how the bubble work

How the Trans Tasman bubble will work

Apr 13, 2021 8:47:25 AM / by HealthCarePlus

Hurrah!!!  Quarantine-free travel will resume between New Zealand and Australia from 11.59pm on Sunday, April 18.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced that quarantine-free travel between New Zealand and Australia will be allowed, beginning April 19.

“Our team’s success in managing COVID-19 and keeping it out over the past 12 months now opens up the opportunity to reconnect with loved ones and resume Trans-Tasman travel”

Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern, media news conference, 6th April 2021.

The governments of the two countries have been able to work out the various issues for the travel bubble, paving the way for easier travel across the Tasman Sea.

However, it's very important to remember - it's flyer beware as insurance will not cover any COVID-19-related travel disruptions within the bubble, such as government-enforced lockdowns or border closures. This means that Kiwi travellers will have to contend with an elevated level of risk if they decide to travel to Australia and vice versa.

 

So how will it work

The bubble will implement a traffic-lights system, containing conditions governing whether quarantine-free travel can be continued, paused or suspended.

traffic light system

 

GREEN LIGHT

The green light, or Quarantine-Free Travel (QFT) Continue, will see flights to and from Australia likely to continue. It includes cases detected at the border and has a low risk of further transmission.

What should travellers do: 

  • understand and follow local health instructions including where required, applying for an       electronic entry pass for the State they are visiting prior to departure
  • keep a record of their movements
  • stay home or in their accommodation if they are feeling unwell
  • and get a Covid-19 test if they have any symptoms 

 

ORANGE LIGHT

The orange light, or QFT Pause, will see flights between the affected state or states paused for up to 72 hours. This will occur when there is a case of unknown source, but is most likely linked to the border.

What should travellers do:

  • follow instructions from the state they are in
  • get a Covid-19 test if they are feeling unwell
  • watch for updates from their airline and check their travel insurance.

Travellers returning to New Zealand from an affected state may be asked to get a pre-departure test before flying; self-isolate and get a Covid test and enter managed isolation upon arrival if they are returning from a state where travel has been paused.

 

RED LIGHT 

The red light, or QFT Suspend, will see a state enter a longer-term lockdown. This will occur when there are multiple cases of an unknown source. Flights to and from the affected state or states may be suspended for an extended period.

What should travellers do

  • follow instructions from the state they are in
  • get a Covid test if they are feeling unwell or are experiencing symptoms
  • watch for updates from their airline and check their travel insurance.

Those returning to New Zealand may be asked to get a pre-departure test before flying; self-isolate and get a Covid test and enter managed isolation upon their arrival in the country if they are returning from a state where travel has been suspended.

"People will need to plan for the possibility of having travel disrupted if there is an outbreak...Just as we have our alert level settings for managing cases in New Zealand, we will also now have a framework for managing New Zealanders in the event of an outbreak in Australia, which involves three possible scenarios: continue, pause, suspend." 

Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern, media news conference, 6th April 2021.

Passengers eligible to travel to or from New Zealand on a quarantine-free flight must not have had a positive Covid-19 test result in the previous 14-day period and must not be awaiting the results of a test taken during the 14-day period.

 

No one can predict when or how a new case might appear in any Australian state so when travelling to Australia, you’ll need to keep track of the COVID-19 situation and play your part in stopping any spread back to New Zealand.

 

For all situations: Be prepared

  • Check your travel insurance and ticket conditions.
  • You may need to stay longer. Be aware getting home is your responsibility.

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What you should do

  • Follow official advice.
  • Download a COVID-19 tracer app in the state you are in.
  • Keep an eye on Covid19.govt.nz.
But most of all...be safe and enjoy yourself and remember we have you covered with our great "Member-Only" deal for Travel Insurance 
 
 

Tags: Travel