Commercial Services

COVID-19 – 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.

Northland Pathology does not perform COVID-19 PCR testing – this is provided by Labtests in Auckland at their laboratory in Mount Wellington. Please note that samples received at Northland Pathology are couriered to Auckland, often overnight, consequently we advise travellers to arrange for testing in Auckland. To find information about Labtests’ pre-departure options please click here.

Read information about the testing process below.

Test Process

You can now book and pay online to get your pre-departure test with Labtests. Our new Test to Travel service is available at our Mt Wellington collection clinic.

Learn more or start your booking here >>

Travellers can also contact their doctor or medical practice to arrange pre-departure testing. If you are not registered with a doctor or your doctor does not provide pre-departure testing, you can use the Healthpoint website to locate a practice that anyone can access. If your test is collected by a doctor or medical practice, payment must be made directly to the medical practice for all associated costs of testing, including the laboratory analysis. Your test is sent to our laboratory for testing and results are electronically submitted back to your doctor or medical practice. It is up to your doctor to provide you with your results.

If you book and pay directly online using our Test to Travel service, you will receive your results in the form of a verified Travel Certificate, which are sent directly to you in an email.

Time-frame for Testing and Results

Pre-departure testing must be requested on or before 72 hours from when the result is required (not flight departure time). Testing must be requested with this advance notice to ensure that the sample can be tested and resulted ahead of flight departure.


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.

Travellers receiving their test from a doctor or medical practice must pay the whole fee directly to the medical practice. The cost of your test is set by the medical practice and includes our fee for the laboratory analysis.


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.


What happens to my swab?

Your COVID swab will be couriered from Whangarei to Labtests’ laboratory in Mount Wellington, Auckland. Here it will be tested using accredited COVID-19 PCR methods.

If you live outside of the Whangarei region, your swab will be couriered to Whangarei and then on to Auckland. Please contact Northland Pathology on 09 438 4243 to discuss meeting our defined courier schedules. Turnaround times can be improved if you take your sample directly to the testing laboratory: Labtests, Specimen Services, 37-41 Carbine Road, Mount Wellington, Auckland.

Monday to Saturday, 9am to 4pm Labtests endeavour to process samples for pre-departure testing on the day they are received at their laboratory, however they cannot guarantee results will be available in time to allow passenger departure.

How do I get my results?

Your results will be sent to your healthcare provider. Please complete our Request for Results form so that you can receive your result in an email. This e mail will be password protected. Your password will be given to when you hand your swab in at one of Northland Pathology’s rooms.


What happens if I can’t open my email?

Call the testing laboratory on 09 574 7399 between 8am and 7pm Monday to Friday.

Further Information

For further information on the laboratory testing process, please contact: info.commercial@aphg.co.nz. For other enquiries please contact admin@norpath.co.nz.