New Zealand Reveals Plans To Allow Tourists To Re-Enter After Almost Two Years

by : Shola Lee on : 24 Nov 2021 08:59
New Zealand Reveals Plans To Allow Tourists To Re-Enter After Almost Two YearsAlamy

New Zealand will reopen to visitors for the first time in almost two years.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern closed the borders early in the pandemic, and they have remained closed for nearly two years.


She has been praised throughout the pandemic for her moves to control the virus in New Zealand.

Jacinda Ardern Blocks Interpreter (Alamy)Alamy

The country will first allow fully-vaccinated New Zealand citizens and residence visa holders from Australia to return on January 16, 2022.

This will then be extended to fully-vaccinated residence visa holders from most other countries on February 13.


All other vaccinated visitors will be allowed to re-enter the country from April 30.

As per Reuters, Covid-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said that those currently travelling will still need to self-isolate.

Auckland lockdown (PA Images)PA Images

Hipkins said:


We will eventually reach a point where people will be able to move much more freely across the border and those periods of self isolation won’t be required. We’re not at that point yet.

He added that this precaution ‘reduces any potential impacts on vulnerable communities’.

However, travellers will no longer be required to stay in state quarantine facilities to do so.

Hipkins continued, ‘A phased approach to reconnecting with the world is the safest approach to ensure risk is carefully managed.’


The new rules will also require a negative pre-departure test, proof of vaccination and a Covid test on arrival.

Jacinda Ardern speaking about coronavirus (PA Images)PA Images

While some are disappointed the country will not reopen for Christmas, Hipkins defended the decision.

As per The Guardian, he said:


Some people and businesses want us to start to open up before Christmas, and that’s understandable, but others want us to be more cautious. We acknowledge it’s been tough but the end of heavily restricted travel is now in sight.

The tentative reopening is inline with New Zealand’s Covid-19 response so far.

An outbreak in the Delta variant earlier this year delayed reopening, with the country’s main city of Auckland only now re-opening.

If you’ve been affected by coronavirus and want up to date advice, visit the Gov.uk help page here. If you need medical help call NHS 111 or visit online

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Shola Lee

Shola Lee began her journalism career while studying for her undergraduate degree at Queen Mary, University of London and Columbia University in New York. She has written for the Columbia Spectator, QM Global Bloggers, CUB Magazine, UniDays, and Warner Brothers' Wizarding World Digital. Recently, Shola took part in the 2021 BAFTA Crew and BBC New Creatives programme before becoming a journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news, trending stories, and features.

Topics: News, COVID, Jacinda Ardern, New Zealand, Now, Travel


Reuters and 2 others
  1. Reuters

    New Zealand sets date for reopening to tourists after nearly two years

  2. The Guardian

    New Zealand to reopen borders to vaccinated visitors from new year

  3. Sky News

    Fully vaccinated travellers finally able to enter New Zealand from next year without quarantine