COVID-19 international pre-departure testing

COVID-19 international pre-departure testing

Most travellers must now have a negative pre-departure test result and supporting documentation to travel overseas. Testing can be accessed through our Test to Travel service as well as at various medical practices in the region. 24-hour turnaround times can only be guaranteed when using our Test to Travel service and are dependent on the demands of the public health response.

Read information about the testing process below.

Test Process

You can book and pay online to get your pre-departure test at our Newtown Test to Travel clinic – 145 Riddiford Street, Newtown, Wellington, 7 days a week. Click here to learn about opening hours and the available testing.

Learn more or start your booking here >>

  • The Test To Travel Centre offers 24/48 hour turnaround time and must be booked online at Test to Travel.
  • For passengers attending a Medical Practice, testing must occur at least 3 days before departure.
  • Clinical Details: must include relevant details on the test request form such as “Pre-Departure COVID-19 Test”, “Asymptomatic COVID test”, “Clearance”, etc.  This allows the laboratory to identify the purpose of testing.

Pre-departure COVID testing is not publicly funded and must be paid by the traveller.

If booking and paying directly through Test to Travel, the sample collection and laboratory analysis for a PCR test is a single-fee of $175 incl GST. See the Test to Travel website for other options and express fees.

Medical Practices have two payment options:

  • Option one – Patient to pay entire swabbing & testing fee to Medical Centre. Wellington SCL to invoice medical centre at end of the month to recover the lab testing fee.
  • Option two – Patient to pay the swab collection fee component to medical practice, then patient to deliver their swab (with lab form) and pay testing fee at one of the selected WSCL Collection Centres (Lower Hutt, Courtenay Place, Porirua, Lincoln Road, Paraparaumu, The Terrace). Note you cannot add on express service through this method.

Referrers will be guided through the process when they select the COVID test in the laboratory e-order system.

Refunds incur a $25 admin fee per person for any refunds processed.

No refunds will be given if you miss your appointment, or cancel your appointment within 24 hours.


By requesting COVID-19 testing individuals are providing their consent for results to be sent through to the national result repository, this is a Ministry of Health requirement for all notifiable diseases.

Information for Travellers

People registering for repatriation flights will be made aware of requirements around pre-departure testing. Information is being provided to the Ministry for Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT) for Air New Zealand to pass on to travellers and the Ministry of Health will make information available on its website.

Individuals can also be directed to look at publicly available information on their destination country’s entry requirements or be referred to the relevant country’s foreign representative to New Zealand.
A list of foreign representatives can be found here.

For further queries regarding COVID-19 exit testing please contact the Ministry of Health COVID-19 hub at COVID-19Response@health.govt.nz, information can also be found on the Ministry of Health Covid-19 homepage.


Our laboratory is an Accredited Medical Testing Laboratories (SARS-CoV-2). For more information visit the IANZ accreditation directory.

Further Information

For queries relating to the laboratory testing process please contact travelcentre@wellingtonscl.co.nz or phone 04 381 5900 EXTENSION 5