.6-9,819
Total population202,731100.0100.0190,959100.0100.0+11,772
Source: Statistics New Zealand, Census of Population and Dwellings 2013 and 2018. Compiled and presented in profile.id by .id , the population experts.
Stats NZ data quality rating: High
Please refer to specific data notes for more information

Please note that in the 2018 Census, where data are not provided, responses are sourced from administrative datasets, in line with the procedures developed by Statistics New Zealand to supplement the 2018 dataset. Due to this, there is no "Not Stated / included" category in 2018, and users should use caution when comparing to earlier Census years.

Languages spoken - Ranked by size
Wellington City20182013Change
Languages spoken - multi-responseNumber% of total populationWellington Region %Number% of total populationWellington Region %2013 to 2018
English194,65896.096.1174,50791.491.3+20,151
French6,5643.22.05,6523.01.9+912
Māori 4,4762.23.54,5512.43.3-75
Northern Chinese4,1192.01.32,5981.40.8+1,521
German4,0412.01.33,5521.91.3+489
Spanish3,9121.91.22,7391.40.9+1,173
Samoan3,5911.82.94,1792.23.1-588
Hindi3,4531.71.22,9341.51.1+519
Yue3,2371.61.03,0631.61.0+174
Tagalog2,5231.20.92,1841.10.8+339
Gujarati2,1721.10.72,0401.10.7+132
Show all (113 entries)
Source: Statistics New Zealand, Census of Population and Dwellings 2013 and 2018. Compiled and presented in profile.id by .id , the population experts.
Stats NZ data quality rating: High
Please refer to specific data notes for more information

Excludes languages with fewer than 12 people speaking them at home.

Languages spoken - Totals
Wellington City20182013Change
Languages spoken - TotalsNumber% of total populationWellington Region %Number% of total populationWellington Region %2013 to 2018
Not stated / included------9,8195.15.6-9,819
Total population152,574100.0100.0190,959100.0100.0-38,385
Total respondents152,574100.0100.0181,14094.994.4-28,566
Total responses265,854174.2155.4248,217130.0123.8+17,637
Source: Statistics New Zealand, Census of Population and Dwellings 2013 and 2018. Compiled and presented in profile.id by .id , the population experts.
Stats NZ data quality rating: High
Please refer to specific data notes for more information

Please note that in the 2018 Census, where data are not provided, responses are sourced from administrative datasets, in line with the procedures developed by Statistics New Zealand to supplement the 2018 dataset. Due to this, there is no "Not Stated / included" category in 2018, and users should use caution when comparing to earlier Census years.

Dominant groups

Analysis of the language spoken by the population of Wellington City in 2018 compared to Wellington Region shows that there was a smaller proportion of people who spoke English only, as well as a smaller proportion of those who spoke Māori, or Māori and English.

Overall, 71.5% spoke English only and 1.8% spoke Māori, or Māori and English, compared with 75.5% and 3.0% respectively for Wellington Region.

The dominant language spoken at home, other than English, in Wellington City was French, with 3.2% of the population, or 6,564 people speaking this language at home.

The major differences between the languages spoken at home for the population of Wellington City and Wellington Region in 2018 were:

  • A larger percentage who speak French at home (3.2% compared to 2.0%)
  • A smaller percentage who speak Māori at home (2.2% compared to 3.5%)
  • A smaller percentage who speak Samoan at home (1.8% compared to 2.9%)

Note: Percentages(%) are based on total population.

Emerging groups

Between 2013 and 2018, the number of people who spoke Māori, or Māori and English increased by 567 or 18.5%, and the number of people who spoke English only increased by 12,849 or 9.7%.

The largest changes in the spoken languages of the population in Wellington City between 2013 and 2018 were for those speaking:

  • Northern Chinese (+1,521 responses)
  • Spanish (+1,173 responses)
  • French (+912 responses)
  • Fiji Hindi (+723 responses)

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