New Zealanders overseas

Advice for New Zealanders overseas about how to travel to New Zealand, border controls when you arrive and registering with SafeTravel.

If you need help

If you are a New Zealand citizen abroad you can get emergency consular assistance. You can access support for situations like lost or stolen passports, death, health issues and law infringements.

New Zealand cannot influence or guarantee another country or airline’s entry, exit or transit requirements. We also cannot help you book a commercial flight.

Get emergency consular help by calling:

More help from SafeTravel (external link)

Who can travel to New Zealand

The New Zealand borders are closed to almost all travellers. Closed borders helps stop COVID-19 from spreading through our communities. The travel ban applies to all arrivals into New Zealand whether by air or sea.

New Zealand citizens and residents

You have a legal right to come to New Zealand if you’re:

  • a New Zealand citizen 
  • a New Zealand resident with valid travel conditions.

If you're travelling from a 'very high risk' country

From 11:59pm on 28 April 2021, travel from very high risk countries will be temporarily restricted to New Zealand citizens, partners and dependent children of New Zealand citizens, and parents of dependent children who are New Zealand citizens.

The following countries currently meet the threshold of being very high risk: India, Brazil, Papua New Guinea and Pakistan.

Restrictions on travel to New Zealand from very high risk countries

Limited exceptions

There are a small number of limited exceptions to the ban on travelling to and entering New Zealand.

These exceptions apply to people who: 

  • already hold a temporary New Zealand visa 
  • do not have a New Zealand visa. 

If you’re not a New Zealand citizen or resident you legally must get approval from Immigration New Zealand before travelling to New Zealand.

COVID-19 key updates from Immigration NZ (external link)

There are exceptions for people who can travel to New Zealand under a quarantine-free travel arrangement. Currently, people from Australia, the Cook Islands and Niue can travel quarantine-free to New Zealand.

Our quarantine-free travel arrangements apply to the aviation (air) border only. Maritime (sea) borders are closed at this time.

Quarantine-free travel

There are also exceptions for some vessels. These include cargo ships, fishing vessels unloading catch and ships coming from Antarctica.

Guidance for the maritime sector from the Ministry of Health (external link)

Border controls on arrival

It's important people returning to New Zealand do their part to stop COVID-19 spreading in New Zealand.

Managed isolation or quarantine

If you're returning to New Zealand you legally must complete at least 14 days of managed isolation or quarantine, unless you're arriving under quarantine-free travel. You will also be tested for COVID-19 during your stay in a facility.

Managed isolation and quarantine

Secure your place in managed isolation

You are legally required to have a voucher before flying to New Zealand. Your voucher allocates you a place in a managed isolation facility. 

Airlines will not be permitted to board you if you do not have a voucher, unless you are exempt from using the Managed Isolation Allocation System. 

Register for a voucher for managed isolation (external link)

Request an emergency allocation

The emergency allocation process exists for limited situations that require urgent travel to New Zealand within the next 14 days.

You can apply for an emergency allocation if you cannot book your preferred date in the Managed Isolation Allocation System, and you meet the eligibility criteria.

You can request an emergency allocation if:

  • you are legally entitled to enter New Zealand under our current border settings
  • your travel is time-critical — within the next 14 days
  • you have registered in the Managed Isolation Allocation System and you have not been able to book an allocation for the date you require urgent travel
  • your circumstances fall within 1 of the 2 categories permitted, and
  • you have attached evidence to support your application.

The managed isolation and quarantine website has details about the travel categories permitted for emergency allocation, and what supporting evidence you need.

Very few emergency allocation requests will be granted. We encourage you to book in early to the Managed Isolation Allocation System, as this is the best way to guarantee your place.

Emergency allocation requests (external link)

Register with SafeTravel

The New Zealand Government is urging any New Zealanders currently travelling overseas to register with SafeTravel. If you register, you will receive notification of any changes made to travel advice for the country or region you're in. Remember to keep your details and travel plans up to date.

Register your details with SafeTravel (external link)

Advice for New Zealanders overseas during COVID-19 (external link)

Last updated: