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Personal Effects & Customs

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Moving to New ZealandOnce you have arrived in New Zealand you will be required to complete an Unaccompanied Baggage Declaration in order that your personal effects can be customs cleared and delivered. These documents will be supplied by Transworld and our import staff will assist with their completion and answer any of your questions. If you are a first time immigrant with the authority to take up permanent residency, a returning New Zealander who has been absent for more than 21 months, or an immigrant with a work permit for more than one year, your household and personal effects will be admitted free of duty and exempt GST (Goods and Services Tax). Having said this, the effects in question must have been owned and used prior to shipping, be for your personal use and must not be of a commercial or business nature.

If you are a New Zealand resident returning within 21 months of leaving New Zealand you will be required to pay duty and GST on all items purchased overseas (excluding clothing, footwear, jewellery and toiletries intended for your own use). Proof of export will be required for items originally shipped from New Zealand, while purchase receipts/invoices will generally be required for those items purchased overseas. To avoid delays with the customs process, it is recommended that these documents are carried in hand luggage, rather than contained in your seafreight/airfreight shipment.

Regardless of your status on arrival into New Zealand, alcohol cigarettes, cigars and tobacco arriving separately from yourself will incur duty and GST. However, where proof can be provided that wine is part of a collection, duties and taxes will not be incurred. Legacies can be imported by New Zealand domiciled residents as long as it can be proved that the legacy is a genuine bequest and that the recipient is a legal beneficiary. Proof of this can be supplied by obtaining a statutory declaration and a copy of a Will or letter from the Solicitor or Trustee handling the estate.

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