World news – Quarantine-free decision for a travel bubble in Aus-New Zealand is imminent

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Jacinda Ardern is expected to announce when the Trans-Tasman Bubble will begin today, which will allow unrestricted travel between the Australian and New Zealand borders.

The New Zealand prime minister said she would make an announcement about the bubble on Tuesday April 6 as airlines and airports appear ready to accept passengers.

The airline is also selling flights between Auckland and Melbourne starting Friday April 9, suggesting the bubble could start this week.

NZ Airports Association chief Exective Kevin Ward told the New Zealand media that any outbreak could be tackled with a state-to-state approach and they are keen to kick off quarantine-free travel to Australia and the Cook Islands.

« They have been ready to meet red and green traveler segregation requirements, as well as health requirements such as cleaning and signing, for some time, and I am confident that they will receive all final approvals from authorities shortly, » he said.

According to the New Zealand Herald, Air New Zealand plans to operate more quarantine-free flights from Auckland to Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane from April 12-18.

The airline will increase flights from Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Queenstown to all nine Australian ports from April 19 to October 30.

Flights from Auckland to Hobart will not go on sale until a two-way safe travel zone has been confirmed.

Qantas and Jetstar have announced that for the first three days of travel, when the two-way trans-Tasman bubble opens, they will be offering capless frequent flyer seats for Classic Flight Reward.

Once the start date is confirmed, thousands of seats in all staterooms can be booked as Classic Flight Rewards during the 72-hour travel period.

Qantas Frequent Flyer will add 50 percent more Classic Reward seats on Qantas Trans-Tasman flights for the remainder of the year.

Olivia Wirth, CEO of Qantas Loyalty, said the initiative would reward the Australian and New Zealand members of the program who continued to add points to their credit during the pandemic.

« During COVID, our members collected points for precisely these occasions, and we want to help make it easier to get on one of the first international flights, » said Ms. Wirth.

« That’s why every seat on every Qantas and Jetstar flight will be Classic Flight Rewards for the first three days after the travel bubble opens.

« There will also be more award seats available for the remainder of the year, including during peak periods such as Christmas and school holidays on Qantas’ Trans-Tasman flights.

« Eighty percent of Qantas frequent flyers said they wanted to use the points they earned while traveling. This is just one example of how we can make it easier for members to get closer to their next dream trip when the limits come back be opened.  »

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