The Department of Internal Affairs

The Department of Internal Affairs

Te Tari Taiwhenua

Building a safe, prosperous and respected nation


Most popular baby names for 2017

8 January 2018

It’s official - Charlotte and Oliver have topped the list of New Zealand’s most popular baby names for 2017.

Charlotte is back on top of the girls’ list, up from second last year. 2017 marks the fifth year in a row that Oliver tops the boys’ list.

Names increasing in popularity include Arlo for boys, jumping from 23rd place in 2016 to 10th place in 2017. Willow is steadily increasing and sits at number 21 on the girls’ list. James remains a favourite name amongst baby boys, appearing in the top 20 every year since 1963.

Registrar-General of Births, Deaths and Marriages Jeff Montgomery says registering a baby is an important first step to make sure they have an official identity and can access their legal rights.

“60,935 babies were registered in 2017, with many new parents now using SmartStart to register the birth of their child. SmartStart is free and helps parents and babies get off to the best start, making it easy to register your baby and get an IRD number for your child, as well as adjusting a Ministry of Social Development benefit or updating a Working for Families application.

“People can do all of this and more in one place, at any time, on any device - saving time and meaning that parents no longer need to fill in multiple forms,” Jeff says.

2017 top 10 girls’ names (2016 place in brackets)
1. Charlotte (2)
2. Harper (4)
3. Isla (3)
4. Olivia (1)
5. Ava (10)
6. Amelia (6)
7. Mia (8)
8. Mila (15)
9. Sophie (9)
10. Emily (7)

2017 top 10 boys’ names (2016 place in brackets)
1. Oliver (1)
2. Jack (2)
3. Noah (7)
4. William (3)
5. Hunter (6)
6. James (5)
7. George (12)
8. Mason (4)
9. Lucas (8)
10. Arlo (23)

The full list of 2017’s top 100 baby names can be found at