Australia-New Zealand ‘travel bubble’ begins
Authorities in New Zealand reopened borders and hundreds of passengers from Australia began visiting the country.
As borders have been reopened, the move will allow quarantine-free travel between countries for the first time in around a year.
New Zealand had enforced isolation for arrivals from its neighbor.
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Adern told media in Wellington, “The bubble marks a significant step in New Zealand’s reconnection with the world and it is one that we should all take a moment to be very, very proud of.”
She also announced that Australia Prime Minister Scott Morrison would visit New Zealand in the “not too distant future”. She also said that Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne will visit New Zealand on Wednesday.
Emotional scenes aired on Television as families reunited at the airport.
Michelle Rafferty, a passenger on a flight from New Zealand, told Australian media, “I haven’t been excited, I haven’t looked forward to it, I haven’t planned anything because I just didn’t think it was going to happen.”
Passengers visiting the New Zealand capital of Wellington were welcomed with a ‘Welcome Whanau’- the Maori term for extended family painted in big white letters.
On the other hand, a choir was singing Dave Dobbyn’s ‘Welcome Home’ at Aukland airport.
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