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Australia and New Zealand Plan a “Trans-Tasman Travel Bubble”

Australia and New Zealand Plan a “Trans-Tasman Travel Bubble”

Well, this is new: On Tuesday, Australia and New Zealand are planning a “travel bubble,” or corridor that will allow free travel between the two countries. If the travel bubble is successful, it could grow to include more countries that have few cases of the coronavirus.

No date has been given for the Trans-Tasman Travel Bubble, but it is scheduled to begin after domestic Australian flights resume.

Currently, Australia and New Zealand have severely restricted international travel to prevent the spread of the coronavirus which includes a 14-day quarantine on international arrivals.

The plan includes “guidelines to allow, on an exceptional basis, essential cross-border travel for purposes such as maintaining global supply chains, including essential business travel.”

Both countries have been successful in containing the virus. If this program is successful, it may be expanded to include Canada and other Asian countries.

Opening up travel between the two countries would provide a huge advantage, economically. New Zealand is the second-largest source of tourists heading into Australia. Australia is the largest source of tourists for New Zealand.

“The broader reality is the global travel market is in a very bad way. In our part of the world and around the trans-Tasman route it makes clear sense that a travel bubble can work in our neck of the woods,” said Simon Westaway, executive director at the Australian Tourism Industry Council.

“It’s a positive we weren’t expecting up till now and hopefully it can be established as a model to open part by part the international network when various countries have a control on Covid-19,” said Qantas’ chief executive, Alan Joyce.

“If the New Zealand bubble idea gets traction and that we’re comfortable with that and that seems like it’s working well, then a similar approach could be done with markets where countries have Covid-19 under control.”


[Image: Flickr]

View Comments (6)


  1. edgewood49

    May 5, 2020 at 5:23 pm

    more to follow. It’s going to be a few years before we see open travel whatever thats going to look like

  2. RabbitohRob


    May 6, 2020 at 4:47 am

    I think NZ want this more than Australia does. It’s funny how ‘swings-and- roundabouts’ work. In the last 12 months the very young inexperienced female NZ PM has called Australia bullies in relation to the Pacific. And she did it again when claiming Australia was bullying for exporting NZ criminals in Australia back to NZ where they belong. Now they need Australia, well they need our money, the Kiwis are behaving like limp-wristed sycophants. I hope the National Cabinet of Australia tells them to bugger-off for a few months and Australia can show the wannabe 7th state of Australia what real bullies look like. Let me assure you Kiwis, you want this more than we need it in Australia. Aussie Aussie Aussie, Oi Oi, Oi.

  3. Jamester

    May 6, 2020 at 8:19 am

    This is not new, it has been in the works for at least 2-3 weeks and NZ media has been covering it. Just remember the bubble will NOT initially cover leisure travelers, but it will eventually be, once Australia is more “in the clear” and process/procedure to screen travelers are in place (which is not yet). When it starts covering leisure travelers, we will see NZ’s tourism industry improve (as Australia is the #1 supplier of visitors to NZ – followed by China).

  4. Lussac

    May 6, 2020 at 3:24 pm

    I’ve been “visiting” NZ for 7 months now (wasn’t supposed to be that long!) and travelling around I’ve met many, many nationalities (Brits, Swiss, Germans, Austrians, French, Dutch, Canadians, Americans and of course Chinese and many more) but can’t recall ever talking to or meeting any Australians. What I don’t understand is that NZ wants to open a corridor to Oz because they reckon that 60% of tourists come from Australia and another large slice from within NZ but from my own experience this must be just wishful thinking and to base getting the tourist industry back on it’s feet after isolating NZ from the rest of the world is just nuts. Queenstown is just a ghost town now and please don’t tell me that it’s economy was based on Oz tourists, well 60% of it anyway, it’s just not believable.

  5. EDIflyer

    May 7, 2020 at 5:00 am

    Sounds very sensible. Also surprised to see comments re ‘young and inexperienced female’ when talking about Jacinda Ardern – she has been internationally recognised as handling this crisis exceptionally well and communicating clearly. What her age or sex have to do with it is lost on me.

  6. Gizzabreak

    May 7, 2020 at 12:30 pm

    @Rabbit O’Rob … Excellent, well researched and intelligent comment. Your final sentence is perhaps the most succinct summary of a contributor’s literary abilities I have ever had the privilege to read … but agree 100% re the repatriated criminals. By the way, how’s the World Rugby Rankings going in the ‘superior’ country? Hmm, NZ 2nd, Oz 7th, oh dear. Last completed Supercar Championship? Kiwis 1st, 2nd, 4th, oh dear. Cricket ODI Rankings? NZ 2nd, Oz 4th … is there no end to Oz superiority?

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