Survivor New Zealand 2018 contestant, Dylan

Name: Dylan

Hometown: Whangarei 

Age: 26

Occupation: Retail Manager 

Dylan is the ultimate Survivor super-fan. He co-hosted a dedicated Survivor New Zealand podcast for the first season. Before Survivor came to New Zealand last year, he even applied for US residency to try and get on the American version!

When it comes to his ability to source food, Dylan isn’t sure how he will go in the wild, he is too used to living in Auckland, ordering UberEATS and staying in Airbnb’s when on holiday! 

How would your friends describe you?

I’m the realist; if you need an honest opinion about anything, you come to me. I’m not afraid to deliver hard truths but I know how to have a laugh. 

I think they’d also say that I’m the kind of person who really doesn’t care what the world thinks of me. I’m unapologetically me, and I think that’s why my friends like me. 

Most importantly, I think they’d say I have their backs, if I hear someone talking trash about my friends I’m going to say something about it!

Why did you apply for Survivor

I’m a massive fan of this show! To be a part of this once in a lifetime experience and is top of my personal bucket list. The wider Survivor community is like a second family to me, so coming out here I feel this immense pressure from wanting to do them proud.

What was the first thing you did when you found out you were to be one of the castaways on Survivor New Zealand

I cried, like, a lot! Then I called my mum and got pizza for dinner. It was a truly surreal moment in my life, one that I’ll never forget. I’ve watched this show since the very beginning and the earliest season that I remembered was the Thailand one. So, this all just felt like it was meant to be!

What did you do to prepare for Survivor

I listened to a lot of podcasts, deep dives and exit interviews with contestants. My strongest muscle is my brain, so I focused on that. 

I downloaded puzzles apps, studied how different puzzles worked and completed them daily on my way to work.

What makes you the ideal teammate? 

I don’t take myself too seriously; I’m happy being laughed with or at. I think that’s needed in a game like Survivor. Someone has to keep the air light, and it usually means people don’t see you as too much of a threat! 

Besides that, I’m fiercely loyal. Like Sandra Diaz-Twine has always said ‘If I tell you I got your back, I got your back’.