Two-way Trans-Tasman Bubble starting 19 April 2021

justinbrett

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True, perhaps the best word is "discourage" it rather than "prevent" it. Although one could argue there are already substantial disincentives to such actions. For one person a trip AKL-SIN-MEL could to cost up to $6000 including hotel quarantine (and that's using Scoot to travel SIN-MEL @$1400 one way). Go further the costs could end up being $10-15000....

I think they could easily just get rid of the travel ban and replace it with an outwards traveller declaration: "I understand I am choosing to leave Australia and may not be able to return in a timely manner. I will be liable to pay for hotel quarantine etc etc"

I'm really quite annoyed that the health minister said today the ban may stay in place even after everybody is vaccinated. Complete overreach for a so called free country.
 

henrus

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True, perhaps the best word is "discourage" it rather than "prevent" it.
I'm willing to bet something will be done quick smart about this. There are people willing to spend that sort of money just to take two weeks away and it's going to become a big problem, the question is just when not if.

My opinion here may be controversial but we need to move to a voucher system like what NZ has done for arrivals. The current system of whoever pays the most gets home is quite disgusting and it should instead be based on who needs to come back most. I'm also a bit sick of the Australian's overseas saying they're stranded.

There was one in the news the other day saying they came back from the UK to Australia because it was "safer" here but now they feel with the vax roll out in the UK it's "safer" over there. All that's really unfair on those who are genuinely wanting to return and not because it's "safer" but instead things like job contracts ending or visas expiring.
 

henrus

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I think they could easily just get rid of the travel ban and replace it with an outwards traveller declaration: "I understand I am choosing to leave Australia and may not be able to return in a timely manner. I will be liable to pay for hotel quarantine etc etc"
I'd actually support this, however as above if they did something like this they'd need to make sure those actually trying to come home were able to do so and not outbid by those going on a holiday and willing to spend $10,000 on a one-way business class ticket into Australia.
 

dajop

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My opinion here may be controversial but we need to move to a voucher system like what NZ has done for arrivals.

Will it be fixed though? NZ takes in around 2300 into HQ each week, that's per capita almost double what Australia take. Singapore takes in per capita 4-5 times the number Australia takes. Way way too many staff involved in Australia's HQ to increase the numbers, if they want to do that need to look at technology, but that's just a bit too innovative for any Australian government.

The voucher system might work, but it would be wise to have late releases of vouchers into the system for those whose circumstances change suddenly.

It also might stop selfish folk (like myself), from making multiple trips, if this continues into 2023, I am currently planning to come back at six-monthly intervals (my job allows it), so I can see my mother and the extended family of siblings, nieces and nephews semi-regularly. Next trip will likely be June (after prior trip in December/January). My selfish attitude that it is the governments problem - not my problem - that I might be taking others places (Scoot has a decent lick of seats available, so I'm not sure they'd be going to "stranded" Aussies anyway given they are involved in very few connections), and think it is absolutely ridiculous that I have to take up a valuable quarantine slot, when the risk of my and fellow Australian residents of Singapore quarantining at home would be miniscule given our lack of community spread here. But thems the rules.
 

henrus

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This is getting a bit off-topic but here we go anyway...
Will it be fixed though?
It won't completely fix the system but it'll fix some of the complaints about the current system. The two biggest complaints (that I see in the media) are lack of guarantee and cost.

Vouchers make the gov more accountable for the allocations instead of the airlines and ensure they get used. It should also bring the cost of flights done more (this is what happened in NZ). The other is the cost of the two weeks (which in my opinion should be made higher so it's not run at a loss).

absolutely ridiculous that I have to take up a valuable quarantine slot, when the risk of my and fellow Australian residents of Singapore quarantining at home would be miniscule given our lack of community spread here. But thems the rules.

100% agree with you and I wouldn't call what you're doing selfish either. Many pacific island countries and some like Singapore should be added as a safe travel country as the risk is quite low. The new model which South Australia rolled (for domestic risky arrivals) out is testing on day 1, 5 and 13 plus a requirement not to enter any high-risk settings (health care/large events etc). This type of model could be used in the future to let some international arrivals in without quarantine provided the overall risk is low.

Because the airlines are allocated a number of allowed passengers (which they don't have to use) you end up with some like Scoot operating SIN-MEL with oneway flights for $1000.
Fares have come down significantly back into Australia and I can see flights from the US and Europe into Australia for ~$2000 so hopefully it shows that demand is slowing.

Finally, one of the smartest things I've seen so far was the use of the new connect@changi program (if you haven't heard about it google it). Basically, it allows you to transit Singapore on separate tickets with the one catch is that you need to have a business meeting lined up in Singapore. Instead of paying huge amounts for direct LAX-SYD, you could instead fly LAX-SIN ~$700, visit the connect at changi (~$380 for 24 hours, it's billed per hour) and then fly on a Scoot flight down to Australia for ~$1000. The same could also work from other parts of the world but obviously you've just got to line up a business meeting first.
 

Lynda2475

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I think they could easily just get rid of the travel ban and replace it with an outwards traveller declaration: "I understand I am choosing to leave Australia and may not be able to return in a timely manner. I will be liable to pay for hotel quarantine etc etc"

and perhaps ask for the traveller to pre-pay for their HQ before departure (if they plan to return in under 2 years or whatever timeframe they think it will be before free travel resumes). That way no debt recovery problems for state govenrments, and they can refund any pre-payments not used if rules relax before they retrun.

You can waive pre-payment for anyone who left Australia before Covid-19 was declared a pandemic and had registered to return. Anyone leaving now or in the future cant claim they didnt know they need to do HQ, so shoudl be prepared to pre-pay.
 

Beano

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Someone is listening to us or at least re-thinking the situation. All good for us travellers.
 

Berlin

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That's not too shabby. I'm using google flights so prices are in AUD but at just $181 to upgrade it's quite a good deal (also comes with 60 extra status credits). Sadly the other direction (OOL-AKL) doesn't match. It seems to be ~5 May to 30 October on sale.
Just booked yet another trip AKL-OOL, that fare is just too good.

Does anyone know how this will work in OOL, never taken an international flight from there before. Will you just enter through the normal security and then move onto a separate international gate or is there a proper "international"part of the terminal? Can I use the domestic QF lounge or is that out of the question? Is there Duty Free?
 
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Now I am just wondering if we get proper Champagne on our flights (fells good to be back to 1st World Problems!) and whether Qantas will open their International lounges in time, as Air NZ seems to be doing.

I was at the media event at the Qantas First Lounge in Sydney this morning and now have answers to these questions for you.

Yes, Qantas will have champagne in business class on its trans-Tasman flights, starting from Monday. It will most likely be leftover stock that was on-hand pre-covid, but it will be proper champagne. However, there won't be amenity kits, blankets or pillows available for now.

And as has been posted elsewhere, the Qantas international lounges will reopen in SYD, MEL & BNE and in New Zealand, Qantas customers will have access to the Air New Zealand lounges for now.

I've also been told that upgrading the Qantas lounges in AKL is a priority. There is no current timeline (so don't expect anything this year), but after the AKL refurbishment, it will be a combined Business/First lounge similar to the ones in BNE or LHR.
 

henrus

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Does anyone know how this will work in OOL, never taken an international flight from there before. Will you just enter through the normal security and then move onto a separate international gate or is there a proper "international"part of the terminal? Can I use the domestic QF lounge or is that out of the question? Is there Duty Free?
On departure you go through normal domestic security and have access to the domestic section (including Qantas club) on the northern end (or right) after security towards the end there is a 2nd screening point where bags are re-screened this time mainly looking for liquids over 100mls. There was also a full body scanner they randomly selected people to go through however this may have been removed as the domestic screening now had them at random. Once through 2nd security there are outbound smart gates and a duty free shop (same company/prices as Sydney with a slightly smaller range), a set of toilets and an over priced cafe.

Upon arrival you're funneled through a duty free store and then onto smartgates (they've only got 4 so it's slow) followed by baggage claim and out an exit door that's seperate to the domestic exit.
Post automatically merged:

and in New Zealand, Qantas customers will have access to the Air New Zealand lounges for now.
I wonder if this also included those on Jetstar operated services?
 

Berlin

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I was at the media event at the Qantas First Lounge in Sydney this morning and now have answers to these questions for you.

Yes, Qantas will have champagne in business class on its trans-Tasman flights, starting from Monday. It will most likely be leftover stock that was on-hand pre-covid, but it will be proper champagne. However, there won't be amenity kits, blankets or pillows available for now.

And as has been posted elsewhere, the Qantas international lounges will reopen in SYD, MEL & BNE and in New Zealand, Qantas customers will have access to the Air New Zealand lounges for now.

I've also been told that upgrading the Qantas lounges in AKL is a priority. There is no current timeline (so don't expect anything this year), but after the AKL refurbishment, it will be a combined Business/First lounge similar to the ones in BNE or LHR.
All awesome news, especially the Auckland lounge. Should have been "a priority" years ago if you ask me but I am glad to hear that it hasn't been forgotten. And I expected a similar setup to Brissy to be honest!
 

Berlin

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On departure you go through normal domestic security and have access to the domestic section (including Qantas club) on the northern end (or right) after security towards the end there is a 2nd screening point where bags are re-screened this time mainly looking for liquids over 100mls.
Mhm. Qantas' website still says that the Qantas club in Coolangatta is closed. Hoping that'll change by the time those international flights start- otherwise it's a lovely seat on the floor of the Heinemann Duty Free shop :rolleyes:
 

henrus

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Mhm. Qantas' website still says that the Qantas club in Coolangatta is closed
It had opened but closed a few weeks ago. Perhaps it's something to do with the gold coast airport upgrades?
 

Beano

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All excellent news. My company just needs its act together so I can book. Still have to see what the ATD says about being in NZ for 14 days or will it be Australia and NZ.
 

henrus

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Still have to see what the ATD says about being in NZ for 14 days or will it be Australia and NZ.
I wouldn't worry about that l, I know a few people who are booked to cross the Tasman once a week for the next 4 weeks. The ATD will be updated it's just a question of when and hopefully before Monday.
 

Hillbilly64

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Has anyone completed the Australian arrival application? My mum is trying to do it for Wednesday and it keeps throwing up errors. First invalid arrival port and now invalid passport number.
 
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