Business Visitors - Do I need a Visa?
If you are visiting New Zealand for three months or less, and
you are from a visa waiver country (see link below for a list of
visa waiver countries), you will not need to apply for a visitor
visa before arriving in New Zealand as long as the purpose of the
visit is for a 'lawful purpose'.
You will be considered to be coming to New Zealand
for a lawful purpose if:
are coming to New Zealand for such purposes as:
Family and social visits;
Guest of government visit;
Marrying in New Zealand.
b. You are
not intending to undertake employment (which also covers
self-employment), or a course of study or training, with the
exception of short-term study.
Business visitors who are not considered to be
undertaking employment include the following:
- Representatives on official trade missions recognised by the
New Zealand Government;
- Sales representatives of overseas companies in New Zealand for
a period or periods no longer than a total of 3 months in any
- Overseas buyers of New Zealand goods or services for a period
or periods of longer than a total of 3 months in any calendar
- People undertaking business consultations or negotiations in
New Zealand on establishing, expanding, or winding up any business
enterprise in New Zealand, or carrying on any business in New
Zealand, and involving the authorised representatives of any
overseas company, body or person for a period or periods no longer
than a total of 3 months in any calendar year.
Business visitors who need to be in New Zealand for longer than
3 months in any one year, and all other business visitors, must
apply for a work visa.
On arrival in New Zealand you will be asked to
- Travel tickets or evidence of onward travel arrangements,
- Evidence of funds for maintenance.
The burden of proof rests with you to prove you are a 'bona fide
applicant' intending a temporary stay in New Zealand.
A bona fide applicant for temporary entry is defined as a person
who genuinely intends a temporary stay in New Zealand for a lawful
- In the opinion of an immigration officer is not
- To remain in New Zealand unlawfully; or
- To breach the conditions of any visa granted; or
- To be unable to leave or be deported from New Zealand.
Evidence of genuine intent and lawful purpose may
include but is not limited to the following:
- Any information or submissions showing that the applicant has a
legitimate need to spend time in New Zealand for a specific period;
- Any documents or submissions showing that the applicant meets
the requirements of the immigration instructions relevant to the
type of temporary entry class visa or entry permission applied
When visiting New Zealand as a business visitor I
recommend carrying evidence that you are a bona fide business
visitor. Evidence could include such things as:
- A recent letter from your accountant confirming your business
activities and experience;
- Confirmation of your residence (proof of address);
- Evidence of funds - overseas bank statements showing business
accounts and account balances;
- Gold card or similar; and
- Emails from a New Zealand business which refer to any planned
Please note if you improperly classify your proposed activities
you risk being offside of New Zealand immigration laws, which could
jeopardise your chances of returning to New Zealand even for a
Therefore, make sure you are:
- Upfront with immigration about the reasons for your visit.
Visa waiver countries: