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Provisional international travel statistics

Temporary release of regular border-crossing flow data in response to COVID-19

Stats NZ is releasing up to date provisional arrivals and departure data based on border-crossings into and out of New Zealand.

With the COVID-19 international pandemic, we recognize the need for as up-to-date data as possible around travellers entering and exiting New Zealand. In order to facilitate that we are releasing provisional data, based on border-crossing data, which forms part of our normal travel and migration data sets.

Unlike our regular releases, these datasets are based solely on border-crossing data and do not incorporate arrival card information. As a result, we cannot release a breakdown of traveller type (e.g. overseas visitor, New Zealand resident) with this provisional data.

The data was first released on 25 March 2020, including border-crossings up to 22 March 2020. Data released on 1 April 2020 includes border crossings up to 29 March 2020. This data will initially be updated on a weekly basis; however, we will regularly review the release frequency.

Notes about the data
The data contains information about the flows of travellers (arrivals and departures) across the border but does not contain information about the stocks of travellers (how many travellers are currently in, or out of New Zealand).
The data is based on the latest border-crossing data and has not been through our full process for the production of statistics and are therefore provisional.

Stock estimates of travellers

Early estimates as at 25 March 2020:

  • 65,000–75,000 New Zealand residents travelling overseas – includes New Zealand and non-New Zealand citizens who have been living in New Zealand. See also New Zealand residents travelling overseas.
  • 170,000–190,000 visitors from overseas in New Zealand – includes Australian and New Zealand citizens visiting New Zealand, as well as visitors on work, student, visitor and other visa types. See also Visitors from overseas in New Zealand.


Stats NZ releases provisional international travel statistics on this webpage each week. The latest available weekly and four-weekly information is provided for short-term overseas visitor and New Zealand resident arrivals. Data in the workbooks are published for 10 main source and 10 main destination countries, as well as for world regions and totals. The CSV files include additional source and main destination countries. Four-weekly and weekly data series are provisional and may be revised.

Weekly international travel statistics
We have implemented a new migration processing system to offset the removal of the departure card. NZ resident arrival tables have replaced the NZ resident departure tables we previously published.

The provisional data are released to enable the tourism industry to monitor short-term travel on a regular and timely basis.

Release of data
This weekly data is intended to be released after 2pm on a Wednesday.

No other four-weekly or weekly data will be available prior to the official release of data for the reference month via the International Travel and International Migration information releases.

Introducing the CSV files
Two CSV files are now available, as an alternative way of accessing provisional international travel data. The CSV files provide additional variables for overseas visitor and NZ resident arrivals for the first time, including: two extra main source and one extra main destination countries; length of stay or absence; main travel purpose; and selected NZ ports. You can find them under Available files.

Length of stay or absence
We’ve changed the methodology to determine length of stay for overseas visitors and length of absence for resident arrivals.

Before November 2018, visitors’ length of stay in New Zealand was captured from their intentions on the arrival card. Visitors who departed before processing was completed for their month of arrival had their length of stay recalculated based on their actual stay. From November 2018, all visitors have their length of stay calculated based on their actual stay.

Before November 2018, residents’ length of absence away from New Zealand was captured from their intentions on the departure card. Residents who arrived before processing was completed for their month of departure had their length of absence recalculated based on their actual absence. From November 2018, all residents have their length of absence calculated on their actual absence.

The change was introduced in the provisional international travel statistics for the week ended 16 December 2018.

All passenger counts are now rounded to the nearest 10. Totals may differ due to rounding and individual figures may not sum to totals. The rounding was implemented to allow the extra detail in the new CSV files.

Before November 2018, total of all countries is based on sample counts in the csv files. This differs from the Excel workbooks where total of all countries is based on actual counts. 

Page updated 01 April 2020

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