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Australia Australians stranded on Norfolk Island by New Zealand COVID-19 travel bubble suspension

01:12  30 january  2021
01:12  30 january  2021 Source:   abc.net.au

New Zealand-Australia travel bubble suspension extended as guests from Auckland's Pullman Hotel make their way across the Tasman

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Australian tourists are stranded on Norfolk Island , with flights cancelled after the suspension of Australia 's travel bubble with New Zealand was extended until 2:00pm on Sunday, January 31. Australia initially closed its border for 72 hours on Monday after New Zealand recorded its first case of COVID - 19 in the community in two months — an infectious strain from South Africa. The border closure was extended after more cases were reported yesterday. Air New Zealand is currently the only commercial airline with scheduled services to Norfolk Island , an Australian territory, 1,400

NZ Herald. VIRUS LATEST: • Covid - 19 has now claimed 2.13 million lives worldwide, with a total of 99.3m cases. • Australia 's Health Minister Greg Hunt has announced Australia will suspend its one-way travel bubble with New Zealand for at least 72 hours out of an "abundance of caution" following the discovery of the South African Covid - 19 variant in the community. The changes are coming into effect immediately.

a man wearing glasses and smiling at the camera: Luella and David Wait travelled to the island for a week and were due to return home on January 26. (Supplied) © Provided by ABC Health Luella and David Wait travelled to the island for a week and were due to return home on January 26. (Supplied)

Australian tourists are stranded on Norfolk Island, with flights cancelled after the suspension of Australia's travel bubble with New Zealand was extended until 2:00pm on Sunday, January 31.

Australia initially closed its border for 72 hours on Monday after New Zealand recorded its first case of COVID-19 in the community in two months — an infectious strain from South Africa.

The border closure was extended after more cases were reported yesterday.

Air New Zealand is currently the only commercial airline with scheduled services to Norfolk Island, an Australian territory, 1,400 kilometres east of Brisbane.

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Australia 's travel bubble with New Zealand has been put on hold for another three days, meaning more disruptions for any trans-Tasman travellers . The decision made by the Federal Government comes as more cases have been confirmed in New Zealand , with more testing and contact tracing New Zealand travel bubble suspension extended until Sunday after fresh cases. Have cases from New Zealand reached Australia ? Not that we are aware of yet, but we do know that 12 people who had been staying in the Pullman Hotel in Auckland at the same time as these new COVID cases had

Australia suspended its travel bubble with New Zealand for another 72 hours after two more cases of Covid - 19 were reported in Auckland. New Zealand health officials are investigating the cases, which are linked to a woman who was likely infected with the South African variant of the virus while in mandatory isolation at a quarantine hotel for returned overseas travelers . The facility has been closed to new arrivals. The suspension of the bubble underlines the difficulties of restarting broad international travel even between countries such as New Zealand and Australia that have been

Each week, there are usually six flights between Brisbane or Sydney and Norfolk Island, with the services originating in Auckland.

"The current suspension of quarantine-free flights by the Australian Government means any crew operating domestic flights in Australia must have completed 14 days managed quarantine, or be Australian-based," an Air New Zealand spokesperson said in a statement.

"This is why we've had to suspend the domestic sectors from Norfolk Island to mainland Australia."

Luella and David Wait, retirees from Maryborough in Queensland, travelled to the island for a week and were due to return home on January 26.

"We heard on the day we were to leave that there were no flights to leave," Ms Wait said.

"We were expecting a flight the next day but eventually we were told there wouldn't be a flight until the next Tuesday, which put us a whole week behind."

Australia has suspended the New Zealand travel bubble. What's happening? And why did it take just one case of COVID-19?

  Australia has suspended the New Zealand travel bubble. What's happening? And why did it take just one case of COVID-19? It took one case of a highly transmissible COVID-19 variant in New Zealand for Australia to suspend the travel bubble. This is why quarantine-free travel has been put on hold.All it took was one case of a highly transmissible COVID-19 variant in the community for Australia to suspend the travel bubble.

Australia has suspended a travel bubble with New Zealand after its first Covid case in months was confirmed to be the South African variant. The infected patient had served 14-days in quarantine and tested negative twice before developing symptoms later. Health Minister Greg Hunt said the suspension was done out of an "abundance of caution". "It is recommended all passengers from New Zealand with a flight scheduled in the next 72 hours reconsider their need to travel ," he told reporters, adding that the decision was made following advice from the Australian Health Protection Principal

Australian health authorities had sought information on a further two people who tested positive to COVID - 19 in New Zealand . Close contacts of these two individuals and others potentially exposed are still awaiting test results. The initial 72-hour suspension was due to end at 2:00pm today. Acting Chief Medical Officer, Professor Michael Kidd, said the suspension would protect Australians while the extent of the situation in New Zealand can be determined. Outbreak in Auckland's Pullman Hotel. The Australian Government announced it was suspending the bubble on Monday afternoon after New

Mr Wait said six people had chartered a jet to take them to Sydney on Friday.

The couple is now having to pay at least $2,000 for extra accommodation, car rental and food.

Ms Wait said she was more concerned about the impact on the Norfolk Island economy, which relied on tourism.

"I'd say very little is happening because 90 per cent of people have done what they wanted in the week they thought they were here for," she said.

Ms Wait said she was hopeful an Australian airline might be able to help.

"Surely there's a plane somewhere that can bring the next lot of tourists and take us home, so Norfolk Island doesn't suffer anymore," Ms Wait said.

Norfolk Island resident Susan Prior said locals who had been holidaying in Australia were trying to get back to the island for work and school.

"It's just inconvenient, but I know the travel agencies and the administration are working really hard to try to get people back here," Ms Prior said.

"But I think we've just got to be patient and hope it works itself out over the next few days."

Australia initially closed its border for 72 hours on Monday after New Zealand recorded its first case of COVID-19 in the community in two months — a highly infectious variant that originated in South Africa.

An Air New Zealand spokesperson said affected customers would be offered a full refund, credit or the option to move to a Qantas replacement service.

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This is interesting!