Visitors to New Zealand to pay tourist levy and require 'eVisa'

The decision was made to change the rules of entry to NZ in February.
The decision was made to change the rules of entry to NZ in February. Photo credit: Getty Images/Newshub.

Travellers to New Zealand will required to pay an international visitor levy and require an Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) from October.

The new ETA visa, similar to the eVisa required to visit the United States, will be required for all visitors from the 60 countries that Aotearoa offers visa waiver entry to.

An ETA will last up to two years and cost NZ$9 for mobile application requests and NZ$12 for web browser requests.

The new International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy also comes into effect in October and will cost NZ$35 and last for the same length of time as the ETA.

Despite similarities, the NZ ETA won't have the long waiting period or high fees that can be associated with some international visas.

What you need to know:

  • Travellers will be required to hold an Electronic Travel Authority, effective October 1, 2019
  • This includes travellers who are transiting through New Zealand, meaning even if New Zealand is not a traveller's final destination, they still must hold an ETA prior to entering the country
  • Travellers can apply for the ETA via the official mobile app or via a browser
  • The cost of an ETA obtained via the app is NZ$9 while obtaining an ETA via a standard web browser costs NZ$12
  • All international airline crew will be required to obtain an ETA at a set price of NZ$9 
  • The standard passenger ETA is valid for two years, while a crew ETA is valid for five years
  • Travellers can begin applying for New Zealand's ETA on July 1, 2019
  • Australian citizens will not require an ETA - however, Australian permanent residents will
  • Other exemptions will apply to crew and passengers on a non-cruise vessel, crew on a foreign ship carrying cargo, guests of the government, people travelling under the Antarctic Treaty and members of a visiting force and associated crew members
  • The International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy will cost NZ$35

Travellers will be required to pay the new levy in conjunction with the new ETA requirement. The levy will be valid for the duration of the traveller's ETA.

Both the ETA and conservation and tourism levy will also be required for those arriving in New Zealand on a cruise ship.