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As Coronavirus continues to have impacts around the world, we understand there will ​be concerns about how this impacts travel. ​Not to mention navigating the updates and information that have been coming out from both the New Zealand Government, International Agencies and Travel Suppliers such as airlines.

To help you find the relevant updates and keep informed, we have centralised updates specific to travel including key airlines and listed them below. Orbit will be continuously monitoring developments and adding to this page as they are advised. All the updates below have come from qualified sources.

As this an evolving situation and information can change quickly, we strongly recommend that you also check official and credible sources well before your departure date. These are listed below under 'Useful Links'.


 Updated ​​​​​​​Friday 27 March
​Travel and border restrictions

New Zealand UPDATED 26/03

The New Zealand Government has put in place a four-stage threat system as the latest part of New Zealand's strategy to combat coronavirus.​ New Zealand is currently at Alert Level 4 which requires New Zealanders who are outside of essential services to stay at home.  For the restrictions under each Alert Level please click hereFor detailed information and what you need to know about COVID-19, please visit the Government's Unite Against Covid Website. 

Transit passengers: Travellers will not be able to transit international flights in New Zealand and travellers arriving after 2:00AM Thursday 26 March will not be able to connect to a domestic flight. New Zealand citizens, residents and immediate family who normally live in Australia will still be able to transit New Zealand to return to Australia. 
Domestic passengers: ​Travellers who arrived on international flights after 2:00AM Thursday 26 March 2020 (NZDT) will not be able to connect to a domestic flight during this 14 day period. New Zealanders needing to take onward domestic flights will be required to provide a self-isolation plan for their arrival port, such as Auckland, or the Government will provide temporary accommodation for the 14-days

Self-isolation required for all arriving passengers: For all flights arriving in New Zealand after 2:00AM Thursday 26 March 2020, ​travellers will be required to have an appropriate self-isolation plan for the 14 day period, including transport to their accommodation, in their arrival port. If travellers do not have appropriate transport to their place of isolation in Auckland or other arrival port, transport will be provided. For those travellers who do not have an appropriate plan for isolation, accommodation and transport to that accommodation will be arranged by the Government for the 14 day period.

The New Zealand Government has issued advice that New Zealanders do not travel overseas and for New Zealand travellers to return home. For the latest on New Zealand border control including the recent announcements visit the Immigration NZ website. For more information on how to self-isolate, please visit the Ministry of Health website here.

Pacific Islands
Anyone with coronavirus symptoms will not be allowed to travel to the Pacific Islands from New Zealand and travellers who have been to other overseas countries will have to wait 14 days before going to the Pacific Islands. All travellers' temperatures will be taken before they leave for the Pacific Islands.

Australia UPDATED 23/03

Only Australian citizens, residents and immediate family members can travel to Australia. New Zealand citizens who usually reside in Australia are exempt. 

The Australian Government is allowing foreign nationals departing New Zealand to transit Australia to return home. Foreign nationals who have been in China, Iran, the Republic of Korea or Italy in the last 14 days will not be permitted to transit via Australia.
All transits must occur on the same day as arrival and passengers cannot clear customs. These arrangements will be in place for 72 hours beginning at 1200 21 March 2020 (Australian Eastern Standard Time). At the conclusion of this period any transit requests will need be considered through an exemption process. New Zealand citizens that reside in Australia are exempt but will be required to self-isolate for a period of 14 days from the time of arrival in Australia.

For more information please visit Department of Home Affairs website here.

Canada NEW 18/03
Canada has temporarily suspended the entry of all non-Canadian citizens or permanent residents. All international flights will also be restricted to airports in four cities: Toronto, Montreal, Calgary and Vancouver. These travel restrictions take effect Wednesday 18 March and do not apply to US citizens travelling to Canada.

United States UPDATED 18/03
The US has extended travel restrictions to the United Kingdom and Ireland. The restrictions suspend the entry of most foreign nationals who have been in the United Kingdom and Ireland, in addition to certain European countries at any point during the 14 days prior to their scheduled arrival to the United States. These countries include: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland. This does not apply to legal permanent residents and immediate family members of US citizens.

The Italian Government has extended nationwide travel restrictions to help stem the coronavirus outbreak. The restrictions include the closure of schools and universities, the banning of public gatherings and travel is only allowed for the purposes of work or for emergencies. The restrictions have been put in place with immediate effect and will be in place until at least 3 April.

Effective from 10 March, all travellers travelling to Tahiti must carry a medical certificate no older than five days from day of arrival certifying their health condition, regardless of their port of departure or nationality.

Effective from 2 March, the Samoan Government has advised that travellers travelling to Samoa are required to carry a medical certificate to enter the country, indicating they are well and able to travel. The medical certificate is required to be dated within three days of travel. It’s recommended that travellers to Samoa allow additional time for check in due to the new requirements.

All travellers who have travelled from or via China within 30 days prior to arriving in Niue, must spend no less than 14 days in a country free from Covid-19, and must acquire an official medical clearance undertaken within three days prior to arrival in Niue or entry may be refused.

Cook Islands UPDATED 27/03
The Cook Islands Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Immigration (MFAI) has introduced new border requirements in relation to Covid-19.Effective immediately, travellers seeking entry to the Cook Islands, including returning Cook Islanders and Cook Islands residents will be required to meet a minimum of 14 days quarantine in New Zealand.

Fiji UPDATED 27/03
The Fiji Government has advised that Nadi Airport has closed from midnight 26 March 2020 for all passenger travel until further notice. Effective from 7 March, Fiji's borders will be closed to all foreigners travelling from or via mainland China, Europe, US, Iran or South Korea within 14 days of their intended travel to Fiji. All travellers will be required to self-quarantine for 14 days.

Papua New Guinea
Travellers who have been to China within 14 days of their intended travel to Papua New Guinea will be refused entry until they have been “medically cleared by a reputable clinic and hospital based on WHO standards.” These restrictions will be in place until further notice.

Singapore ​UPDATED 23/03
Singapore has increased border control measures from 23 March 2020, 2359 hours (Singapore time). All short-term visitors (from anywhere in the world) will not be allowed to enter or transit through Singapore. Flights departing New Zealand from Tuesday 24 March will only be allowed to accept Singapore citizens, Singapore permanent residents and Long-Term Pass holders for Singapore. 

All foreign travellers travelling from or via China and its Special Administrative Regions will not be allowed entry into the Philippines. Filipino nationals and Philippine permanent resident visa holders will be allowed to enter “subject to a 14 day quarantine, to be implemented by the Bureau of Quarantine (BOQ).” Other visa holders and transiting passengers, will also be denied entry.


Useful links

For New Zealand immigration and border controls:

For travel to other countries and associated risks:

For health information:

For comprehensive and credible information worldwide regarding Coronavirus:


Updated Friday 27 March
Airlines reduce services across networks

There are multiple schedule changes across all airlines including flight suspensions. We recommend checking with the airlines directly and have provided the relevant links below.

From 11:59PM Friday 27 March, travellers will not be permitted to use domestic flights to get to an international airport for the purpose of leaving New Zealand on an international flight as this is not seen as essential travel by the New Zealand Government. Passengers are still able to travel by private car to the international departure airport, as long as they can prove they are flying out of the country within the next few hours.

Auckland International Airport are requesting departing passengers who are booked to fly within three hours to come to the international terminal only. If you are dropping someone off for a flight or picking up family and friends, please make use of the pick-up/drop-off area for farewells or use the Wait Zone for pick-ups and do not enter the international terminal.

Air New Zealand UPDATED 26/03
As an essential service, Air New Zealand will continue to operate on Alert Level 4. The Government has extended the timeframe for all travellers to get home to 11.59PM on Friday 27 March. For travel after 27 March, travellers will need to check that they qualify to travel under the essential services list before they book a ticket or head to the airport. All Air New Zealand Lounges will be temporarily closed. For further information on flight schedules for Air New Zealand and updates, please click on the link below. 

Seating on Domestic services:
With the recent COVID-19 Government announcement Air New Zealand is endeavouring to support guidance around social distancing. As a result of this, travellers may notice a change to their original choice of seat to allow additional space around them. Travellers on smaller regional aircraft, Air New Zealand will aim to allocate window seats first with no-one next to them in the aisle. On board domestic jet aircraft, middle seats will remain unoccupied if possible. Wherever possible, Air New Zealand will continue to seat families, and customers travelling in the same booking, together.

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Qantas & Jetstar UPDATED 27/03
​Qantas have suspended all flights from New Zealand from​ the end of March to 30 June. For more information please use the below link.

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NEW ZEALAND NETWORK: Following New Zealand Government advice, Jetstar will be temporarily suspending all New Zealand domestic services from Saturday 28 March 2020. 

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Singapore Airlines
Singapore Airlines will only accept Singapore nationals on their New Zealand services from 24 March. For changes to flights and suspended services please click on the link below.

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Virgin Australia

Following extended travel restrictions in Australia, Virgin Australia has temporarily suspended all international services and has reduced its domestic network until June 14 2020.

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Cathay Pacific

Cathay Pacific have reduced around 90% of Cathay Pacific and Cathay Dragon flights into Mainland China due to the Coronavirus outbreak. They have also reduced approximately 40% of their network until 28 March 2020. Outside of China, the destinations that are subject to the temporary suspension include Hong Kong, New York, Washington DC, Seoul, Adelaide, Rome, Milan, London, Barcelona and Tel Aviv. There are also smaller destinations included in the link below. Start dates for suspensions and frequency reductions are variable.

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Emirates have suspended all flights from New Zealand from 25 March to 30 June. For more information please use the below link.

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Qatar Airways

Qatar Airways has temporarily suspended flights to and from China, Hong Kong, Iran and Italy until the end April 2020 due to entry restrictions imposed by various countries. We have also been advised that effective from 11 March, Qatar Airways has temporarily suspended all Stopover facilitation for the Purpose of Connection (STPC). Passengers with longer connections will need to stay within Hamad International Airport (HIA) with ​entry into Doha City.

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Air Chathams
Air Chathams has reduced its services between Wellington and the Chatham Islands. The service is now operating two days a week from three days a week.

Korean Air

Korean Air has advised of changes to its international schedule including a temporary suspension of flights from Incheon to Auckland until Saturday 28 March. Operations will resume from 29 March 2020 based on how the situation progresses.