Transit passengers

Information about transit visas and criteria for passing through New Zealand to another country.


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

COVID-19 update

No transiting New Zealand to China

From 7 November, you can no longer transit New Zealand to China. The Chinese Government has introduced new health testing requirements for COVID-19. There are currently no testing facilities in the transit area of New Zealand airports.

If you have already been granted a transit visa you will no longer be able to use this. If you are eligible to transit New Zealand on an NZeTA you will not be able to do so. If you attempt to transit you will not be able to board the flight.

We are no longer accepting any further transit visa applications for transit to China. If you submit a transit visa application, it is likely to be declined.

Transit travellers cannot enter New Zealand to undertake any testing requirements for COVID-19.

New Zealand cannot consider any special request or exemptions. Please refer to the Chinese embassy for any requests or further information.

COVID-19 tests for China-bound flights | China Embassy in New Zealand

关于新西兰赴华航班新冠病毒核酸检测要求的通知 | 中华人民共和国驻新西兰(库克群岛、纽埃)大使馆

Transit through New Zealand

If you pass through New Zealand on your way to another country and do not plan to stay you are a transit passenger.

As a transit passenger you can only travel through Auckland International Airport where you must stay in the transit area of the airport or on board your craft. Normally you must spend less than 24 hours in transit in New Zealand, but this may change at short notice due to COVID-19 Alert Levels.

Travel to other countries 

To transit New Zealand, you must:

  • meet one of the categories or exceptions that mean you do not require an NZeTA or transit visa, or
  • hold a NZeTA if you are allowed to transit on an NZeTA, or
  • hold a transit visa if you are required to have a transit visa.

Alert Levels and transit rules can change quickly, so it is your responsibility to make sure you can transit through New Zealand and enter any country on your journey. If you are unable to do this, you may not be allowed to board the plane.

 As a transit passenger you cannot enter New Zealand.

Who does not need a visa or NZeTA

You do not need a visa or NZeTA if you:

  • are a New Zealand citizen or residence class visa holder
  • are a New Zealand temporary entry class visa holder with valid travel conditions
  • are an Australian citizen
  • meet one of the COVID-19 exceptions.

Who must request an NZeTA

If you are planning to transit through New Zealand to another country you must request an NZeTA before you travel if you:

  • hold a passport from a country on the list of transit visa waiver countries, or
  • are a citizen of a country on the list of visa waiver countries and territories, or
  • hold a current Australian permanent resident visa that allows you to return to Australia from overseas, or
  • regardless of nationality, your immediate or final destination after transiting New Zealand is Australia and you hold a current visa issued by the government of Australia to enter Australia, or
  • regardless of nationality, you are travelling from Australia — including a person who began their journey outside Australia.

Transit visa waiver countries

Visa waiver countries and territories

Information about NZeTA

Who must apply for a transit visa

You must apply for a Transit Visa before you travel if you are not:

  • from a transit visa waiver country
  • from a visa waiver country, or
  • an Australian permanent resident.

Apply for a transit visa

Transit visa applicants from all countries, except Tonga and Samoa, must submit applications to an Immigration New Zealand office or Visa Application Centre.

Transit visa

Applicants in Tonga and Samoa may apply via email, by providing the following documents:

  • a completed INZ 1019 Transit Visa Application form
    Transit Visa Application form (INZ 1019) PDF 1MB
  • a copy of your passport page showing your photo and passport information
  • travel tickets to a country that you have a right of entry to or other evidence of onward travel arrangements
  • a confirmed travel itinerary including relevant arrival and departure times from New Zealand
  • a statement of the purpose of the journey to the country of destination, and
  • any other information or evidence that you consider demonstrates you are eligible to be granted a transit visa.

Send to:

You will not need to provide your original passport, passport photos or pay the normal fee temporarily.

We aim to process transit visa applications in 20 working days.


The email address is only to be used by people sending transit visa applications from Tonga and Samoa. No other enquiries will be answered.

COVID-19 travel restrictions

Travellers should remain aware of COVID-19 travel restrictions. These restrictions can change at short notice.

Travellers should monitor Government websites for changes.

Travel and the border | COVID19.govt

COVID-19 updates | Auckland Airport