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COVID-19: New Zealand Travel bubble – back in business

COVID-19: New Zealand Travel bubble – back in business

The one-way travel bubble between New Zealand and Australia, which exempted arrivals from the usual 14 days quarantine was suspended back on 15 February. Today it has been re-instated for those travelling from New Zealand to Australia.

Those travelling between Australia and New Zealand still need to complete 14 days quarantine in New Zealand.


Flights out of New Zealand were suspended following new community coronavirus cases emerging in Auckland related to hotel quarantine. Suspension of the ‘green zone’ has been a regular occurrence each time there are potential community transmission cases in New Zealand.

Current rules

The current rules for travel between New Zealand and Australia require a negative PCR test.

‘All passengers travelling from New Zealand on a ‘green zone’ flight, who have been in Auckland for any period (with exception of the airport for travel) over the last 14-days, will be required to provide evidence at check-in of a negative PCR test conducted within 72 hours of the scheduled flight departure.’

statement from the Australian Department of Health
Milford Sound, South Island, New Zealand

2PAXfly Takeout

The aviation industry has a difficult road ahead when it comes to sustainability. It’s going to require a relative revolution in technology, with ‘electric planes’ or hydrogen planes, or some form of jet engine that doesn’t require a carbon based fuel. And that is going to require the development of an alternative to jet engines probably.

It’s a big ask. It will take time to develop.

This move to home grown and manufactured SAF is a first step – maybe even a baby step in a very long road of innovation. In the long run, US$200 million won’t even touch the sides.

We don’t seem any closer to a two-way bubble. My suspicion is that any thoughts of this arrangement have been superseded by the distribution of the vaccine. I think we are unlikely to see any further significant movement on travel bubbles let alone international borders until vaccine rates are approaching the lower end of herd immunity, which seems to be agreed at around 60%. That means October 2021 or later, I think.

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