Visa policy of New Zealand

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New Zealand entry stamp - general entry
New Zealand entry stamp - visitor visa
New Zealand entry stamp - resident visa

A foreign national wishing to enter New Zealand must obtain a visa unless he or she is

  • a citizen or permanent resident of Australia, under the Trans-Tasman Travel Arrangement,
  • a citizen of one of the 59 visa waiver eligible countries and territories,
  • a holder of the United Nations laissez-passer, or
  • eligible for visa-free travel under other provisions (visiting force, cruise ship passengers and crew, aircraft crew etc.).

Citizens and permanent residents of Australia are deemed to hold resident status in New Zealand upon arrival under Trans-Tasman travel arrangement.

All visitors must hold a passport valid for 1 month. Visitors are required to hold proof of sufficient funds to cover their stay. The amount of funds needed is NZD 1,000 per person per month of stay or NZD 400 if accommodation has been prepaid. Visitors are required to hold documents required for their next destination.[1]

New Zealand issues eVisas to nationals of visa waiver countries and China. Applications for student, work, and visitor visas can be lodged online.[2]

Visa policy map[edit]

Holders of passports of these countries may travel to New Zealand without obtaining a visa
  New Zealand
  Visa-Waiver Countries (3 months)
  United Kingdom (6 months)
  Australia (deemed to hold resident status on arrival)

Visa waiver countries[edit]

Under the Immigration Act 2009[3] and the Immigration (Visa, Entry Permission, and Related Matters) Regulations 2010[4] passport holders of the following 62 jurisdictions may travel to New Zealand without obtaining a visa for up to 90 days.[5]

Purpose of the visit for all visa waiver countries must not be medical consultation or treatment

  1. ^  United Kingdom citizens and other British passport holders who produce evidence of the right to reside permanently in the United Kingdom may travel to New Zealand without visa for 180 days.
  2. ^ A visa waiver does not apply to people traveling on alien's (non-citizen's) passports issued by these countries – Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.
  3. ^ Only Greek passport holders whose passports were issued on and after 1 January 2006.
  4. ^ Portuguese passport holders must also have the right to live permanently in Portugal.
  5. ^ Residents of Hong Kong traveling on Hong Kong Special Administrative Region passport or British National (Overseas) passport.
  6. ^ Residents of Macau travelling on Macau Special Administrative Region passport.
  7. ^ Permanent residents, as demonstrated by a personal identity number, of Taiwan traveling on Taiwan passports.
  8. ^ Including nationals of the USA.

Other categories[edit]

Additionally, the visa waiver applies to the following categories:[8]

  • people granted a visa waiver by special direction.
  • members of a visiting force (including members of the civilian component of the visiting force) as defined in the Visiting Forces Act 2004 at the request or with consent of the Government of New Zealand and in the ordinary course of the person's duty or employment.
  • for periods of 28 days, crew or passengers on any ship carrying passengers (including cruise ship passengers) or cargo or both (in the ordinary course of business of the craft) between any foreign port and New Zealand.
  • for periods of 28 days, crew on any foreign ship authorised by the Minister of Transport to carry coastal cargo.
  • for periods of 7 days, beginning with the day on which the aircraft arrived in New Zealand, aircraft crew on any commercial aircraft flying between any other country and New Zealand.
  • members of, or any person associated with, any scientific programme or expedition under the auspices of a Contracting Party to the Antarctic Treaty within the meaning of the Antarctica Act 1960.
  • any other class of persons specified in the Immigration (Visa, Entry Permission, and Related Matters) Regulations 2010.

APEC Business Travel Card[edit]

Holders of passports issued by the following countries who possess an APEC Business Travel Card (ABTC) which states on the reverse that it is valid for travel to New Zealand can enter visa-free for up to 90 days.[9]

ABTCs are issued to nationals of:[10]


New Zealand Visa

Eligible passengers who are transiting through a New Zealand airport for less than 24 hours, and not leaving the transit area of the airport, do not need a transit visa. Eligible passengers are:[11]

Cook Islands[edit]

Cook Islands entry stamp issued at Rarotonga International Airport

All visitors to Cook Islands, irrespective of nationality, are visa exempt for a maximum stay of 31 days. Visitors travelling for tourist purposes may extend their stay, for periods of 31 days, up to a maximum of 6 months.[13]


Niue entry stamp issued at Hanan International Airport

All visitors to Niue, irrespective of nationality, are visa exempt for a maximum stay of 30 days. Extension of stay are possible.[14]


All visitors must obtain a permit to enter Tokelau from the Tokelau Apia Liaison Office in Apia, at least 2 weeks prior to travel. Tokelau can only be reached by boat from Samoa and a permit from the Samoan Immigration Authorities is required to leave and re-enter Samoa.[15]


New Zealand issued 262,033 general visitor visas in 2014/15 fiscal year. Top nationalities were:[16]

Applicant nationality Number of general visitor visas issued
 China 128,849[17]
 India 40,142
 Fiji 14,511
 Philippines 10,002
 Tonga 9,128
 Thailand 8,425
 Samoa 7,421
 Russia 3,994

In 2014/15 fiscal year most short term visitor arrivals were from the following countries of nationality:[18]

Most visitors came from the following countries of residence:[19]

See also[edit]