New Zealand has unveiled a plan to reopen its borders to international visitors from April 30, in a gradual easing of pandemic border restrictions that have been in place since March 2020.
The South Pacific country has imposed some of the world’s tightest Covid-19 restrictions, which has helped to limit the spread of the virus.
Outlining the country’s staged reopening plan on Wednesday (November 24), Covid-19 response minister Chris Hipkins said: “A phased approach to reconnecting with the world is the safest approach to ensure risk is carefully managed. This reduces any potential impacts on vulnerable communities and the New Zealand health system.”
Fully vaccinated foreign travellers will be allowed to enter the country from April 30, and will have to self-isolate for seven days on arrival, said Hipkins.
Vaccinated New Zealanders and residence visa holders in neighbouring Australia can travel to New Zealand from January 16, while New Zealanders and residence visa holders in all other countries will be allowed to enter from February 13.
All travellers must show proof of being fully vaccinated as well as a negative pre-departure Covid-19 test result. They will have to self-isolate for seven days, and will be tested for Covid-19 upon arrival.
New Zealand has recorded just over 10,000 Covid-19 cases and 40 deaths since the start of the pandemic â€“ far fewer than most comparable countries.