Border facilitation process for events

The Major Events Border Steering Group provides a targeted border facilitation service for events that meet its criteria.

Border facilitation criteria

To be eligible to apply for border facilitation, an event must meet some or all of the following criteria:

  • It will attract a large number of international participants and/or spectators, and has the potential to generate significant tourism opportunities for New Zealand.
  • It has the potential to raise New Zealand's international profile significantly, and to attract major sponsorships and international media coverage.
  • Organisers can demonstrate a high level of professional management and coordination.
  • It offers substantial sporting, cultural, social, economic or other benefits to New Zealand or New Zealanders.

What facilitation provides

For sports team members, managers, match officials, conference attendees or festival participants, the border facilitation service provides:

  • event-dedicated incoming lanes for immigration, customs and bio-security
  • immigration support for visa services and border facilitation
  • priority luggage transfer
  • airside meeting and greeting for teams, managers and VIPs
  • a special commemorative stamp for certain events.

Checklist for organisers

The Major Events Border Steering Group (MEBSG) has produced the advisory checklist below for event organisers. It provides guidance on the border facilitation process and accessing border services.

MEBSG Planning Advisory Checklist [DOC, 45 KB]


As a general rule, applications need to be received by the Major Events Border Steering Group at least 6 months before the event.

How to apply

If you are a Major Events Development Fund recipient you should discuss your application with your New Zealand Major Events Advisor first.

To apply for border facilitation for your event:

  1. Complete the application form. If you need help with the form, contact
  2. Major Events Border Facilitation Application Form [PDF, 123 KB] - Send the form to the New Zealand Major Events Coordinator for assessment and a response.
  3. The Major Events Border Steering Group (MEBSG) will assess the event against the criteria and in the context of any border-specific factors that may be present, or may potentially arise.
  4. We will then let you know if your application to MEBSG is successful.

If your application is approved

If your event is granted the MEBSG facilitation service, you enter into a full working partnership with the group and will need to sign a formal Letter of Agreement.

This commits your event to providing the border agencies with the mandatory border information in the timelines required, and to full cooperation in the following activities and processes.


You are required to:

  • meet the chair of the MEBSG to provide additional background and event details well in advance of the event
  • assign an event staff member to work with the Regional Border Coordinating Committee (RBCC)
  • agree to work proactively with the MEBSG in providing border information and communication in the timeframes required.

During the event

You need to:

  • attend all scheduled MEBSG meetings in Wellington, as required, to update and brief the border agencies on the event planning progress
  • participate in developing the MEBSG work programme to enable it to facilitate the event.

The assigned event RBCC liaison staff member is required to:

  • attend all the RBCC meetings as required
  • liaise closely with the RBCC to identify issues and help resolve problems as they arise
  • assist with implementing the MEBSG work programme
  • help coordinate the on-the-ground work.


You need to provide and present a post-event report to a full meeting of the MEGBG so that lessons learned can be incorporated into future work programmes.