Roy Morgan Research
March 28, 2023

Over 2.7 million New Zealanders read newspapers and more than 1.6 million read magazines in 2022

Topic: Press Release, Readership Surveys
Finding No: 9206
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Roy Morgan readership results for New Zealand’s newspapers and magazines for the 12 months to December 2022.

Nearly two-thirds of New Zealanders aged 14+, 2.75 million (65.8%), now read or access newspapers in an average 7-day period via print or online (website or app) platforms. In addition, more than 1.6 million New Zealanders aged 14+ (39%) read magazines whether in print or online either via the web or an app.

These are the latest findings from the Roy Morgan New Zealand Single Source survey of 6,572 New Zealanders aged 14+ over the 12 months to December 2022.

New Zealand Herald read by over 1.7 million while Northern Advocate is the big improver

New Zealand’s most widely read publication is again the New Zealand Herald with a total cross-platform audience of 1,734,000 in the 12 months to December 2022 – almost five times as many as the second placed Dominion Post with a readership of 357,000.

There were two top ten titles which grew their total cross-platform audiences in 2022 led by the Northern Advocate, up 16,000 (+11%) to 158,000 and fifth placed Waikato Times, up 2,000 (+1%) to 197,000.

Filling out the top five are the Otago Daily Times in third place with an audience of 267,000 readers just ahead of The Press in fourth place on 253,000.

Other newspapers to increase their total cross-platform audiences during 2022 included the Rotorua Daily Post, up 15,000 (+17.3%) to 103,000, the Manawatu Standard, up 14,000 (+16.6%) to 101,000, the Gisborne Herald, up 9,000 (+13.9%) to 73,000, the Wairarapa Times-Age, up 6,000 (+10.8%) to 65,000 and the Ashburton Guardian, up 16,000 (+50.9%) to 47,000.

Top 10 Newspapers – Total 7 Day Cross-Platform Audience (Print & Online)

Publication Print Digital
(web or app)
Total 7 Day Cross-Platform Audience* (print, web or app)
  Dec
2021
Dec
2022
Dec
2021
Dec
2022
Dec
2021
Dec
2022
% Change
  ‘000s ‘000s ‘000s ‘000s ‘000s ‘000s %
New Zealand Herald 559 484 1,585 1,510 1,844 1,734 -6.0%
Dominion Post 205 141 271 263 408 357 -12.5%
Otago Daily Times 107 84 238 219 304 267 -12.3%
The Press 145 135 189 175 272 253 -7.2%
Waikato Times 86 79 134 137 195 197 1.0%
Sunday Star-Times 167 137 60 56 216 185 -14.3%
Hawke’s Bay Today 80 79 109 103 173 165 -4.7%
Northern Advocate 72 60 95 115 142 158 11.0%
Bay of Plenty Times 57 52 104 100 149 136 -9.0%
Taranaki Daily News 56 31 103 98 137 114 -17.0%

*Cross-Platform Audience is the number of New Zealanders who have read or accessed individual newspaper content via print or online. Print is net readership in an average 7 days. Online is net readership online in an average 7 days.

TV Guide and KiaOra (Air NZ inflight magazine) increase their print readership during 2022

New Zealand’s most widely read magazine is the driving magazine AA Directions which had an average issue readership of 316,000 during the year to December 2022 – almost 150,000 ahead of the second-placed New Zealand Listener with an average issue readership of 181,000.

There were two leading magazines to increase their average issue readership in the year to December 2022 led by the TV Guide magazine, which increased its readership by 4,000 to 161,000, and Air New Zealand’s inflight magazine KiaOra which almost doubled its readership, up by 30,000 to 75,000 as New Zealand’s borders re-opened and flights began to return to pre-COVID conditions.

Other widely read magazines included NZ Woman’s Day with a readership of 117,000, Australian Women’s Weekly (NZ Edition) on 110,000, Habitat on 99,000, NZ Gardener on 80,000, NZ House & Garden on 74,000 and Dish on 72,000.

Other magazines to grow their readership during the year to December 2022 included Consumer, up 2,000 to 55,000, NZ Geographic, up 1,000 to 51,000, Bunnings Magazine, up 4,000 to 44,000, Time, up 3,000 to 39,000, NZ Autocar, up 3,000 to 20,000, NZ Trends Design Series, up 2,000 to 20,000, Rugby News, up 4,000 to 19,000 and NZ Motorhomes Caravans & Destinations, up 1,000 to 11,000.

New Zealand’s Top 10 Magazines by Average Issue Print Readership

Publication Dec 2021 Dec 2022 % Reach Change
  ‘000s ‘000s %
AA Directions* 374 316 -1.4%
New Zealand Listener* 221 181 -1.0%
TV Guide* 157 161 0.0%
NZ Woman’s Day* 146 117 -0.7%
Australian Women’s Weekly
(NZ Edition)*
141 110 -0.8%
Habitat* 100 99 0.0%
NZ Gardener* 93 80 -0.3%
KiaOra (Air NZ inflight magazine) 45 75 0.7%
NZ House & Garden* 110 74 -0.8%
Dish* 92 72 -0.5%

*Roy Morgan has measured additional readership for this magazine via Cross-Platform Audiences – see next section.

AA Directions and New Zealand Listener at the top but TV Guide leads audience growth

AA Directions is still easily New Zealand’s most widely read magazine with a market-leading total cross-platform audience of 405,000 – almost 200,000 ahead of the second most widely read New Zealand Listener with a total cross-platform audience 226,000 in the 12 months to December 2022. The magazine was also one of the few to grow its digital audience during 2022.

However, of the top ten magazines by cross-platform audience, it was the TV Guide which had the most improved performance with its audience increasing by 8,000 to 192,000 to be the third most widely read.

Other leading magazines with strong cross-platform audiences of over 130,000 include NZ Woman’s Day on 176,000, Australian Women’s Weekly (NZ Edition) on 150,000, Habitat on 138,000, NZ Woman’s Weekly on 135,000, Dish on 134,000 and Mindfood on 132,000.

There were two other magazines which grew their total cross-platform audiences during 2022 led by Fish & Game NZ, up 5,000 to 105,000 and Time magazine, up 6,000 to 54,000.

Top 10 Magazines – Total Cross-Platform Audience (Print & Online)

Publication Print Digital
(web or app)
Total Cross-Platform Audience*
(print, web or app)
  Dec
2021
Dec
2022
Dec
2021
Dec
2022
Dec
2021
Dec
2022
% Change
  ‘000 ‘000s ‘000s ‘000s ‘000s ‘000s %
AA Directions 374 316 171 158 455 405 -11.0%
New Zealand Listener 221 181 74 75 257 226 -12.0%
TV Guide 157 161 58 56 184 192 4.3%
NZ Woman’s Day/
Now to Love
146 117 86 77 204 176 -13.6%
Australian Women’s Weekly (NZ Edition) 141 110 65 54 188 150 -20.4%
Habitat 100 99 59 58 142 138 -2.8%
NZ Woman’s Weekly/ Now to Love 105 69 86 77 172 135 -21.3%
Dish 92 72 116 87 177 134 -24.1%
Mindfood 80 62 109 87 165 132 -20.1%
NZ House & Garden 110 74 91 67 174 126 -27.8%

*Cross-platform audience is the number of New Zealanders who have read or accessed individual magazine content via print or online. Print is average issue readership. Digital is average website visitation and app usage (if available) in last 7 days for weekly titles (New Idea, New Zealand Listener, NZ Woman's Day, NZ Woman's Weekly, Property Press, That's Life, Time, TV Guide) and last 4 weeks for all other non-weekly titles.

Canvas is easily the most widely read Newspaper Inserted Magazine in 2022

The New Zealand Herald’s Canvas (North Island) was clearly the most widely read Newspaper Inserted Magazine in 2022 with a readership of 201,000 – a third higher than any other magazine.

There was not much to separate the next four magazines – less than 7,000 between the second most widely read Sunday Magazine with a readership of 134,000, Viva (North Island) with a readership of 129,000 and both Weekend (North Island) and Your Weekend – both with a readership of 127,000.

New Zealand’s Leading Newspaper Inserted Magazines by Print Readership

Publication Dec 2021 Dec 2022 % Reach Change
  ‘000s ‘000s %
Canvas (North Island) 272 201 -1.7%
Sunday Magazine 172 134 -0.9%
Viva (North Island) 176 129 -1.1%
Weekend (North Island) 153 127 -0.7%
Your Weekend 153 127 -0.7%

Michele Levine, Chief Executive Officer, Roy Morgan, says:

Block Quote

“The latest Roy Morgan readership figures for New Zealand show nearly two-thirds of New Zealanders, 2.75 million (65.8% of the population aged 14+), now read or access newspapers in an average 7-day period via print or online (website or app).

“The leading newspaper is again the New Zealand Herald with a total cross-platform audience of well over 1.7 million and is read by almost five times as many people as the second placed Dominion Post – read by over 350,000.

“In many respects 2022 was a year of transition as COVID-19 pandemic restrictions progressively relaxed and life returned closer to a semblance of pre-pandemic normality. However, there were also rising economic pressures as the highest inflation for decades led to rapid interest rate increases from the Reserve Bank of New Zealand.

“These pressures have had an impact as New Zealand’s economy contracted in the December quarter 2022 by 0.6% – this is the third straight year New Zealand has experienced at least one quarter of negative growth.

“However, despite these economic pressures there were bright spots with several newspapers increasing their cross-platform audiences in 2022 including the Northern Advocate (+11%), Waikato Times (+1%), Rotorua Daily Post (+17.3%), Manawatu Standard (+16.6%), Gisborne Herald (+13.9%), Wairarapa Times-Age (+10.8%) and the Ashburton Guardian (+50.9%).

“Despite the challenges of the past three years the audiences for New Zealand’s magazines are consistent and in the year to December 2022 over 1.6 million New Zealanders (39% of the population aged 14+) read magazines whether in print or online either via the web or an app.

“The six most widely read magazines dominate both the print readership and cross-platform audience figures filling the top six spots in both rankings. AA Directions with a print readership of 316,000 and a total cross-platform audience of 405,000 is the most widely read magazine in New Zealand once again.

“In second spot on both rankings is New Zealand Listener with a print readership of 181,000 and a total cross-platform audience of 226,000. However, the big mover during 2022 is the TV Guide magazine which increased its print readership by 4,000 to 161,000 and increased its total cross-platform audience by 8,000 to 192,000.

“The other magazines to maintain their leading positions in the overall market include NZ Woman’s Day with a print readership of 117,000 and a total cross-platform audience of 176,000, Australian Women’s Weekly with a print readership of 110,000 and a total cross-platform audience of 150,000 and Habitat with a total cross-platform audience of 138,000.

“Although 2023 shapes up as a challenging year on many fronts, those magazines which can offer a direct path to consumers and maintain interesting and relevant content that engages with their audiences will find there are paths to growth to pursue.”

Download our latest profiles of New Zealanders who read different Newspapers or Magazines.

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Margin of Error

The margin of error to be allowed for in any estimate depends mainly on the number of interviews on which it is based. Margin of error gives indications of the likely range within which estimates would be 95% likely to fall, expressed as the number of percentage points above or below the actual estimate. Allowance for design effects (such as stratification and weighting) should be made as appropriate.

Sample Size Percentage Estimate
40% – 60% 25% or 75% 10% or 90% 5% or 95%
1,000 ±3.0 ±2.7 ±1.9 ±1.3
5,000 ±1.4 ±1.2 ±0.8 ±0.6
7,500 ±1.1 ±1.0 ±0.7 ±0.5
10,000 ±1.0 ±0.9 ±0.6 ±0.4
20,000 ±0.7 ±0.6 ±0.4 ±0.3
50,000 ±0.4 ±0.4 ±0.3 ±0.2

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