Hopes rise of NZ travel bubble before the year’s end

Hopes for a trans-Tasman travel bubble are rising again with November touted as a possible start date.

A tourism task force comprising Tourism Australia, the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Flight Centre and other industry leaders has stated its aims of hard state borders coming down by December 1 and flights between some Australian cities and New Zealand starting as early as next month.

Sydney is flagged as the first city which would open up to visitors from New Zealand followed by Adelaide.

“I would see South Australia, along with New South Wales, in the front end of that arrangement because they’ve taken their borders down,” Prime Minister Scott Morrison said.

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said it was “possible” trans-Tasman travel could happen by December under a state-by-state approach that was likely to begin with NSW.

It is then expected Australians will be able to travel to New Zealand without needing to quarantine in January or February.