NZ’s travel bubble suspension with Aus upsets hospitality sector

New Zealand’s eight-week suspension in the travel bubble with Australia has had an immediate impact on the country’s hospitality sector.

Hospitality New Zealand Chief Executive Julie White said the suspension’s impacts on the hospitality and accommodation sectors are being felt immediately, Xinhua news agency.

“Hospitality operators’ first priority is the safety of their people, community and ‘whanau’ (family). Balancing the health risk and economic impacts comes at a cost to the hospitality and accommodation industry,” said White.

Quarantine free travel from all Australian states and territories to New Zealand is being suspended as the Covid-19 situation in Australia worsens.

From 11.59 p.m. Friday, Australians were no longer be able to enter New Zealand quarantine-free.

This will be in place for at least the next eight weeks.

“I am also concerned with the toll this is having on people in the industry, and the onset of Covid-fatigue,” White said.

Peter and Susanne Wood, who run a restaurant and a boutique conference facility in Methven, a town in the Canterbury region, said they received their first cancellation from booked Australian guests.

Susanne said they expect many more cancellations to come.

“We were pretty full over the next month because of school holidays across the Tasman,” Susanne said.

“Some of our guests from Australia are already in the country so their bookings aren’t affected but those who aren’t here yet will be cancelling.”

The Woods said they expect people who were planning to travel to Australia can travel within New Zealand instead.