BREAKING: Overseas travel date announced for Aussies
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has just made a huge announcement, telling Aussies they will be able to fly to their nation without having to quarantine in less than just two weeks.
Appearing in front of media on Tuesday afternoon, the New Zealand leader announced that the trans-Tasman bubble would be going ahead after more than a year of closed international borders.
She said that the new travel opportunity across the ditch will start at 11.59 pm April 18.
Airlines including Qantas and Air New Zealand will be allowed to take bookings from April 19.
“Managing COVID and keeping it out of New Zealand over the last year has been a massive team effort,” she said from the Beehive in Wellington.
“One sacrifice that has been particularly hard for many to bear over the past year has not been able to see friends and family who live in Australia.
“Cabinet was presented with advice today that conditions for opening up quarantine-free travel with Australia had been met.
“The Director-General of Health considers the risk of transmission of COVID-19 from Australia to New Zealand to now be low, and that quarantine-free travel would be safe to commence.”
Ms Ardern went on to sat that the bubble was a world first, and an “important step” in post-pandemic recovery.
“This is an important step forward in our COVID response and represents an arrangement I do not believe we have seen in any other part of the world,” she explained.
“That is, safely opening up international travel to another country while continuing to pursue a strategy of elimination and a commitment to keeping the virus out.”
People who travel from New Zealand are able to fly to most parts of Australia without having to undergo mandatory quarantine.
However, the trans-Tasman bubble allows people from both countries to be exempt from quarantine restrictions.
Ms Ardern made clear that there would be scenarios where the bubble might burst, including if there were to be an outbreak in an Australian city.
She also said it would depend on a number of circumstances, including the number of cases and contacts, or whether the source of the virus could be linked or not.
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