Since February 2015 New Zealand is free from departure tax!
I am glad to announce that travellers will have less departure tax to pay in NZ airports in 2012 comparing with last year, so travel experience to New Zealand is getting less annoying. In the second half of 2011 Dunedin airport joined Auckland and Christchurch airports and replaced international departure fee passenger service charge (PSC) of NZ$12.78 each way which is now included in ticket price.
In 2012 Queenstown, Wellington and Palmerston North airports also wiped departure taxes.
In 2014 Hamilton airport become tax free. At least you don’t need to pay any additional taxes at airport and everything already included in ticket price.
Since February, 2015 Rotorua airport also stopped charging departure taxes at airport. It was last airport in New Zealand which was charging fees at the departure.
Here is table with current departure tax at airports in New Zealand:
|Name of Airport||Arrival fee NZ$||Departure fee NZ$||Where to pay|
|Auckland airport||12.50||12.50||included in ticket price|
|Christchurch airport||12.50||12.50||included in ticket price|
|Dunedin airport||12.78||12.78||included in ticket price|
|Hamilton airport||–||5||included in ticket price. There is no international flights, domestic only.|
|Palmerston North airport||8||–||included in ticket price|
|Queenstown airport||???||???||included in ticket price|
|Rotorua airport||–||15.00||included in ticket price|
|Wellington airport||???||???||included in ticket price|
As you can see from this table your total payable tax can go up to NZ$37.50 if you are arriving to Christchurch (NZ$12.50 passenger services charge) and departing from Queenstown (NZ$25.00 departure fee). But if you are doing opposite your total taxes would be only NZ$12.50, i.e. arriving to Queenstown (NZ$0.00 passenger services charge) and departing from Christchurch(NZ$12.50 passenger services charge). For one person may be it is not big saving, but for families or frequent fliers it can make difference.
Also you should know that at Hamilton and Rotorua airports there is domestic departure tax too, not only international departure fee.
You need to pay a NZ$5 departure fee on domestic services out of these airports.
UPDATE May, 2008. 1st of July 2008 is the last day passengers need to pay International Departure Fee in Auckland airport. Commonly known as a departure fee was actually an Airport Development Charge (ADC) paid by travellers via the $25 departure fee at Auckland Airport. This ADC fee has now been replaced bya Passenger Services Charge (PSC), which, from 1 July 2008, will be levied on airlines rather than on travellers. In practice, this means that instead of travellers paying a departure fee, a new charge (PSC) will be levied onto airlines at a charge of $13 for each way of a traveller’s journey (both arrival and departure). Individual airlines will be responsible for deciding if and how they collect the charge from passengers. (Airport Times, May 2018)
UPDATE April, 2012. From 1st of April 2012 International Departure Fee is no longer applicable at Wellington Airport. If you have pre-purchased an International Departure Fee you can obtain a refund from Travelex at Wellington Airport by presenting your Departure Fee Sticker.
UPDATE September, 2012. Somehow we missed this news but Queenstown Airport has wiped its NZ$25 international departure fee at the end of June. As airport chief executive said: “Removing the fee will greatly improve the experience international passengers have when leaving the airport.” He is so right!
UPDATE October, 2012. It looks like this year is tax cut year. From 1st of October passenger won’t need to pay NZ$5 domestic departure tax at Palmerston North Airport, but landing fee will be increased by NZ$3 and will be included in the ticket price, so Air New Zealand wasn’t happy about it.
UPDATE April, 2013. Talk about new departure tax in Christchurch started. Lets hope it will be only talk.
UPDATE April, 2014.There is no departure levy at Hamilton airport. All taxes are included in ticket price.
UPDATE February, 2015. No more departure taxes to pay at Rotorua airport. Read more here.