How To Apply For New Zealand Visa For Filipino Citizens [Philippines Passport Holder Tourist Visa Application Guide to New Zealand]

Are you planning to apply for a New Zealand visa but still don’t know how to do it as a Philippines passport holder? Here’s my guide on how a Filipino citizen can apply for a New Zealand visa.

The news that New Zealand is an expensive country isn’t new to most of us. The cost of living is pretty expensive but if you have an extra money to spend, then I really think you should visit this country at least once in your life. 

Photo by  Stefan Wagener

The landscapes in the ‘Paradise of the Pacific’ are vast and most of it unspoiled. You’ll see greens and blues everywhere. Fields of grass seem endless, they have lots of pristine lakes and beaches, and you’ll be surrounded by rolling hills, towering mountains and volcanoes. You can either sleep in a tent close to the wilderness or stay in a luxurious hotel-- they surely got the best of both worlds. The people from here are really the humblest persons and friendly too. I have to say it is beguiling in every single way. 

Well, we’re off to a good start because the Visa Fee of Php 6,000 for New Zealand is waived if you are staying for less than 60 days. It is absolutely for FREE and here’s how you can get it! :)

WHEN AND WHERE TO GET THE NEW ZEALAND VISA FOR TOURIST

You may course your application in two ways:

OPTION 1: ONLINE APPLICATION

OPTION 2: PAPER/PERSONAL APPLICATION through VFS Global Manila

Address: Mezzanine Floor, Ecoplaza Bldg., 2305 Don Chino Roces Ave Ext, Makati City or VFS Global Cebu, 9th Floor, Keppel Center, Unit 905, Samar Loop cor. Cardinal Rosales Avenue, Cebu Business Park.

VFS is open from Monday-Friday from 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM (Manila) and 8:00 AM to 2:00 PM (Cebu). They are both closed on holidays.

The processing time usually takes 20 working days but it could take longer in some situations so I suggest that you apply at least 5 weeks before your intended flight. 

For purposes of this post, I will discuss both processes :)

WHAT ARE THE NEW ZEALAND VISA REQUIREMENTS FOR TOURIST?

These are the documents you need to prepare for your application. If you’re applying online, make sure to scan these documents in PDF file and the photo should be in JPG file.

1. Proof of identity. This shall include 2 acceptable photos if you use a paper application form or 1 photo if you apply online and your passport.

2. Copy of your passport’s personal data page.

3. Proof of financial capacity. This shall include bank certificate/bank statement for the past 6 months, payslips, credit card statements, lease contract wherein you are the lessor, etc. 

4. Proof of financial capacity of your sponsor, if you have any. This sponsor could be a relative, friend, your employer, etc. You should also submit a signed letter from this person that he/she will be the one paying for your trip. If he/she is a relative, then you can submit proof of relationship like your birth certificate/photos.

5. Proof of onward travel. You must have a CONFIRMED ticket to leave New Zealand or at least have a sponsor to cover this cost. You can also prove this by having sufficient funds to cover this cost in addition to the day-to-day expenses. You can book a Rent a Flight confirmed ticket reservation with us for $30 only.

6. Other evidence to prove your financial capacity and work status. 

  • For employees- Bring your original Certificate of Employment, approved leave of absence, ITR(Income Tax Return), or a copy of PRC Card or IBP Card, if applicable.

  • For Digital Nomads/ Online Work - Paypal or income history, proof of work online (screenshots)

  • For business owners- Copy of Business Registration from SEC or DTI, copy of Business Permit or Mayor's Permit, ITR, etc.

  • For students- School Certificate (Original), copy of enrollment form, etc.

NOTE: Always keep the receipt of the Bank Statement and Bank Certificate, they usually ask for this too.

STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE ON YOUR ONLINE VISIT VISA APPLICATION FOR NEW ZEALAND

STEP 1: Visit the page of New Zealand Immigration. Select the type of visa that you are applying for. Afterwards, you will be led to a page which asks you to Create an account

STEP 2: Follow all the steps and fill in all the details that they are asking for completely. This will then lead you to a verification link that will be sent to your email address. Click on that link. If you can’t see this email, then it could be in your spams folder.

STEP 3: Once you click the link, you will be redirected to New Zealand’s Immigration Online portal. Under ‘Applications‘, click ‘Create a new visitor visa application’. 

STEP 4: To verify if you are on the correct page, you will be directed to an ‘Is this form right for you?’ page. Answer it with a yes or a no. Please take note that the Philippines is a fee waiver country. 

STEP 5: You can now start your application. Fill out the forms completely and truthfully. 

STEP 6: Upload your documents. As mentioned earlier, you can only use .JPG file type for your photo, and the rest should be in .PDF under 10MB size. I suggest that you keep one type document in one file. (eg. all pages of your bank statement should be in one file). 

STEP 7: After completing everything, you will be directed to a ‘Thank you’ page. Print it and Submit your passport either personally or through an authorized representative to VFS Global. You can either do it on your own or wait for an email from the immigration for you to do it. (I recommend to just wait for an email so you’ll know if they want any other document from you)

STEP 8: Pay the VFS Service Fee. The visa handling fee is Php 570 per application and the courier return (optional) is Php 380 per application. They will notify you by email that your passport is set for release. 

STEP 9: Wait and pray that you get your visa!

Photo by  Stefan Wagener

STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE ON YOUR PAPER/PERSONAL VISIT VISA APPLICATION FOR NEW ZEALAND

STEP 1: Complete the Visa Application Form. Make sure to fill it out truthfully and attach 2 colored visa photos with your name at the back. 

STEP 2: Submit ALL the required documents together with your original passport and a photocopy of the bio page. For new passports that are issued from August 2016 onwards (passport number usually starts with letter “P”), please do not forget to sign on page 3. Otherwise, your visa application will not be accepted. Ensure that you a have a clear photocopy of all your original documents.

STEP 3: Pay the VFS Service Fee of PHP 760 per application for the application lodgement and PHP 380 (optional) per application for the courier return fee. This may be paid in cash or bank transfer

STEP 4: Get your receipt and wait for your passport to be released (hopefully with the visa!) 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS FOR NEW ZEALAND VISA APPLICATIONS

1. How much is the visa processing fee for New Zealand?

It is free of charge if you’re staying for less than 60 days. :)

2. What can I do in New Zealand with my Visitor Visa?

Unlike most of the visas in other countries which only allows you to travel as a tourist, a Visitor Visa in New Zealand allows you to do some other things: you can also play sport or perform in cultural events without pay, enter New Zealand to get married, and undertake short-term study. A visitor visa allows you to study one or more courses of up to a total of three months in each of the 12-month periods your visa is valid.

3. Do I need to have a ‘show money’?

Definitely as they are asking for a proof of financial capacity. You need to show them that you have the money to finance yourself and anybody else in your application while you are in New Zealand as well as a return ticket (or the money to buy them). You should have 1000 NZD/month of intended stay and 400 NZD if you have already paid for your accommodation.

4. Can I submit more documents?

Sure! In fact it is encouraged to do that! So if you have a land/condominium title, car registration, etc. then go ahead and submit a copy of it too :)

 5. Can I apply for a multiple entry visa? 

New Zealand is pretty lenient with this one. Most applicants for visitor visas will be granted a multiple entry visa. 

 6. How long is the visitor visa valid?

Unless otherwise stated under special instructions, visitors to New Zealand are limited to a maximum stay of 9 months on a visitor visa (WOW!). They may also allow you to stay for three months more if you have financially supported yourself and you have not worked, studied, or been sponsored during your initial stay. (MAS WOW!)

7. Do I need to have a confirmed return ticket?

YES. You should have a confirmed return ticket. Otherwise, you can just prove that you have the money to buy them or ask your sponsor to write that he/she will be the one paying for your return flight.

8. Do I need a travel insurance?

It is not mandatory but I always recommend getting one. You’ll never know what will happen on your trip so getting one is a MUST for me. Mabuti na ang sigurado! I highly recommend the insurance offered by Safety Wing that I personally use!

9. Can I track my application?

Definitely. You can track your application here!

10. How can I get my passport once it is set for release?

You or your representative (with authorization, your id, and his/her valid ID) can either to pick up from the VFS Global. You may also opt to have it sent to your address via courier in which case you have to pay the courier fee.

11. Is it advisable to avail of the services of a tour agency?

For me, it doesn’t make any difference if you avail of their services. I got ALL my visas without their assistance. I did it all by myself! Aside from being very expensive, it doesn’t guarantee the approval. It’s always up to you-- the way you dress up, how confident you are, the documents you submitted, and the way you answered the interview questions that matters. 

For more information, please check out the the New Zealand Visitor Visa Guide and VFS Global

Click this for the Directory of Visa Applications Guides & Tips For Filipinos

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