As New Zealand has Visa Waiver Agreements with the US, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Argentina, Chile and Uruguay. Passport holders from these countries:
- with return air tickets, or holding a valid onwards ticket to a country the traveller has a right to enter
- who has a passport valid for three months beyond the date they are leaving NZ
- who has proof of sufficient funds for the duration of the visit, and
- is only wishing to visit for the time granted on arrival
May visit New Zealand as a tourist for up to three months without a visa. (If the intention is to stay longer, you should apply for a visitor's visa).
For a list of additional countries that participate in the Visa Waiver Agreement, please visit: http://glossary.immigration.govt.nz/VisaFreeCountries.htm. (external link)
US and Mexico citizens travelling on valid "regular" passports do not have to pay visa fees for visitor, work, or student visas.
All applicants are required to pay VAC fees of US$38 per application.
There are three available options for people enquiring about applying for a visa for New Zealand, or enquiring if a visa is needed:
- The Immigration New Zealand website (external link). This website not only answers all questions relating to New Zealand visas, but is now also the portal through which an applicant can apply for their visa - through the Online system. By selecting the "Contact Us" option the enquirer can also access the Knowledge Base Q&A section of the website.
- Call the Immigration Contact Centre (ICC) in New Zealand at 011 64 9 914 4100. The ICC is operated 24 hours a day for 365 days of the year. It has staff fluent in various languages that are fully trained in all aspects of immigration policy and procedure.
- Call the Visa Acceptance Centre (VAC) in Washington DC at +1 202 223 3400. These questions should be limited to procedure - such as feeds, postal addresses, etc. The website for the VAC is www.ttsnzvisa.com (external link)
Visa Application Centre (VAC) Washington DC
Address: 1120 19th Street NW, Suite No. 415
Washington DC 20036
Phone: 1 202 223 3400
Fax: 1 202 223 3900
Website: https://www.ttsnzvisa.com (external link)
Office hours: Monday to Friday 9.00am to 4.00pm
Working holiday visas
The United States Working Holiday Visa can now be applied for online. If you are between 18 - 30, please see the New Zealand Immigration website for the online application form and instructions (external link).
Mexico Working Holiday Visa can now be applied for online. If you are between 18 - 30, please see the following FAQ for instructions (external link).
There are also two private companies that offer an exchange programme for young United States citizens wanting to work in New Zealand:
- BUNAC (external link) offers a work exchange programme for United States citizens aged between 18 and 35.
- CCUSA (external link) offers a work exchange programme for United States citizens aged between 18 and 30.