New Zealand suspends quarantine-free travel with Australia's Victoria for 72 hours
New Zealand's quarantine-free travel with Australia's Victoria was suspended on Tuesday as the source of a new COVID-19 cluster recently reported in the Australian state's capital Melbourne is being investigated, according to New Zealand's COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins.
The suspension of the travel bubble will start from 07:59 pm New Zealand time on Tuesday and last 72 hours initially. "As with previous pauses, it will be under constant review," Hipkins said.
The move came as a range of COVID-19 restrictions including limiting the size of gatherings were announced in Melbourne after the Australian city detected its first community transmission cases since February.
New Zealand officials have assessed that the most cautious option is to pause the travel bubble with Victoria as there are still several unknowns with the outbreak, Hipkins said.
New Zealand and Australia's Victoria state launched the trans-Tasman quarantine-free travel in April aimed at boosting economic and tourism recovery on both sides.