Border Clearance Levy refunds available for some travellers

Travellers who entered New Zealand between 1 September and 17 December 2020 may be eligible for a refund of $8.50 + GST per entry from MPI.

The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) has identified that due to a technical oversight, its border clearance levy (BCL) was collected from inbound passengers without the correct authority between 1 September and 17 December 2020. The levy is used to help pay for our biosecurity services, which are essential for keeping pests and diseases out of New Zealand.

The amount charged was $8.50 (plus GST) per passenger and was collected by airlines on the passengers’ behalf as part of the ticket price.  To fix this, MPI has established a process for affected travellers to claim this money.

You may be eligible for a refund if you:

  • Entered New Zealand between 1 September and 17 December 2020
  • Entered New Zealand as a passenger (passengers in transit do not pay the levy),
  • Are aged over the age of 2,
  • Did not arrive in New Zealand after having been rescued at sea,
  • Did not arrive in New Zealand seeking temporary relief from stress of weather,
  • Did not arrive in New Zealand on any of the following:
  • a craft being operated by the New Zealand Defence Force or the defence forces of any Government other than that of New Zealand,
  • a craft being used wholly for diplomatic or ceremonial purposes of any Government,
  • a craft being used wholly for the purposes of a mission being carried out or organised by any Government that is a humanitarian mission or a mission in response to an emergency or a crisis,
  • a craft being used for the purposes of an official expedition of a Contracting Party,
  • a non-passenger commercial craft.

How to request a refund

Download and and fill out the Border clearance ley refund form.

Border clearance levy refund form [PDF, 459 KB]

Attach the completed PDF and the necessary banking verification details to an email and send it to

 You will need to provide:

  • Your name as it appears on your passport
  • The details of your trip (date of arrival and flight number),
  • Your bank account number, name of bank and name on the account
  • A method of verifying your bank details (screenshot, deposit slip etc.).

We will check the information you provide against personal and travel information stored in the Joint Border Management System (JBMS).  This is so that we can verify these details for the purposes of the refund.  The information you provide will only be used by MPI for the purposes of verifying and processing your refund.

It is voluntary to provide this information to MPI. However, we will be unable to process your request without it. You have the right to access and correct any information that we hold about you.  For more information about how MPI handles personal information and your rights under the Privacy Act to request access to and correction of any information you provide to us, please refer to the Transparency & Privacy Statement on our website.

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