After greater than two years, Recent Zealand is fully reopening its borders and welcoming back all international travelers.
The country is reopening on July 31, some three months sooner than previously announced.
Earlier this 12 months, Recent Zealand’s borders were opened to Australians and residents of 60 places that don’t need visas to enter, including Singapore, the USA and the UK.
In 2021, Recent Zealand had among the world’s strictest pandemic restrictions, including lockdowns triggered by a single Covid case, extensive testing and various public health mandates.
Its largest city Auckland was on lockdown for 107 days, from August to December 2021, as a consequence of outbreaks of the highly infectious delta variant.
Many curbs have been lifted, but requirements to enter Recent Zealand remain stringent. Here’s what to know before you visit.
Apart from Recent Zealand residents and Australians living within the country, visitors are required to supply proof of vaccination to enter, in response to the government’s Covid information page.
Each electronic and paper vaccination certificates are acceptable.
Travelers have to do a rapid antigen test on their arrival date — although not essential upon arrival on the airport — and a second one on the fifth or sixth day of their trip, in response to Recent Zealand’s Ministry of Health.
Masks aren’t required outdoors, but they’re required indoors, equivalent to in museums, supermarkets and pharmacies.
Least expensive time to go to
Despite inflation in Recent Zealand hitting a 32-year high of seven.3% earlier this month, Navigate Travel said prices of tours, activities and accommodations are the identical price, if not cheaper, than what they were before the pandemic.
“(A vacation in) Recent Zealand’s very low-cost for the time being … Apart from air travel, there’s never been a less expensive time to return,” said Daniel Painter, the travel agency’s managing director.
Because it was announced in May that the country’s borders would fully reopen at the tip of July, there was strong interest from travelers to go to, said Tourism Recent Zealand.
“Online searches for international flights to Recent Zealand (are) up 39% because the announcement was made, in comparison with pre-Covid searches,” said Gregg Wafelbakker, the tourism body’s general manager for Asia. Greater than 60% of this interest is coming from Australia, he said.
Nonetheless, Painter said that travel demand from Asia stays low, with visitors from the region coming mostly from Singapore.
The Singapore-based travel agency Chan Brothers Travel indicated a shortage of flights could also be in charge.
“Travel demand to Recent Zealand has been healthy ever because the borders [reopened] to Singaporeans in May. Nonetheless, as a consequence of flight availability, we do observe demand outstripping supply,” said Jeremiah Wong, the agency’s senior marketing communications manager.
After years of being locked out of Recent Zealand, travelers are indicating they’re willing to spend more to travel for longer periods within the country, said Wong.
“An eight-day Recent Zealand tour was a well-liked alternative before the pandemic, but we’re currently seeing more interest and bookings for our 11-day tour that permits travelers to soak up the sights at a more relaxed pace,” Wong said.
Navigate Travel’s Painter shared similar sentiments, saying that travelers “want the power to give you the chance to calm down and never must worry about things, but additionally they need to give you the chance to get a lot of bang for his or her buck.”
Painter said hikes within the country’s national parks, a scenic helicopter ride over Franz Josef Glacier, and whale watching near the town of Kaikoura on Recent Zealand’s South Island are only among the activities that tourists shouldn’t miss.
A helicopter flight above the Franz Josef Glacier.
Peter Kolejak / Eyeem | Eyeem | Getty Images
After remaining in Singapore for greater than two years, Lew Moe Kien, 60, and her husband, 62, visited Recent Zealand for 12 days in May — just two weeks after its borders reopened to Singapore residents.
They said locals were elated to have tourists back within the country, and that they were welcomed with open arms at restaurants and other establishments.
“The places we visited in Recent Zealand weren’t crowded in any respect,” said Lew. “For lots of the places of interest, it was only the 2 of us there.”
Lew and her husband visited each the North and South Islands of Recent Zealand, including Hobbiton — a well-liked destination for “Lord of the Rings” fans — the glow worm caves in Waitomo, and the pancake-shaped rock formations and blowholes at Punakaiki.
Shirleen Tan, 46, a human resources skilled from Singapore, is planning a visit to Recent Zealand along with her family in December.
“We were in search of somewhere with warm weather, and Recent Zealand is certainly one of the few warm countries in December,” said Tan.
She said she is looking forward to visiting vineyards for wine tastings, eating fresh oysters at oyster farms, and “having fun with the attractive scenery that Recent Zealand is known for.”