Visitors

Apply for a visitor firearms licence

Eligibility criteria for a visitor firearms licence

You need to:

  • Be 16 years of age or over
  • Complete an online application at least one month before your visit to New Zealand
  • Be from a country that practices a similar firearms safety and licensing regime as New Zealand
  • Hold a current firearms licence in your home country
  • Demonstrate that you are a fit and proper person to be in possession of and use firearms while in New Zealand
Note:Being a fit and proper person means meeting a certain standard of conduct and character. It is up to you to satisfy New Zealand Police that you are fit and proper. When applying for a visitor firearms licence, you must tell us about any:
  • criminal convictions, this includes driving-related offences
  • pending criminal charges
  • unsatisfied judgments in court
  • adverse findings against you by a court in civil proceedings

Home country criteria:

  • Countries such as the United States of America, do not (in all states) issue firearms licences. If you are from a state that does not issue firearms licences then you will need to provide proof that you can legally own a firearm in your own country/state, and that you have been trained in the safe use of firearms, by uploading a copy of one of the following:
    • hunting permit
    • concealed carry permit
    • hunter education certificate
  • You will also need to provide proof of your good character, such as a certified criminal history

You cannot get a visitor firearms licence if you intend:

  • Staying in New Zealand longer than 12 months. You must apply for a New Zealand firearms licence
  • To immigrate to New Zealand

 

The application process

  • Access the online application using the RealMe login you created (get a login here)
  • Complete all sections of the application
  • Upload your photo (as described in the section above)
  • Upload a scanned copy of your passport ID page
  • Upload a scanned copy of your firearms licence for your home country
  • You will need to provide details on:
    • the purpose of your visit
    • all firearm activities you will participate in during your stay
    • all types of firearms that you intend to use during your stay in New Zealand.
  • Provide the details of the New Zealand firearms licence holder(s) that you will be storing firearms with while you are in New Zealand. The required details are:
    • their New Zealand firearms licence number
    • the name and email address of the New Zealand firearms licence holder
  • Pay your visitor firearms licence application fee of NZ$25 by credit card
  • Consent to the Police making inquiries to determine if you are a fit and proper person to be in possession of and use firearms in New Zealand and authorise any person approached by the Police in this matter to release or disclose all relevant information.
Note:Once your application for a visitor firearms licence has been approved, you cannot make any changes to your arrival date and/or your departure date. If you need to change either of these dates, you will need to re-apply for your visitor firearms licence including paying another application fee.

 

Application approval
If your application is approved, you will receive an email advising you of your approved application and the conditions that apply.

Application refusal
If your application is refused, we’ll write to tell you why.

Bringing firearms into New Zealand

If you are intending to bring your own firearms into New Zealand, you will need to make a selection from a list of standard firearms during the application and provide the following details:
  • Make
  • Model
  • Calibre
  • Action type
  • Ammunition type
  • Serial number
Note:Applicants must provide a compelling and appropriate reason for importation of prohibited offensive weapons. A permit must be obtained prior to the weapons arriving in New Zealand.


For enquiries relating to importation of prohibited offensive weapons, please contact Police at permitfirearms@police.govt.nz


The application to import offensive weapons [Form POL67OW ]i s available in the Firearms Forms and Guide section.

When you arrive in New Zealand

Your approved visitor firearms licence will be issued to you by New Zealand Police upon your arrival in New Zealand. Your approved visitor firearms licence will be valid between the dates specified on your licence which are based on your arrival date and departure date.

If arriving by:

  • air, airport staff will be able to direct you to the nearest Police desk or office at your arrival airport. The New Zealand Airport Police will then:
    • check your passport
    • check your firearms licence issued by the country you live in
    • check, if you applied to bring firearms into New Zealand, all firearms and parts.
    • issue a visitor firearms licence to you and (if applicable) a permit to import firearms and/or part.
  • sea-port, go to the nearest local Police station in the area to pick up your approved visitor firearms licence.

Note:

  • If you only applied for a visitor firearms licence and did not apply to bring firearms with you as part of your application, then you will not be allowed to bring any firearms into New Zealand with you.
  • If you applied to bring firearms with you as part of your application, you can only bring the firearm(s) that have been approved by Police for you to import. These will be stated in your approved visitor firearms licence email.
  • You must declare all firearms to New Zealand Customs officials.
  • If you arrive with firearms that are not listed in your approved visitor firearms licence email, then they will be seized and held by Police until you depart New Zealand.

Leaving New Zealand with firearms

You must:

  • Take all firearms and parts that you brought with you out of New Zealand
  • Complete any form(s) required for an export permit or for notification purposed to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, New Zealand.

If you need help, please contact the Export Controls office below:

Remember to arrange to import any firearms back into your country of origin before you leave New Zealand.
Police checks at the port of departure are important to ensure all firearms brought into New Zealand are taken back with visitors as per the conditions on their visitor firearms licence.

If leaving via:

  • an airport: report to the Airport Police
  • a sea-port: report to the nearest local Police station.

Prohibited offensive weapons

Due to the recent firearms laws changes some firearms-related information is under review.

Offensive weapons other than firearms

These are offensive weapons you are not allowed to bring into New Zealand:

  • Bayonets
  • Knuckledusters, knives incorporating knuckledusters, swordsticks (including, without limitation, any identifiable components of swordsticks), and any weapon disguised to give the appearance of another article*.
  • Any knife having a blade that opens automatically by hand pressure applied to a button, spring, or other device in or attached to the handle of the knife (sometimes known as a flick knife or flick gun).
  • Any knife having a blade that is released from the handle or sheath by the force of gravity or the application of centrifugal force, and that, when released, is locked in place by means of a button, spring, lever, or other device (sometimes known as a gravity knife or butterfly knife).
  • Any knife, with the exception of a folding pocket knife with a blade less than 10 cm in length, that —
    is designed for ease of concealment on the person; or
    • has a double-edged blade that is designed or suitable for stabbing or throwing (as opposed to cutting); 
  • or
    • is a knife of any of the kinds sometimes known as a fist knife, gimlet knife, punch dagger, push dagger, push dirk, push knife, T-handled knife, or throwing knife.
Note: This includes firearms disguised as other articles, such as walking stick shotguns.

If you want to bring any of these weapons into New Zealand, before you leave your home country apply to New Zealand Police.

 

Visitor firearms licence and import permits

The New Zealand (NZ) border is currently closed to almost all travellers, with limited exceptions, to help stop the spread of COVID-19. For more information, please visit the NZ Immigration website

Please note, anyone seeking a visitor licence will need to apply for one a minimum of four months before intended arrival in NZ – this will ensure applications are resolved before arrival. Visit News and updates for further information.

 

 

Helpful information

 

Firearms Enquiry online form

Need help?

 
permitfirearms@police.govt.nz