Covid-19: Travel bubble with Victoria on hold as lockdown looms for Melbourne

Quarantine-free travel from Victoria to New Zealand will be paused from 1.59am on Friday, Covid-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins has announced.

The pause will run for at least four days and be reviewed on Monday, Hipkins said in a statement on Thursday evening.

The pause meant anyone in Victoria after 1.59am Friday could not travel to New Zealand from any state in Australia until further notice.

Melbourne has had three Covid-19 lockdowns this year alone and was expected to head into another this week.

Daniel Pockett/Getty Images

Melbourne has had three Covid-19 lockdowns this year alone and was expected to head into another this week.

Anyone who had been at a location of interest in Melbourne could not travel to New Zealand, Hipkins said. Those who were travelling on Thursday night must have had a negative pre-departure test.

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Anyone who had been in Melbourne in the past week and had since returned to New Zealand should monitor their health, and be aware that the number of locations of interest were increasing. They should be checking these regularly via the Victorian public health website.

People queue at a Covid-19 testing clinic in western Sydney.

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People queue at a Covid-19 testing clinic in western Sydney.

On Wednesday Hipkins warned Kiwis in Victoria to consider returning to New Zealand if they were worried about the bubble.

Quarantine-free travel with New South Wales remained paused. Managed return flights from Sydney were still in place, requiring all travellers to go into managed isolation on arrival.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian replaces her face mask as she leaves a Covid-19 update press conference in Sydney, Lockdown restrictions have been tightened across NSW as Covid-19 cases emerge in the community.

Mark Kolbe/Getty Images

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian replaces her face mask as she leaves a Covid-19 update press conference in Sydney, Lockdown restrictions have been tightened across NSW as Covid-19 cases emerge in the community.

Pre-departure testing wasn’t required for these travellers.

Anyone who had been in NSW on or after 10.30pm on June 26 were not permitted to travel to New Zealand from any other parts of Australia. The Ministry of Health warned travel histories would be checked at the airport prior to departure.

People travelling from other parts of Australia were required to present proof of a negative pre-departure test and must complete a travel declaration.

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New Zealand-Australia travel bubble suspended for Victoria until Monday

Thu Jul 15 , 2021
The growing Melbourne outbreak has prompted New Zealand to close the trans-Tasman bubble to Victoria for four days. On Thursday afternoon, COVID-19 Minister Chris Hipkins announced a suspension of quarantine-free travel from Friday. “We acknowledge the frustration and inconvenience that comes with any interruption to trans-Tasman travel, but given the […]