Importing goods to New Zealand can be challenging, especially if you are new to the importing process. Numerous regulations exist; the New Zealand Customs Service [NZCS] requirements can be overwhelming, and ignorance can be costly. However, on the other hand, importing goods to New Zealand can be a smooth and profitable venture when you have the right information and guidance from a customs broker like Platinum®.

Platinum® have put together this comprehensive guide to give you expert importing advice before you venture into importing. Platinum® have experience in working with you and your overseas supplier before your goods are shipped to New Zealand; this includes the logistics and shipping process, having your goods customs pre-cleared through both the New Zealand Customs Service [NZCS] and the Ministry for Primary Industries [MPI] and the final stage of arranging the goods to be delivered to your site.

Understand the import regulations and restrictions in New Zealand   

Every country has specific import regulations and restrictions that importers must comply with when importing goods. Some products could be entirely prohibited, some require special permits, and most goods require no permits. In New Zealand, for instance, the Ministry of Primary Industries (MPI) regulates various imports for biosecurity reasons, and any breach can be costly. Researching and understanding the requirements for your goods before you even commit to purchasing them is vital.

Choose an experienced freight forwarder  

The success of your importing business relies heavily on the freight forwarder that you choose to move your goods from overseas to New Zealand. An experienced freight forwarder like Platinum® knows the issues that must be addressed before they are even discussed. The freight forwarder will arrange to have the goods shipped, monitored during transit, pre-cleared through the NZCS and the MPI before arrival and then delivered to you. Platinum® works with your overseas supplier and yourself to ensure all the paperwork is correct before the goods depart.

Understand the total landed cost  

The total landed cost, in many circumstances, is never known until you receive your goods. Platinum® always aims to provide you with detailed costing before you even purchase the goods. It allows you to calculate the costs of purchasing, shipping, import duty [if any], import GST, airline terminal charges, port charges and delivery. Understanding the total landed cost is crucial as it may make purchasing the goods locally more feasible. This landed costing will ensure that you are able to achieve your targeted profit margin. Platinum® can provide comprehensive quotes to help you determine your total landed cost-efficiently.

Monitor your supply chain  

An efficient supply chain is the backbone of any successful importing business. We believe that the element of monitoring is key to any importation. 

When the supply chain is monitored, this means that you know exactly where your goods are at any time and when you can expect to have the goods at your location. Supply chain monitoring assists you in planning your staff, warehouse space, inventory management [re-ordering] and product delivery. Platinum® provides you with supply chain updates so that you can make decisions for your business.

Stay up to date with the latest industry trends and standards  

As the ‘importing world’ regularly changes, it pays to stay informed of new developments, such as Free Trade Agreements that New Zealand implement. Regulations, taxes, and shipping costs change and failure to keep up to date can be costly. Platinum® monitors industry costs and notifies you when these costs are changing; at the moment, it is important to monitor New Zealand port charges and wharfage costs. 


This comprehensive guide was created to assist you in navigating the New Zealand importing process like a well-seasoned importer. In conclusion, we cannot recommend enough of the research that needs to be undertaken before you even purchase the goods. We recommend that you undertake that research, rely upon an experienced freight forwarder, understand the total landed costs, monitor your supply chain and stay updated with industry trends. 

Platinum® New Zealand is here to assist you in achieving success with your importing business. Platinum® provides expert importing advice and best-practice freight forwarding solutions tailored to your business. Contact Platinum® today for detailed costing.