Next year I plan to:

  • Travel to NZ from the UK (visa-waiver applies so single entry visa automatically granted I think for 6 months) & stay for up to a week
  • Go to Australia for 2 or 3 weeks (I know I need a visa for that)
  • Come back to NZ for a further 5 months

What happens when I try to re-enter NZ at step 3? Do I get another visitor visa automatically, or will I be stopped from coming back in?


As a rule, yes, you do get a fresh 6 months on each entry, and no, I would not expect any problems if you leave after spending only a week and then come back. It would be much more suspicious if you spent 5 months on NZ, briefly left and came back.

I am curious about why you would choose to route your travels that way, since logistically it would make a lot more sense to avoid the backtracking, but I presume you have your reasons.

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  • sounds like a scheme to get around having to apply for a residence permit... – jwenting Sep 12 '17 at 8:18
  • @jwenting the limit is 9 months in any 12 on any visitor visa(s) - so long as you dont breach that, you are fine. – Moo Sep 12 '17 at 8:20
  • Sorry, 9 months in any 18. – Moo Sep 12 '17 at 8:27

Not sure whether or not to add this as a comment in support of jpatokals answer or as an answer in its own right, but chose to go with answer.

Adding some personal experience here, as my experience is nearly identical to your intentions:

I arrived in New Zealand on the 29th of June and received the ambiguous "6 month visitor visa" at the border (I use the term ambiguous because it gives you no dates!) - I checked my visa status using the online Visa Verification Service and noted my visa expiration date was the 29th of December.

I left New Zealand on the 13th of August for a weeks visit to Australia, and arrived back into New Zealand on the 19th of August. I was again issued the ambiguous "6 month visitor visa" at the border and let into the country.

I again checked my visa status using the online Visa Verification Service and my new expiration date was the 19th of February.

I did indeed receive a brand new 6 month visitor visa.

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