One of the last places to be settled by humans, the beautiful and remote island of New Zealand is a popular tourist destination for many US citizens. If you’re planning to travel there and take in all that the country has to offer, including stunning wildlife and natural structures, there are a few things you need to know about getting your travel authorisation first.
- 1 Do US Citizens Need a Visa for New Zealand?
- 2 New Zealand Visa Application Process for US Citizens
- 3 New Zealand Visa Requirements for US Tourists
- 4 What is the New Zealand Visa Cost for US Citizens?
- 5 How Long Can Americans Visit NZ?
- 6 Travelling to New Zealand Tips
- 7 US Embassy and Consulate in New Zealand
- 8 New Zealand FAQ for US Citizens
- 9 Full Information on How to Apply for a Visa for New Zealand
Do US Citizens Need a Visa for New Zealand?
In order to travel to the country as a US citizen, you need to apply for an eTA, an electronic travel authority, before travel. This electronic visa waiver program was launched in October 2019 and is mandatory for any national of the 60 countries exempt from needing a visa to enter the country for tourism purposes.
The eTA isn’t actually an eVisa, but you can apply for it in a similar way. Simply fill out the Byevisa application online, entering your personal information, passport details and travel plans, pay the fee and tourist levy and receive your approval via email.
It usually takes from 30 minutes to 1 business day for the visa waiver program application to be processed, depending on the Byevisa processing speed you select. That said, it is advised to apply at least 3 business days before travel as further documentation may be required.
New Zealand Visa Application Process for US Citizens
In order to obtain your eTA, you are required to fill out our form and pay a fee. On the form, you are asked standard questions about:
- Your flight dates.
- Your email.
- Where you plan to stay.
- How much money you plan to take.
- Health information.
- Name, current address and date of birth.
- Passport number and expiration details.
After you’ve entered the necessary information, you’re prompted to pay the government’s fee associated with the waiver of 47.00 USD. You also pay Byevisa’s processing fees, which start as low as 25.00 USD. Once you’ve received your waiver from Byevisa by email as fast as 30 minutes, you can use it to travel into the country.
New Zealand Visa Requirements for US Tourists
To be eligible for the waiver program and obtain the eTA, you must have a valid passport, plan to spend no more than 90 days in the country and be able to pay the fee using a valid debit or credit card or PayPal account.
When you check in for your flight, in addition to your eTA you may be asked to show proof of sufficient funds (1000 NZD per month you’re staying or 400 NZD if you’ve prepaid for your accommodation) and proof of a return or onward ticket.
Certain people are exempt from the legal requirement to obtain the eTA, such as:
- Guests of the government.
- Crew and passengers of a cargo or otherwise non-cruise ship.
- People travelling under The Antarctic Treaty.
What is the New Zealand Visa Cost for US Citizens?
Despite not being a visa, the eTA will cost money when you apply for it. The cost of the eTA is 47.00 USD, which includes the New Zealand government’s 35.00 USD tourist levy. You also pay Byevisa’s processing cost, from 25.00 USD for our Standard (1 business day) service, 45.00 USD for our Rapid (4 hours) service and 65.00 USD for our Highly Rapid (30 minute) service.
How Long Can Americans Visit NZ?
Your eTA is valid for 2 years. During that time, you can make multiple visits, with each visit lasting a maximum of 3 months. You cannot spend more than 6 months in the country during any 12-month period.
Travelling to New Zealand Tips
Travel to the country is easy, with several direct flights from most major US states and cities. Flight time can vary but takes around 11-14 hours for a direct flight. You can travel from Los Angeles, New York and San Francisco to Auckland direct, taking no longer than 15 hours. Some destinations and flights require a stop and for you to board another plane. In cases of stopovers, you need to ensure you follow the visa procedures for that country as well.
Your waiver documents can be printed out before travel and presented at immigration within any New Zealand airport.
US Embassy and Consulate in New Zealand
The US embassy within the country is located in Wellington, with a consulate in Auckland that provides several services to US citizens, including:
- General tourism information.
- Medical assistance.
- Legal assistance.
- Passport services, including help if your passport is lost or stolen while in New Zealand.
- Child and family matters.
If you lose your passport, require medical assistance or encounter legal problems while in New Zealand, you can contact the consulate in order to obtain help with anything you may need to re-enter the US or remain in the country temporarily for medical care or to resolve other issues.
New Zealand FAQ for US Citizens
So, you want to travel to New Zealand, but you still have some questions that need to be answered? While we’ve tried to give you all the main information you need to know already, we understand that there’s a lot to answer about travel authorisations. So, let’s read on to find out more about travel and visa requirements.
Can I Get a New Zealand Visa as a US Permanent Resident?
If you are a US permanent resident but don’t have an American passport, you need to make your travel authorisation application using your home country’s passport. This means that you need to follow all the relevant application procedures for citizens of your birth country.
Is It Safe for Americans to Travel to New Zealand?
This country is a very safe place to visit. Ranked second in the 2017 Global Peace Index and with low crime rates, it’s considered safe for Americans to visit.
How Many Americans Are in New Zealand?
There were over 350,000 US visitors to the country as of 2018, with most flying into Auckland airport, making it a popular tourist destination for US travellers.
What Should I Know Before Travelling to New Zealand?
Most of The Lord of the Rings and Hobbit films were filmed in areas of the country, with Hobbit holes and filming locations available to visit.
Full Information on How to Apply for a Visa for New Zealand
For US citizens and citizens of the 60 countries who are part of the waiver program, you simply fill in a form online, ensure you have a passport valid for 3 months after your entry date, pay a fee and print out your document.
For more information, please visit our page about the New Zealand eTA for further details about the New Zealand eVisa. You can also learn more about visiting this country ahead of your trip by clicking this link.