Popular Babies’ Names for 2015

Surprisingly, the most popular name for girls is nearly the same as the most popular boys’ name: Olivia for girls and Oliver for boys. This is the third year that Oliver has been the most popular boys’ name. Olivia was the top name for girls in 2012. The top 10 girls’ names were: Olivia, Charlotte, Harper, Sophie, Emily, Ella, Isla, Mia, Amelia, and Isabella. Isla can also be pronounced without the ‘s’ ‘i-la’, and Mia can also be ‘my-a’.

The top ten names for boys were: Oliver, Jack, William, James, Benjamin, Mason, Hunter, Charlie, Liam, and Jacob.

Surnames are now much more multi-ethnic. (The figures are for 2013.) While the first 6 surnames for New Zealand babies are English ones: Smith, Wilson, Williams, Brown, Taylor, Jones (Welsh), number 7 is Singh, number 8 is Wang and 10 is Li.

However, for Auckland babies, the most common surname is Wang. This is followed by Li, Chen, Liu, Smith, Zhang, Lee, Patel, Huang, and Singh at number 10.

Parents can now register their child’s birth online at the Department of Internal Affairs. New Zealand parents living overseas should register their child in New Zealand to make sure the child is a New Zealand citizen.

There were more than 62,500 births last year.

Listen to January 5th 2015 to hear about popular names for previous years.


popular v common – popular involves a choice; common refers to number


Olivia – 4 syllables with the stress on the second syllable; Oliver – 3 syllables with the stress on the first syllable
The ‘ch’ in Charlotte is pronounced ‘sh’.

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