While planning our upcoming trip to New Zealand and doing lots of research I came across a part that said I would need: Chest X-ray Certificate INZ 1096. The reason for this is is if you've spent 3 months in total over the last 5 years in a country where there is a high risk for tuberculosis, you MUST send an updated chest x-ray proving you are free of TB. To view a list of the countries click here. Seeing as i've spent nearly 8 I needed the certificate.
One problem for most people is the cost. At least for Americans and our pathetic less than ideal health system, a chest X-Ray would generally not be covered by insurance, especially for travel reasons. Besides that, the out of pocket cost would end up being a few hundred dollars at very the least. If you are in Asia however, the cost is usually incredibly low. I paid $43 out the door for everything. They even put it in an envelope so I would be able to mail it.
The other tricky part is that you are required to go to one of the doctors/hospitals that are officially recognized by New Zealand Immigration. If you live in a big city you might be in luck, but if not you may have to travel a bit of a distance to get to one. In our case we had to travel to Bangkok. Its over 825km from Phuket and can add some costs for transportation and getting a hotel for a day or two. If you are in Thailand, and are about to do what we did I hope this guide helps.
We arrived in the Bangkok Bus Terminal #2 which is the current hub of nearly all intercity travel in Thailand. We opted to take the BTS (Bangkok Mass Transit System) instead of paying one of the touts at the terminal 1000 baht which was a total rip off. I'm really glad we did as we got to see the Queens Park and didn't stay on Khao San Road again.
Bangkok #2 Bus Terminal
To do this, walk out of the bus station and head south. After about 1km you will find the entrance of the Wachira Benthat Park . If you'd rather see the biggest market in S.E. Asia walk another .7km or so to Chatuchak Market. From there you should see the Skytrain in the distance to the east. Walk east and cross a fish street (you'll see what I mean) and another small park and you'll be at the Mo Chit Station which is the first/last stop of the BTS line.
Wachira Benthat Park:
BTS Train Station:
It cost 42 baht (just over a dollar) to ride the Skytrain 13 stops south all the way to Thong Lo station. From there you will be about 2 blocks from Samitivej Sukhumvit Hospital. We decided to take a taxi as it was raining and nearly 35˚C. The ride should cost about 60 baht and take no more than 5 minutes with traffic.
Once you are at the Hospital you actually need to head to the third floor on Building 2. Building 2 is on your right if you arrive by Taxi. Head down the hall and show them your INZ 1096 form which you must have printed and filled out before checking into the hospital. When we arrived, the nurse quickly recognized it and asked me to fill out another patient form. It was even in English!!
A short wait and I was asked to fill out even more information at another desk with another nurse who spoke decent English. Then she took me to another room and took my vitals. After this she walked us to the first floor of the other building and into the back towards the main X-Ray area. You'll wait some more with others doing something similar and after your x-ray they will hand you one of these forms (below).
Mine had a schedule I needed to follow which included lunch. Great idea! They've got a pretty good cafe if you don't want to walk too far. I had the Arizona Wrap and it was heavenly.
After about an hour, head back up to the second floor of Building 2 and pay for your X-Ray. The cashier is hidden in the Maternity/Childs area. Why, I will never know.
Next, go back up to the third floor and count how many kilo-calories you've burned. (Its written on each stair) and pick up your X-Ray. It should be in an envelope with the Hospitals Seal on the back. Do not open it or NZ Immigration won't accept it.
If you want to send it off from Bangkok there is a Post Office literally under the Thong Lo station of the BTS line. Next door to the post office is a packing service who will wrap it up for you like the image below.
From there, it'll cost about 900 baht for EMS (Express Mail Service) to New Zealand. The Thai Post Service even provides a nifty tracking feature on their website so you can see where it is. I was told it would arrive within 5-7 business days and that was it. Keep in mind New Zealand Immigration won't accept it if it arrives after 15 days so its best to just pay for the express mail.
My parcel arrived in New Zealand after three days. On the tracking site it read "Addressee has P.O. Box" and I proceeded to freak out. The only reason is that sometimes this status means it wouldn't fit inside the recipients mailbox and on occasion could be sent back. Luckily it wasn't and a couple days later it said it was received. A couple days after that I logged onto the immigration site to check the status and it said approved! Easy as that!
As far as the Working Holiday Scheme/Visa goes, once approved you have one year to enter the country. From there you will have twelve months to work and see New Zealand, re-entering as much as you please. (Multiple entry visa). After that if you are under the age of 35 you can apply for another year working visa. If you are from the UK you are lucky and get a 24 month visa instead of a 12.