Visa Processing Times

How long will it take for you visa to be granted?

Individual processing times of your visa application depend on the complexity of your application, on the need to provide further information and on the number of other applications received by the Immigration Authority, INZ.

Official processing times describe the time needed by INZ to process your visa application once you have lodged it.

You can speed up the processing time of your visa application by working with our Immigration Advisers!

To understand how to speed up your application, understand the three steps of the application process:

    1. Submission of Visa Application

    • After you have submitted your application, it will be scanned by a receiving officer, who will check whether all documents have been submitted in the prescribed manner.
    • Delays may occur if your documents are not complete and your application is returned to you as a consequence.

    2. Lodgement and allocation of Visa Application

    • Once your application has been formally accepted, it is lodged and allocated to an immigration case officer who will be in charge of deciding whether you will be granted the visa.

    3. Eligibility check and verification of Visa Application

    • The case officer will assess your eligibility and determine whether you have proven that you are eligible for the specific visa type you have applied for. If applicable, the case officer will also confirm the details you have given about your partner and children
    • If your case officer questions your eligibility under the policy, you may be given a chance to explain yourself and submit further documents. In many cases, documents have to be obtained from the migrant’s home countries, which can be difficult and very time-consuming.

    What you can do to speed up the processing time of your visa application:

    Choosing the right visa type right from the start and submitting a professionally compiled and complete visa application will be the best way to speed up your visa application process.

    Start working on your visa application as early as possible to be ready for your application to be submitted as soon as you fulfil all eligibility requirements.

    A lot of work can be done to prepare a flawless visa application that will not require any unnecessary queries from Immigration New Zealand when time is of the essence.

    We have seen work visas issued within a couple of days, much to the delight of our clients and their new employers.

    Competent visa advice and careful preparation are the keys to a smooth visa application process and to avoiding delays, regardless of which type of visa you are applying for.

    Read about how our Visa Service will manage your visa application and help you speed up your visa application process.

    Immigration NZ Timeframes:

    For estimated visa processing times for holiday visitors, work, and resident visas, view the table below. Please note that all processing times can only be estimates at this stage, as the Covid pandemic has brought many challenges for INZ to manage visa applications. We will update this table as soon as we get any updated information.

    Visitor Visas:

    Visitor Visa

    50% of applications completed within:

    75% of applications completed within:

    90% of applications completed within:

    Visitor (Holiday)
    18 days
    33 days
    57 days

    Work Visas:

    Work Visa

    50% of applications completed within:

    75% of applications completed within:

    90% of applications completed within:

    Essential Skills
    18 days
    37 days
    71 days
    Partner of a New Zealander
    71 days
    4 months
    7 months
    Partner of a Student
    46 days
    76 days
    4 months
    Partner of a Worker
    26 days
    58 days
    3 months
    Post-Study Work Visa
    18 days
    36 days
    48 days
    Variation of conditions on a Work Visa
    6 days
    17 days
    47 days

    Residence Visas:

    Residence Visa

    50% of applications completed within:

    75% of applications completed within:

    90% of applications completed within:

    Partner of a New Zealander
    9 months
    10 months
    12 months
    Permanent Resident Visa
    7 days
    11 days
    63 days
    Skilled Migrant
    6 months
    10 months
    17 months
    Transfer of visa to new passport
    1 day
    3 days
    6 days
    Variation of travel conditions on a resident visa
    7 days
    14 days
    66 days

    The Coronavirus is extending Visa Processing Times

    The New Zealand government has implemented strong border restrictions to keep the number of outbreaks as low as possible.

    This situation is expected to cause further delays in visa processing times for the following weeks, but we remain upfront and transparent in promising only what we can deliver.

    Starting with us sooner means we can use our professional experience and carefully developed strategy to build your high-quality visa application swiftly and keep additional delays at bay.

    Speed up the process, get it right the first time.

    Complete our Free Assessment to ask our Licensed Immigration Advisers which pathway to New Zealand is right for you.
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    “In contrast to another Immigration consultancy that we contacted, your company offered a free webinar and an assessment, warm, approachable staff that communicates openly with potential customers. I found your website and it was very detailed and informative. I understand that your company is a fee for services provider, but that has not been conveyed as a prerequisite during the decision making process.”

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    At first, Maj kindly explained the whole process and what to expect. I was coached and introduced to New Zealand job market by their Job Search team, and getting assistance until I got a job in the country. The Visa team would also follow me up on my pending documents, so I never felt left out. Truly recommended for those seeking out an option to live in New Zealand. Big thanks from me and my whole family for things NZIC did for us..!

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    NZIC helped me in my way to get a Visa and job search. They were always available to talk to and were open to all sorts of questions. No matter how random they were. Very friendly staff. And even when they had changes in employee and advisors, they always stayed professional and up to date. I can only say good things and recommend them highly.

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    Very pleased and satisfied with the service we received from NZIC. They assisted me and my family from start to finish. Always willing to assist, and communicated our progress every step of the way. With their assistance we managed to obtain permanent resident visa status.

    South Africa