New Zealand has announced that it will no longer require inbound travelers to conduct a SARS-CoV-2 pre-departure test effective June 20. The move brings forward the initial date planned for the change by six weeks, or July 31.
“We’ve taken a careful and staged approach to reopening our borders to ensure we aren’t overwhelmed with an influx of COVID-19 cases. Our strategy has worked and as a result it’s safe to lift pre-departure test requirements much sooner than planned,” said COVID-19 response minister Ayesha Verrall in a press statement.
“Factors such as the availability of and cost of getting a test are increasingly becoming a barrier for people intending to travel here, especially as other countries wind back testing availability or the requirement for a test on entry themselves,” she added.
However, New Zealand will still have a set of border surveillance measures for detecting any possible new variants of COVID-19, including requiring travelers to self-test on Day 0/1 and again on Day 5/6. A positive result would then require a PCR test.
Separately, travelers transiting through New Zealand will no longer need to be vaccinated, nor be required to complete a New Zealand Traveler Declaration.