Travel to visit veterans in hospital long-term

If you’re a New Zealand veteran in long-term hospital care, we may be able to help with visitors’ travel costs.

Veterans & visitors covered

Veterans covered

To get visitors’ travel funded, you must be:

  • in hospital for at least 28 days; and
  • a veteran covered by Scheme One.

To be covered by Scheme One, you must have:

  • Scheme One service (in Viet Nam, or before 1 April 1974); or
  • Scheme One entitlement (an entitlement already granted under Scheme One).

Visitors covered

To get help with their travel visiting you, visitors must be one of:

  • your spouse or partner
  • your child or dependant
  • someone in a special relationship with you, whose travel it would be reasonable for us to help with.

For visitors who’re not your partner, child or dependant, we’ll look at:

  • their relationship with you (for example, ex-partner; long-term friend)
  • support they give you (emotional, social, spiritual or economic)
  • your circumstances (for example, other relationships and support).

You choose whether we’ll consider a visitor’s claim, by signing the claim form. If you’re not legally able to make decisions:

  • your next of kin, or person with legal authority to make your decisions, can sign the claim for you
  • we’ll consider claims from your spouse, partner, children or dependants, where there’s no one with authority.

Costs covered

We’ll pay up to $2,000 in a 12-month period for your visitors’ travel-related costs. For example:

  • veteran, from country town, in hospital an hour’s drive away — we may help with partner’s costs driving between hospital and home
  • veteran with child living overseas  we may help with child’s airfare.

Costs must be actual and reasonable. We may help with the travel itself, accommodation and meals, and out-of-pocket costs.

Actual travel

Travelling costs we help with include fuel, public transport fares, and sometimes airfares.

We pay:

  • private vehicle — (for round trip) $0.62 per km for first 200km; then reducing to $0.27 (except in some exceptional situations)
  • public transport (bus, rail, ferry) — fare paid
  • other kinds of travel — what’s reasonable.

When calculating distance, we take the shortest road distance between start point and hospital. We use:

Meals and accommodation

We may be able to help with your visitors’ meal & accommodation costs.

We assess these case-by-case, focusing on what’s most helpful for you and your visitors (within the cap on travel-related costs).

Out-of-pocket costs

We’ll only reimburse out-of-pocket costs if they:

  • were directly linked to the travel (for example, parking or road toll fees)
  • couldn’t be avoided (except by paying more in other travel costs)
  • are supported by proof (for example, pay-and-display parking ticket).


Once costs are incurred, deadline for claiming them is last day of the following month. We must get the claim by that date.

Claim form (Visitors' Travel) [PDF, 262 KB] must be signed by visitor and veteran—or person with authority to act for veteran. We’ll also need (originals or certified copies):

  • proof (usually, admission/discharge sheet) of your stay in hospital for at least 28 days, unless the stay’s already on our records
  • itemised tickets/receipts, showing amounts paid, when they were paid, and what for.

Sometimes we may ask for further evidence, to verify the costs or their purpose.

More information

One-page summary

Related information

  • Children's Pension — support payment for child, where veteran has severe, service-related impairment
  • Children's Bursary — study payment for child, where veteran has severe, service-related impairment (or is on Veteran's Pension or Weekly Income Compensation)
  • Reviews — your rights if you disagree with our decision about whether you qualify
  • Complaints — your rights if you're unhappy with how we've administered your travel

Relevant legislation