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NEW ZEALAND - Take normal security precautions
Take normal security precautions in New Zealand.
Safety and security
Safety and security
Street crime takes place in major cities. Theft generally occurs in the following places:
- hotel rooms
- tourist sites
- recreational areas
- unattended vehicles
Ensure that your personal belongings, including passports and other travel documents are secure at all times.
The Government of New Zealand maintains a public alert system on terrorism. The current threat level is set to low.
More about the local terrorism threat - New Zealand Security Intelligence Service
Travel times by car are easy to underestimate. Roads can be narrow, curvy and cover hilly terrain.
Weather conditions can change quickly, particularly during winter. Snow, ice, fog, rain and strong winds can lead to dangerous driving conditions.
Landslides caused by heavy rain can block or wash away roads.
Mountain roads, including those leading to ski hills, may be narrow, unpaved and without safety barriers.
Look out for roaming animals in rural areas. Dairy herds often cross main roads at milking time.
Railway crossings may not have barriers, and bells may ring only during daylight hours, especially in rural areas.
- Information on road closures and warnings - New Zealand Transport Agency
- More on road closures and warnings - New Zealand Automobile Association
Although many tourists participate in adventure activities in New Zealand without problem, serious accidents have occurred and some activity operators have been accused of negligence.
- Never do these activities alone and always hire an experienced guide from a reputable company.
- Buy travel insurance that includes helicopter rescue and medical evacuation.
- Ensure that your physical condition is good enough to meet the challenges of your activity.
- Ensure that you’re properly equipped and well informed about weather and other conditions that may pose a hazard.
- Inform a family member or friend of your itinerary, including when you expect to be back to camp. Consider carrying a personal locater beacon.
- Know the symptoms of acute altitude sickness, which can be fatal.
- Obtain detailed information on trekking routes or ski slopes before setting out and do not venture off marked trails.
General safety information
Check with local tourist authorities before travelling to remote areas.
Cellular telephone coverage may be limited in remote areas.
We do not make assessments on the compliance of foreign domestic airlines with international safety standards.
Every country or territory decides who can enter or exit through its borders. The Government of Canada cannot intervene on your behalf if you do not meet your destination’s entry or exit requirements.
We have obtained the information on this page from the authorities of New Zealand. It can, however, change at any time.
Verify this information with foreign diplomatic missions and consulates in Canada.
Entry requirements vary depending on the type of passport you use for travel.
Before you travel, check with your transportation company about passport requirements. Its rules on passport validity may be more stringent than the country’s entry rules.
Regular Canadian passport
Your passport must be valid for at least 3 months beyond the date you expect to leave from New Zealand.
Passport for official travel
Different entry rules may apply.
Other travel documents
Different entry rules may apply when travelling with a temporary passport or an emergency travel document. Before you leave, check with the closest diplomatic mission for your destination.
Tourist visa: Not required (for stays of up to 90 days)
Business visa: Required
Student visa: Required
The following documents are required to visit New Zealand:
- an onward or return ticket
- a visa for the next destination (if required by next destination)
- proof of sufficient funds (NZ$1,000 per person per month, or NZ$400 per person per month if you have proof of prepaid accommodation)
Children and travel
Learn about travel with children.
Learn about potential entry requirements related to yellow fever (vaccines section).
- There are no updates at this time.
Be sure that your routine vaccines, as per your province or territory, are up-to-date regardless of your travel destination.
Some of these vaccines include: measles-mumps-rubella (MMR), diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, polio, varicella (chickenpox), influenza and others.
Vaccines to Consider
You may be at risk for these vaccine-preventable diseases while travelling in this country. Talk to your travel health provider about which ones are right for you.
Hepatitis B is a disease of the liver spread through blood or other bodily fluids. Travellers who may be exposed (e.g., through sexual contact, medical treatment, sharing needles, tattooing, acupuncture or occupational exposure) should get vaccinated.
Seasonal influenza occurs worldwide. The flu season usually runs from November to April in the northern hemisphere, between April and October in the southern hemisphere and year round in the tropics. Influenza (flu) is caused by a virus spread from person to person when they cough or sneeze or by touching objects and surfaces that have been contaminated with the virus. Get the flu shot.
Measles is a highly contagious viral disease and is common in most parts of the world.
Be sure your measles vaccination is up-to-date regardless of your travel destination.
Yellow Fever - Country Entry Requirements
Yellow fever is a disease caused by a flavivirus from the bite of an infected mosquito.
Travellers get vaccinated either because it is required to enter a country or because it is recommended for their protection.
- There is no risk of yellow fever in this country.
Country Entry Requirement*
- Proof of vaccination is not required to enter this country.
- Vaccination is not recommended.
* It is important to note that country entry requirements may not reflect your risk of yellow fever at your destination. It is recommended that you contact the nearest diplomatic or consular office of the destination(s) you will be visiting to verify any additional entry requirements.
Food and Water-borne Diseases
Travellers to any destination in the world can develop travellers' diarrhea from consuming contaminated water or food.
Practise safe food and water precautions while travelling in Australia and New Zealand. When in doubt, remember…boil it, cook it, peel it, or leave it!
Insects and Illness
Travellers are advised to take precautions against bites.
There is no risk of malaria in this country.
Animals and Illness
Travellers are cautioned to avoid contact with animals, including dogs, snakes, rodents, birds, and bats. Certain infections found in some areas in Australia and New Zealand, like rabies, can be shared between humans and animals.
Medical services and facilities
Health care is good and widely available.
Travellers to New Zealand who are injured in a work or motor vehicle accident are generally covered for public hospital treatment by the Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC). As a result, individuals do not have the right to sue for damages (apart from exemplary damages) for personal injuries that are covered by the ACC.
Make sure you get travel insurance that includes coverage for medical evacuation and hospital stays.
Keep in Mind...
The decision to travel is the sole responsibility of the traveller. The traveller is also responsible for his or her own personal safety.
Be prepared. Do not expect medical services to be the same as in Canada. Pack a travel health kit, especially if you will be travelling away from major city centres.
Laws and culture
Laws & culture
You must abide by local laws.
Learn about what you should do and how we can help if you are arrested or detained abroad.
Dual citizenship is legally recognized in New Zealand.
If you are a Canadian citizen, but also a citizen of New Zealand, our ability to offer you consular services may be limited while you're there. You may also be subject to different entry/exit requirements.
Traffic drives on the left.
You should carry an International Driving Permit.
The use of mobile telephones while driving is illegal, unless the phone is fitted with a hands-free device.
As per New Zealand’s Accident Compensation Act, you can’t sue for losses stemming from personal injury resulting from accidents. This includes car and sporting accidents.
- Road regulations - New Zealand Transport Agency
- Information in case of an accident - New Zealand’s Accident Compensation Corporation
- More about the International Driving Permit
There are strict regulations in place on imports, including some medications.
List of prohibitions and restrictions - New Zealand Customs Service
The currency is the New Zealand dollar (NZD).
Credit cards are widely accepted. ATMs are widely available.
Natural disasters and climate
Natural disasters & climate
New Zealand is located in an active seismic zone and is prone to earthquakes.
Tsunamis may occur after a strong earthquake and can travel long distances across the Pacific.
Strong earthquakes and aftershocks have been recorded throughout the country in recent years. In case of an earthquake, you should follow the advice of the local authorities.
There are a number of volcanoes and active thermal areas in the country.
Extreme weather events, floods, landslides and avalanches are frequent in New Zealand. Severe rainstorms can lead to flooding and landslides, which can cause extensive damage to infrastructure and can hamper the provision of essential services.
Exercise caution, monitor local media and follow the instructions of local authorities.
Dial 111 for emergency assistance.
Wellington - High Commission of Canada
For emergency assistance after hours, call the High Commission of Canada in Wellington and follow the instructions. You may also make a collect call to the Emergency Watch and Response Centre in Ottawa at +1 613 996-8885.
The decision to travel is your choice and you are responsible for your personal safety abroad. We take the safety and security of Canadians abroad very seriously and provide credible and timely information in our Travel Advice to enable you to make well-informed decisions regarding your travel abroad.
The content on this page is provided for information only. While we make every effort to give you correct information, it is provided on an "as is" basis without warranty of any kind, express or implied. The Government of Canada does not assume responsibility and will not be liable for any damages in connection to the information provided.
If you need consular assistance while abroad, we will make every effort to help you. However, there may be constraints that will limit the ability of the Government of Canada to provide services.
Learn more about consular services.
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