New Zealand Travel Bubble Announcement

Mattg

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Mattg

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Just arrived safely from New Zealand about an hour ago- so relieved. AKL airport completely dead and no lounge open. Very thorough examination of all paperwork including NZ proof of vaccination and Covid Test results. Overheard some other guests being in trouble as they only had the little NZ vaccination card rather then the official email/letter from the department of health and the latter seemed not to be good enough. Also a word of warning- they wanted to see the actual Covid test result from Labtest and not a letter from a doctor simply confirming your negative test.

Flight itself on AirNZ surprisingly uneventful. Business class was full to the last seat and I think the entire plane was from what I could tell. Unlike Qantas, no downgraded service but proper AirNZ international menu, meals and plenty of Champagne which we really enjoyed. Upon arrival, the usual useless announcement over the intercom by some Australian government person (we somehow have to keep them busy for all those tax payer $$$ it seems…) and, even more useless, a coloured A4 print out. Like the announcement, none of the really interesting questions where answered (like where to get the 24 hour Covid test) but you were rather told to wash your hands, expect the worst if you have a sore throat and so on.

At Sydney, Duty Free on arrival was closed and fenced off but otherwise not any different from normal. We were only asked whether we are vaccinated but this wasn’t even checked and out at the luggage belt we were. Somehow Sydney airport decided to save money on the air conditioning in the terminal and therefore everyone was sweating like hell. Our “Priority” tagged suitcases came off the belt last- good to know that it’s not only Qantas who doesn’t manage to get this right.

To our surprise- with no word it was mentioned that we need to get a 24 hour and then a 7 day test, let alone informed where to get those. Definitely no testing facility there at arrivals either so I wonder how many will actually bother to go and to them. Not there would be any chance to enforce this anyway unless it’s somehow connected to your Medicare which I highly doubt. We’ll go to some walk in testing clinic sometime tomorrow most likely, just to do the right thing.

I met up with @Berlin at AKL before the flight and don't really have much to add, other than to say that NSW now has way more freedom than Auckland and that I'm also glad and relieved to finally be home.

I second @Berlin's experience with all documents being thoroughly checked at AKL. Heck, I even needed to show my passport and ticket to an immigration officer just to be allowed inside the terminal!

The checks were not nearly as thorough in SYD, which I can verify did not have any air-conditioning running and was a sweat box. The only document they gave us when disembarking the plane was a generic federal government A4 sheet says that you may be directed to quarantine and please monitor for COVID-19 symptoms, etc. No mention of needing two COVID-19 tests after arrival.

The smart gates were open and the only interaction I had with a Border Force officer was between the smartgate and baggage carousel, when somebody asked me if I was vaccinated. I said "yes", and that was it. No checking of anything and I was out of the airport within 20 minutes.

I went to get my day 1 test yesterday morning at a public drive-through site and was the only person there other than the staff who were standing around chatting. The person who took my swab was shocked when I explained how difficult (and expensive) it was to get a COVID-19 test in New Zealand. Got my result overnight and of course it is negative.
 

justinbrett

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IF I make it to NZ in Jan I know I will have a really hard time getting a test to come back to Sydney if the bubble doesn't resume....I'm happy to get one leaving Sydney but it doesn't make sense to get one to come back.....I dunno :(

You probably shouldn‘t go then.
 

Mwenenzi

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That's good to hear. Where did you end up going to get your vax cert recognised?
For my NZ vax cert sent to my Melb GP practise who uploaded to AIR
 
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Berlin

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Just as a follow up- our (negative) test result came back after about 10 hours in the middle of the night. How’s that for efficiency! Compare that with NZ where even when paying extra, many people have to wait for two + days to receive their results.

Over there, the government preaches to us the whole time “to get tested” but then the labs seem to close up at 5pm neat every day. How’s that for bsitting an entire nation!
 

Croupier

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Got my results from Rako in Auckland within 8hrs for $260, non invasive saliva PCR.
Disgusting what the useless NZ government is pulling over these companies.
 

Berlin

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Yes it feels like the wheels have well and truly fallen off now.

My AKL family are losing their marbles at the government right now and they used to be very supportive…
Was the same here. I was a great Jacinda supporter and even gave her my one and only ever (I'd assume) vote that I had in NZ as a long term Aussie resident. But since the vaccines are there and plentiful, the tide has turned.

It feels as if the majority of Aucklanders who have done the right thing, enduring numerous lockdowns and getting vaccined, are now being held hostage for the few who don't get their jabs.

So it's not a surprise that many are now at the end of their tether. And now that I see first hand the difference in lifestyle between AKL and SYD, gosh I cannot blame them at all!
 

Mwenenzi

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Yes it feels like the wheels have well and truly fallen off now.

My AKL family are losing their marbles at the government right now and they used to be very supportive…
In the South Island a lot of Labour support has evaporated. Locked down but no community CV19 for close to a year .They would not want a by-election in the SI. Would be a gift to Nats-ACT
 

Berlin

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Big protests in Wellington against the NZ government, patience has started to run out…
But from what I can tell, that seems to be rather some crazy anti-vaxxers protesting here and hardly a mask in sight- judging from images on the media, that is. If they all just got their lazy bums up and get vaccined, then even under Jacinda the country could finally open up. So rather counter-productive, if you ask me...
 
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photo_2021-11-12_13-34-59.jpg

Well, I made it safely on board :). Also this happens to be one of AirNZ's few (only?) 787s with inflight WiFi.

My ATR flight from Wellington to Auckland landed 25 minutes late, but luckily I was in the last row and got off first. Made it to the other terminal and through customs and security theoretically just on time for boarding of NZ753 (AKL-SYD), however it turns out this service was 1 hour delayed anyway... all that rushing for nothing.
 

Berlin

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I think just one has it!

Was AKL busy?
We had Wifi on our flight last week too. Maybe they prioritise the Wifi equipped ones for the trans-Tasman 'escape' flights? Or maybe it's just pure coincidence...
 
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