Customs Requirements For Entry To New Zealand

There are no duties or taxes on household goods taken into New Zealand for personal use. Clothing and other personal items need not have been previously worn or used, but they must be for personal use.

Furniture, stereos, refrigerators, and housewares are some items which must have been previously used by the importer in order to be free of duties. It facilitates the landing of your household goods if you contact your New Zealand agent before leaving home.


Motor Vehicles

Subject to inspection upon arrival in New Zealand, any first-time immigrant may import a motor vehicle or boat duty-free, provided that you maintain ownership of the vehicle or boat for two years after the date of importation.


Restricted Items

New Zealanders take pride in the fact that their beautiful country is free of many pests and diseases. The traveller or expat should expect certain restrictions in keeping with the country’s desire to maintain the status quo. The Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries (MAF) has strict inspection rules for all luggage and imports at points of entry into New Zealand.

Any plant or animal material must be declared on arrival in New Zealand, at which time you will need to fill out an ‘Agriculture and Customs Declaration’. Included in the list of items to be declared are:

  • Food of any kind – raw or processed
  • Animals and animal products
  • Plants, dried fruits and vegetables, seeds, fresh or dried flowers, nuts, bulbs, straw, bamboo, wood, and other plant products
  • Equipment used with animals or plants
  • Camping gear, golf clubs, and used bicycles
  • Biological specimens.

Anyone visiting farms or forested areas within 30 days before arrival in New Zealand should notify the Agriculture Quarantine Officer upon arrival.

Greenstone, Maori antiquities, and Paua shells may not be exported from New Zealand.

A permit for all firearms, other than the prohibited types mentioned below, must be requested from police on arrival. Firearms must be registered within one month of arrival.

Fresh fruits and vegetables, meat, honey, birds’ nests, and reptiles are all prohibited from importation to New Zealand.

Concealed firearms such as revolvers and automatic pistols are prohibited. Other prohibited weapons include various types of easily-concealed knives, swordsticks, and knuckle dusters. Drugs are prohibited, as are indecent articles such as videotapes and magazines.


Currency Restrictions

There is no restriction on the amount of foreign or New Zealand currency that may be taken into or out of New Zealand. Funds may be in the form of any instrument of payment.


More Information

For more details, consult the New Zealand Customs Service.


  • Information courtesy of Living Abroad,