Image: Archi Banal
Image: Archi Banal

IRLDecember 2, 2021

A very simple guide to sorting out My Vaccine Pass

Image: Archi Banal
Image: Archi Banal

Vaccine passes are about to become our ticket to semi-normality. If you’ve left downloading My Vaccine Pass until the eleventh hour, Dylan Reeve shows you how to get it done for IRL

From tomorrow, you will need to present My Vaccine Pass in order to get the haircut you’re so desperately overdue for (maybe?) before a big dinner at that favourite restaurant you haven’t stepped foot in for months. If you’ve left this to the last minute, let’s take this opportunity to get you set up.

What follows is the process for signing up online to receive your My Vaccine Pass. To do this, you’ll need an official New Zealand or Australian government identity document and your own email address.

If that’s not going to work for you, then you can call the helpline on 0800 222 478 or visit any local pharmacy that’s providing vaccinations – they can provide you with a physical copy of your vaccine pass. 

Step 1: Get Vaccinated

In order to receive My Vaccine Pass, you need to be vaccinated. Ideally, you’ve already done this; if not, you should book a vaccination — it’s free, safe and there’s probably a spot available today. Unless you can time travel, you’ll need to pause at this stage, then come back for Step 2 in a few weeks when you’ve had two doses. 

Step 2: Visit My Covid Record

In order to request your My Vaccine Pass, you have to get set up on My Covid Record, and to login to My Covid Record, you need to have a My Health Account (the naming is a nightmare, we know).

If you already have a My Health Account then hit the Log in button and jump to Step 4. Otherwise, carry on and get set up with My Health Account. 

Step 3: Sign Up for My Health Account

Hit the Sign up button and you’ll be presented with two options, Sign up with email or RealMe.

The important thing here is do not use RealMe unless you are absolutely sure you have a fully functional and verified RealMe account already. If there are any issues with your RealMe identity, you will need to resolve them separately before you can continue, which will add time and complexity to the process.

To sign up with email, you need a unique email address, and it should be one you will have access to in the future. Probably best not to use a work email address or one you share with anyone else. 

Enter your email address and you’ll be sent an email with a unique code – if you don’t receive it straight away, make sure you check your spam or junk folder in case it got accidentally caught up. Once you enter that code you have to pick a password. 

You’re in! You’ve got a My Health Account.

Step 4: Verify your identity

To connect your account to your real identity and your health records, you need to provide details from an official identity document. 

You will need a New Zealand driver licence, birth certificate, passport or citizenship certificate, or an Australian passport or birth certificate.

If you don’t have any of these documents, you can’t continue online and will need to call the Ministry of Health helpline on 0800 222 478 to complete the process.

The identity confirmation process will ask for specific information from your identity documents and should be able to then connect your account to your Ministry of Health records.

Step 5: Request your My Vaccine Pass

Once you’ve connected your account to your NHI data, you should see a prompt on the My Covid Record site to request your pass.

When you click the Request pass or certificate button, you will be presented with two options, the My Vaccine Pass or an International Travel Vaccination Certificate. Unless you have a big OE planned, the first option is what you’re looking for.

From there you just need to double check the details that will appear on your pass, and hit the Request pass button. 

Step 6: Receive your My Vaccine Pass

That’s it. You’ve done it all. Now you just have to wait for the pass to land in your inbox (again, check spam or junk folders if it hasn’t turned up in a little while).

The email will include a PDF you can print, screenshot, save to your device, or all of the above.

There are also a couple of buttons in the email that will allow you to add the certificate to your phone’s secure wallet. Click on whichever one is right for your device (Apple Wallet for an iPhone, Google Pay for Android phones). This will save a version of the pass on your phone. 

Step 7: Get amongst it

Put on your mask, pop your phone or printed-out pass in your pocket and head on out to your favourite restaurant or bar. 

When you arrive, you should be asked to show your vaccine pass. Think of it like showing an e-ticket when going to a concert. Open your phone’s wallet or pull up the PDF before you get to the door, ready to show. 

Current guidelines say that businesses must sight your pass, so you can show them your phone or a print out. They may also choose to use the government’s verifier app to make sure your pass is real and valid. Some businesses may also ask to see another form of ID in order to make sure your pass is actually yours.

A little inconvenient for sure, but definitely better than lockdown or rampant Covid infections.

Public Interest Journalism funded through NZ On Air.

Mad Chapman, Editor
The Spinoff has covered the news that matters in 2021, most recently the delta outbreak. Help us continue this coverage, and so much more, by supporting The Spinoff Members.Madeleine Chapman, EditorJoin Members

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