Emergency allocation requests

You can apply for an Emergency Allocation if you have been unable to book your preferred date in the Managed Isolation Allocation System and you meet our eligibility criteria.

Spaces in managed isolation are currently extremely limited due to high demand. An Emergency Allocation process exists for limited situations which require urgent travel to New Zealand within the next 7 days.

It is important to note that very few Emergency Allocation requests will be granted, so we encourage travellers to book in early to the Managed Isolation Allocation System as it is the most effective way to guarantee your place. Should you be granted an emergency allocation, you still need to complete 14 days managed isolation.

Why are we allowing emergency allocation requests?

To ensure that we can enable urgent travel to New Zealand for people who meet the criteria, and have not been able to find a space in managed isolation through the Managed Isolation Allocation System.

Who can apply?  

You can submit an emergency allocation request if you meet the following criteria:

  • you are legally entitled to enter New Zealand under our current border settings, and
  • your travel is time-critical (within the next 7 days), and
  • you have registered in the Managed Isolation Allocation System and have been unable to book an allocation for the date you require urgent travel, and
  • your circumstances fall within one of the 2 categories detailed below, and
  • you have attached evidence to support your application (see details below).

Note: Applications for an emergency allocation are a last resort option and the threshold is extremely high. There is no guarantee that a person who fits within these categories will receive an emergency allocation, as this will depend on the numbers of applicants and available places.

The 2 categories for applications for emergency allocation requests

Your circumstances must fall within one of these categories to be eligible for an emergency allocation request.

Category 1

1a) New Zealand citizens[1] or residents[2] where a serious risk to health exists for the applicant or their dependant, which requires urgent travel to New Zealand; OR

1b) Where urgent travel is required to ensure a child is provided with appropriate care and protection.

Category 2

2a) New Zealand citizens or residents who are required to provide critical care for a dependant person in New Zealand and need to travel urgently to do so; OR

2b) A person whose entry to New Zealand is time-critical for the purpose of delivering a critical public or health service, such as the provision of specialist health services required to prevent serious illness, injury or death; or the maintenance of essential infrastructure whose failure would result in significant harm or disruption to a large number of New Zealanders; OR

2c) New Zealand citizens or residents, who are unable to legally remain in their current location and have no other option but to return to New Zealand; OR

2d) New Zealand and non-New Zealand citizens, where urgent travel to New Zealand is required for national security, national interest or law enforcement reasons.

2e) New Zealand citizens or residents entering New Zealand to visit a close relative[3] who is dying, where timely travel is unlikely to be possible if the person books through MIAS.

Applications will be prioritised depending on their category, as these reflect the most time-critical situations which may require travel to New Zealand. Category 1 applications will be given priority over Category 2 applications.

It is important to note that if you are granted an emergency allocation, you will still need to complete 14 days Managed Isolation on your arrival in New Zealand.

[1] New Zealand citizens include people in the New Zealand Realm: Tokelau, Niue and the Cook Islands.
[2] Resident visa class holders who are normally resident in New Zealand.
[3] A close relative is a spouse or partner, parent, child, brother or sister, grandparent, grandchild, spouse’s or partner’s parent. 

When can I apply?

You can apply for an emergency allocation before you travel to New Zealand.

Applications must be submitted within seven days of your intended date of departure.

What types of applications are not accepted?

Unfortunately due to limited space, applications will not be approved for travel in the following circumstances as they do not fall within one of the 2 categories above:

  • Attending a funeral or memorial service;
  • Flight cancellation;
  • Economic activity such as commercial/business activity.
  • To be reunited with family.

The application process

If you meet the eligibility criteria detailed above you can submit your application. There are four steps to this process:

1. Complete your registration in the Managed Isolation System

Complete all passenger details in your individual or family group registration in the Managed Isolation Allocation System.

Managed Isolation Allocation System(external link)

2. Complete the Emergency Allocation Request form

The form is an editable PDF which you can fill out electronically on any computer, tablet or mobile phone. You can save the form to your files and send it to us via email.  If you need to print and write on the form by hand, please print in block capitals so that we can accurately record your details.

Emergency Allocation Request form [PDF, 862 KB]

3. Provide evidence to support your application

You must provide the supporting evidence that is relevant to your situation:

Category 1a: Serious risk to health exists for the applicant or their dependant

Required documentation: A letter from a doctor or treatment provider confirming there is a serious risk to health which requires your urgent travel to New Zealand.

Category 1b: Urgent travel is required for a child

Required documentation: Evidence to support this application. For example, court documents, police statement, or statement from child protection agency.

Category 2a: To provide critical care for a dependant person in New Zealand

Required documentation: Evidence to support this application. For example, letter from a doctor or treatment provider, court documents or police statement.

Category 2b: For delivering a critical public or health service

Required documentation: Confirmation from New Zealand health or public service that your entry to New Zealand is time critical. Copy of visa if not a New Zealand citizen or resident.

Category 2c: Unable to legally remain in your current location

Required documentation: Evidence to support this application. For example, a copy of communications with the visa-issuing authorities of the country where you are, or confirmation from your airline.

Category 2d: For national security, national interest or law enforcement reasons

Required documentation: Evidence to support this application including a statement in support from the New Zealand Government.

Category 2e: To visit a close relative who is dying where timing is critical

Required documentation: A letter from medical practitioner stating the close relative’s medical condition is terminal and their life expectancy.

Due to the time-critical nature of these applications, we will not be able to offer a translation service. We require that all evidence is provided in English.

4. Submit your application

Submit your application and supporting evidence to: specialallocation@miq.govt.nz

Please include the category of your application in the subject line, for example 'Category 1'.

You will receive an email within 1 working day (NZST) confirming your request has been received.

Timeframes for receiving an outcome

We aim to process applications within 3 business days and are unlikely to be able to approve applications for travel the next day, as this does not allow sufficient time for us to process your application. We suggest that you do not book your flights unless your application is approved.

Note: We can only begin processing your application if you have provided the required evidence outlined on this page. Providing this evidence along with your application will assist us to process your application more quickly.

How are applications assessed?

Applications for an emergency allocation are prioritised according to their category. We will assess your application and supporting evidence to determine whether you meet the criteria. Category 1 applications will be given first priority, followed by Category 2.

What happens if my application is successful?

You will receive an email confirming you have been allocated a place in managed isolation and with the information on what to do next.

What can I do if my application is declined?

If you don’t agree with the outcome you can lodge a complaint.

How to make a complaint

Can a friend, family member or travel agent submit an Emergency Allocation Request on behalf of someone else?

Yes, but they must provide the same details on the application form which were used for registration in the Managed Isolation Accommodation System.

Is there a cost associated with applying?

No.

Will you cancel a returnee’s allocation in a managed isolation facility because someone else has a more urgent need?

No.

Where can I go for more help?

For help using the Managed Isolation Allocation System, contact the MIQ Service Centre

What to expect in managed isolation

How to make a complaint

Last updated: 08 December 2020