Getting forklift licence in NZSo you are in New Zealand you want to operate a forklift for employment. Every worker who operates forklift must be trained to get forklift licence. First you need a forklift operator certificate. You can get the certificate by undergoing necessary forklift training from Worksafe accredited training provider. Mainly there are two minimum requirement to operator forklift in this country, first, the forklift operator licence that you must have in possession and the F endorsement that you are certified to drive the truck in publicly accessible roads. The forklift licence is valid for three years while the F endorsement is valid as long as the driver’s license has not expired yet.

Select Your Location

Worksafe training providers can be found in may locations in NZ. In this blog, we’ve made it simplifier and easier for you to find one nearest to you. Just select the city where you below, you will see the list/directory of training providers. Aside from that, we also included some guides on how to take the forklift training and some answers to your most frequently-asked questions. Whether you are an absolute novice or an experienced operator, we have the guides for you.

Auckland  Napier-Hastings  New Plymouth 
 Wellington  Dunedin   Whangarei
Christchurch Palmerston North Invercargill
 Hamilton  Nelson  Whanganui
 Tauranga  Rotorua  Gisborne



5 Forklift Licence Categories You Can Apply For

1-Day Course Basic Training – This is suited for forklift operators who have good knowledge and skills driving the equipment but without formal Occupational Safety and Health certificate. This course is shorter obviously because the trainees have already the skills needed to become confident operating forklifts. The forklift the trainee is capable to operate will be indicated in the certificate.

2-Day Course Basic Training – This training course is longer compare to the previous one mainly because this is intended for trainees who have no prior experience and confidence operating forklifts who want to obtain beginner certificate. The course duration for absolute beginners may vary, it will depend on the size of the class, skill levels of the trainees and the type of trucks the trainees are intending to drive. The forklift the trainee is capable to operate will be indicated in the certificate. He will also be issued with forklift licence card as well.

Refresher Course – This course are for trainees whose certificate or licence have expired or soon to be expired. The forklift licence lasts only for three years after it was issued.

F- Endorsement Course – There is a dedicated training instructor who will conduct this course. F Endorsement is a separated course and are given to those individuals who have attained a certificate who are planning to operate the forklift on the road. After taking, the trainee will bring the certificate to the nearest AA or VTNZ office to apply for F endorsement in their driver’s licence. There’s a minimal application fee of $44.20 (as of this writing).

Supplemental Training Course – Since training course is specific to the type of forklift a trainee wanting to be trained on, trainee can undertake a supplemental course so that he can be qualified to operate other types of trucks. After the course, the forklift training the trainee finished taking will be added to the OSH certificate in addition to the training/s he had previously completed.


Related Regulations Governing Forklift Training in NZ

Health and Safety in Employment Act of 1992 (Approved Code of Practice)

Employers shall ensure that workers who are operating heavy machineries such as forklifts must be trained in the safe operation of it in the workplace. Therefore, if you are employed, it is your company who has the responsibility to provide you the training necessary.

It is a good practice for employers to regularly monitor the performance of the forklift operators to ensure that workers keep competency and compliance to the standard of this Act. If employer found depreciation of operators’ ability operating forklift, refresher course shall be given.

Individuals who are yet to be employed can take recognized training from training providers. These schools can be found in many locations in New Zealand. In this website, we supply that for you. Just click the menu where you are situated, the menu is at the left side of the screen (if you are logged in desktop) or at the bottom (if you are using mobile phone).

Registration of Forklift Instructor

Instructor who has train the trainer course and has teaching experience will be eligible to deliver the forklift training and conduct operator evaluation. If you plan to be an instructor, the Act has the requirements for aspirants.

Under this Act, the registration of forklift training instructor will go through the Occupational Safety and Health Service. The requirements are as follows:

  • Applicant had completed the curriculum and passed the evaluation of at least one forklift training course.
  • Applicant must submit resume reflecting relevant experience. This will serve as supporting document. Applicant can also attached certificates supporting what have written in the resume.
  • Applicant must show evidence that he had passed a forklift train-the-trainer course. If applicant doesn’t have such course under his belt, he can show proof that he has appropriate and related training experience to satisfy the Occupational Safety and Health Service.
  • Applicant must have teaching materials, interactive training aids and set of testing questionnaires to form part of the lesson plan. In addition to this, questionnaires and corresponding answer should be submitted for evaluation before it can be approved for use in the testing.
  • Applicant must have in possession valid and current New Zealand driver’s licence.

Individual who are applying to become a forklift training instructor will be given with letter of registration affirming that the application has been approved. The re-registration will be done every three years.


New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA)

When operating forklift on the road, NZTA said that someone who’s driving forklifts must be in possession of an (F) endorsement on his driver’s licence.

In addition to that, the operator must have the class of licence suitable for the weight of the equipment being operated on the road. There are only two classes, namely:

Class 1 – driver licence class of operator of forklifts weighing not more than 18,000 kilograms including its load.

Class 2 – licence class of operator driving forklifts weighing more than 18,000 kilograms including its load.

If you’re unsure if you need an F endorsement or not because you don’t know the definition of “on the road”, here’s the how the NZTA defined it. Click Here.  You can also make a phone call to 0800 822 422 or drop by at the nearest NZTA office to make a personal enquiry.

When applying for an F endorsement, you must have these requirements:

  • Accomplished Application for Endorsement DL19 form. You can download the form from here
  • You must supply proof that you’ve completed a forklift operator training course. You can show your training certificate as evidence. If you are not trained yet, you can find driver training organizations also in this website. Just select your location, you will find list of those training schools.
  • Your car driver’s licence or other two valid IDs. Here’s the list of identifications you can present, Click Here
  • The NZTA is strict about driver vision. Have your eyes examined by a doctor and get a certificate to show as proof of having good vision.
  • As of now, the application fee for F endorsement if $44, pay this amount.

These requirements will be submitted to the authorized licensing agent near your area for processing.

NZQA Unit Standard Assessments

10851 – Operate a powered industrial lift truck fitted with forks – Level 3 – 7 Credits

Trainees who have this unit standard are able to prove the safe operation powered industrial lift trucks can conduct pre-operational equipment checking and inspection and start up procedure prior to actual equipment operation. Operators who have this unit standard can also carry out forklift practical skills and parking and shutting down of the lift truck after operation.

10852 – Operate a powered industrial lift truck fitted with attachments – Level 3 – 3

Operators who have 10852 unit standard credits can exhibit the ability to operate forklift with attachment, can prepare the lift truck with attachment for operation, and can shut down the equipment.

Credits 18496 – Issued in conjunction with F Endorsement

Can display the knowledge and skill driving lift truck on a road, this unit is issued to operators who have with an F endorsement.

Forklift Operator Salary in NZ

In this country, forklift operator receives an average of NZ$18.22 per hour. The salary ranges from NZ$32,121 - NZ$66,331 including bonuses and depending on the experience and skills the operator has. Operator is commonly referred to as storeman or store person.

If you are able to work in night shifts, with good physical stamina, with good attitude toward the job, and if you have forklift operator certificate, then you can get easily hired. There are numerous job vacancies all around NZ.


To Conclude this

To drive a forklift, operator must have forklift licence in NZ before he can be permitted to drive the equipment. The Health and Safety in Employment Act 2002 Section 20 requires all drivers to be trained first. If you have no prior driving experience, you can take the training from a Worksafe registered provider. The training providers can be found on this website as well. We categorized it by location, choose the city where you are, you will see the available training providers in that area.

Get Certified Fast
Take Forklift Training Online

Get Started Here

Get Your Forklift Certificate Today


Universal Windshields & Canopies by National Forklift Covers