It is possible to move to NZ without the need for a visa. All the traveler needs is a New Zealand visa waiver or an e-visa and the recipient can enter the country any time he/she so please. This New Zealand electronic travel authority is very easy to get particularly if you are from a waiver country.
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The New Zealand visa waiver can be used by beneficiaries who plan on visiting, doing business or are in transit to another destination. As mentioned above, not all countries qualify for the NZ visa waiver. Those that do not qualify should not bother applying as their applications will be rejected.
In this article, we will exhaustively highlight everything that has to do with the New Zealand electronic travel authority or e-visa for short, which is a visa waiver that allows people to enter the country without the need to apply for a visa.
New Zealand Visa Waiver
The New Zealand electronic travel authority is a document that allows visitors or transit passengers to travel to or through NZ without a visa. Applicants must however be traveling with a passport from a visa waiver country.
Other category of people that can apply for a New Zealand visa waiver are passengers on a cruise ship that is passing through NZ or permanent residence of Australia, especially those passing through Auckland international airport on their way to another country.
New Zealand Visa Waiver Length Of Stay
The New Zealand visa waiver is valid for multiple visits to the country and allows the recipient stay in the country for a period of up to 2 years. In this time, NZ electronic travel authority holders are free to come and go as they please.
There are however, fees associated with applying for a NZeTA and a stipulated period for its processing. These conditions need to be met before qualified applicants can be awarded a New Zealand e-visa.
New Zealand Visa Waiver Countries
Visitors or transit passengers with passports from certain countries or territories are not required to apply for visa before traveling to New Zealand. Although, they are required to be granted a New Zealand electronic travel authority.
Applicants from visa waiver countries who plan on visiting for a short period must request and be granted an NZeTA before they can embark on their trip. This category of people will be given this document if they are staying from 3 months to 2 years depending on the situation.
New Zealand visa waiver countries include;
Portugal (if you have the right to live permanently in Portugal)
Taiwan (if you are a permanent resident)
United Arab Emirates
Estonia (citizens only)
Hong Kong (residents with HKSAR or British National–Overseas passports only)
United Kingdom (UK) (if you are travelling on a UK or British passport that shows you have the right to reside permanently in the UK)
Latvia (citizens only)
Lithuania (citizens only)
LuxembourgMacau (only if you have a Macau Special Administrative Region passport)
United States of America (USA) (including USA nationals)
New Zealand Visa Waiver Exceptions
Applicants from visa waiver countries and territories who plan on traveling to New Zealand for medical treatment or consultation are required to apply for a visa and not a NZeTA for embarking on their trip to this country.
A medical treatment visa is necessary for people traveling to New Zealand because they might be incapacitated and could be required to stay in the country for up to 6 months before they are fit enough to travel.
New Zealand Visa Waiver Entry Conditions
Travelers might not be allowed to board their flights or cruise to New Zealand, particularly if they don’t have a valid passport or an approved NZeTA. Australian or New Zealand citizens do not require a visa or visa waiver to get into the country.
The New Zealand immigration website states that; travelers are no longer required to complete a New Zealand traveler declaration to enter New Zealand. The New Zealand Traveler Declaration will be reintroduced in mid-2023 and will replace the paper passenger arrival card.
To apply for a New Zealand visa waiver, there are certain conditions that needs to be met, without which this travel document will not be issued;
- The traveler must be visiting NZ on a passport from a visa waiver country
- The individual is in transit through Auckland international airport to another country, while traveling on a passport from a visa waiver country or a transit waiver country
- People passing through Auckland international airport as a transit passenger to or from Australia
- Travelers that have a permanent resident visa for Australia that allows you return to Australia from another country
- Individuals that are cruise ship passengers
Check Your Passport
Travelers to New Zealand may not be allowed into the country at check in, if their passports are not valid for travel to NZ. You are mandated to check that your passport will not expire until:
- 3 months after the date you plan on leaving New Zealand, or
- 1 month after the date you plan on leaving New Zealand. This is particularly for passports that was issued by a country that has an embassy or consulate in New Zealand that issues passports for that country.
Passport Condition For NZ Resident Visa Holders
People living in New Zealand permanently, for instance those on a resident visa, only need to have passports that are valid to travel to New Zealand. However, they need to make sure that their passports has not been;
- Reported stolen or lost
- Invalidated by the issuing government
Category Of People Who Do Not Need A New Zealand Visa Waiver
There are certain category of travelers who do not need a New Zealand visa waiver to come into the country. This set of people are granted unbridled access and can come and go as they please. These are people;
- Who hold a New Zealand visa
- Who are from Australia or New Zealand
Information For Permanent Residents Of New Zealand Visa Waiver Countries
Permanent resident visa holders from NZ visa waiver countries must understand that a permanent resident visa is not evidence of citizenship of that country. NZeTA applicants must be mindful of this.
For instance, a United States (NZ visa waiver country) green card holder still needs to apply for a visa or visa waiver depending on the reason of travel to enter New Zealand. To be able to travel to NZ visa free depends on the passport the traveler is traveling with.
People who intend to travel to New Zealand on passports issued by visa waiver countries have the benefit of;
- Traveling to New Zealand without having to apply for a visa
- Being eligible to apply for a New Zealand electronic travel authority before they set out to NZ
Travelers planning on traveling to New Zealand on passports from countries not on the visa waiver list will be required to apply for and be granted visa before they travel.
Cost Of A New Zealand Visa Waiver
Individuals applying for an NZeTA via the app will have to pay a NZD $17 charge to get their application processed, while those doing it online through the web portal of the New Zealand immigration service are required to pay NZD $23. And then there is the international visitor tourism and conservation levy to think about.
International Visitor Tourism And Conservation Levy
Tourist, students, people on working holidays and even workers coming to New Zealand are mandated to pay an international visitor conservation and tourism levy (IVL) of NZD $35.
Depending on the type of passport you are traveling with, your reason for coming to New Zealand or whether you are from a visa waiver country, you might be obligated to pay this levy. However, it must be pointed out that not all travelers to NZ are required to pay this fee.
International Visitor Tourism And Conservation Levy Exemption
There are people who are exempted from paying the IVL fee. Those who are not required to pay this levy are;
- People traveling to New Zealand on an Australian or New Zealand passport
- Those traveling to the country on a passport from many pacific island nations
- Transit passengers arriving at and leaving from Auckland international airport
- People who have New Zealand resident visas
- Those who hold Australian resident visa
- Those on a business visitor visa or APEC business travel card
How To Apply For A New Zealand Visa Waiver
Travelers from NZ visa waiver countries who seek to apply for a New Zealand electronic travel authority are required to fill the online form or use the mobile app to request theirs. An international visitor tourism and conservation levy must also be paid.
Meeting Photo Requirement
During NZ visa waiver application, if the applicant’s photography does not meet the stipulated requirement, another one will be requested. Photo must be less than 6 months old and applicant must be easily identifiable. All technical specifications should also be met.
Request for a New Zealand electronic travel authority could be delayed or rejected because of poor quality photographs. Photographs are more likely to be accepted if a professional photographer is used for this purpose.
Applicants who request their NZeTA using the web app can choose to upload an existing photo or take one using their device’s camera. Those using the mobile app are limited to using their device’s camera to take the desired photo.
Photographs must be;
- Less than 10MB in size
- Must be in a JPG (or JPEG) file format
Photos taken on devices must have a minimum camera resolution of 540 x 720 pixels. Large size photos will be automatically resized.
If You Make An Error On Your New Zealand Visa Waiver Application
Upon approval of a New Zealand visa waiver application, only a few details can be corrected. Details such as the applicant’s;
- Passport number (for applicants that got a passport replacement done)
- Email address
- Corrections, due to small spelling mistakes or numerical errors
To effect these sort of changes, applicants are advised to use the online form found on the New Zealand immigration services website to request these changes on their NZeTA.
Applicants who seek to change their name or passport number on their NZeTA will need to request the changes 10 days before they are scheduled to travel. Those interested in changing their nationality on their passport are mandated to submit a new NZeTA request.
What Happens After You Get Issued A New Zealand Visa Waiver?
Even though the traveler has been issued an NZeTA, upon arriving the New Zealand border, an application for entry permission must be submitted. This application is usually processed swiftly. However, extra questions might be asked by immigration personnel before entry permission is given.
Evidence to support the application might be requested by the New Zealand immigration officer in charge of your file. Other documents such as a return ticket from New Zealand as well as evidence of financial support could be requested. So, travelers must be ready.
Traveling To New Zealand For Business Reasons
People traveling to New Zealand for business reasons, but are citizens of countries on the list of visa waiver do not need to apply for visa before arriving New Zealand. Those who leave for NZ on or after 1 October 2019 must hold an NZeTA. There are other entry requirements that must be met also.
It is possible to travel to New Zealand without applying for a visa. To do this, a New Zealand visa waiver or an NZeTA is required, to get this travel document, the applicant must be from a New Zealand visa waiver country.
To apply for a New Zealand visa waiver, an online form can be accessed through the NZ immigration website or by using the mobile app. While filling this form care must be taken not to make a mistake, because very few corrections can be made after this travel authorization gets approved.
Visitors and business people who apply for a New Zealand visa waiver could get to stay in NZ for a total period that could extend to 2 years, depending on the reason for traveling to the country. Care should be taken to ensure that support documents are carried along so that the traveler is not turned back at the border.
Is your country represented on the list of New Zealand visa waiver countries? Will you be taking advantage of the NZeTA to travel to New Zealand?