Australian High Commission
New Zealand
Cook Islands and Niue

Visas and immigration

Visas and immigration

Please note: Australia requires that your passport must be valid only for the period of your intended travel in and out of Australia. There is no requirement for your passport to be valid for six months after your travel.


Welcome to the website of the Australian High Commission in Wellington. The Immigration, Citizenship by Descent and Visa office is based at the Australian Consulate General in Auckland. It is an overseas office of the Department of Home Affairs. The office assists clients who are usually residents of New Zealand, the Cook Islands, Niue, Tokelau and Pitcairn Island.

Apply early

It is important for you to plan ahead and apply for visas early to avoid disappointment. We advise you not to book flights or make travel commitments until you have a visa to travel to Australia. The Department will not be liable for any financial loss incurred by clients whose visa applications were finalised later than expected or unsuccessful. 

A complete application is the correct form, fee, supporting documentation and biometrics (if required).

Standard Processing Times – Department of Home Affairs website

New Zealand Citizens and Third Country Nationals

If you are a New Zealand citizen, do not have tuberculosis or a criminal conviction, you can live and work in Australia without applying for a visa in advance. You will be eligible for a Special Category Visa (subclass 444) which is granted on arrival when you travel on a valid New Zealand passport.

If you have questions regarding the Special Category Visa (Subclass 444) or applying for other visas, please see these Frequently Asked Questions.

If you are a citizen of another nationality (not New Zealand), follow this link to work out what kind of visa you are eligible for - Find a Visa

For information about visa fees, please see

Most people will need to provide their biometrics (fingerprints & facial images) when applying for a visa. For information on biometric collections, see and

Travelling with a Criminal Conviction -

Applying for a Visa to Australia

All paper based visa applications in New Zealand are lodged through the Australian Visa Application Centres (AVAC) in Auckland, Christchurch, Dunedin, Queenstown or Wellington on behalf of the Department. Their contact details are as follows:

AVAC Locations:



Operating Hours

Extended Hours


Ground Floor, Big Albert Building, 87-89 Albert Street, Auckland CBD, Auckland

8.30 am to 4.30 pm, Monday to Friday

Available by appointment only from 4.30 pm to 7 pm Monday to Friday


Break Free on Cashel Hotel, 165 Cashel Street, Christchurch 8011

8 am to 3.30 pm, Tuesday & Wednesday by appointment only.



Wains Hotel, Dunedin, 310 Princes Street, Dunedin 9016

11 am to 3.30 pm, Monday (fortnightly) by appointment only.



Sofitel Hotel, 8 Duke Street, Queenstown 9300

11.00 am to 3.30 pm, Monday (fortnightly) by appointment only.



Davis Langdon House, Level 4, 49 Boulcott Street, Wellington 6011

8 am to 3.30 pm, Thursday & Friday by appointment only.



AVAC contacts:

Website -

Email    -

Phone lines -      (09 366 0274) are available from 8 am - 7 pm, Monday to Friday.

Postal Address – PO Box 105154, Auckland 1143, Auckland.

Home Affairs – Auckland Visa & Citizenship application checklists are available here:

Changes to Australian Visa Application Centre arrangements in New Zealand – February 2017

Most clients lodging a visa application for Australia in New Zealand will need to attend an Australian Visa Application Centre in person to provide biometrics unless they are excluded or exempted from the Programme. New Zealand citizens are excluded from providing biometrics.

Visa applicants who apply for online visas may need to provide their biometrics. If so, they will be sent an electronic letter requiring them to have their biometrics collected at an AVAC.

The AVACs in Dunedin, Queenstown, Wellington and Christchurch will charge a Premium location surcharge in addition to the standard service fee for receiving applications and collecting biometrics. Applicants are required to make an appointment to attend the AVACs.

The quickest and most efficient way to lodge a visa application in New Zealand is to submit a complete visa application with all of the required supporting documentation at an AVAC and have your biometrics collected at the same time.

For more information, please see:

AVAC website:

Department of Home Affairs website:

Lodging online visas

You may be eligible to lodge your visa application online. Please see Online Services for eligible nationalities and other online visas. Online applications can also be made at the Department’s website

Factors for consideration:

  1. You will need access to a credit card to pay for an online application. A third party may complete an online application on your behalf with your consent.
  2. If you have lodged an online visa application through the Department’s website, please note that the AVAC cannot provide any information regarding the status of your application, nor do they have access to the Department’s systems.
  3. You may need to provide your Biometrics (finger prints & facial images) and this will require attending an AVAC office in person. See here.


All travellers, except New Zealand citizens, must obtain a visa or travel authority before travelling to Australia.

For information regarding living in Australia, please follow this link to our Living in Australia page.