Immigration New Zealand’s visa application centres (VACs) in Kiribati and Nauru will close on 30 November 2021. Australia’s VACs in Kiribati and Nauru will also close by this date.
VACs accept and digitise paper visa applications and passport information associated with online applications. From 1 December 2021, customers of INZ’s Kiribati and Nauru VACs will need to courier a printed application or apply using Immigration Online.
INZ's VACs in Sydney (Australia), Suva (Fiji), Honiara (Solomon Islands) remain open:
Visa application fees won’t increase due to the VAC closures, however, applicants still need to pay the VAC service fee.
Applicants will also need to cover the extra cost to courier an application and/or passport to and from the nearest VAC. We encourage applicants to check with their local courier what the fee and timeframe are, before submitting their application.
INZ contracts VFS Global Ltd (VFS) to operate 42 user pays VACs in 27 countries. The Kiribati and Nauru VACs are closing due to a significant decline in the volume of applications globally as a result of COVID-19, uncertainty around when normal visa activities will resume, and the impact of INZ’s continuing digital development.
This decision has not been taken lightly and INZ has explored a range of options to avoid the closures, including an increase to the VAC service fees. However the level to which these fees would need to rise to cover the cost of operating in these two locations was deemed to be too high and unreasonable. Ultimately the increased service fees would have fallen on the applicant to cover, which would have resulted in a much higher fee than the overall cost (including courier charges) to send an application to their nearest VAC.