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Private yachts and small craft

Arrivals on superyachts and pleasure craft are not exempt from the current border closure. Departures will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

The New Zealand Maritime Border is still closed and the COVID-19 Public Health Response (Maritime Border) Order (No 2) 2020 is still in force.

For departing craft, you need to be aware that once you have departed New Zealand, any return will be subject to the provisions as set out in the Maritime Border Order.

For foreign flagged vessels and non-New Zealand citizen crews, applications and exemptions would be required. There would also be the requirement to meet the 14 day isolation period and return a negative COVID result.

Any costs incurred would likely be at the crews expense, including any Managed Isolation Facility charges.

Visa waiver crew (including Australian citizens not resident in NZ) travelling on superyachts and pleasure craft are not exempt from the closure of NZ’s border, and current immigration instructions state they must be refused entry permission unless they meet one of the exceptions.

The maritime border will remain closed when Trans-Tasman Quarantine Free Travel starts from Sunday 18 April at 11:59pm NZT.

More information on current immigration policy, including the process to apply for an exception to the border closure can be found on Immigration New Zealand’s website.

Download the Vessels arriving in New Zealand Guide (PDF 205 KB).

Yachts and small craft

Each person aboard must have:

  • A valid passport, certificate of identity or other travel document
  • A visa (if required). For more information visit
  • Evidence of funds of NZ$400 per month, if living on board a yacht
  • An outward ticket (or evidence of of sufficient funds to buy an outward ticket) if departing by commercial transport. 

Before you arrive

You must send us an Extended Notice of Arrival at least 168 hours before you arrive in NZ and also complete the Advance Notice of Arrival at least 48 hours before you arrive in NZ waters.

Extended Notice of Arrival

The Extended Notice of Arrival is an important document that all vessels coming into New Zealand will need to completed and sent to us at least 168 hours before arrival In New Zealand waters.

The form can be downloaded and submitted to:

Advance Notice of Arrival

The NZCS 340: Advance Notice of Arrival (DOC 284 KB) form will need to be completed and set to us at least 48 hours before you arrive in NZ waters.

The form can be downloaded and submitted to

Before arrival into NZ, you are required to complete:

Note: the Passenger Arrival card is a sample only and cannot be presented to Customs or MPI staff.

Download the Arrival Pack (PDF 1.78 MB) that contains important information on your arrival into New Zealand.

If anyone on board has or is suspected of having an infectious disease, you must fly the international Q flag and notify health authorities.

When you arrive

When you arrive in NZ waters, tell us by calling Maritime Radio on 1 of these frequencies:

  • 4125 kHz
  • 6215 kHz
  • VHF Ch16.

You must report to a Customs port of entry.

Restricted and prohibited items

You are not allowed to bring some items into NZ, and some require approval to import, including firearms and weapons.

You must declare any firearms when you arrive. NZ Police will take them and stow them safely until you leave NZ.

Infringement Notices

You may receive a $400 fine if you break the law, do not comply with Customs requirements or fail to declare prohibited goods, or items exceeding customs allowances.

Border clearance levy

Each person must pay a Border Clearance Levy of  NZ$15.79 when they arrive and NZ$2.94 when they leave NZ.

We will send an invoice to the email address you give us on your advance notice of arrival form. You have until the 20th day of the following month to pay. If you pay late, we will charge you:

  • 8% on the remaining amount
  • 2% for every month you don’t pay.

Leaving NZ

You must leave NZ waters from an authorised port of entry. Getting the completed departure forms to us three days before your departure will help avoid processing delays.  We must receive your forms no less than 4 hours before you leave:

If you entered on a temporary import entry, you will also need to complete: Form C4G: Import entry (temporary) yachts and small vessels (PDF 81 KB).

Maritime NZ also require an inspection safety certificate from Yachting NZ (search Safety Inspections), if your craft is registered in NZ.

Ensure you have passports for every person leaving on the craft, and a recent photograph of the craft which can be used for identifying it.

Completed departure forms must be sent to us at least four hours before you leave.

When we have approved your clearance, you must leave immediately and directly, or you risk a fine or prosecution.

The only exceptions are in an emergency, or with our permission. Contact us on immediately:

If the situation isn’t life-threatening, but you still need to pause your journey, you must get our permission first. An officer will tell you what other requirements you must meet.

Taking duty free items out of NZ

You can only load duty-free consumable items when you’re about to depart NZ. The duty-free business or ship’s providore must email us the completed requisition form no more than 12 hours before you leave.

Keep receipts for any duty-free purchases you’re claiming, as we may inspect them.

You can only load duty-free consumable items when you’re about to depart NZ. You can do this through a duty-free business or ships providore, who must email NZCS 325: Requisition for Ships Stores (DOC 147 KB) to us at They must email us no more than 12 hours before you leave.

Keep receipts for any duty-free purchases you’re claiming, as we may inspect them.

Extending your stay, chartering or permanently importing your yacht

Visitors to New Zealand may import a yacht or sailing craft for up to 2 years without paying duty and GST or a financial security provided they meet all of the following criteria:

  • they are a permanent resident of a country other than New Zealand
  • the yacht or sailing craft will not be sold or offered for sale in New Zealand, or destroyed or given away without permission from Customs
  • the yacht or sailing craft will not be used commercially for hire, transport of cargo or carrying passengers.

Note: the qualifying criteria may be extended, on a case by case basis, to craft used for charter, provided the charter work is less than 65 per cent of the vessel’s time in New Zealand.

If the requirements above are not met, we will require a financial security and the yacht or small craft must be exported within 12 months.

If you’re moving to NZ, you may be able to import your craft without paying Customs duty and GST.

Contact us

  • Calling from NZ: 0800 428 786
  • Calling from Australia: 1 800 301 861
  • Calling from overseas: +64 9 927 8036

Further information