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Leaving New Zealand


Some borders around the world are closed to people who are not citizens and permanent residents of that country, or have restrictions or additional requirements in place for visitors.

Find out more about what to consider when leaving New Zealand at | International Travel

Before you leave New Zealand, check the SafeTravel website for information on:

  • disability information
  • health and travel
  • passports and visas
  • travelling to Australia
  • insurance
  • travelling with a criminal conviction
  • work and income benefits
  • travel advisories.

When you leave

Once you’ve checked in, you must move through a Customs area to get to duty-free shops and the departure lounge.

You must also complete a NZCS 337 Border Cash Report (DOC 236 KB) or the online Border Cash Report form, if you’re carrying NZ$10,000 or more in cash or foreign equivalent. Note: if you wish to use the online Border Cash Report form, this can only be carried out within 72 hours of your travel.

Fact Sheet 13: Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism Act 2009 (PDF 710 KB). 

Leaving on cruise, commercial or small craft

There are specific requirements if you’re leaving New Zealand on:

Outstanding fines

You may not be allowed to leave New Zealand until you have paid any outstanding fines.

This may include:

  • criminal convictions
  • student loan defaults
  • Family Court maintenance avoidance.

Check with the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) Collections Centre if you’re unsure whether you have any unpaid fines or defaults.

Taking items into other countries

You don’t need to declare personal items when you leave New Zealand. You can also take or send out many food items, but not all. Find out more at MPI's Import webpage.

If you’re leaving New Zealand with expensive equipment – eg a laptop or camera – and want to bring it back in with you, you can get a Certificate of Export. This will make bringing your item back in simpler, as you might otherwise have to pay Customs duty and/or GST on it.

Your item must be uniquely identifiable, eg with a serial number.

Present your item to a Customs office before you leave. There may not be a Customs office at your place of departure – check beforehand.

To find out what items – including food – you can take into other countries, ask:

There are some items you can’t take out of New Zealand, or need permission to take out.

If you’re going to use your items for commercial purposes, you must:

  • complete the required documentation
  • pay any necessary export clearance and other charges.


eGates allow travellers in some airports to process themselves – this means that their passport would be scanned at an eGate instead of being checked by a Customs officer.

You can use eGates if you:

  • are 12 years or older
  • have an e-Passport from:
    • New Zealand
    • Australia
    • Austria
    • Canada
    • China (excluding Hong Kong)
    • France
    • Germany
    • Ireland
    • Netherlands
    • Singapore
    • Sweden
    • Switzerland
    • Japan
    • South Korea
    • United Kingdom
    • United States.

You can’t use eGates if you have outstanding fines or you’re not allowed to travel.

Find out more on our eGate page.


Check the Aviation Security Service website to see what you can take with you when you travel by airplane. Check with the airline you’re travelling with, too, for any requirements they have.

Imaging equipment doesn't damage film and electronic equipment except, in some cases, if there’s repeated exposure.

GST refunds

You can’t get GST refunds on items you purchased in New Zealand.

If you want to buy something and not pay GST on it, you must:

  • buy it from a duty-free shop
  • arrange for the retailer/supplier to export your item
  • arrange for the retailer/supplier to deliver your item to an airside location – ie a place in an international terminal after Customs and security – for departing travellers.

Border clearance levy

You must pay a border clearance levy when you leave NZ.

If you’re departing by:

  • air or sea, it’s $2.94
  • cruise ship, it’s $4.72.

If you bought a plane or cruise ship ticket, the levy will be built into your ticket price.

The following people don’t have to pay the levy:

  • children under 2 years old
  • commercial passenger plane and cruise ship crew
  • military and diplomatic staff
  • government crisis workers
  • crew on commercial air and sea craft, including cruise ships.

Exporting your items

You must submit an electronic export entry at least 48 hours before you leave New Zealand. There is a fee of $17.94.

If you’re taking the items out with you as luggage on a plane and have a carnet, you must give us 2-3 days’ notice. A Customs officer will then complete your carnet at the airport check-in counter.

Once you have proved the items have left New Zealand, we will release any financial security you gave us - this may take a few days.