COVID-19 update 2 April: Temporary entry restrictions are in place at the NZ border. ONLY New Zealand residents and citizens (and their children and partners) are permitted to enter New Zealand – this includes the Realm countries (the Cook Islands, Niue, Tokelau), Australian citizens and permanent residents ordinarily resident in New Zealand, airline and marine crew. There will be some exceptions to the entry restrictions, on a case by case basis. For more information on the temporary entry restrictions, please refer to either the Immigration NZ website or the Ministry of Health website. More Customs’ information in relation to COVID-19, including how Customs is continuing to ensure that imports/exports clear the NZ border, is available on this website. For more information about the NZ Government’s COVID-19 response, please refer to the official COVID-19 website.
If you're planning to buy duty-free goods, find out first what your limits are.
You will have to pay GST and duty (where applicable) if your duty-free items or other goods purchased overseas cost more than NZ$700 in total. This does not apply to tobacco and alcohol, which have different limits.
If you're travelling with other people, you can't combine your $700 concessions.
Children can only claim the concession if the items are for them and are items a child would own and use.
If you don’t want to pay GST and duties on tobacco, please be aware of your duty-free limits.
Travellers to New Zealand
Duty-free tobacco is limited to:
- 50 cigarettes or 50 grams of cigars or tobacco products or
- 50 grams of a mixture of all three
You have to declare if you are over the limit and pay duty and GST on the excess amount. If you fail to declare tobacco, it will be seized and you could face further action.
To learn more, take a look at our FAQ page.
Tobacco sent by mail or cargo
There are no concessions available for tobacco sent by mail or cargo.
All tobacco is subject to duty, GST and an Import Entry Transaction Fee, which must be paid before your package can be released.
These charges apply for any quantity of tobacco, even small amounts.
If you have been sent tobacco as a "gift", you are noted as the "importer" and therefore you are liable for the charges.
For more information, take a look at Tobacco sent by mail or cargo.
If you don't want to pay GST and duties on alcohol, you are limited to no more than:
- 4.5 litres of wine or beer
- 3 bottles (or other containers) of spirits or liqueur (each bottle or container can hold a maximum of 1.125 litres).
The duty-free concession only applies to items you’re bringing with you for your personal use, or as gifts, provided the items:
- are not being carried on behalf of another person
- are not intended for sale or exchange.
Note: You have to be 17 years or older to claim the alcohol and tobacco concessions. You have to be 18 years or older to buy these items in New Zealand.
If you bring in more than the concessions above allow, you'll have to pay full duties on the excess. This includes bringing in containers which can carry more than 1.125 litres.
If you’re bringing items back into NZ that you had when you left, you don’t need to declare them unless:
- you bought them duty-free when you left, or
- they’re valuable, eg laptops and cameras.
You can ask for a Certificate of Export before you leave, to prove you already owned the items. They must be uniquely identifiable, eg with a serial number. You can get a Certificate of Export from a Customs office.
If you can’t get a Certificate of Export before you leave, we recommend you keep receipts or other proof you already owned the item.