How long it takes to process a visa application

We process applications as soon as we can. To avoid delays, check that the information in your application is complete and correct.

Processing times can vary

We are committed to delivering the fastest possible service for visa applicants. How long it takes us to process your application depends on how complex it is. We consider every application separately to make sure it aligns with New Zealand's immigration policy and regulations.

Note

Our Beijing office is temporarily closed due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Visa processing may take longer than the timeframes indicated.

Check your status online

If you applied online, you can check the status of your application and find out if we need more information from you.

Checking your application status

Average processing times

Find out how many calendar days it has taken us to process applications for our most common visas in the 3 months to 1 February 2020. For applications that take more than 90 days we have rounded that number to the nearest month. For example, if applications take 110 days, we say it takes 4 months.

Visitor visa

Visa 50% of applications completed within: 75% of applications completed within: 90% of applications completed within:
Visitor (holiday) 13 days 26 days 33 days

Find recent processing times for other types of visitor visa, for example business and group visitor visas.

Fees, decision times & where to apply

Student visas

Visa 50% of applications completed within: 75% of applications completed within: 90% of applications completed within:
Fee Paying Student 16 days 32 days 61 days
Variation of conditions on a student visa 9 days 14 days 19 days

Find recent processing times for other student visas.

Fees, decision times & where to apply

You can also find out how long it takes to process visas for international students depending on the type of education provider they study with.

Visa processing times for international students

Work visas

Visa 50% of applications completed within: 75% of applications completed within: 90% of applications completed within:
Essentials Skills 17 days 34 days 64 days
Partner of a New Zealander 49 days 4 months 7 months
Partner of student 51 days 4 months 7 months
Partner of worker 27 days 48 days 88 days
Post-study work visa 14 days 21 days 36 days
Variation of conditions on a work visa 8 days 13 days 31 days

Find recent processing times for other work visas.

Fees, decision times & where to apply

Residence visas

Visa 50% of applications completed within: 75% of applications completed within: 90% of applications completed within:
Partner of a New Zealander 8 months 9 months 10 months
Permanent Resident Visa 9 days 13 days 20 days
Skilled Migrant 6 months 12 months 15 months
Transfer of visa to new passport 9 days 13 days 17 days
Variation of travel conditions on a resident visa 9 days 16 days 23 days

Find recent processing times for other residence visas.

Fees, decision times & where to apply