COVID-19: Requesting proof of vaccination for overseas travel

If you need written confirmation of your COVID-19 vaccination for international travel you can request a letter from the Ministry of Health.

Last updated: 13 September 2021

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Vaccination cards

Normally, you would be given a purple vaccination card after your first vaccination appointment. Some vaccination sites aren’t currently providing these at Levels 2, 3, and 4 in order to be contactless.

These cards are not official proof of vaccination. They are appointment reminder cards – so you know when your second vaccination appointment is.

If you need formal proof of your COVID-19 vaccination for international travel, you can request a vaccination confirmation letter from the Ministry of Health.

Vaccination confirmation letters

A vaccination letter from the Ministry of Health will include:

  • your name
  • your date of birth
  • your NHI number
  • the name of the vaccine you had
  • the batch number
  • the number of doses you’ve received and dates administered.

The letter includes the personal information we hold about your vaccination in the COVID Immunisation Register (CIR), and your personal details which are linked to your National Health Index (NHI) number.

For some people, the name in your letter might not match the name in your passport.

If your legal name is different to what’s attached to your NHI number, you can ask your health care provider to update your NHI information. You’ll need to show your healthcare provider identification.

The letter will not include your passport number.

About NHI numbers

What we record in the CIR

We’re unable to guarantee that other countries will recognise your COVID-19 vaccination letter as formal proof of vaccination.

You will also need to follow all the usual immigration processes for any country you wish to enter. For some countries, you will also need to take additional steps, such as having a negative pre-departure test.

How to request a vaccination letter

To request a vaccination letter for overseas travel, fill out the proof of COVID-19 vaccination form.

Requests are prioritised based on your overseas travel departure date.

If information is missing or incomplete, we can’t process your request.

If you’d prefer, you can also post your request to:

Privacy Request
National Contact Centre
Ministry of Health
PO Box 3015

Please include your:

  • full name
  • date of birth
  • address
  • phone number
  • NHI number (if known)
  • date of departure for overseas travel.

How to find your NHI number

Vaccination confirmation letters are sent to you via email or post. Please specify how you would like us to send it to you when you submit your request.

How long it takes

We aim to respond to all requests within 20 working days. However, there is a heavy demand for COVID-19 vaccine-related enquiries at the moment, so it may take longer than 20 days for us to respond.

If you’ve been granted early vaccine access

If you’ve successfully applied for an early vaccination, we will arrange for you to receive a letter confirming your vaccination status after you’ve had both doses. You do not need to apply for a letter yourself.

Applying for an early vaccine for travel overseas

Travelling overseas after vaccination

Globally, standards for COVID-19 vaccination certificates are still being established, so countries may have different requirements.

You should check the requirements of the country you’re travelling to and find out what proof of vaccination, if any, is needed.

Developing digital vaccination certificates

We’re working on new digital certificates that will record your COVID-19 health status. This will include vaccination and test results.

The certificates will be designed to support international travel. One way to access these in the future will be through an online portal that is being developed.

We expect digital certificates will be available later this year.

Travelling to New Zealand

At this stage, the Pfizer vaccine is the only COVID-19 vaccine approved for use in New Zealand. However, regardless of what vaccine you received overseas or in New Zealand, restrictions still apply at New Zealand’s border.

This means that unless you’re travelling from a quarantine-free location, you’ll still need to go through managed isolation on arrival to New Zealand. You may also be required to have a pre-departure test.

Border closures and exceptions – Immigration NZ

The Government is continuing to look at how we can reopen our borders safely, and the rollout of effective vaccinations internationally and in New Zealand will be key to when and how this will happen.

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