Heathrow Airport: Australia and New Zealand’s strict travel rules make sightseeing very difficult
A trip to the exotic lands of Australia and New Zealand has always attracted Brits in search of some winter sunshine.
A visit to both countries in January and February means arriving in the height of summer – with thousands of visitors typically departing from Heathrow Airport.
Tourists are eager to see Australia’s amazing landmarks like the Sydney Opera House and the Great Barrier Reef.
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New Zealand’s extraordinary landscapes and its connection to movies like The Lord of the Rings also attract tourists.
However, since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, both countries have introduced very strict travel rules, meaning very few people have been allowed in.
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This means that Brits who want to visit, or who have family members living in both countries, have been very frustrated.
The rules also mean that Britons living in Australia find it difficult to leave and return home.
New Zealand also recently tightened its rules on travel after an outbreak.
Here are the latest travel rules for Australia and New Zealand.
Entry requirements for Australia
Quite simply, entry to Australia is still closed to most people.
Travelers wishing to visit will need a visa.
Entry into the country is generally limited to citizens, but there are exemptions for people traveling to escort an Australian citizen or a child who is permanent resident in Australia.
One guardian for each child under the age of two will generally be approved, but only one for children over the age of two will be allowed.
Additional guardians might be allowed on a case-by-case basis if they can provide medical advice and evidence.
Those seeking exemptions are warned that the Home Office has a strong demand for exemptions and that there is no guarantee on the timing of a decision.
Requests must be made at least four weeks and no more than three months.
A negative Covid-19 test is required to travel to and through Australia.
Anyone arriving in Australia is required to undergo a mandatory 14-day quarantine at a designated location near their arrival, which they may have to pay for themselves.
Anyone arriving may also be required to undergo a health examination before entering quarantine.
Entry requirements for New Zealand
Travel to New Zealand is prohibited from Brazil, India, Pakistan and Papua New Guinea, except for citizens and their partners, children and dependents.
All non-citizens will need a visa to enter.
Temporary visa holders living or working in the country will need to meet New Zealand immigration requirements.
Anyone traveling to New Zealand will need to self-quarantine for 14 days.
They must also have undergone a Covid-19 test within 24 hours of their trip and have had a second one within the day of arrival.
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