Apply for a New Zealand firearms licence

Important note: At the moment, all new firearms licence applications currently have a processing period of approximately 12 months, or 6 months if you are applying to renew your existing licence. For new licence applicants, firearms safety courses are now subject to COVID-19 Traffic Light settings, please see Firearms Safety Course booking and preparation here for more information.

Who needs a New Zealand firearms licence

If you are 16 years old or over you can apply for a firearms licence. This will allow you to have and use unsupervised:

  • shotguns and rifles that do not require an endorsement (as below)
  • specially dangerous airguns (including pre-charged pneumatic (PCP) air rifles).

You need a special addition to your licence (called an endorsement) and a permit to possess to:

  • possess or use prohibited items
  • collect pistols and restricted weapons or stage theatrical performances involving pistols and restricted weapons
  • possess pistols and restricted weapons in your capacity as a dealer or their employee.

Anyone can use a hunting and target shooting rifle or shotgun without a licence if they are under the immediate supervision of a licence holder. ‘Immediate supervision’ means the licensed person is within reach and can control the firearm. The supervisor must not be using another firearm at the same time.

If you are visiting New Zealand for less than a year and need a firearms licence, apply for a visitor licence.

Step 1: Complete the application form

Download the application form and enter all the requested information. You can do this electronically using the editable PDF below and uploading the form to the firearms forms upload page

Important note: Do not use an Internet browser or Apple's Preview application to open this form. Please save the form first to your device then open it using Adobe Acrobat Reader. If the form is completed using a browser, the entered information may be lost if you click on the ‘back’ button, or if you try to save it.

Before you apply, please ensure you read the application form carefully. An incomplete form will cause delays in processing your application.

To apply for a firearms licence you will need to:

  • meet the personal eligibility requirements;
  • have secure firearm storage facilities at your home address;
  • be able to supply names and contact details for referees who will be interviewed by Police as to your suitability to possess or use firearms;
  • be able to provide details of people who live at, work at, or may have free or unsupervised access to, the premises where you intend to store firearms;
  • provide passport style photographs of yourself (see below for detailed requirements);
  • provide copies of the required identification documents;
  • pay the required fee at a New Zealand Postshop;
  • be able to attend an interview with Police to discuss your suitability to hold firearms;
  • be able to attend a course on firearms safety if you are a first time applicant or are instructed to do so by Police.
  • be able to complete a multi-choice safety test (based on the Arms Code) at your interview, if you hold a firearms licence and are applying for a new one before it expires.

Step 2: Pay your application fee

Pay the application fee at a New Zealand Postshop and attach a copy of the receipt to your application, this can be a scanned copy or digital photo of the receipt.

When you make payment, you'll need to tell Postshop staff the amount that you need to pay so they can charge the correct fee.

Please note that the application fee is non-refundable.

Firearms licence application fees (including GST) are:

Type of fee


Licence fee for new licence holders


Licence fee before expiry of last licence


Licence fee after expiry of last licence


Fee for one or more endorsements (if you apply for them at the same time) allowing you to have:

  • target pistols
  • a collection of pistols or restricted weapons (bona fide collectors or museum endorsement)
  • pistols or restricted weapons for performing a play/film/re-enactment (theatrical endorsement)
  • prohibited items
  • pistols or restricted weapons for hire or sale (dealers)


Find a New Zealand Postshop that offer firearms licence payments using the locator below:

Postshop/Kiwibank Locator
Filter using the ‘Pay a Bill’ option after indicating your location.


Step 3: Get recent passport style photo

Your photo/s must:

  • have been taken within 12 months of the submission of your application
  • be a full front view of your face, head, and shoulders with the head filling most of the photograph
  • be of you without a hat or head covering (except where your religion requires you to wear a hat or head covering)
  • have a plain, light-coloured background
  • be in colour

Photographs in electronic format must be:

  • portrait photographs (with a 4:3 aspect ratio)
  • in jpg or jpeg format
  • between 25KB and 10MB
  • between 900 and 4500 pixels wide and 1200 and 6000 pixels high.

If you are submitting a hard copy application, you must provide two identical photographs on printed photographic paper measuring 45mm x 35mm untrimmed.

Digital and printed photos from commercial outlets will typically meet these requirements.


Step 4: Complete and submit your application to Police

Once you have completed the Firearms Licence application form (Editable PDF 777KB), upload it at the link below. You will also need to upload the supporting documents listed below.

  • a photo or scan of the receipt for your application fee
  • a recent passport style photo (or two identical printed photos if you are submitting a hard copy application).
  • Identity documents
    • a photo or scan of proof of address within the past 3 months (e.g. utility bill, bank statement, electoral roll) AND
    • a photo or scan of either
      • two documents that prove your identity (passport, birth certificate, driver licence, photo ID, Kiwi Access card, credit card/bank card). At least one of these documents needs to have a photo of you
      • your current firearms licence (if you have one)

Upload application documents

Once your application form and supporting documents have been successfully uploaded, you will receive an email confirming your application has been submitted.

If you have any questions or need any help, please contact your local firearms office.

Identity requirements for firearms licence applications

Along with your applications, you must provide documentation to prove your identity. You can choose to prove your identity with one of the following two options below.

Note: If you are 16 or 17 years of age and cannot provide the required identification, a parent or guardian may provide a written declaration to support your application.

All forms of identification must be current, or as otherwise stated. If you cannot meet the below identification requirements, please call Police on 105 number to discuss your application.

If submitting a handwritten application, please attach copies of the original documents to your application. Do not send original documents.

Option 1

Provide the following photo identification:

  1. New Zealand firearms licence, current or expired within 12 months
  2. Proof of address dated within the last 3 months (e.g. bank statement, utilities bill, electoral roll, etc).
    This can be a scan/digital photo/screenshot of a paper or electronic document with your name and address on it.

Option 2

Provide one (1) of the following photo identification:

  • New Zealand passport
  • Overseas passport
  • New Zealand driver licence
  • Police identity card
  • New Zealand Defence Force photo identification
  • Kiwi Access card (18+ Card)
  • Identity document issued by New Zealand government


Proof of address dated within the last 3 months (e.g. bank statement, utilities bill, electoral roll, etc).
This can be a scan/digital photo/screenshot of a paper or electronic document with your name and address on it.

AND provide one (1) of the following identification:

  • Birth certificate
  • Citizenship certificate
  • Permanent resident document
  • Identity document issued by secondary or tertiary institution
  • Card issued by a New Zealand bank with your full name and signature
  • Educational records or certificates
  • Professional or trade association membership certificate
  • Other (as noted in your application form).


If you are unable to access technology to apply for a firearms licence online

You can submit a paper application, along with the respective supporting documentation, by dropping it into a Police station or by posting it to our National Support Team at:

National Support Team
Arms Safety and Control
Kāpiti Digital Services Centre
PO Box 722
Paraparaumu 5032