What is a New Zealand Interim Visa?

What is an Interim Visa? Do I need one? Can I apply for an Interim Visa for New Zealand?

An interim visa is an automated visa granted by Immigration NZ that allows you to stay lawfully in New Zealand while you wait for your new temporary visa. 

 

An interim visa may be granted to a person who:

  • Holds a temporary visa; and
  • Has applied for a further temporary visa; and
  • Is in New Zealand.

You cannot apply for an interim visa.

In order to get issued an interim visa, you need to make the new temporary entry visa before your existing visa gets expired. 

The conditions of your interim visa will depend on your current visa and the one you applied for.

 

The following table shows what kind of interim visa you would get:

Your Last Visa

Visa Applied For

Interim Visa Conditions

Visitor

Visitor

Visitor

Visitor

Work

Visitor

Visitor

Student

Student (open)

Student

Visitor

Visitor

Student

Work

Visitor

Student

Student

Student (open)

Work

Visitor

Visitor

Work

Student

Student (open)

Work (employment-specific)

Work (employment-specific, same employer, position and location)

Same conditions as the last visa

Work (employment-specific)

Work (employment-specific – different employer, position and location)

Visitor

Work (employment-specific)

Work (open)

Visitor

Work (open)

Work (open – same kind of open visa)

Work (open)

Work (open)

Work (open – different kind of open visa)

Visitor

Work (open)

Work (employer-specific)

Visitor

Military, Diplomatic, Consular, Official

Same kind

Same conditions as the last visa

Military, Diplomatic, Consular, Official

Any other kind of temporary entry visa

Visitor

 

Interim visas are usually automatic, and Immigration NZ grants them a few days prior to the end of your current visa. Character warnings in Immigration NZ’s systems, however, may require the applicant to apply manually. Therefore, it’s essential to make sure everything is in order before your current visa expires.

Your interim visa might have different conditions than your previous visa, and you could end up going from a work visa to an interim visitor visa. This means you need to stop working before your work visa ends to avoid breaching your visa condition and affecting your future visa applications. Travel conditions will not be applied to the interim visa so you cannot travel in and out of the country with an interim visa.

 

Your interim visa will expire:

  • If Immigration NZ approves your application and grants you a visa; or 
  • 21 days after your application is declined or withdrawn; or 
  • If after six months, Immigration NZ has made no decision.

The holder of an interim visa may not apply for any visa while the interim visa is current.

 

Very important: If your visa is close to expiring, and you are not sure how to proceed to avoid issues with your next application? Ask our Licensed Immigration Advisers for a free assessment and find out how we can help.


Read more about applying for a visa for New Zealand:  

Visas for New Zealand: The different visa types explained. 

Do you qualify for a resident visa? Find out by doing a Quick Self-Check.

How many points do you need for your Expression of Interest?

You need a job to get a visa. 

Find a job with the support of our Job Search Program. 

Are your skills in demand? Look up the Skill Shortages Lists.