What is a New Zealand Culturally Arranged Marriage Visitor Visa?

The Culturally Arranged Marriage Visa is for people from other countries who have agreed to marry a New Zealand citizen or resident. With this visa, they can come to New Zealand and live with their spouse.


The main purpose is to honour cultural traditions where marriages are typically arranged and allow the couple to reside together in New Zealand.

Visa Charges (NZ Immigration)

Starts from NZD $211

Processing Time

Around 6 weeks for 80% of applications

Length of Stay

Upto 3 months

Note: The cost and availability of New Zealand visas can change because of decisions made by the New Zealand Immigration authorities.

Reach out to us today, to find out how we can assist you in reaching your immigration goals.

What You Need to Know Before Applying

Vital information you should be aware of if interested in applying to a Culturally Arranged Marriage Visitor Visa.

For Your Wedding

You’re allowed to travel to New Zealand for your marriage ceremony.

After Marriage Abroad

This Visa permits you to enter New Zealand after getting married outside the country.

Applying for Partnership Visa

Later, you can also seek a partnership visa once you start living with your spouse in New Zealand.

Wedding Timeframe

Keep in mind that if you arrive in New Zealand for marriage, your wedding must happen within three months of your arrival.

Explaining Cultural Arrangement Practices

A few points to show that Cultural Arranged Marriages are recognised by New Zealand.

Cultural Understanding

Culturally arranged marriages are deeply rooted in tradition and often involve formal agreements between families. This practice is respected in many cultures worldwide and is acknowledged by New Zealand’s immigration policies.

Diverse Practices

These arrangements can differ widely among cultures. They may involve formal family agreements, matchmaking processes, or ceremonies conducted in the applicant’s home country. The crucial aspect is that the marriage aligns with traditional customs rather than being an independent decision by the couple.

Recognition in New Zealand

New Zealand immigration laws recognise these cultural practices and offer a pathway for partners in such marriages to come together in New Zealand, honoring the authenticity of cultural traditions.

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Criteria for the Visa

A comprehensive list of criteria needed for your application to be a good fit to obtain the Cultural Arrange Marriage Visitor Visa.

Marriage Legitimacy

The marriage should be legal according to New Zealand’s laws and seen as genuine and strong.

Arrangement Details

The marriage arrangement must have happened before either person came to New Zealand. Proof of this cultural arrangement, including information from both families, is needed.


The partner in New Zealand must support the application and fulfill specific requirements.

Health and Character

Applicants need to meet health and character standards established by New Zealand immigration authorities.

What is the Application Process?

Here’s the simplified process for getting a Culturally Arranged Marriage Visitor Visa in New Zealand.

Step 1: Getting Ready

Gather essential documents confirming your marriage’s legality, cultural arrangement, and your partner’s eligibility.

Step 2: Applying

Submit your application online or through paperwork, including all required documents.

Step 3: Review Process

Immigration NZ will review your application to ensure it meets the visa requirements.

Step 4: Visa Outcome

If approved, you’ll receive a visa, usually allowing you to stay for up to 12 months.

Culturally Arranged Marriage Visitor Visa Process at ICL

At ICL Immigration, we know that getting a Culturally Arranged Marriage Visitor Visa in New Zealand can be tricky. Our experienced immigration consultants are here to help make your journey easy and successful. Here’s a detailed look at how we can support you in getting your Culturally Arranged Marriage Visitor Visa:

Step 1: Initial Consultation

– Understand Your Story: We’ll chat about how your marriage was arranged and if it meets the visa criteria.
– Check Eligibility: We’ll see if your marriage qualifies for the Culturally Arranged Marriage Visa in New Zealand.

Step 2: Service Agreement

– Agreement Signing: We’ll go over and sign a contract that lays out what we’ll do, fees, and what you need to do.
– Clear Expectations: We’ll make sure you know what to expect and understand each step of the process.

Step 3: Preparing Your Application

– Document Gathering: We’ll help you collect all the needed papers like marriage certificates and proof of cultural arrangements.
– Form Assistance: We’ll guide you through filling out the visa form correctly and completely.

Step 4: Sending Your Application

– Submitting Your Application: We’ll send in your complete application with all documents to Immigration New Zealand.
– Confirmation: You’ll get a confirmation from us and a copy of your application for your records.

Step 5:  Case Officer Assistance

– Communicating for You: Once Immigration NZ assigns a case officer, we’ll handle all the talks for you.
– Answering Questions: If they need more info, we’ll work with you to provide what’s needed fast.

Step 6:  Awaiting Decision

– Keeping Track: We’ll keep an eye on your application and keep you updated on any changes.
– Staying Patient: While we wait for Immigration NZ’s decision, we’re here to offer support and guidance.

Step 7:  Visa Approval and Support

– Approved Notification: As soon as your visa’s approved, we’ll let you know and help with next steps.
– After-Approval Guidance: We’ll give you advice on getting ready for your move to New Zealand and what to expect when you arrive.


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What constitutes a ‘culturally arranged marriage’ under this visa?

A marriage arranged according to recognized cultural traditions where the arrangement took place before either party lived in New Zealand.

Can I work in New Zealand on this visa?

Yes, holders of a Culturally Arranged Marriage Visa are allowed to work in New Zealand.

How long can I stay in New Zealand on this visa?

The visa typically allows a stay up to 12 months.

What if my marriage arrangement was made while my partner was visiting overseas?

The arrangement should have been made before either party settled in New Zealand; this will be a crucial factor in your application.

What kind of evidence is required to prove a culturally arranged marriage?

Evidence includes marriage certificates, statements from both families, and any relevant cultural details pertaining to the arrangement.

Does my New Zealand partner need to meet specific requirements?

Yes, your partner must be eligible to sponsor your application and meet character and financial requirements.

Can this visa lead to residency?

After living together in New Zealand, you may be eligible to apply for a partnership-based residence visa.

What happens if my visa application is declined?

You can address the reasons for decline in a new application or seek an appeal, depending on the circumstances.

Can I include my children on this visa?

Dependent children can be included in the application, subject to meeting certain criteria.

Is it necessary to have been married in a formal ceremony?

The marriage needs to be legally recognized, though it can be a traditional or cultural ceremony.

How is a culturally arranged marriage defined for the purpose of this visa?

It refers to a marriage that follows traditional cultural practices where the arrangement is made by families or community leaders.

Is a legally registered marriage necessary for this visa?

Yes, the marriage must be legally recognized, either in New Zealand or in the country where the marriage took place.

What if my arranged marriage doesn’t have a formal ceremony?

As long as the marriage is legally recognized and follows cultural traditions, it can be considered for this visa.

Can I apply for this visa if I’ve met my spouse online?

The key factor is whether the marriage was arranged following traditional cultural practices, not where you first met.

How does Immigration NZ verify a culturally arranged marriage?

Through documentation provided, such as marriage certificates, statements from cultural or religious leaders, and evidence from both families.

What happens if my cultural marriage practices are not widely known?

You should provide detailed information about your cultural practices as part of your application to assist Immigration NZ in understanding your unique situation.

Can same-sex couples apply for this visa?

Yes, if their culturally arranged marriage is legally recognized and meets all other visa criteria.

Are there any age requirements for this visa?

Both parties must meet the legal age requirement for marriage in New Zealand.

What if I am still legally married to someone else?

You must be legally free to marry. Being married to another person may disqualify you from this visa.

Can cultural marriage traditions from any country be considered?

Yes, as long as the marriage is legally recognized and adheres to the cultural traditions of that country.

Disclaimer: The information provided is subject to change based on New Zealand government policies. For the most current information, please refer to Immigration New Zealand or contact ICL Immigration for updated guidance.

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