Australia has reached an agreement for a small travel bubble that would allow New Zealand individuals to travel to New South Wales and the Northern Territory, with flights scheduled to start in a fortnight across the Tasman.
Earlier today, Prime Minister Scott Morrison spoke with his New Zealand counterpart, Jacinda Ardern, agreeing that from October 16, New Zealanders will visit jurisdictions.
Ms Ardern, however, has yet to agree to accept Australians into New Zealand, and has warned Kiwis eager to visit Australia that upon their return they will still have to quarantine.
Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack, announcing the news, said stage 1 of a travel zone with New Zealand will see quarantine-free one-way travel to NSW and the NT.
“This is the first stage in what we hope to see as a trans-Tasman bubble between the two countries, not just that state and that territory,” he said.
“This will allow New Zealanders and other residents in New Zealand who have not been in an area designated as a COVID-19 hotspot in New Zealand in the preceding 14 days to travel quarantine-free.”
Mr. McCormack said the ball was in court of New Zealand as to whether Australians would be allowed in without quarantine, or New Zealanders returning from their Australian visit.
“We have resisted that because we want to keep New Zealanders safe,” she said.
“We will not open the borders for quarantine-free travel with Australia until it is safe to do so, because doing it too early risks losing all of the freedoms that we already have in our economy.”