What is the change? Travelers are reminded that New Zealand will introduce an Electronic Travel Authority system Oct. 1.

What does the change mean? 
Nationals of 60 visa-waiver countries will need to obtain an ETA before traveling to New Zealand. The ETA system is designed to provide security benefits and streamline the pre-screening process. 

  • Implementation time frame: Oct. 1.
  • Who is affected: The change will affect nationals of 60 visa-waiver countries who may wish to travel to New Zealand as a visitor, or else transit through New Zealand on their way to their final destination. Australian citizens will be exempt from the requirement but Australian permanent residents will need to obtain the authorization. The change will not affect travel procedures for nationals of visa-required countries.
  • Processing: Immigration New Zealand has stated that travellers should allow up to 72 hours when applying for an Electronic Travel Authority, although the process could take as little as 10 minutes in many cases.
  • Business impact: Businesses may wish to notify employees and business visitors of the new requirement.

Additional information: Those who will require an ETA will need to complete a short online form and pay a small processing fee. The form will request basic information, such as:

  • Birth date;
  • Passport details;
  • Contact information;
  • Declarations regarding purpose of travel and criminal history; and
  • Optional biometric information (passport photo).

ETAs will be valid for two years and will cost NZD $9 if applied for on INZ’s app, or NZD $12 if applied for online. An International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy (IVL) of NZD $35 will also be payable.

Analysis & Comments: Travelers from visa-waiver countries should take note of the pending change, especially if they are planning travel to New Zealand on or after Oct. 1. The change will not affect travel procedures for New Zealand citizens, Australian citizens or holders of valid New Zealand visas.

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