Travellers to New Zealand from several Muslim-majority and African countries are finding it much harder than others to get visas for a Kiwi holiday, new immigration data released to the Herald shows.

In the past six months, 103 visitor visa applications were lodged from Iraq and 68 were declined. Six in 10 applicants from Afghanistan and more than half from Syria also failed to get visitor visas to New Zealand.

By contrast, only 5 per cent of those from China and 10 per cent of applications from the United States were turned down.

Professor Paul Spoonley, a Massey University immigration expert, says visa applicants from some countries are being scrutinised more than others. Photo / Dean Purcell
Professor Paul Spoonley, a Massey University immigration expert, says visa applicants from some countries are being scrutinised more than others. Photo / Dean Purcell

Immigration expert Professor Paul Spoonley said the

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VISITOR VISA DECLINE RATES