New Zealand NZ suspends travel bubble as Victorian virus cluster grows

NZ suspends travel bubble as Victorian virus cluster grows

nz travel melbourne
NZ has barred quarantine-free travel from Melbourne for at least three days following this week's community outbreak of COVID. Photo: Getty
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New Zealand’s government has suspended quarantine-free travel from Victoria after the discovery of five community cases this week.

On Tuesday afternoon, COVID-19 Minister Chris Hipkins said a three-day suspension would take effect from 8pm Tuesday (NZ time).

“The government understands the disruption this will temporarily cause affected passengers. It was a close call but the correct one given the current unknowns,” Mr Hipkins said.

“An epidemiological link has yet to be determined between these cases and there is currently no known link between people in the current outbreak and any of the exposure sites from Wollert.”

Victorian authorities have introduced virus measures across Melbourne with the emergence of the community outbreak in the city’s north this week. Masks will become mandatory indoors in greater Melbourne from 6pm Tuesday, while gatherings in private homes will be limited to five people.

Tuesday’s suspension of travel to NZ is the third pause since the trans-Tasman bubble opened in April.

Jacinda Ardern’s government also blocked travel from Western Australia and NSW following the discovering of community cases in those states’ capital cities.

-with AAP