Immigration experts in Australia & NZ

NZ Announces 5-stage Border Reopening Plan

The New Zealand government has announced a 5-stage plan to gradually open the border, starting on Sunday, February 27, 11.59 pm with fully vaccinated New Zealand citizens who are in Australia.

Here are the five stages of the plan, outlining when visa holders and international students can enter NZ:

Stage 1 — from Sunday, February 27, 11.59 pm

Fully vaccinated New Zealanders and other eligible travellers in Australia can enter New Zealand and self-isolate on arrival. Eligible travellers must have spent the previous 14 days in Australia and meet health requirements before they travel.

Eligible travellers include:

  • New Zealand citizens
  • New Zealand permanent residents or resident visa holders
  • Australian citizens or permanent residence visa holders where New Zealand is your primary place of established residence
  • Holders of a critical purpose visa (with a border exception)
  • Those exempt from border entry restrictions such as diplomats and air crew, except those that are travelling from Very High-Risk countries, and
  • Partners, dependent child/ren or parents of a dependent child who:
    –  holds a visa based on the relationship to a New Zealand citizen or resident
    –  is travelling with a New Zealand or resident
    –  is ordinarily resident in New Zealand.

 

Stage 2 — from Sunday 13 March, 11.59 pm

Fully vaccinated New Zealanders and other eligible travellers from anywhere in the world can enter New Zealand and self-isolate on arrival.

The following changes to schemes and border exceptions will be made:

  • Working Holiday Schemes will reopen on a rolling basis (the staging and timing of individual schemes will be confirmed)
  • the income criteria for the Other Critical Worker border exception will be reduced to 1.5 times the median wage (NZD $84,240 a year or NZD $40.50 an hour) for roles longer than 6 months
  • the requirement for Other Critical Workers to demonstrate that the skills are not readily obtainable in New Zealand will be removed, and
  • the highly skilled family reunification border exception will be aligned with the 1.5 times the median wage bright line test for Other Critical Workers.

All travellers must meet health requirements before travel.

Eligible travellers include:

  • New Zealand citizens
  • New Zealand permanent residents or resident visa holders
  • Australian citizens or permanent residence visa holders where New Zealand is your primary place of established residence
  • Holders of a critical purpose visa (with a border exception)
    those exempt from border entry restrictions such as diplomats and air crew, except those that are travelling from Very High-Risk countries, and
  • Partners, dependent child/ren or parents of a dependent child who:
    –  holds a visa based on the relationship to a New Zealand citizen or resident
    –  is travelling with a New Zealand or resident
    –  is ordinarily resident in New Zealand.

 

Stage 3 — from Tuesday 12 April, 11.59 pm

Temporary visa holders currently outside New Zealand and who have a valid visa can enter New Zealand as long as they still meet their visa requirements.

Up to 5000 international students can enter New Zealand for semester 2.

Workforce class exceptions and events, and government approved programme lists, will be extended and updated as needed.

 

Stage 4 — from July 2022

The NZ borders will open to:

  • Australian citizens, Australian permanent residents and other foreign nationals travelling from Australia
  • Visitors from visa-waiver countries
  • Accredited Employer Work Visa (AEWV) holders.

 

Stage 5 — from October 2022

The border opens for all other New Zealand visa holders, including visitor and student visas, unless the visa is closed or paused.

For any immigration assistance, please contact: Arno.Nothnagel@absoluteimmigration.com

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