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Your Questions (FAQs)

Most questions are answered in the appropriate sections below. If you have questions regarding any of our services or want to request additional information, please contact NZ Relay.
  1. What is New Zealand Relay (NZ Relay) service?

    NZ Relay service involves a Relay Assistant (RA) serving as the "ears and voice" on phone calls between a Deaf, hearing impaired, Deafblind, or speech impaired user, and a hearing person.

    Relay Assistants convey messages from one party to another. They will read aloud words typed by a Deaf user on a TTY, or via the Internet, and relay the hearing person’s spoken response by typing back to the NZ Relay user. They are also there to assist with clarifications when verbal communication (i.e. speech impaired user) between both parties is occurring.
  2. Is NZ Relay open 24 hours / 365 days?

    Yes. NZ Relay is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year except for the Video- Assisted Speech to Speech service, which operates from Monday to Friday 7.30am - 9pm, and Saturday 9am - 5pm, closed public holidays; and the Video Relay Service which operates from Monday to Friday, 9am-5pm, closed public holidays. CapTel is open 7am – 10pm daily.
  3. Are there any charges for using NZ Relay?

    No. There is no call surcharge for relay assistance. Local and national landline calls are free of charge.

    Calls between a landline and a cellular mobile phone, long distance overseas calls, and calls to a premium number (0900) are chargeable. You must pre-register to make chargeable calls. Click here for more information.

    Note: You must still pay for your telephone line rental.
  4. What are the NZ Relay Toll-Free access numbers?

    Local and National Calls*:
    TTY: 0800 4 711 711
    Voice: 0800 4 712 712

    For cellular/mobile callers within NZ*:
    TTY: (09) 237 8897
    Voice: (09) 237 8898

    For International callers dialing into NZ*:
    TTY: +64 9 237 8897
    Voice: +64 9 237 8898

    Help Desk:
    TTY: 0800 4 713 713
    Voice: 0800 4 715 715

    *Note: You must pre-register to make chargeable calls.
  5. What is the Voice Carry-Over service?

    Voice Carry-Over (VCO) enables Deaf or hearing impaired people, who prefer to use their own voice, to speak directly to the party they are calling. The Relay Assistant (RA) will type the voice responses back to the VCO user who reads the typed message on a TTY screen. Click here for more information.
  6. What is Hearing Carry-Over service?

    Hearing Carry-Over (HCO) enables people who are speech impaired to use their hearing abilities to listen directly to the other party. The Relay Assistant (RA) voices the typed responses from the HCO user to the hearing person, who then speaks directly to the HCO user without RA interaction. Click here for more information.
  7. Are there any limitations to number of calls or length of time through NZ Relay?

    No. There are no limitations on the number of calls or length of time through NZ Relay.
  8. How are emergency calls handled through NZ Relay?

    Do not use relay for emergency services. Police receive all emergency text (TTY and FAX) calls for Police, Fire and Ambulance services and coordinate these calls to the appropriate service. In case of an emergency, please contact the Deaf emergency call centre directly:

    Deaf Emergency Fax: 0800 16 16 10
    Deaf Emergency: TTY 0800 16 16 16
    Voice: 111
    Or text your emergency to 111. Refer to http://www.police.govt.nz/111-txt for more information.

    If the NZ Relay call centre receives a request for a TTY emergency call, the NZ Relay call centre will attempt to dial ‘111’ and relay the conversation between the caller and the emergency centre personnel.
  9. Can I place NZ Relay calls long distance overseas?

    Yes. You can make international (long distance overseas) calls through NZ Relay. Please have the country code, city code and telephone number ready for the Relay Assistant. You must pre-register to make international calls. Click here for more information.
  10. Can I make a NZ Relay call from overseas?

    Yes. You can make a NZ Relay call from overseas to a New Zealand telephone number by dialing the NZ Relay international number to reach the NZ Relay call centre.

    TTY: +64 9 237 8897
    Voice: +64 9 237 8898
  11. Is speech to Speech available through NZ Relay?

    Yes. Speech to Speech (STS) is a permanent service and operates Monday to Friday 7.30am – 9:00pm and Saturday 9:00am – 5:00pm.
  12. Can I use Internet to access NZ Relay?

    Yes. You can access the NZ Internet Relay by clicking on 'Start Internet Relay' on the top of this window.
  13. What is Video Relay Service?

    The Video Relay Service (VRS) enables Deaf people to communicate in New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL) with hearing people via video telephony with a Video Interpreter through the Internet or Video Phone. At NZ Relay all the Video Interpreters (VI) are qualified with a Diploma in New Zealand Sign Language/English Interpreting as a minimum and are members of the Sign Language Interpreters Association of New Zealand (SLIANZ). The Video Interpreters will interpret/relay the signed conversation over the phone, in real time, to the hearing caller.
  14. Can I use a mobile phone to access NZ Relay?

    Yes. A voice user of a cellular mobile telephone can make a relay call. A TTY User can access the NZ Relay system from certain models of mobile telephones.

    To reach the NZ Relay call centre from a mobile telephone the voice user must dial either of the following national numbers. Cellular toll charges are applicable.

    TTY: +64 9 237 8897
    Voice: +64 9 237 8898

    You can also use your smartphone (or Tablet) to make a relay call, anytime and from anywhere, 24 hours a day. The only thing you will need to do is download the TexMee application from either the Appstore and Google Playstore.

    For more information, click here.
  15. When I reach an answering machine, can I leave a message?

    Yes. When you reach an answering machine, you may leave a message with the NZ Relay number and your telephone number for the other party to call back.
  16. What are the Terms and Conditions of NZ Relay?

    NZ Relay is for communications with people who are Deaf, hearing impaired, Deafblind, or speech impaired. Only genuine calls through NZ Relay are allowed.

    The NZ Relay provider reserves the right to interrupt or disconnect any relay call that is not genuine.

    For more information, click here.
  17. What is the role of the NZ Relay Assistant?

    The role of the Relay Assistant (RA) is to voice everything you type, and type everything that is heard. The RA serves as a "live human telephone wire” who serves as a link between Voice Users and people who are Deaf, hearing impaired, Deafblind or speech impaired that are using Text phones (TTYs) or the Internet Relay service.
  18. How can I be sure that all NZ Relay calls are kept confidential?

    All NZ Relay calls are private and confidential. When you hang up, your entire conversation is then erased. No records of conversations are kept or stored.

    Prior to employment, every NZ Relay Assistant (RA) undergoes a Police check, signs a Relay Centre Code of Ethical Behaviour agreement and undergoes "Relay Assistant Code of Ethics" training.
  19. How can I connect to NZ Relay using V18? (V18 is a communication code like Baudot and some TTYs use V18 and not Baudot)

    1. Dial NZ Relay's TTY number (08004 711711)
    2. The NZ Relay centre will answer with "HELLO GA"
    3. You will need to press the space bar a couple of times
    4. The NZ Relay centre will then answer with "HELLO NEW ZEALAND RELAY ASSISTANT ---- GA"
    5. Make a relay call just like you would with a Baudot TTY.

Please use the TexMee App for Relay services on mobile devices.

Because if you're on a mobile device and wish to use relay services, you must use the TexMee App.

If you don't have the TexMee app installed, click on the download button below to get started.
To learn more about TexMee and how to use it, please click here.