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Home > Immigration News > Immigration Update: New Zealand – Visitor Visa Changes for South African Nationals

Immigration Update: New Zealand – Visitor Visa Changes for South African Nationals

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13 OCTOBER 2016


Previously nationals of South Africa were not required to apply for a visitor visa prior to travelling to New Zealand.  Genuine visitors were granted a visitor visa on their arrival in New Zealand pursuant to a special visa waiver arrangement.


Effective 21 November 2016, all South African visitors to New Zealand will need to apply for visitor’s visas before they depart South Africa.  The changes are being introduced as a result of an increase in the number of visitors from South Africa who are being turned around at the airport as they are considered not to be genuine visitors.  Additionally, some visitors were found in possession of fraudulent South African passports.


This change will have a major impact on South African nationals who previously travelled to New Zealand to visit friends and family visa free.  There is also some evidence to suggest that some South Africans were travelling to New Zealand to seek employment and if they found jobs they would then apply for work visas.

From 21 November 2016, all visitors will need to lodge a visitor visa application well before they intend to travel to New Zealand.  They will need to provide evidence to the New Zealand Immigration authorities that they are genuine visitors, provide evidence of funds, return flight tickets, genuine reasons for the visit and incentives to return to South Africa at the end of their visit.


New Zealand Contact Details

Isabel Chorao
Immigration Manager, New Zealand
Santa Fe Australia
T: +64 9 363 9591
M: +64 21 472 054
E: [email protected]


Licensed Immigration Adviser No. 201100384



Santa Fe Immigration Services

Plaza Level, AIG Building, 41 Shortland Street, Auckland 1010
(PO Box 4008, Shortland Street, Auckland)




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