I remember arriving in Auckland, looking out of the airplane window and seeing the beautiful land of New Zealand for the first time. I remember the first time I was hosted, then buying a car, getting a job and starting to find my way around New Zealand. It’s been a year since I landed in New Zealand. Little did I know what was to come; a global pandemic, forcing thousands of Israeli travellers to return to their home country and leave the paradise New Zealand and Australia have to offer. I, however, decided to stay put and let the pandemic pan out. I’ve been living here in New Zealand for about a year, and I am now looking forward to my next adventure either in Australia, taking a flight to Israel, or getting my hands dirty working on a hearty farm. Wherever you are right now, here are some options for other travellers looking to come and travel here that may be helpful, and which ones are actually realistic.
Vaccinations will be starting to become available soon. Israel will have over 4 million vaccinations by the end of the year, and when this happens people will be able to walk the streets normally again, Covid free. Nevertheless, the policies in New Zealand and Australian local governments have shown that they would rather be safe than sorry, therefore travel bans will not be lifted anytime soon. Some people predict that by the end of the year New Zealand will lift the international travel ban if the prospective travellers provide evidence for being vaccinated and Australia will probably do the same a bit sooner than New Zealand, but this is still a while away.
Australia has taken several different measures in order to counteract this reality. Australia lifted their travel ban restrictions that prevented New Zealanders to travel there, and everyone that has been in quarantine for over 14 days can come and travel freely. A few Israeli travellers have taken advantage of this opportunity, but most of them have decided to go back home or stay in New Zealand and work on a farm. Some Israeli travellers in Australia left before the lockdown during March, but some decided to find work on a good farm and continue to live there. Dozens of Israeli travellers have applied for a second and third working holiday visa and seek assistance from immigration officers and advisors.
What Can We Do in the Meantime
Just the other day, I was sitting at home with my host. We watched the news and they actually gave us several good ideas:
Install the Yesh app, and learn how it works.
Travel yourselves. All the tracks are open, the roads are clear and the prices are cheap. Go ahead and enjoy what travellers enjoy every summer.
If you need support in hosting or or if you have any difficulties, just contact us and we will help you as much as we can.
COVID 19 Travel Prediction
At some point, the borders will once again be open for travellers. One of the biggest sources of income to New Zealand is backpackers and travellers. My COVID-19 travel prediction is that travellers will be able to tour New Zealand and Australia in the summer between December and February of 2021. To be honest, I’m very optimistic. And I know that when the travellers come back, hosts will be ready for them with open arms and a loving spirit.