, February 23. According to New Zealand, the New Zealand Immigration Service announced the latest details of the visa extension for visitor categories. As long as several criteria are met, you can apply for a visa extension of up to 6 months.

  Last Friday (19th), the Minister of Immigration of New Zealand announced the relaxation of restrictions on visitor visas, and most visa holders can automatically extend the visa for two months.

Not only that, the Minister of Immigration also temporarily exempted those visitors visa holders from staying in New Zealand.

  According to the Minister of Immigration, anyone holding a visitor visa that expires on or before March 31, 2021, the government will allow their visa to be automatically extended for two months.

During the two-month extension period (two months from the expiry date of their current visa), they will need to apply for a new visa to stay in New Zealand for a longer period of time.

The conditions for automatic extension are:

  1. In New Zealand on February 19, 2021;

  2. The temporary visitor visa expires between February 19, 2021 and March 31, 2021.

  Note: The extension is automatic and free of charge.

However, this extension does not apply to COVID-19 short term visitor visas.

Although the new validity period will not be shown on the visa, the extension is actually valid.

As long as the visa holder meets the above conditions, it will not be regarded as an illegal stay.

In addition, the new expiration date will not be visible in the Visa Verification Service system until after March 5.

The Immigration Bureau also specifically reminded you not to call the Customer Service Center of the Immigration Service because they cannot verify the status of this type of visa.

  If the applicant applies for a new visa before June 30 this year, he can enjoy the exemption for 9 months within 18 months (referring to the maximum stay period of 9 months in every 18 months).

Exempting the 9-month rule within 18 months means that visa holders who are still in the country can apply for a visa for another 6 months.

  On February 23, the Immigration Bureau announced the specific exemption rules and requirements for applying for a new visa, and revised the immigration policy instructions. Applicants still need to meet all other tourist visa requirements, including funding, continuing travel, health and personality requirements.

Applicants can apply for a visa for up to 6 months if they meet the following conditions:

  1. Currently in New Zealand;

  2. Hold a valid visa;

  3. Submit the application before June 30, 2021;

  4. Meet all other visitor visa requirements, including health, character, funding and other requirements.

Applicants must prove that they are real visitors, therefore:

  1. Cannot work in New Zealand;

  2. No New Zealand student visa;

  3. Not funded;

  4. Sufficient funds to maintain life and accommodation.

  The above instructions will be effective from February 18, 2021.

(Reporter Sophia)