More than 300 flights will be operated this month to bring home Kiwis stranded abroad.
Now that New Zealand has reopened its borders to vaccinated citizens and permanent residents based in Australia, the country’s flag carrier has stepped up the frequency of services on eight Trans-Tasman routes connecting Auckland and Christchurch with several major Australian cities.
In a statement, Air New Zealand Chief Customer and Sales Officer Leanne Geraghty said, “We expect to have more than 300 flights available between New Zealand and Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, and the Gold Coast for the month of March alone. Once we have a clearer view as to the level of demand, we will adjust the schedule accordingly, but we’re confident there will be seats available for those who need them.”
In line with government requirements, all customers will need to provide evidence of a negative PCR test within 48 hours of travel or a supervised rapid antigen test result no more than 24 hours before departure. They’ll also be required to show proof of full vaccination at check-in; a policy that came into effect on February 1 bans unvaccinated travelers aged 18 and over (with no medical exemption) from any of Air New Zealand’s international flights.
While Kiwis in Australia can return home without needing to register for a space in managed isolation facilities through a lottery system, they must complete a period of home isolation upon arrival. The current rule is 10 days, but the expectation is that it will be shortened to seven days once the country moves to the second phase of its reopening on March 13, when New Zealanders and eligible travelers arriving from the rest of the world will no longer have to quarantine in a hotel.
Here is Air New Zealand’s Trans-Tasman flight schedule until at least March 20:
|Auckland–Brisbane||Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, Sunday|
|Auckland–Gold Coast||Wednesday, Friday, Sunday|
|Auckland–Sydney||Daily, with twice-daily flights on Friday and Sunday|
|Christchurch–Brisbane||Monday, Thursday, Saturday|
|Christchurch–Melbourne||Wednesday, Friday, Sunday|
|Christchurch–Sydney||Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday|
More information here.