When you apply for a visitor, student, or work visa, even if you’re travelling with a waiver, your immigration officers assess if you’re “bona fide.” This means we’ll look into your reasons for coming to New Zealand and whether you intend to leave New Zealand at the end of your stay
About bona fides
“Bona fide” means to be genuine and to act in good faith.
When you apply for a temporary visa, your immigration officers must be guaranteed that you are genuine about your reasons for coming to New Zealand and about what you will do while you’re here. They must also be satisfied that you won’t stay in New Zealand without a visa and that you can leave at the end of your stay here.
To consider you’re bona fide, your immigration officers from Immigration New Zealand must believe that:
You genuinely intend a temporary stay in New Zealand
You’re coming to New Zealand for a lawful purpose
You’ll comply with the conditions of your visa once in New Zealand
You won’t remain in New Zealand unlawfully
You’ll be able to leave New Zealand at the end of your stay
This means that your reason for coming to New Zealand must be consistent with the visa you are applying for
Assessing bona fides
When your immigration officers assess if you’re bona fide, they’ll look at:
The information you provide on your visa application or, if you’re traveling with visa waiver, your arrival card
Your visa application and the documents you provide to support it
Any information we have about your personal circumstances
Any information we have about your previous applications.
Your visa application You must answer truthfully when you complete your visa application and/or arrival card. If your immigration officers believe you have provided any false or misleading information about your situation or reasons for coming to New Zealand, you may be declined a visa or entry permission on character grounds.
Your supporting documents You must provide documents that show that you meet all of the criteria for the visa you’re applying for.
If you wish, you can include extra information that supports your reasons for spending time in New Zealand.
Your personal circumstances When your immigration officers assess the information they have about your personal circumstances, they’ll look at things like:
Any family ties you may have in your home country or in New Zealand
Any personal, financial, professional, or other commitments you may have in your home country or New Zealand
Any circumstances that might mean you may not want to return to your home country
Your previous applications When your immigration officers assess the information they have about your previous applications, they’ll check whether:
You’ve ever stayed in New Zealand longer than you were allowed
You’ve ever breached your visa conditions
You have a partner or child who is in New Zealand without a visa
When you’re not bona fide
Your immigration officers won’t consider you’re bona fide, if they believe that:
Your reason for coming to New Zealand is different from what you provided in your visa application or arrival card
You’re likely to breach the conditions of your visa
It’s unlikely you’ll be able to leave or be deported from New Zealand to your country of citizenship. This can happen if the New Zealand Government restricts deportations to your home country, or you don’t have the right documents to return to your home country