Mailing dates & times

Find out about our Critical Entry Time and when to send your letters, cards, parcels to colleagues so they get there on time.

Critical Entry Time (CET) for Direct Entry Mail

New Zealand Post has a Critical Entry Time (CET) for Direct Entry mail. This is the latest time that New Zealand Post can receive your mail at our International Mail Centre in order for it to be processed and released into our network on the same day.

Where your mail is received by New Zealand Post prior to CET (Monday to Friday, excluding weekends and public holidays) it will be processed same day; after this time mail will be processed the next working day.

The CET that will apply is dependent on the paperwork that you send your mail to New Zealand on. Where your mail is consigned to, and recovered by New Zealand Post on:

UPU recognised mail documentation (Direct Entry CN documents)

Product Aircraft Wheels Down Received International Mail Centre, Auckland* Border Agency Cleared
Direct Entry Letters 1200 1300 1400
Direct Entry Parcels 1200 1300 1400

Commercial Air Waybill (AWB)

Product Aircraft Wheels Down Received International Mail Centre, Auckland* Border Agency Cleared
Direct Entry Letters 1100 1300 1400
Direct Entry Parcels 1100 1300 1400

Where New Zealand Post does not do the recovery of your mail from the airline:

Delivery

Product Received International Mail Centre, Auckland* Border Agency Cleared
Direct Entry Letters 1300 1400
Direct Entry Parcels 1300 1400

CET for mail that arrives in New Zealand via sea may vary. Please check with your New Zealand Post representative for the CET that will apply for your mail.

* Where mail has been pre-cleared by border clearance agencies (Customs and the Ministry of Primary Industries) the Aircraft Wheels Down and Received International Mail Centre times can be extended by one hour, and mail can be Received by the International Mail Centre up to the published Border Agency Cleared times specified above.

For example:

  • If the aircraft lands at 1230, the mail is received at the IMC at 1330 and has been pre-cleared through Customs and MPI, your mail will be processed and released that day.
  • If the aircraft lands at 1230, the mail is received at the IMC at 1330 and has NOT been pre-cleared through Customs and MPI, your mail will be processed and released the next working day.
  • If the aircraft lands on a Friday at 1400, the mail will be processed and released on the next working day (Monday, excepting any public holidays).

Non-delivery dates

We deliver mail six days a week, Monday to Saturday. We don't deliver mail on a Sunday or on public holidays and over the following holiday periods:

Public holidays

Public holiday Dates
New Year holiday period 1, 2 and 3 January 2017
Waitangi Day 6 February 2017
Good Friday 14 April 2017
Easter Monday 17 April 2017
ANZAC Day 25 April 2017
Queen's Birthday 5 June 2017
Labour Day 23 October 2017
Christmas Day 25 December 2017
Boxing Day 26 December 2017

Anniversary dates

Province Date
Auckland 30 January 2017
Taranaki 13 March 2017
Hawke's Bay 20 October 2017
Wellington 23 January 2017
Marlborough 30 October 2017
Nelson 30 January 2017
Canterbury 17 November 2017
Canterbury (South) 25 September 2017
Westland 4 December 2017
Otago 20 March 2017
Southland 18 April 2017
Chatham Islands 27 November 2017

Delivery targets

Standard service delivery target times apply for each domestic and international sending service. These are set out in the Terms and Conditions for the relevant service.

However, your mail may be delayed if you are sending to rural, remote areas outside major cities or where the item is dutiable or held by Customs. New Zealand Post bears no responsibility for gifts sent overseas that may incur Customs duty or taxes - find out more about customs declarations & consignment notes.

If you’re sending overseas, as we do not directly control all parts of the delivery chain, we cannot guarantee your item will always reach its destination within the delivery target time.