How much will it cost?
Moving a pet to New Zealand usually costs several thousand New Zealand dollars. We can break the cost down into:
* Vet Costs before you leave
* Getting a Permit to Import Animals into New Zealand
* Air Transport
* Quarantine Costs in New Zealand
We’ll look at the cost of each of these items in turn and throw in a few details to help you get through the process successfully.
You are not required to use a pet transport company to bring your pet to New Zealand, however it is recommended by MAF.
Vet costs before you leave
Your pet will need to undergo medical tests before you can bring it to New Zealand. These are described in the import application forms further down the page.
A vet in your home country will also need to implant a microchip in your pet for identification purposes. This should be done at least six months prior to departure date for pets requiring rabies vaccinations.
* Coming from the UK allow around £300 for vet costs.
* From the US, budget around $600 or so.
Be aware that from January 2012 cats and dogs from the UK, Malta, Republic of Ireland, and Sweden will be required to have a rabies vaccination and rabies titre test.
If you are coming from a country where rabies tests are required, remember that blood tests usually have to be performed at least 6 months before your pet comes to NZ. So if you want to come to New Zealand soon, best start getting those rabies tests done now.
Coastcat posted that Americans need to be careful about microchips as standards in the USA and NZ differ. If you are coming from the USA, you will save yourself trouble by getting your vet to implant a chip that can be read by scanners in New Zealand. In the USA the standard is a 125 kHz microchip. In New Zealand the standard is 134.2 kHz.
Certain breeds and types of dogs are not allowed to be imported. These include the Brazilian Fila, Dogo Argentino, Japanese Tosa, Perro de Presa Canario and the American Pit Bull Terrier.
Permit to Import Animals
* It costs NZ$166.62 for an import permit. (The cost is fixed at NZ$166.62 no matter how many pets you wish to bring in.)
* A Permit to Import your pet will NOT be issued unless you have a letter from an approved quarantine facility (see below) confirming a space has been booked for your pet.
The particular pet import application form you need depends on whether your pet is from a recognised rabies free country – this includes Japan, Singapore and Taiwan OR from a specified country where rabies is absent or well controlled. This includes South Africa, European countries, USA and Canada.
An import permit is not required for cats and dogs exported from Australia.
You will also need an export certificate issued by your own country for your pet.
It is recommended that you apply for an import permit at least six weeks before you intend to move your pet.
*To fly a cat or a small dog to New Zealand from the UK will cost around £1,500.
Naturally you should shop around. You will find reputable shippers who charge both above and below the £1,500 mark. A good idea is to budget for £1,500. If you get a cheaper quote, or negotiate one, you can count it as money saved.
*If you are flying from the USA, your small pet should travel to NZ for less than US$1,500.
Wherever you are coming from, bear in mind that if you are bringing a large animal, costs will rise accordingly. A proportion of the shipping charge is based on the size of the air-kennel the animal will need and another part of the cost is based on the animal’s weight.
Quarantine Costs in New Zealand
Apart from pets arriving from Australia, all pets have to be placed in quarantine.
You will need to place you pet in quarantine for at least 10 days in New Zealand. This will cost you approximately between NZ$1200 and NZ$1,800 per animal including transportation from the airport and MAF inspection fees.
There are five approved quarantine facilities in New Zealand located in
* Avondale, Auckland (cats only)
* Takanini, Auckland
* Pokeno, Auckland
* Levin (North of Wellington)
* Aylesbury, west of Christchurch
Detailed contact information for each of these four facilities is here
You are able to visit your pet in quarantine if you wish.
Where is your pet coming from? Complete Bio-Security Regulations
The complete (several pages long) of regulations controlling the import of your cat or dog depend on where you are coming from. Find your country on the guidance document below and read through the complete documentation (strongly recommended).
Good Luck and may your dog(s) or cat(s) be thankful they have such caring owners.