New Zealand borders to reopen from February 2022 in 5 stages

Reconnecting New Zealand to the World (again)

The Government has announced a new, five-step approach to reopen New Zealand borders to the world. Key to this process is the removal of Managed Isolation and Quarantine for most travellers. MIQ will be replaced with self-isolation and tests on-arrival. Note that mandatory MIQ will remain for unvaccinated travellers.

This new plan prioritises the reopening of certain key visa categories in a short timeframe in order to address worker shortages. New Zealand's unemployment rate early 2022 is just over 3%.

A new, five-stage approach to reopening New Zealand Borders

Updated 11 May 2022

STEP 1From 11.59pm, Sunday 27 February 2022
  • NZ borders will reopen to New Zealanders and other eligible travellers (including Critical Purpose visa holders) under current border settings (e.g. people with border exceptions) from Australia
STEP 2From 11:59 pm, Sunday 13th March 2022 
  • Reopen to New Zealanders and other eligible travellers under current border settings from the rest of the world (from Friday 4th March)
  • Open to skilled workers earning at least 1.5 times the median wage (NZ$40.50 per hour or NZD$84,240 annual salary)
  • Open to Working Holiday Scheme visas
STEP 3From 11:59 pm, Tuesday 12 April 2022
  • Open to Australian citizens and permanent residents arriving from anywhere in the world
  • Open to current offshore temporary visa holders, who can still meet the relevant visa requirements,
  • Open to up to 5000 international students for semester two
  • Further class exceptions for critical workforces that do not meet the 1.5 times the median wage test will be considered

From 11.59 pm, Sunday 1 May

  • Open to visa-waiver travellers
  • Open to existing holders of visitor visas (including guardian visas).

From 16 May

  • Open to visitors from Pacific islands, including Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, French Polynesia, Kiribati, Nauru, New Caledonia, Niue, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Republic of the Marshall Islands, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, and Vanuatu.
STEP 4From 4 July 2022
  • The Accredited Employer Work Visa will open, meaning the skilled and health worker border exception can be phased out
STEP 5From 31 July 2022
  • Border fully reopens to visitors and students from anywhere in the world
  • All visa categories fully reopen