Tourists could be taxed to enter New Zealand

Tourists arriving in New Zealand may be charged up to $35 to enter the country under a Government proposed international visitor levy.

Some key outlining points around this are:

* Most international visitors entering New Zealand for 12 months or less would be charged a levy, approximately to be between $25 to $35

* There would be exemptions, most notably Australian citizens and permanent residents and people from most Pacific Island Forum countries

* The levy would be collected through visa fees and via the proposed Electronic Travel Authority process, also under consultation, for citizens of visa waiver countries

* The levy would collect around $57-80 million in its first year, depending on the rate, which is proposed to be split between tourism infrastructure and conservation activity.

The Government will begin a consultation period, ending on July 15, to see if a tourist tax could ease the cost burden on communities and ratepayers for tourism-related infrastructure.