NZ Aviation Coalition backs trans-Tasman travel

NZ Aviation Coalition backs trans-Tasman travel

Trans-Tasman travel will be a win:win

Re-establishing trans-Tasman travel as soon as it is safe is vital to help restart the New Zealand economy says the New Zealand Aviation Coalition (NZAC), a group of core aviation service providers.

Justin Tighe-Umbers, NZAC’s chair, says today’s joint announcement from Prime Ministers Jacinda Ardern and Scott Morrison shows now is the right time to start working on a trans-Tasman safe travel zone.

“A trans-Tasman bubble makes total sense,” he says. “People are ready to travel and flying under Level 2 shouldn’t be considered any riskier than going to a restaurant or bar under Level 2.

“Both countries are leading the world in responding to COVID-19 and we can also lead the world in developing safe borders for international travel.  Allowing flights between New Zealand and Australia will deliver huge benefits to both economies and allow friends and families to reconnect.”

More than 50% of New Zealand’s international visitors come from Australia, bringing NZ$3B of tourism spend each year and contributing towards 230,000 jobs directly employed in tourism.

NZAC says it is working closely with the Australia New Zealand Leadership Forum’s (ANZLF) ‘Trans-Tasman Safe Border Group’.

“It’s natural that after the lockdown environment some people may have concerns about travelling safely by air,” Mr Tighe-Umbers says. “Alongside the work of the safe border group, NZAC will be helping to explain to New Zealanders why they can have confidence in the safe reopening of our border to Australia – and how both countries can minimise risk by using health technology and systems.”

Mr Tighe-Umbers says it is important to remember that aircraft have still been flying people into and around New Zealand during Alert Level 4. This period of essential travel provided a good opportunity to review existing health and safety systems and protocols at airports and on aircraft.

NZAC is pleased to see Prime Ministers Ardern and Morrison are also interested in exploring opening travel to interested Pacific countries, once the trans-Tasman arrangements have been established.



For more information contact:

Justin Tighe-Umbers

New Zealand Aviation Coalition chair

Tel:  027 268 4053


Media requests:

Felicity Anderson

Tel: 021 22 40 520