Pre-departure tests to enter New Zealand

Most travellers legally must have a negative COVID-19 test to enter New Zealand. Find out more about New Zealand's pre-departure testing requirements.

Latest update — 7 January 2022

Significant changes came into effect from Friday 7 January 2022. Please read the information on this webpage to ensure you have the correct tests and documentation to enter New Zealand.

Pre-departure testing requirements to enter New Zealand

Most travellers to New Zealand must have a negative PCR or RT-PCR test within 48 hours of their scheduled departure of their first international flight. There are alternative testing options available to travellers from specific countries and jurisdictions where PCR testing is limited. 

You will need to have had both your COVID-19 sample taken and your result returned within 48 hours of departure for a PCR or RT-PCR test.

You still need a test even if you have been vaccinated for COVID-19.

You are responsible for checking your chosen testing provider can provide you with acceptable pre-departure documentation to the specified standard required by the New Zealand Government. Tests from free community testing stations may not be acceptable for travel clearance, so check before your test.

Medical certificates

If you are required to provide a medical certificate because you cannot take a test due to medical reasons, you will also need to get this 48 hours before your flight.

Additional testing options for travellers from places with limited access to PCR tests

There are 105 specified places where obtaining a PCR or RT-PCR test may be difficult or not possible. Travellers from these places can instead provide evidence of a supervised negative rapid antigen test (RAT) or a supervised loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) test taken within 24 hours of departure.

You will need to have had both your COVID-19 sample taken and your result returned within 24 hours for a RAT or LAMP test to board your flight to New Zealand.

All tests must be supervised by a health professional, which includes pharmacists, and verified in writing in the place of origin.

Find out if you need a pre-departure test to enter New Zealand

Exemptions for pre-departure tests

Some people are exempt from the pre-departure testing requirements.

Acceptable pre-departure documentation

You must make sure that the testing provider you choose can provide your test results with acceptable pre-departure documentation to the specified standard required by the New Zealand Government.

Free community testing stations often do not provide all the information required for travel clearance, so check before having your pre-departure test.

If your pre-departure documentation does not contain the required information, or is not in the required format, you may be prevented from boarding your plane.

Acceptable pre-departure documentation 

The New Zealand Government requires that all pre-departure tests contain the following information for travel clearance:  

  • traveller’s name
  • traveller’s date of birth and/or passport number 
  • date and time the test was conducted
  • name of testing lab
  • test type
  • test result

Find testing locations overseas

You can get tested at a range of places. We recommend you select a test provider carefully, to make sure you can get tested and get your results in time for your flight departure.

Make sure you check your chosen testing provider will provide you with acceptable pre-departure documentation to the specified standard required by the New Zealand Government. You are responsible for meeting any costs associated with your test.

All tests (including at-home tests) must be processed by a laboratory recognised in the country of origin as authorised or accredited to conduct tests.

Information in other languages and alternate formats

Get information about pre-departure testing in other languages and alternate formats.

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