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New Zealand Requires Electronic Travel Authority – Effective October 1, 2019

Date: August 21, 2019

The government of New Zealand has issued a new requirement for entry into the country. Effective for arrivals on or after Oct. 1, 2019, all travelers from visa-waiver countries, including the United States, who are traveling to or through New Zealand need to be approved for a New Zealand Electronic Travel Authority (NZeTA) and pay a tourism tax. The NZeTA costs between $9 and $12NZD, and the tourism tax (which doesn’t apply if you’re just transiting the country) is $35NZD.

An electronic travel authority (or electronic travel authorization), abbreviated as eTA, is electronic documentation that is required by some countries to indicate that a traveler from a visa-exempt country – who doesn’t have to go through the full visa application and screening process – has had a basic pre-screening prior to travel. The online application process needs to be completed in advance, either through the NZeTA mobile app or the New Zealand immigration website. Although most customers are being approved quickly, the application can take additional time to process. Each traveler’s NZeTA will be validated during check-in, and those who require an NZeTA but don’t hold a valid one will not be allowed to check in or board their flights. United is not able to accept or process the NZeTA application on behalf of travelers because of the personal information that’s required.

United has worked to proactively communicate this change to those customers who have booked or are booking travel to New Zealand on or after October 1. This applies to pass travel as well.

In addition, the company is reportedly working through a process for handling working crew ETAs for New Zealand.  Expect additional communications in the coming weeks. 

You can learn more or request an NZeTA through the New Zealand Immigration website, or download the NZeTA app through the App Store or Google Play.

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