Shooters Coming to New Zealand

Attention All Overseas Shooters Looking to Compete in NZ Pistol Matches

All pistol shooters coming to New Zealand for a competition need to complete the following documentation. NZ Police only approve temporary pistol licences for shooters competing in organised matches.

Contact the Match Director in the FIRST INSTANCE (or PNZ Executive Officer) for a FIREARMS LICENCE NUMBER to add to the permit to import your pistol. This should be done BEFORE filling out the Visitors Firearms License and Permit to Import firearms (below).

If you have any questions, please contact the Pistol NZ Executive Officer.

Important Notice: All International Shooters, please note for future reference

Police have released an update on the future of visitor firearms licence processes, read below:

We have made some changes to the Visitor Firearms Licence process

[1 Feb 2019] Over the next few months, Police will make the transition to a new licence administration software, along with an improved process for visitor firearms licence applications. There will be five important changes applicants will experience when applying for a visitor firearms licence:

Visitor firearm licence process

  1. In order to apply for a visitor firearms licence, applicants will need a RealMe® login, the New Zealand Government’s secure login service. Getting a RealMe® login is quick and easy and applicants will be guided through the process when they first apply for a visitor firearms licence. Find out more about RealMe®(link is external).
  2. Clear and simple instructions on the Police firearms website to help applicants prepare well for the application process and ensure they have all documents and pre-requisites ready for submission for the online application. Visitors will be provided pre-qualifying information and guidelines at the start of the application process to speed up the overall process and reduce the need for clarifications and follow-ups.
  3. This new process will require applicants to pay the visitor application fee online using their credit card (Visa or MasterCard) as part of the application process. This will remove the need to pay in cash at the airport on arrival in New Zealand. Cash will not be accepted at New Zealand airports once the new system goes live.
  4. Applicants will be able to easily upload their documents (such as a photo, copy of both their passport and home country firearms licence) online as part of the application, reducing the need for subsequent email communication between Police and the applicant for supporting documentation.
  5. As part of the application process, all applicants for a visitor firearms licence will be required to complete a short online theory test. This will be based on information available in the Arms Code and will demonstrate their knowledge of New Zealand’s requirements for the safe handling and storage of firearms.

1: Visitors Firearms License and Permit to Import firearms

Go to THIS page for further details on this online application process including the Realme Logon process

Click HERE for a manual, writable form, ONLY if the above online Police form is not available

Once this application is received, the NZ POLICE will send you a receipt of the approval which will be sent to the airport of arrival. Keep this on you when travelling to New Zealand.

NOTE: The Police have stated that they have three weeks to process any online applications. If you send in your application inside three weeks the application may NOT BE APPROVED in time for your arrival! To be certain of your permit make sure you place your application BEFORE three weeks from the first day of the event.

When travelling to New Zealand bring Your Firearms Licence

The information above will also be sent to Pistol NZ - for our information only - so you must ensure that you complete this process or you will not be permitted to bring your firearms into the country.

REMEMBER: You must have a temporary New Zealand Firearms Licence to shoot in New Zealand, even though you may not be bringing firearms with you. The New Zealand police do not communicate with you about whether there is an issue or not. Pistol NZ no longer advises the airport police of incoming shooters. When the police issue the import permit they will advise the airport police themselves of your pending arrival.

It is a Police requirement when an overseas shooter decides to compete in NZ with Pistols, that they must nominate a NZ licence holder to store their pistols with for the duration of their stay.

Any overseas shooter should contact the Match Director in the FIRST INSTANCE (or PNZ Executive Officer) to obtain a NZ licence holders-licence number and the location of storage, so they can add to their application.

2: Registration for the event

The Police will be seeking verification from Pistol NZ that the incoming shooter is coming for a legitimate competition. Pistol New Zealand need to receive your event registration form before you send your visitors firearms license application to the NZ Police.

PLEASE NOTE: Please make sure that you send your entry form and payment directly to the event organiser. Pistol NZ will not be forwarding the information.

Place to send this information to is:

  • Email address for scanned papers (PREFERRED METHOD):
  • Postal:
    PNZ Executive Officer
    P O Box 391
    New Zealand 4156
  • Fax (least preferred method):
    +64 6 870 7574

3: Invitation letter to export pistols from your country

If you need an invitation letter from the event you are entering to export pistols or ammunition from your country or your airline requests such a letter to allow you to board your flight with firearms or ammunition contact the Executive Officer who can provide an invitation letter.

4: MFAT Export of Strategic Goods form

PLEASE NOTE: This form is only to be filled in and sent to MFaT if an International shooter entering and leaving New Zealand has 5 OR MORE firearms for shooting a National or International shooting competition.

If you are arriving or leaving with LESS than 5 firearms for shooting a National or International shooting competition, then you do not need to fill in or send this form to MFAT.

(Bulk Imports or Exports of MORE than 5 Firearms still need the MFAT form filled out).

International shooters still need to a copy of the Import Permit you obtain from your own country. In the case of Australia we know this to be the B709a, to be able to re-import the firearms back into your OWN Country.

Changes in exportation laws now require approval for you to export your firearms (to yourself). You need to complete the form highlighted and include with it a copy of the Import Permit you obtain from your own country. In the case of Australia we know this to be the B709a.

Send this information to the Export Controls Officer at:

  • Email:
  • Fax: +64 4 439 8227
  • Postal: Export Controls Officer, MFAT Disarmament Division, Private Bag 18901, Wellington, New Zealand

PLEASE NOTE: The Executive Officer for Pistol New Zealand does not handle these papers. You need to send them direct to the place indicated. Whilst there are some who would advise that this is not required, we are advised by the NZ Police that it is and we do not want any of our people to provide the "test case". MFAT will contact the incoming shooter directly.

Overseas shooters please take note of this important update from the NZ Police (December 15th 2017)

Important Update to all International Shooters

Arrangements for bringing firearms through Auckland International Airport

New arrangements are in place for people who wish to bring firearms through Auckland International Airport.

Following consultation with airlines, ground handling contractors and Police partner agencies, it has been agreed that a new, consistent process should be in place to increase security.

From December 2017 , firearms coming into the airport will be uplifted by ground handlers who will then place them in a secured cabinet situated between baggage carousels 3 and 4. The person bringing the firearms into the country will then be required to contact the Airport Police and complete the paperwork required to bring the firearm into New Zealand before proceeding to Customs.

The new arrangements will apply to New Zealanders returning with firearms as well as people visiting from overseas.

Australian Shooters Travelling to New Zealand

Rod Pascoe did an article in the Sport Shooters Association of Australia (SSAA) Handgun Magazine outlining his findings when Australian shooters to New Zealand to shoot.

Pistol New Zealand thank SSAA for the use of this article.

The article can be found HERE