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NZ Herald Premium special birthday offer: Try a digital subscription free for a month

NZ Herald

To mark the second birthday of our digital subscription service, we're offering a free four-week trial for potential new members.

Two years ago, the New Zealand Herald took a bold step that no major Kiwi news organisation had taken before: it asked readers to pay for access to its best journalism online.

Today, as we celebrate the second anniversary of Herald Premium, our digital subscription service has grown beyond expectations — and is continuing to expand rapidly, auguring an exciting future for New Zealand's leading news publisher.

More than 110,000 people are now paying to read smart, insightful reporting and commentary on the most important national, business and political issues, along with a selection of articles from leading international publications. More than 60,000 of them are paying for digital-only Premium access.

This weekend, to mark Premium's second birthday, we're offering potential new subscribers a free four-week trial. Click here for more details.

The offer expires at 23.59pm on Saturday, May 1.

Five-, six- or seven-day subscribers to the Herald's print editions, or our regional newspapers, are entitled to full digital access; they just have to go to nzherald.co.nz/activate to activate their Premium subscriptions.

Kiwis are turning to Premium now as they have to the Herald for more than 150 years — to help them make sense of uncertain times.

Since Premium launched, NZ has been through two extremely turbulent years. Here, road policing supervisor Vicki Parker staffs a Covid checkpoint near Mangawhai in February. Photo / Michael Cunningham
Since Premium launched, NZ has been through two extremely turbulent years. Here, road policing supervisor Vicki Parker staffs a Covid checkpoint near Mangawhai in February. Photo / Michael Cunningham

Since Premium launched, New Zealand has been through two extremely turbulent years, and Herald journalists rose to the challenge, bringing our members up-to-the-minute news, astute analysis, and deep-dive investigations about the stories that really matter — including the rollout of the Covid vaccines, the housing crisis, and the performance of New Zealand's first majority government in more than two decades.

Premium membership has more than doubled from a year ago, providing a vital new source of support for high-quality journalism at a time when New Zealand's news media faces difficult headwinds.

Public interest journalism is difficult and expensive to produce; it requires newsrooms with financial and legal resources, skilled staff, and significant reach. But the ability of publishers to fund this crucial work has been severely curtailed by unprecedented technological and economic disruption in the news business.

When the Herald launched Premium in 2019, it flew in the face of critics who doubted that a digital subscriber service of this scale could be established in the New Zealand market. Many leading publishers overseas have transitioned to that model in recent years, from the New York Times to the Times of London, but sceptics said not enough Kiwis would ever pay for journalism on the internet to make it financially viable here.

Two years on, the Herald's decision has been vindicated, proving that New Zealanders do indeed recognise the value of quality journalism.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern waves to supporters outside her house in Sandringham, Auckland on election night 2020. Photo / Jackson Meecham
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern waves to supporters outside her house in Sandringham, Auckland on election night 2020. Photo / Jackson Meecham

We've been humbled by the support from our subscribers. It comes at a time when Herald journalism is in more demand than ever. Our website, nzherald.co.nz, is the number one news website in New Zealand, reaching 1.95 million last month. And our print editions now reach 612,000 people on an average day and 720,000 on Saturday.

Premium subscribers get access to hundreds of articles every week on news, sport, business, politics, lifestyle and entertainment. They also get selected articles from blue-chip global publishers including the Financial Times and New York Times.

Among the exclusive Premium stories we published recently were property editor Anne Gibson's must-read articles about sweeping reforms to tenancy laws, which affect hundreds of thousands of Kiwi renters and landlords.

Dogged reporting by investigative correspondent Nicholas Jones revealed numerous worrying gaps in our health system that have been aggravated by Covid-19, including poor children being forced to wait in pain for tooth extractions and diabetics whose sight is at risk because they're missing out on a simple screening procedure.

And a series of gripping reports by senior reporter Jared Savage took readers inside the alarming rise of the criminal gangs behind New Zealand's methamphetamine trade.

Our ambitions for Premium don't stop here. We're investing in quality journalism, including recently launching a dedicated investigations team with several of the country's most formidable reporters. And we'll soon roll out more innovations that will better inform and serve our loyal subscribers, and to bring Herald journalism to a new generation of readers, viewers and listeners.

With your support, we will continue to provide news that Kiwis can trust for another 150 years.