COVID-19: NEW Zealand exception to Australian International travel ban
In the clearest move yet towards a trans-Tasman travel bubble, Greg Hunt, Australia’s Health Minister has amended biosecurity laws to lift the ban on international travel – but only for New Zealand, as long as you have been in Australia for at least 14 days.
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Previously, Australians needed to apply for an exemption to the international travel ban before leaving the country for the land of the long white cloud – or anywhere else for that matter.
Currently, if you do head to New Zealand, you won’t need that exemption, but you will need to spend 14 days in quarantine on arrival. If you are in NZ and are travelling to Australia, then no Oz quarantine is required, although you will need to isolate for 14 days on your return to New Zealand.
When/If the trans-Tasman travel bubble comes into place, depending on which state you want to enter, there will be no quarantine for those entering, Australia or New Zealand.
Jacinda Ardern, New Zealand’s Prime Minister said in a post cabinet meeting press conference on Monday that she would have an announcement on the travel bubble on April 6, 2021. She also indicated that it was more likely to be a state by Australian state ‘bubble’ rather than a country wide bubble.
If you are planning trans-Tasman or international travel in the next 12 months – and who isn’t? – then this is a great way to earn Gold with Air New Zealand, and for getting gold recognition on 26 Star Alliance members from Singapore Airlines and Thai to Asiana, ANA and Lufthansa.
Air New Zealand fares appear significantly lower than Qantas at the moment, in most classes, so why not save some money, and match your status? You will also travel on either their 787 or brand new A321neo’s compared to Qantas A330’s where you might have to endure the flying kangaroo’s business suite product (ironic yuk!)
It seems like it’s status match nirvana at the moment.
It ain’t signed, sealed or delivered yet, but this is another move in the right direction. Agreements still need to be negotiated about what happens if/when an outbreak occurs (in either country), and ground rules for contact tracing and some other technical issues need to be negotiated. However, this is all heading in the right direction.
Both Australian and New Zealand tourist industries will be jubilant once the trans-Tasman bubble is in place.