The Internal Affairs Minister plans to introduce legislation to increase the period for which passports will be valid, to ensure people get the full five years of use.
Chris Tremain says he plans to introduce the Passport Amendment Bill and have the changes in place by the end of the year.
He says because some countries require visitors to have six months left before their passport expires, some passports are renewed early meaning the full five years is not actually used.
Mr Tremain says under the new legislation, people renewing passports will be able to have up to nine months of time remaining on their old passport transferred to their new one.
He says he has ruled out bringing back 10 year validity for passports, citing security issues as the main reason.