Border restrictions: who can enter New Zealand or request to travel

The New Zealand border is currently closed to almost all travellers to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

On this page:

Managed isolation and quarantine

Who can come to New Zealand without requesting to travel

Other travel must be for a critical purpose

 

Managed isolation and quarantine

Travellers to New Zealand from all countries are tested for COVID-19 and a 14-day managed quarantine or isolation is mandatory.

You are legally required to obtain a Managed Isolation Allocation system voucher confirming your place in a managed isolation facility before boarding a flight. 

Warning

If you do not have a voucher confirming your allocation in a managed Isolation facility you will not be able to board your flight to New Zealand. 

A Managed Isolation Allocation system voucher is not a visa.

Book your place | Managed Isolation and Quarantine

Who can come to New Zealand without requesting to travel

You can come here without first requesting to travel if you are:

  • a New Zealand citizen or permanent resident
  • a resident with valid travel conditions, unless you got a resident visa outside New Zealand and you have never used it to travel here
  • a partner or dependent child of a New Zealand citizen or resident, and your visa is based on this relationship
  • a diplomat who holds a post in New Zealand
  • Australian citizens or permanent residents ordinarily resident in New Zealand.
Note

If you are a dependent child you must be younger than 20 if you have a temporary visa, or younger than 25 if you have a resident visa.

Australian citizens and permanent residents ordinarily resident in New Zealand

Australian citizens and permanent residents who ordinarily reside in New Zealand can travel to New Zealand.

Acceptable evidence at airport check-in required.

This may include but is not limited to:

  • Government-issued documentation — for example, New Zealand driver licence, or evidence of tax residency with Inland Revenue
  • documentation confirming current employment or approved study in New Zealand
  • documentation confirming you own or rent property in New Zealand — for example, utility bills, rates notices, lease agreement.

Your residency will be verified against your travel history before Immigration New Zealand makes a decision if you are allowed to board your flight.

If you have any doubt about whether your circumstances fall within the definition of ordinarily resident, we recommend you lodge a request for assessment prior to your intended departure. There is no charge for this request.

Request for travel to New Zealand

Other Australians who are not ordinarily resident in New Zealand may still be able to come to New Zealand under another category.

List of critical purpose reasons to travel

Other travel must be for a critical purpose

Anyone else coming to New Zealand must be coming for a critical purpose and they must request approval from us first. Travel must be for a reason that we think is critical and is on our critical purpose list.

List of critical purpose reasons to travel

How to request to travel

If you think you meet our criteria to travel you must first submit an expression of interest using our online request form. If you are coming here as an 'other critical worker' then your employer must do this for you.

Request for travel to New Zealand

If we agree you have a critical purpose, we will invite you to apply for either:

  • a Critical Purpose Visitor Visa — if you do not already have a visa — or
  • a variation of your visa conditions if you already have a work or student visa.

Provide in your request:

  • as much information as possible about the reason you want to travel to New Zealand
  • the full details of any people in New Zealand you are related to
  • the full details your partner or children if they are included in your request to travel.
Note

Before submitting a request, consider the availability of flights to New Zealand and travel restrictions for any country you may need to transit on the way.

Once you submit your request

We aim to respond to requests within 2 working days. However, it may take longer depending on the volume and complexity of requests. Requests from employers and agents for approval in principle to bring other critical workers generally take 2 weeks.

If we agree you have a critical purpose to travel, we will send you a link to the form you need to use to apply for a visa or variation of conditions.

You may need to pay a fee

From 10 August 2020, most applicants are charged a fee to apply for a Critical Purpose Visitor Visa or Critical Purpose Variation of Conditions. The fee you have to pay may change depending on your country of citizenship and where you are now.

Fees, decision times and where to apply

The fee for a Critical Purpose Variation of Conditions is NZD $190.