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Things you need to know

You will need to log into your account in order to complete our online documentation which includes:

  • Inventory, recording the contents of your shipment;
  • Insurance to protect your shipment in case of mishap.

You will need to upload scans of your passport - the picture page, the signature page and if applicable, a copy of your visa, at the final stage of the process.

There are helpful pointers all throughout but you must be completely accurate with the information you enter as these forms will be presented to the authorities at the destination.

Couple taping cardboard shipping box

Importing your personal effects and household items

Your shipment of personal effects and household items can be imported duty-free if you fulfil this criterion:

  1. You are a returning New Zealand citizen, or, non-citizen with long stay / permanent residence visa, who are returning to take up permanent residence after a period of 21 months or more living outside New Zealand;
  2. If you are not already in New Zealand, then you do not need to be present when your shipment is imported but you must be planning to return within 6 months of importing your shipment – you must supply your e-ticket / airline ticket, otherwise, supply a copy of your receivers passport and visa to New Zealand they will also need to be added to the customs form as an additional person;
  3. The items you are importing as your personal effects and household items have been owned for more than 6 months and are not for resale, disposal, gifted, leased / hire out or otherwise used for business purpose.

The Ministry of Primary Industries (MPI) has the right to inspect all shipments of personal effects and household items. They have the right to demand that items within the shipment be either cleaned, irradiated or removed for deep burial which will incur additional charges. We recommend that if you plan to send any of the items listed below you first clean and dry any item that has been in contact with household dust, soil or vegetation before packing.

If you are sending any of the items below they are covered by this restriction.

We recommend that if you plan to send any of the items listed below you first clean and dry any item that has been in contact with household dust, soil or vegetation before packing. Please also ensure they are easily accessible for inspection by customs.

If you are sending baggage only: boxes, bags and suitcases, you need to pack any kind of boots and shoes, e.g. walking / hiking boots, golf shoes, rugby boots, everyday shoes, inside your boxes at the top, with the soles facing upward or, with suitcases, on top of your clothes with the soles facing upward, so they are visible for quick inspection. This may not be possible with boots but placing on top should be enough.

If you are using our MoveCube® service, you will be provided a white box marked “Shoe & Boot Box” within which you need to pack all your shoes and boots of any kind, e.g. walking / hiking boots, golf shoes, rugby boots, everyday shoes. This Shoe & Boot Box will need to be packed at the door of the MoveCube® for quick inspection.

We recommend that if you plan to send any of the items listed below you first clean and dry any item that has been in contact with household dust, soil or vegetation before packing. Please also ensure they are easily accessible for inspection by customs.

  • All types of BBQ / Braai, BBQ / Braai equipment and charcoal
  • Lawn mower, spades, forks, ladders, wheelbarrow and other garden tools, etc.
  • Gazebo, folding chairs, garden games, etc..
  • Rattan screen.

We recommend that if you plan to send any of the items listed below you first clean and dry any item that has been in contact with household dust, soil or vegetation before packing. Please also ensure they are easily accessible for inspection by customs.

  • Mountain bikes, child’s bicycle, scooters, etc..

We recommend that if you plan to send any of the items listed below you first clean and dry any item that has been in contact with household dust, soil or vegetation before packing. Please also ensure they are easily accessible for inspection by customs.

  • Russian Maryoshka doll.
  • Christmas decorations made of wool.
  • Christmas tree.

We recommend that if you plan to send any of the items listed below you first clean and dry any item that has been in contact with household dust, soil or vegetation before packing. Please also ensure they are easily accessible for inspection by customs.

  • Sea shells, corals.
  • Feathers, feather pillows.
  • Leather hides.
  • Reeds, wicker baskets.
  • Rattan chairs, rattan screen, rattan chest.
  • Bamboo, bamboo steamer.
  • Plant pots.
  • Wood carvings & wooden ornaments.
  • Wheat bags.

We recommend that if you plan to send any of the items listed below you first clean and dry any item that has been in contact with household dust, soil or vegetation before packing. Please also ensure they are easily accessible for inspection by customs.

  • All general strollers and prams.

We recommend that if you plan to send any of the items listed below you first clean and dry any item that has been in contact with household dust, soil or vegetation before packing. Please also ensure they are easily accessible for inspection by customs.

  • Golf clubs, golf bags with clubs, golf bags with trolleys – soil is often found at the bottom of the golf bag.
  • Cricket gear: stumps, bats, balls, leg protectors, gloves, etc..
  • Hockey gear: sticks, balls, gloves, etc..
  • Mountaineering equipment: ropes, gloves, etc..
  • Tents, tent poles & pegs, camping chairs etc..
  • Walking stick.
  • Saddles, bridle, girth, etc..
  • Fishing rod, fishing lure, fishing tackle, etc..
  • Hunting equipment: bow & arrow.
  • Swimming pool equipment.

We recommend that if you plan to send any of the items listed below you first clean and dry any item that has been in contact with household dust, soil or vegetation before packing. Please also ensure they are easily accessible for inspection by customs.

  • Brooms, mops, vacuum cleaner (remove bag or clean filters), dustbin, step ladder, etc..

We recommend that if you plan to send any of the items listed below you first clean and dry any item that has been in contact with household dust, soil or vegetation before packing. Please also ensure they are easily accessible for inspection by customs.

  • Importing car parts or bike parts into Australia will require the appointment of a Customs broker with additional charges.

This list is not exhaustive but indicative.

Importing wedding gifts

Wedding gifts can be imported duty-free as part of your personal effects and household items provided that, in addition to completing our online documentation, you should provide a copy of your Marriage Certificate.

Importing inheritance items

Your inherited items can be imported duty-free provided you, the beneficiary named in the will, are living permanently in New Zealand.

In addition to our completing our online documentation, you will need to provide a copy of the death certificate and either a letter from the executor explaining you are the beneficiary with the list of the inherited items, or, a copy of the Will.

Importing jewellery

Jewellery can be imported duty-free as part of your personal effects and household items.

Importing piano with ivory keys

You will need to provide an original CITES permit with the piano before the items is shipped to allow us time present to the Border Agency of the export country.

Importing new personal effects and household items, including presents and souvenirs

If you have purchased new items and added them to your shipment, then duty and GST may apply. In addition to completing our online documentation, you will need to provide purchase invoices or receipts. Should the total declared amount of new/unused items be above NZ$100 additional form may need to be completed as duty/taxes may apply for these items. The Imports department will send the relevant form out to complete.

Young lady packing cardboard boxes

Prohibited goods

We aim to make importing into New Zealand as easy as possible. See our comprehensive list of items you cannot send to New Zealand along with any service orientated restrictions.


This page was last updated on 1st July 2021.

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