The Department of Internal Affairs

Te Tari Taiwhenua | Department of Internal Affairs

Building a safe, prosperous and respected nation


High demand for 10-year passports

11 December 2015

A surge in demand for new 10-year passports has seen the Department of Internal Affairs’ New Zealand passport office receive 31,372 passport applications since 30 November.

That’s an increase of over 60 percent on normal December demand.

Deputy Chief Executive Service Delivery and Operations, Maria Robertson, says the department received almost 4,000 applications per day last week as Kiwi travellers got in quick for their new passports in time for the summer holidays.

“To receive that number consistently shows just how popular the return to 10-year passports has been. We’re seeing a slight drop in demand in the last few days, but we’re still far busier now than this time last year.”

Ms Robertson says that the number of passport applications received by the department had dropped in the months leading up to the re-introduction of adult passports with 10 years validity.

“We knew that people were holding onto their passport application in order to get a 10-year passport. We were pleased to receive around half of those applications in the first week and are thrilled that the majority have been made via our world class online renewal service.

Ms Robertson says that the department anticipated the volume of 10-year passport applications to peak ahead of the summer holidays and so planned the changeover meticulously to ensure no disruption for customers.

“We credit the uptake of online applications with the quick service we have been able to provide our customers, with the majority of applications received online being processed within 2.5 working days, well within our standard 10 working day service target.

“Around 60 percent of adult passport renewals have been made online, so our advice before the changeover to get in early and apply via our online passport renewal service really got through to people.”

For more information on 10-year passports visit


Interviews may be available on request.

Media contact: Sarah Wilcox +64 4 494 5722

New Zealand passports: the numbers

  • 75 percent of New Zealand citizens hold a passport.
  • New Zealand passport service received 31,372 passport applications between 30 Nov and 10 Dec 2015.
  • New Zealand passport service issued 27,145 passports between 30 Nov and 10 Dec 2015.
  • Average time to process online passport applications: 2.5 days
  • 58 percent of adult passport renewals completed via the online passport renewal service by Kiwis around the world
  • NZ Passports Service ranked in top 2 of Kiwis Count survey of government service quality in 2015
  • NZ passport is ranked in the top 10 most powerful passports in the world by