Information for airlines

Immigration New Zealand (INZ) works in partnership with trusted carriers across the world to protect the security of our borders. This section contains information and advice specific to the airline industry.

We want to have effective working relationships with airlines. The value that we bring to these relationships includes helping to educate airline staff on:

  • the carrier obligations under the Immigration Act 2009 and associated regulations
  • the documents people need to enter New Zealand
  • types of fraud
  • examining documents
  • the use of the Advance Passenger Processing (APP) system.

Airlines have responsibilities under New Zealand regulations, they must:

  • provide to INZ the APP information required by the Act and regulations, for anyone who intends to board an aircraft to New Zealand
  • comply with INZ directives about allowing certain persons to board an aircraft or not
  • provide Passenger Name Record (PNR) information to INZ
  • make sure INZ has access to the Passenger Name Record (PNR) information
  • make sure that anyone boarding an aircraft to travel to New Zealand holds the correct documentation, including a valid passport or identity certificate and a valid visa if required
  • prevent anyone from leaving an aircraft other than at an Immigration Control Area (ICA)
  • provide information to an immigration officer about anyone on an aircraft, if required.

Information for Airlines (INZ 1117) has more information PDF 707KB
Contact us to request a printed copy of the booklet

Carrier Infringement Regime

From 1 July 2012 commercial airlines operating flights to New Zealand may be liable for infringement fees if they breach their immigration-related obligations. We’ve created the 'Guide to the Carrier Infringement Regime for Airlines' to help airlines better understand how the Carrier Infringement Regime will operate.

Guide to the Carrier Infringement Regime for Airlines (INZ 1203) PDF 546KB

Private aircraft operators should be aware that while many aspects of the carrier infringement regime don’t apply to them, they must still comply with all their obligations under the Immigration Act 2009. In particular, private aircraft operators must make sure that all people travelling to New Zealand hold the correct travel documentation. Failure to do so may lead to either an infringement notice or to prosecution.

Advance Passenger Screening

New Zealand’s border systems provide advance passenger screening to enhance the security of New Zealand's borders and minimise disruption for genuine travellers. 

When you check in for your flight to New Zealand, an airline will conduct an Advance Passenger Processing (APP) check with INZ. INZ will generally give the airline clearance to bring you to New Zealand. However, you may be refused permission to board your flight to come to, or return to, New Zealand if:

  • you do not have an appropriate visa to enter New Zealand, or
  • your visa has expired, or
  • you are attempting to travel using a stolen or lost travel document, or
  • your visa has not been transferred to your current/new passport or the passport being used to enter New Zealand.

In addition, the TIETAC (New Zealand) system allows airlines to ask us about your New Zealand visa status at any time during your journey to New Zealand. TIETAC is a secure network that uses information like your travel document number, nationality and name to confirm your visa status and provide messages to carriers about whether you can travel to or transit New Zealand. TIETAC was introduced to minimise travel delays for people who’ve been granted eVisas.

It’s a good idea to make you sure your travel documents are up-to-date and you have an appropriate and current visa before you travel.  If you have any questions, contact us.

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Immigration Control Areas

The 'Immigration Control Areas (ICAs) International Airports' document describes the ICAs in effect from 29 November 2010.

The Immigration Control Areas (ICAs) International Airports (INZ 11567) PDF 232KB

Enforcing the Immigration Act 2009 – Employers and Carriers

'Enforcing the Immigration Act 2009 – Employers and Carriers' outlines the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment's (MBIE) approach to enforcing employer and carrier obligations under the Immigration Act.

MBIE’s approach places greater emphasis on voluntary compliance and building collaborative relationships. It takes a proactive approach and retains discretion to use a range of tools to resolve non-compliance.

'Enforcing the Immigration Act 2009' outlines MBIE’s enforcement principles relating to the employer and carrier sectors. It also highlights the support available to organisations that may require assistance in resolving their compliance issues.

Enforcing the Immigration Act 2009 – Employers and Carriers PDF 197KB