Covid-19 - FAQ Relating to Visas and Travel to New Zealand

Covid-19 - FAQ Relating to Visas and Travel to New Zealand

As the world continues to battle against the novel coronavirus, we understand that you may have questions relating to your visas and travel to New Zealand. We have prepared an FAQ below relating to the most commonly asked questions:  

1. I am a visitor to New Zealand and my visa expires in the next few weeks. I do not wish to travel during this time. Can I renew my Visitor Visa?

If your visa expires prior to 2 April 2020 you will have to apply for a new visa as soon as possible. Any temporary visa holders in New Zealand with visas expiring between 2 April 2020 and 9 July 2020 (inclusive) will have their visas automatically extended to 25 September 2020. Contact us to discuss your individual circumstances.

2. I am currently on a Work Visa and I have been made redundant as the company is losing business. What can I do?

Each person's circumstances will be different and assessed on a case by case basis by Immigration New Zealand. We are aware that Immigration New Zealand is liaising with the Minister of Immigration to come up with the answers to these questions. We recommend speaking to an Immigration Lawyer regarding your circumstances as you may also be eligible for a different type of visa.  

3. I currently hold a valid Work Visa for New Zealand but I am outside New Zealand. Will I be able to re-enter?

At this stage the border is closed for all non-citizens and non-residents. There are exceptions to this and you may wish to speak to an Immigration Lawyer to ascertain whether you fall within those exceptions.

4. My partner is currently overseas and holds a partnership-based visa. Is she/he able to enter New Zealand?

Immigration New Zealand has advised that it can make exceptions on a case-by-case basis for holders of visitor visas who are partners of temporary work or student visa holders, who normally live in New Zealand, and if their partner is currently in New Zealand.

5. When are the border restrictions valid until?

As this is an evolving situation, we are unable to confirm when this may last until. It is important that you monitor the situation and keep up to date by checking Immigration New Zealand's website.  

6. I am a New Zealand citizen and I'm flying into New Zealand with my partner and child, who are not New Zealand citizens. Will they be able to enter?

Yes. Partners, legal guardians or any dependent children who are travelling with a New Zealand citizen, permanent resident or resident visa holder will be granted entry permission. However all parties must self-isolate once in New Zealand and adhere to the requests of a Health Officer.

7. I am an Australian Citizen but I live permanently in New Zealand. I am currently out of the country and would like to return home to New Zealand. Will I be granted entry permission?

Yes.

8. I am expecting to transit through New Zealand on my way home. Will I still be able to do so?

Australian citizens, residents and immediate family are able to transit through New Zealand on their way to Australia. You must however remain airside, and cannot enter New Zealand.

New Zealand citizens, residents and immediate family members who normally live in Australia can transit through New Zealand on their way to Australia. You must also remain airside, and should not enter New Zealand. If you enter New Zealand, you must self-isolate.

For a restricted period of time, until 23.59 hours on 29 March 2020, nationals from United States and Canada may transit through New Zealand from Australia on flights to Canada or the United States.

Similarly, until 23.59 hours on 29 March 2020, individuals travelling from the Pacific, who do not need to transit through Australia, can transit via New Zealand to their home countries.

If you are concerned about your particular circumstances, please contact our Immigration Specialist, Ramya Sathiyanathan on (09) 306 6727 (rsathiyanathan@mcveaghfleming.co.nz).

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Immigration

Employment Law

© McVeagh Fleming 2020

This article is published for general information purposes only.  Legal content in this article is necessarily of a general nature and should not be relied upon as legal advice.  If you require specific legal advice in respect of any legal issue, you should always engage a lawyer to provide that advice.