Arriving in New Zealand

Your first hours in New Zealand will probably be spent at the airport. Here's some important information to make the arrival process easier and more pleasant for you.

Arrival Cards

When you arrive in New Zealand you'll need to present your passport and a completed Passenger Arrival Card. You'll usually get this card on the plane on your way to New Zealand. The card will ask you to supply information about immigration, biosecurity and customs.

The card is available at the airport in a number of languages and from the New Zealand Customs website.


New Zealand is free of many insect pests and plant and animal diseases commonly found elsewhere in the world. At ports and airports a lot of effort is put into minimising the risk of these being introduced.

You’re required by law to “declare” all plant and animal material you bring with you. When you declare restricted items you won’t be charged with any offence. The goods will simply be taken from you and you can go on your way. Some items like tents and shoes can be treated (for example, fumigated) and then returned to you.

You'll fill out an “Agriculture and Customs Declaration” when you arrive and you must declare if you have any of the following (check the New Zealand Customs website for updates):

  • food of any sort
  • plants and parts of plants (alive or dead)
  • animals (alive or dead) or products of animals
  • equipment used with animals
  • camping gear, golf clubs, recreation gear (e.g. used hiking boots) and used bicycles
  • biological specimens
  • certain items cannot be brought into New Zealand at all or can only be brought in with written permission given beforehand. This includes fruit, meat, honey, bird nests and reptiles

You should not bring the following items into New Zealand:

  • firearms and weapons unless a permit is obtained from New Zealand Police on arrival at the airport ( this includes sporting firearms)
  • ivory in any form including tortoise or turtle shell jewellery and ornaments; medicines using musk, rhinoceros or tiger derivatives; carvings or anything made from whalebone or bone from any other marine animals; cat skins or coats

Tauranga and Rotorua Transport

Tauranga and Rotorua both have a regional airport with daily flights to and from Auckland and Wellington. You can take a public bus or taxi to your accommodation. Visit and click on 'Rotorua' or 'Tauranga and Western Bay' for timetables.

Coaches operating to and from Tauranga and Rotorua city centres regularly:


Transport from Auckland International Airport - Free Shuttle for New Students

Toi Ohomai offers new students a free shuttle from Auckland International Airport to Rotorua, Taupō, Tokoroa, Whakatāne or Tauranga when they first arrive in New Zealand.

If you'd like a seat on the shuttle please give at least 5 working days notice and send us your flight number and arrival date and time (see contact details at the bottom of this page). You can let us know about any accommodation requirements you have, at the same time. If you're making your own arrangements with accommodation, please advise us of the address.

We'll contact you or your agent to confirm that a shuttle booking’s been made for you and we'll include instructions on how to meet your shuttle. Do not leave the airport with anyone else.

Making your own Shuttle Arrangements

Luxury Airport Shuttles operate from Auckland, Hamilton and Rotorua Airports and you can make your own arrangement directly with them.

If you need help outside of these options please contact us.

Getting to Campus

Public buses run daily to all our main campuses.

The International Team will meet with you on your first day give you all the information you need to begin your study and to settle into Toi Ohomai and New Zealand.

We promote a bicultural vision and you'll be welcomed at the start of your studies with a Pohiri (traditional Māori welcome ceremony).

Contact information

International Centre, Mokoia Campus

07 346 8712

0800 86 46 46

Monday–Friday, 8.00am–4.30pm

E Block, Mokoia Campus

Toi Ohomai International Office, Private Bag 3028, Rotorua 3046, New Zealand

Toi Ohomai International Centre Facebook page

International Centre, Windermere Campus

07 557 8993

0800 86 46 46

Monday–Friday, 8.00am–4.30pm

L2, Windermere Campus

Toi Ohomai International Office, Private Bag 12001, Tauranga 3143, New Zealand   

Toi Ohomai International Centre Facebook page