International travel will be the last industry to return to normal – or a new normal – after the coronavirus pandemic, but residents in Australia and New Zealand may be able to pack their bags for a trip across the Tasman long before the rest of the world opens its borders.
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern will sit in on Tuesday’s National Cabinet meeting where the possibility of a “trans-Tasman bubble” will be discussed which would allow travel between the two countries, an exception to the strict travel measures imposed by nations all around the world.
Side note: these are the people you’ll run into at the airport. Post continues below video.
It’s an ambitious plan buoyed by our geography, far from other nations and without land borders, and our successes in getting COVID-19 under control.
The New Zealand ski season is an Aussie travel favourite, and Kiwis are always keen for some Queensland sun – so should we be dusting off our suitcases? Here’s what we know about the ‘trans-Tasman bubble’.
Current border restrictions.
On March 14, Ardern announced all travellers entering NZ were required to quarantine for 14 days. She said at the time it was the “widest-ranging and toughest border restrictions of any country in the world,” though soon after many other countries announced similarly strict measures.
The following day, Morrison announced the same would apply to travellers entering Australia.
Australia has since tightened its border rules to allow only residents and citizens and their families in with a 14-day mandatory hotel quarantine, and New Zealand has banned any non-resident or citizen from entering. Kiwis who return are also placed in a 14-day hotel quarantine.