Victoria’s coronavirus spike threatens to burst trans-Tasman travel bubble with New Zealand

The trans-Tasman travel bubble between Australia and New Zealand is under threat from the recent surge in Covid-19 cases in Victoria.

While plans for a trans-Tasman travel bubble had been formally approved by both nation’s leaders, no date had yet been set.

But New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Arden has indicated it could now be rolled out on a state-by-state level rather than federally.

“The test for us remains the same – and our test could apply state by state or at a federal level,” Ardern told Newstalk ZB.

“We are in a good place at the moment. Australia is really the one who has to make some calls about when they’ll be ready.”

Just last week, Tourism Minister Simon Birmingham was touting September as a possible start date.

But the sudden outbreak in Victoria has poured cold water on that scenario for the moment.

“Obviously, we won’t be doing that with Victoria while they are where they are,” Arden said.

“One of the criteria for us is that they need to be where we are in terms of there being no community transmission.”

The crisis in Victorian has also impacted the border reopening schedule across Australia, with NSW forced to close its border with Victoria to contain the community transmissions.