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Travelling to New Zealand on a cruise ship

Information about travelling to New Zealand on a cruise ship including prohibited and restricted items, declaring items, and bringing money into New Zealand.

Before you travel to New Zealand 

Before you travel to New Zealand on a cruise ship you must: 

If you are flying to New Zealand to join a cruise ship, you must meet all the requirements to enter New Zealand by air. Find out more on our Travelling to New Zealand page.

Arriving into New Zealand – what to expect 

Border officers can check the bags you are taking from the ship at any port in New Zealand. You must carry identification with you, even if you are only daytripping off the ship and will be returning to the ship later.

Arrival declaration

All travellers arriving into New Zealand need to complete a New Zealand Traveller Declaration (NZTD). On it you will declare what you are bringing into the country. 

Travellers both permanently disembarking in New Zealand, and those transiting New Zealand will need to complete an arrival declaration by the first port of arrival in New Zealand. 

You can complete your declaration using either the digital NZTD, or a paper arrival declaration (NZTD paper declaration [Maritime]).

Note: The copy of the NZTD paper declaration (Maritime) provided on this webpage is a sample only and cannot be printed out and presented to Customs or MPI staff. 

New Zealand Traveller Declaration

The New Zealand Traveller Declaration (NZTD) allows travellers to complete a digital arrival declaration instead of a paper arrival card.

The digital NZTD is available for all travellers arriving in New Zealand on a cruise ship, including disembarking and transiting passengers and crew.  

The earliest travellers can submit their declaration is 24 hours before they depart the last international port before travelling to New Zealand. They must submit their digital declaration by the time the cruise ship has berthed at its first New Zealand port.

Travellers who cannot complete a digital declaration can complete a paper declaration. This must also be completed by the first port of arrival in New Zealand. 

Find out more at

Prohibited and restricted items

You won’t be able to bring prohibited items into New Zealand.

You may be able to bring some restricted items into New Zealand, but only if you have a permit for them.

Find out more on our Prohibited and restricted items webpage.

Note: you can’t bring pepper spray into New Zealand – we consider it to be a weapon.

Biosecurity requirements

New Zealand's biosecurity law prohibits the removal of certain food items from a cruise vessel, whether the items were available on board or brought onto the ship personally.

Food items that cannot be removed from the cruise ship include:

  • fresh fruit and vegetables
  • meat of any kind
  • prepared meals (including sandwiches)
  • dairy products
  • eggs
  • honey
  • flowers, seeds, or plants.

Only commercially bottled drinking water, chocolates, confectionery, and biscuits are permitted to leave the vessel.

Passengers and crew going ashore are requested to present their hand luggage, including backpacks for inspection if requested. Leave it on the ship or risk a $400 instant fine.

Find out more on the  Ministry of Primary Industries' website.

Bringing money into New Zealand

You are required to complete a Border Cash Report if you carry NZ$10,000 or more cash (or foreign equivalent) into or out of New Zealand.

You can complete this in the paper form: NZCS 337: Border Cash report (DOC 332 KB), or, on condition of acceptance by a Customs Officer, the online Border Cash Report form.

If you have not completed a Border Cash Report before reaching New Zealand, a Border Officer will provide a form to you to complete. If you have completed the online Border Cash Report you will receive an ID receipt for presenting to Customs at the port.

Note: the online Border Cash Report form can only be completed within 72 hours of your trip to New Zealand.

Cash means:

  • physical currency
  • travellers’ cheques
  • cheques
  • money orders, postal orders, or similar
  • bearer bonds
  • a bill of exchange
  • promissory notes
  • any instrument prescribed by regulations under the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism Act 2009.

It’s a criminal offence to fail to declare cash on your report or to avoid making the report. If you do either, you could:

  • be fined
  • be imprisoned
  • have your cash seized.

Translations of the Border Cash Report are available in the following languages:

ArabicChinese (Simplified)Chinese (Traditional)FrenchGermanJapaneseKoreanMāoriPortugueseSpanish.

Your Border Cash Report must be completed in English.