2021 Interim Visa

The 2021 Interim Visa lets you stay in New Zealand while your 2021 Resident Visa is being processed. You can now request a visa to travel so you can leave and return to New Zealand.

About the 2021 Interim Visa

If you have applied for a 2021 Resident Visa and your current visa expires in the next 7 days, Immigration New Zealand (INZ) will process a 2021 Interim Visa for you which will come into effect the day after your current visa expires. You do not need to apply.

We will send you an eVisa with the appropriate duration and conditions.

About eVisas


Once you have a 2021 Interim Visa you cannot apply for other visas. If you think your 2021 Residence Visa might be declined or you may withdraw, you may want to apply for a further temporary visa instead so you can remain in New Zealand on a temporary visa.


If you have a work or visitor visa the 2021 Interim Visa will let you stay in New Zealand with your current visa conditions.

If you have a student visa you will get open student visa conditions, allowing you to study any programme at any educational institute at any location.

How long the visa lasts

The 2021 Interim Visa is valid for 12 months unless your 2021 Resident Visa application is declined or withdrawn within this 12-month period.

In this case the interim visa will expire 2 months from the date of the decision to decline or withdraw.

If you want to apply for a further temporary visa

If your current visa is about to expire you may want to apply for a further temporary visa rather than getting a 2021 Interim Visa. You may want to do this because:

  • the temporary visa's conditions are more suitable for you — for example, you may want to move from work to study
  • if your 2021 Resident Visa application is declined or you withdraw, you will still have a valid, temporary visa and can apply for further visas.

You must apply for further temporary visa before your current visa expires.

If you have applied for both a temporary visa and a 2021 Resident Visa

If you have applied for both visas and your current visa expires, you will receive an interim visa based on your temporary visa application.

If you want an interim visa based on your temporary visa application, you should apply for a further temporary visa at least 7 days before your current visa expires, otherwise we may give you a 2021 Interim Visa instead.

Changing employment conditions

If you hold an employer-specific work visa your 2021 Interim Visa has the same employment conditions. If you wish to change employment you can apply for a variation of conditions using the following form:

INZ 1020 Application for a Variation of Conditions or a Variation of Travel Conditions PDF 424KB

You should complete sections A, F and I, and sections G and H if they apply to you. Include a cover letter stating that you hold a 2021 Interim Visa and want to change employment.

Request a visa to travel

If you hold a 2021 Interim Visa, you can request a visa to travel so you can leave and return to New Zealand on the same visa. Your request will be considered under section 79(5) of the Immigration Act 2009.

We will continue to process your 2021 Resident Visa while you are overseas.


If you do not make a request before you leave, your 2021 Interim Visa will expire. To return to New Zealand, you will need to apply for a new visa or wait until your 2021 Resident Visa is approved.

How to make a request

To make a request you need to provide the following information in writing and submit your request by email. There is no fee to make a request.

Also include the information for any partners or dependent children who currently hold a 2021 Interim Visa and are also travelling.

Information to provide


  • personal details — name, date of birth
  • passport number
  • INZ client number (if known)
  • INZ 2021 Resident Visa application number
  • contact details – email address, phone number
  • departure date from New Zealand.

If you need to check your client or application number, access your Immigration online account using the INZ website login option.

Submit your request

Email your request to:


You will receive an automated email to confirm that your request has been received. Immigration New Zealand may contact you to confirm your details.


This email inbox will not be responding to general 2021 Residence Visa updates or enquiries.

Assessing your request and timeframe

The process for assessing your request is different from assessing a visa application.

Each case is different and there is no timeframe for assessing Section 79(5) requests.

We will process requests as quickly as possible.

Notified of a decision

If your request is approved, we grant you a visa which will enable you to travel.

We send you an eVisa to confirm that you can re-enter New Zealand.

About eVisas

If your request is not approved

We will email you if your request is not approved.

There will be no change to your current conditions. You will continue to hold a 2021 Interim Visa.

Under the law, we do not have to consider your request or:

  • provide any reasons for our decision
  • make any enquiries about the information you provide in support of the request or about other information INZ holds about you
  • grant a visa of the type or length you asked for — for example, we can give you a visitor visa instead of a work visa
  • grant a specific visa even if you seem to meet the criteria for that visa.

Immigration Act 2009 Section 79 | New Zealand Legislation