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new zealand travelling with ashes

Carrying ashes on a Air New Zealand flight

Carrying ashes on a Air New Zealand flight

Travelling with ashes can be tricky it is best to get thing right from the start, so that you experience the minimum disruption.  If you intending to take cremation ashes on an Air New Zealand flight, this is what they say:

Air New Zealand does not have an actual policy as such in regards to the carriage of cremated human remains/ashes.

Our advice is that we do not stop our passengers from carrying urns with the cremated ashes of their loved ones. However, we do advise that the choice to carry such an item is at their discretion. We ask that such items be carried discreetly out of respect of our other passengers and we suggest that this is carried as cabin baggage to ensure safe handling.  We recommend that the urn is wrapped or boxed accordingly so that the contents do not escape during the journey. It is highly recommended that if the human remains had been cremated, that the appropriate documentation is also on hand as Customs and Border Security may wish to view this document.  We suggest that such an item is not carried in their checked baggage, as we cannot guarantee safe handling. Regrettably, checked baggage can get damaged, delayed or even lost during the travel process.

Thank you Air New Zealand for letting us know.

We would also advise that you speak to the embassy for the country of where you are travelling to, to see if there is likely to be any complications at that end.

Also make such you use a non-metallic urn that can be scanned by customs.

Here is our general advice on travelling with ashes, if you cannot physical travel with the ashes you may wish to consider using our courier / repatriation service.

Advice correct as of January 2016

11 thoughts on “Carrying ashes on a Air New Zealand flight

  1. Reply
    Troy - 31st January 2019

    Is there any cost to take my brothers ashes on in carry on luggage for Australia to new zealand

    1. Reply
      Richard Martin - 31st January 2019

      Usually not, but it is up to the airline in question. I am not aware of anyone ever being charged.

  2. Reply
    Susan Thomas - 13th September 2018

    I wish to notify Air NZ that I wish to carry my husband’s ashes to Christchurch on Monday 8th October.
    The ashes are sealed in a polystyrene sealed container and will be with my carry on bag.
    My flight details are Flight 549 leaving Auckland at 2.30pm on Monday 8th October
    Booking reference UGSHYH
    Yours faithfully,
    Susan Thomas.

    1. Reply
      Richard Martin - 13th September 2018

      Dear Susan
      You will need to contact the airline yourself directly – this is their contact page
      I hope you trip goes well.
      Kind regards

  3. Reply
    Brian - 1st July 2018

    What is required if we wish to break the journey for a couple of days in a country other than the intended destination. Thanks

    1. Reply
      Richard Martin - 2nd July 2018

      Dear Brian

      It is country dependant, but if you have the correct documentation – death and cremation certificate, it is usually simple.

      Kind regards

  4. Reply
    Selma Paul - 14th March 2018

    Can I take my dogs ashes with me on a plane to Aussie.

    1. Reply
      Richard Martin - 15th March 2018

      Dear Selma. This is the first time I have been asked this, I have had a look and I can’t see anything stopping you, I would carry them in hand luggage and contact the airline to tell them your intentions.

  5. Reply
    NameJessica - 12th October 2017

    Thank you for the information found it very useful.

  6. Reply
    Nick - 15th April 2017

    “Appropriate documentation” ?????

    1. Reply
      Richard - 18th April 2017

      Indeed not very helpful. A copy of the death and cremation certificate would be appropriate.

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