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Jacinda Ardern announces travel bubble with Cook Islands

May 3, 2021 4:25 pm
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern. [Source: One News]

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has this afternoon announced the long-awaited travel bubble between New Zealand and the Cook Islands.

This will begin 14 days from now on Monday, May 17.

Ardern made the announcement to the media at her post-Cabinet address.

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She stated the travel bubble will begin on May 17 only “on the basis of a clear set of criteria is met”.

A one-way bubble was open for people from the Cook Islands to and from New Zealand, but New Zealanders could not travel there under the same conditions.

There will be no requirement for pre-departure tests, but there will be random health checks at airports.

New Zealand’s COVID-19 vaccine rollout to the Cook Islands is set to start later this month.

It comes after advertising by Air New Zealand suggested the airline was ramping up its flights to Rarotonga this month.

Ardern earlier told Breakfast discussing the bubble was “one of the topics” on Cabinet’s meeting agenda this afternoon.

Meanwhile, on Friday, a traveller from the Cook Islands was found to have breached the trans-Tasman travel bubble after they flew from Auckland to Perth without spending the required two weeks in New Zealand.

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