Travel zones are routes of travel that have eased COVID-19 border restrictions, either in Australia, in the destination, or both. Travel zones may involve:
- exempting a destination from Australia's outwards travel ban
- allowing quarantine-free travel; and/or
- fewer or no COVID-19 testing requirements
Read on to learn more about the the Australia – New Zealand quarantine-free travel zone.
Australia - New Zealand quarantine free travel
- Travel from Australia to New Zealand
- If the COVID-19 situation changes
- Exemption to the outward travel ban
- Travel from New Zealand to Australia
Travel from Australia to New Zealand
Following a decision by the Government of New Zealand, you can now travel from Australia to New Zealand without needing to quarantine on arrival. The new arrangement came into effect at 11:59pm on 18 April 2021.
In order to travel to New Zealand on a quarantine-free flight, you must:
- have spent 14 days or more in either Australia or New Zealand before your departing flight (this includes spending all 14 days in Australia or travelling from New Zealand to Australia and returning within 14 days)
- not have had a positive COVID-19 test in the 14 days before you depart
- not be waiting for the results of a COVID-19 test taken in the 14 days before you depart
- complete an online travel declaration before you depart, and
- not have any cold or flu symptoms
You don't need to be vaccinated for COVID-19 to travel on a quarantine-free flight. Standard New Zealand immigration and biosecurity requirements apply to all incoming passengers.
When you're in New Zealand you'll need to comply with all COVID-19 restrictions, including wearing a mask in certain areas. You should download and install the NZ COVID Tracer app before you arrive in the country.
Read and subscribe to our travel advice for New Zealand for information about risks and restrictions before deciding to travel.
Get comprehensive travel insurance before you leave. Be prepared that travel insurance may not cover COVID-19-related claims. Travel insurance is also important to protect you from events not related to COVID-19.
If the COVID-19 situation changes in Australia or New Zealand
The arrangement may be paused or suspended at short notice if there's a COVID-19 outbreak in either country. If there's an outbreak in the state or territory you're departing from, you may need to provide a negative COVID-19 PCR test before boarding your flight. If the arrangement changes while your flight is mid-journey, you may be required to enter managed isolation on arrival in New Zealand.
Exemption to the outward travel ban
If you're an Australian citizen or permanent resident who has been in Australia for 14 days before departure, you can travel to New Zealand without applying for an exemption to leave the country. However, if New Zealand is not your final destination, you must still apply for an exemption to leave Australia. Transit through New Zealand is not included in the travel zone arrangement.
If you leave New Zealand to travel to a destination not included in the quarantine-free travel zone and then want to return to New Zealand, you'll need to have a critical purpose and submit an expression of interest. It's not guaranteed that you'll be given permission to re-enter.
If you leave New Zealand to travel to a destination not included in the quarantine-free travel zone and then want to return directly to Australia, you'll need to comply with all COVID-19 testing and quarantine requirements. Our advice for all destinations besides New Zealand remains 'do not travel'.
- New Zealand travel advice
- Travel from Australia to New Zealand - quarantine-free travel (NZ Government)
Travel from New Zealand to Australia
Quarantine-free travel from New Zealand to Australia commenced in October 2020. Read more about the New Zealand travel zone on the Department of Home Affairs website.
Standard Australian immigration and biosecurity requirements apply to all incoming passengers.
- Read our general travel advice before you go and COVID-19: Leaving Australia for things to consider before planning travel
- Always get travel insurance before travelling overseas
- Find out about medical assistance overseas
- Read the Consular Services Charter to learn how DFAT can and can't help
- See our advice for Australians staying overseas
- For more information about international travel insurance see: Does travel insurance cover the COVID-19 coronavirus? (CHOICE)
- Find more information on Australian border restrictions and travel zones (Department of Home Affairs)
- For more information about quarantine-free travel with Australia, see the New Zealand Government COVID-19 website
Australia has strict border measures in place to protect the health of the Australian community.
COVID-19 has changed international travel. It’s more unpredictable, and far more complex. We've broken down what you should consider before planning to travel.