Following the Victorian Government’s decision to extend their lockdown restrictions, New Zealand’s Quarantine Free Travel pause with Victoria will also be extended for a further six days, with a further review due on Wednesday 9 June.
We acknowledge this extension will cause further inconvenience to those who have already had their travel plans disrupted, and have been prevented from returning for almost two weeks. New Zealanders will be wanting some certainty around when they can start to plan to come home.
The Government has announced plans for the carefully managed commencement of return ‘green flights’ from Melbourne to New Zealand, from Tuesday 8 June at 11:59pm.
Travel on such flights will be limited to New Zealand citizens, Australian citizens normally resident in New Zealand, people with humanitarian exemptions and critical workers who are stranded in Victoria.
Officials are continuing to work on details of how seats will be allocated if demand for these flights exceeds supply. These details will be provided on the COVID-19 website in coming days.
Anyone boarding these flights will need to have a negative pre-departure test taken less than 72 hours before departure.
The Nau Mai Rā contact information and health declaration must also be completed before departure to confirm travellers have not been at a location of interest.
New Zealand health officials have conducted an assessment of the public health risk and have determined that by 9 June, the risk to public health of people returning from Melbourne will be low.
The commencement of flights recognises that by then, people currently in Victoria will have completed 14 days in lockdown. This reflects the equivalent time which might have been spent in managed isolation in New Zealand.