Bubble chat is back, with direct flights between New Zealand and Tasmania taking off as early as January next year, thanks to a new deal announced by PM Scott Morrison.
Tassie is set to see the resumption of international flights with New Zealand for the first time in more than two decades, early next year.
G’day and Kia Ora, the bubble! Well inbound anyway for now.
Plans for 130 direct flights next year were unveiled by Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Saturday, allowing Kiwis to sample the tastes and sights of Tasmania.
“2020 has been a challenging year, but this is a sensational coup, and I invite New Zealanders to come to Tasmania and discover what makes this place so very special.”
Prime Minister Scott Morrison
The deal, struck by the Morrison and Gutwein Governments, will see Hobart airport welcoming around 30,000 international travellers each year.
Tell me more…
According to the Tasmanian Tourism Boost report, The new arrangement will see the Morrison Government invest $49.2 million for around 30 Australian Border Force, Australian Federal Police investigators and biosecurity officers to make Hobart airport an international gateway for three flights a week from New Zealand and two flights a week in winter.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the new arrangement realised the vision set out in the Hobart City Deal and would be a significant jobs boost.
“While the pandemic might have set back the timetable for making Hobart an international airport, it is just going to mean more pent up demand for the best Tasmania has to offer.”
“This is a unique opportunity to travel between two extraordinary island destinations, and a terrific boost for local jobs across our tourism sector, including more jobs at our Airport as we undertake upgrades in the coming weeks to accommodate international arrangements.
Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack said the airline and tourism industries had been smashed by COVID-19 and that the deal offered hope to businesses and workers.
“This deal is going to see more tourists at Tasmania’s museums and galleries, staying at its hotels, eating and drinking at its restaurants and cafes, and exploring its parks and sights.”
“For too long Tasmania has been compared with New Zealand, and now Tassie has the chance to prove that one island is better than two”
Assistant Minister Jonathon Duniam
The Morrison and Gutwein Governments expect the new arrangement to commence in January 2021 and will be reviewed at the end of the first year.
Helping Aussies return home
The Australian and Tasmanian governments have also agreed to provide an additional 450 spaces in quarantine facilities in Hobart hotels to help repatriate more Australians.
Morrison said the additional capacity was on top of the 6315 weekly quarantine spaces currently agreed to by states and territories.
“We’re working every option to help as many Australians return home as quickly as possible,” the prime minister said.
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