Except when flown with royal or vice-regal flags, the New Zealand Flag should always be given the Position of Honour in New Zealand. Within New Zealand, the New Zealand Flag takes precedence over all other national flags and house flags. However, international practice forbids the display of the flag of one nation above that of another in time of peace.
When the New Zealand Flag is flown with the flags of other nations, each flag should be the same size and should fly from a separate flagpole of the same height. A house flag may fly beneath the New Zealand Flag on the same flagpole.
The New Zealand Flag may be displayed in a variety of ways:
From a flagpole on a rope
The first quarter should be uppermost and as close as possible to the top of the mast, tight with the flagpole. In a line of national and house flags, the New Zealand Flag should be flown in the position of honour, to the left when you’re facing the flags.
From left to right, flags should be in this order: the New Zealand Flag, flags of other nations in alphabetical order of country, house flags. In special circumstances, flags of Commonwealth countries may take precedence over other foreign flags. Commonwealth flags should also be in alphabetical order.
For two or more flagpoles parallel to the building line, the New Zealand Flag should be the first flag on the left when you’re looking at the main entrance.
When there are two or more flagpoles on the forecourt of a building at an angle to the main entrance, the New Zealand Flag should be flown on the outermost pole when flagpoles are to the left of the main entrance, and on the innermost pole when flagpoles are to the right.
Within a circle of flags
In a semi-circle of flags representing a number of nations, the New Zealand Flag should be in the centre.
In an enclosed circle of flags representing a number of nations, the New Zealand Flag should be flown on the flagpole immediately opposite the main entrance to the venue.
From a flagpole with yardarm and gaff
When displayed with the flag of another nation on a flagpole fitted with a yardarm, the New Zealand Flag should be on the left side of the yardarm as viewed from the front. If the flagpole is fitted with a gaff, the New Zealand Flag should be flown from the gaff and above any other flag.
The first quarter of the New Zealand Flag should be in the position nearest the top of the pike. When carried, the pike should be held straight up so that the flag can hang free. The New Zealand Flag should always lead in a single file of flags.
When two or more flags are carried side by side, the New Zealand Flag takes the position of honour on the right hand end of the line facing the direction of movement.
With crossed flags
Whenever crossed with the flag of another nation, the New Zealand Flag should be on the left as you’re looking at it, its staff in front of that of the other flag.
Suspended vertically above a street
The first quarter should face north in an east-west street, and face east in a north-south street, so it is on your left as you’re looking at it when facing east or south respectively.
Flat against a surface
Against a wall or flat surface or hung in a window, the first quarter should be in the top left position.
On a speaker’s platform
Displayed from a staff on a speaker’s platform, the New Zealand Flag should be on the right hand side of the speaker.
As a pall for a casket at funerals
Any New Zealand citizen may have the New Zealand flag on their coffin. The first quarter should be draped over the left shoulder of the deceased. The flag should be removed before the casket is lowered into the grave or, at a crematorium, immediately after the committal.
As a covering for a statue, monument, or plaque at an unveiling ceremony
The New Zealand Flag should be used for this purpose when the occasion has national significance.
As car flags
The New Zealand Flag is usually only flown from a car carrying a Minister of the Crown, a New Zealand Ambassador when overseas, and the Chief of Defence Force.
As table flags
Double-sided miniature flags are suitable for use at conferences and restaurants, on tables and desks. The Flag should be attached to a mast and stand.
With the national Māori flag
For information on flying the national Māori Flag with the New Zealand Flag, see the national Māori flag page.
Folding the New Zealand Flag
See our Answers to Common Questions page.
Updated on 11th May 2023