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Thread: Resident Visa - travel conditions about to expire

  1. #1
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    Default Resident Visa - travel conditions about to expire

    Hi, I am holding resident visa (along with family) with travel conditions expiring in July. I am currently in India. We have entered NZ once in 2018. I had planned to move permanently during this time and my tickets were booked for April 10. However, the tickets got cancelled by airlines due to covid-19. I know, still there are couple of months in which situation can change, however, I want to know if NZ immigration would consider request for extending the travel conditions if situation is not good till July. I tried calling NZ immigration few times, but there is long wait time and my call did not connect. anybody in same condition?

  2. #2
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    I'm sorry. It's not possible to predict what INZ will do in cases like yours. (And the timing is so unlucky.)

    The government is urgently bringing in laws right now to try to limit the spread of the epidemic. They're not concerned at the moment with ANYTHING else. When the emergency is over, whether that is in three months, six months, or longer, there is going to be a lot of sorting out to be done, in all areas of life, as things are gradually moved back to normal, and everything to do with how the INZ regulations applied will be just ONE of those things. When the time comes, the government will make decisions and give new instructions to INZ. They'll make announcements at that time. Until then, it will be a matter of wait and see.

    One thought that comes to me is that you should make sure you keep carefully all the records showing that you HAD your arrangements made, and would have travelled, and that it wasn't you who cancelled the flights. This may possibly help you if eventually there is a chance for you to argue your case.

  3. #3
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    Thanks for reply. I am worried even more

  4. #4
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    We're in exactly the same boat as you, PankajM.
    Our resident visa travel conditions expire in June, and we have tickets for mid-May (for a flight which may or may not take off).

    A careful reading of today's "COVID-19: Alert Level 4" notice along with the "Epidemic Management Notice information" does indicate that INZ is currently working with a skeleton staff tasked with prioritizing "exceptional cases", e.g. health and other essential workers. The notice is also quite specific that "Residents with expired travel conditions cannot travel to New Zealand. You may apply for reinstatement of resident visa travel conditions." This, taken together with information helpfully provided by JandM and others on this forum, does seem to support the view that no case-by-case variations of travel conditions are forthcoming in the near future (at least not for the duration of the Epidemic Management Notice).

    Can anyone kindly confirm my reading of the following current INZ policy?
    "If you hold a residence visa and this is not your first time travelling to New Zealand you can enter New Zealand."

    Would it be accurate to note that we HAVE traveled to NZ on our current resident visa when we "activated" it in 2018?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
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    Quote Originally Posted by comingtonz View Post
    Can anyone kindly confirm my reading of the following current INZ policy?
    "If you hold a residence visa and this is not your first time travelling to New Zealand you can enter New Zealand."

    Would it be accurate to note that we HAVE traveled to NZ on our current resident visa when we "activated" it in 2018?
    I've mentioned this in another thread, but as per Section 108 of the Immigration Act (and also mentioned in Y3.10(a) in the operational manual), you must be granted entry permission if you hold:

    • a Permanent Resident Visa; or
    • a Resident Visa granted in New Zealand; or
    • a Resident Visa granted outside of New Zealand, and it is your second or subsequent entry into New Zealand as the holder of that Resident Visa.
    .

    Note that Y3.10(a) is referenced from Y4.50, which is the new section in the operational manual documenting the COVID-19 entry restrictions.

    The situations where a Resident Visa holder cannot travel to New Zealand are:

    • The Resident Visa was granted outside of New Zealand, and the holder is yet to enter New Zealand holding that Resident Visa. Usually, such people require the grant of entry permission at the border (Section 108(5) of the Immigration Act); however, said entry permission will now be automatically refused due to the COVID-19 travel restrictions (Y4.50). I should mention that refusal of entry permission will result in the Resident Visa being cancelled (Section 107 of the Immigration Act).
    • The travel conditions on the Resident Visa has expired while the holder is outside New Zealand, and the Resident Visa itself is therefore deemed to have expired (R5.66). This scenario existed even before COVID-19, and all indications are that it will continue to do so during COVID-19.

  6. #6
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    Thank you for the detailed breakdown, Kelerei.
    My question was really regarding the "...as the holder of that Resident Visa." phrasing. I was looking to confirm that one is considered to be the holder of a Resident Visa before it's activated (a sensible reading).
    Looking at the part of your post covering situations where a Resident Visa holder CANNOT travel to NZ seems to make that quite clear - one is considered a "holder" once the Resident Visa is granted, and so the initial activation visit counts toward the number of entries into NZ "as the holder".

    Thanks again!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2018
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    New Zealand
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    Just to clarify something with both comingtonz and pankajm

    How long had you spent in NZ in total as a resident?/How did you intend on meeting the PRV requirements. I say that because INZ has specific rules regarding how long a Variation of Travel conditions on a resident visa can be granted for.

  8. #8
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    Nzs,
    I can't speak for PankajM, but we have spent 10 days in NZ when we activated our Resident Visa in 2018.
    One needs valid travel conditions to COME BACK INTO New Zealand as a (non-permanent) resident. There is, however, no travel condition requirement to STAY in the country indefinitely. The only drawback of being a resident without valid travel conditions is the inability to travel internationally (if one wants to preserve NZ resident status, that is).
    As I've explained in a different thread, we are planning on applying for a 12-month Variation of Travel Conditions after 184 days in the country (consecutive, starting on our arrival this May). This will allow us to travel back to the US for short periods of time to wrap things up/take care of ailing family. We should be able to apply for another such variation after the first one expires.
    We will be able to apply for our PRV once we meet one of the commitment requirements. Most likely, this will be the "enough time in NZ" commitment, which we'll be able to satisfy within about 1.5 years in the country. We are also looking into satisfying the "Have a business" and "Established a base" requirements.
    All these carefully laid plans are obviously contingent on our getting TO New Zealand before our travel conditions expire in early June. Given the current state of affairs, that is far from a certainty.

  9. #9
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    Oct 2016
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    India
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    Thanks for the replies. I, too, activated my resident visa in 2018 and stayed in NZ for two weeks. I, definitely, don't qualify for variation in travel conditions in normal scenario. However, I wonder if NZ immigration will grant variation of travel condition in view of covid-19 situation. I started to execute my plan to permanently from Dec 2019 and did wind-up my personal matters and left my job. I had a booking to reach NZ on April 10, that stands cancelled due to airline not operating on this date. I am going to rebook flights for May-Jun time, but situation is still uncertain. Is there any email id for NZ immigration where I can contact and discuss my case.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    Almost all of INZ is closed down right now. I don't know of any place you could get information. I strongly suspect that when the crisis is over, the NZ government will have to have some work-arounds, because of all the disruption to travel and visas that has happened. But they will make it up when normal life begins to pick up. There's no way to predict all the decisions they will come to.

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