What to do before you travel — NZ to Australia

Who can travel quarantine-free to Australia, criteria you must meet and how you need to be prepared if your travel is disrupted.

How quarantine-free travel works

You can travel between Australia and New Zealand without having to enter a managed isolation facility when you arrive.

You can visit each country for any length of time and you do not need to stay for 14 days before you return.

All other normal entry requirements, for example immigration and biosecurity, apply.

Which states or territories you can travel to

You can travel quarantine-free to all states and territories in Australia.

25 May: From 7:59pm on 25 May, travel from Victoria to New Zealand is paused. This applies to interstate travellers from Victoria.

Information about quarantine-free travel between Victoria and New Zealand

Who can travel quarantine-free to Australia

People in New Zealand who meet the eligibility criteria can fly quarantine-free to most states in Australia.

If you’re outside New Zealand, you can fly quarantine-free to Australia once you have met New Zealand’s managed isolation and quarantine requirements. If you're travelling from a country that has a quarantine-free arrangement with New Zealand, for example the Cook Islands, you must stay in New Zealand for 14 days before you can continue your journey to Australia.

You will also need to meet immigration rules and eligibility criteria.

Currently, quarantine-free travel is available on commercial aircraft only.

Normal immigration rules apply

Normal immigration rules apply. This means if you usually need a visa, then you will need one to fly quarantine-free to Australia.

If you plan to travel to Australia and return to New Zealand, you will need to make sure you meet the visa and entry requirements for Australia before you travel and ensure you have a valid New Zealand visa or NZeTA to return to New Zealand.

Visas to enter Australia (external link)

Temporary visa holders from New Zealand

If you're a temporary visa holder in New Zealand, you should be aware that you need to meet New Zealand immigration requirements in order to return to New Zealand. This means you need to have a ‘multiple entry’ visa that gives permission to leave New Zealand and return, provided all entry requirements are met.

You must meet some criteria

To travel to Australia on a quarantine-free flight, you must meet some criteria.

It is your responsibility to check the eligibility criteria for entering Australia. You will also need to check that the state or territory you want to land in, or travel onwards to, is accepting quarantine-free flights from New Zealand.

The requirements for entering Australia could change at short notice.

You also need to spend the 14 full days before your date of departure in either New Zealand or Australia. Note this means you can travel from day 15 onwards.

Complete the Australia Travel Declaration

Before you travel to Australia, you need to complete the Australia Travel Declaration at least 72 hours before you depart. This declaration collects your contact details in Australia, flight details and your health status.

Australia Travel Declaration (external link)

You may need to complete a travel declaration or apply for a travel permit for the state or territory you're travelling to.

Travel declarations and travel permits

You do not need a pre-departure test

You do not need a negative COVID-19 pre-departure test to travel to Australia on a quarantine-free flight.

Australia has sometimes introduced requirements for testing on arrival for people travelling from New Zealand. You should regularly check the requirements of the state you're arriving in.

Check the restrictions of your destination

Australia’s states and territories may have their own restrictions and requirements, for example for pre-departure testing. Check what you need to do and what you need to know before you travel.

You should also check what you need to do if you are travelling between states in Australia, as you may need to meet some requirements.

Travel information about COVID-19 by state or territory:

Travel declarations and travel permits

Some states and territories require you to complete or apply for a travel permit or travel declaration. This is in addition to the Australia Travel Declaration that you must complete before you can enter Australia.

Some states only require you to complete one when there have been outbreaks of COVID-19. However, some states have made it compulsory for everyone to complete one, whether you're travelling from New Zealand or from another state.

Make sure you check what you need to do before you travel to any state or territory in Australia, and that you complete any declarations or permits before you depart. 

Register at SafeTravel

We encourage you to register at SafeTravel to get the latest travel advice for Australia.

Registering means the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT), embassies and consulates can:

  • contact you in an emergency situation
  • provide consular assistance if needed
  • check on your wellbeing, or
  • send you important information.

Register at SafeTravel (external link)

Be prepared, and have a plan if your travel is disrupted

Community cases of COVID-19 in New Zealand or Australia could lead to the Government pausing any quarantine-free travel arrangements while it gathers information about the risk.

You are responsible for managing any disruption to your travel due to COVID-19.

Have a plan if your travel is disrupted

Have a plan for what to do if your return to New Zealand is delayed. You may need to stay in Australia for longer than you planned, and you will need to meet any costs for this. Government assistance is unlikely to be available.

Make sure you keep in contact with your employer if your return is delayed. If you’re an employer, make sure you know your workers’ rights in this situation.

Guidance for workers and employers about quarantine-free travel (external link)

You should get travel insurance

You should get travel insurance before you travel overseas. Read the travel insurance conditions and talk to your travel insurer if you are unsure about whether their policy covers COVID-19-related travel disruption.

You may need to enter managed isolation when you return

If the COVID-19 situation changes in Australia, you may need to enter managed isolation or self-isolation when you return to New Zealand. If this happens, you will need to pay for your stay there. Applications to waive payments will be considered on a case-by-case basis. If you need to travel to New Zealand urgently, you can apply for an emergency allocation.

Managed isolation and quarantine (external link)

If you're a temporary visa holder from New Zealand

If you're a temporary visa holder from New Zealand, you should ensure you have enough time on your visa to cover an extended stay in Australia if required. If quarantine-free travel is suspended and border restrictions are put in place, you must have the right to enter New Zealand and hold a valid visa — this may include seeking a Border Exception to return to New Zealand.

If the COVID-19 situation changes in Australia or New Zealand

If there is a change in Alert Level in New Zealand or the situation changes in Australia, Covid19.govt.nz (this website) and news websites will announce it. You can also find information here about what to do at different Alert Levels.

If community cases occur in New Zealand or Australia, the Government could pause quarantine-free travel for a time to assess the risk or it could suspend travel for a longer period of time. Travellers should have a plan and be prepared for travel plans to be disrupted.

How a COVID-19 case in Australia would be managed

We cannot predict when or how a new case might appear in any Australian state. But we do have a plan for how we'd handle a wide range of possible situations. While any response will depend on the circumstances, like timing and location, it's useful to know what to expect.

Here is a guide to what might occur and what you could be asked to do in the event there are COVID-19 cases in Australia when you travel.

How a COVID-19 case in Australia would be managed

Check the COVID-19 website of the state or territory you're in

If there is a change in Australia’s COVID-19 situation, for example cases in the community, check the COVID-19 website for the state or territory you’re in. They will tell you what you need to do.

Covid19.govt.nz (this website) and our social media channels will announce changes to Australia's COVID-19 situation and to quarantine-free travel.

Information about COVID-19 by state or territory:

Renew your passport if it has expired

Over 400,000 passports belonging to New Zealanders have expired since our borders closed last year.

If you need to renew your passport, apply now to avoid the rush when quarantine-free travel between New Zealand and Australia opens on 19 April.

Apply for a passport (external link)

Processing times may be longer than usual. If you need to travel same day or within 2 days, call 0800 22 50 50 from within New Zealand or +64 4 462 0650 from overseas.

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