Living legend and Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern has announced that New Zealand will be opening up its borders to Aussies in late February, so kiss the quokkas goodbye because it’s kiwi season girls.

During a press speech to Business New Zealand on Thursday, Ardern highlighted the next steps for New Zealand to fully open up. The very first step is a border opening for Australia on February 27th, 11:59pm.

From that date, returning New Zealanders and eligible (double) vaxxed Aussies will be able to enter the country and self-isolate for a set period of days. Upon arrival, they will also be handed three RATs for no cost at all. Yet another reason Ardern rules and Morrison drools, honestly.

Following this, New Zealand has four more steps in their reopening plan:

  • 13 March, 11:59pm – The country will open to New Zealanders and eligible travellers from across the world.
  • 12 April, 11:59pm – New Zealand opens to offshore temporary visa holders who still meet visa requirements and approximately 5000 international students.
  • July (no date set) – All Aussies may enter the country.
  • October (no date set) – New Zealand is open to the entire world, and all visa categories reopen and become available.

Anyone who travels to New Zealand without being fully vaxxed will be required to undergo managed isolation and quarantine (MIQ).

“It’s easy to hear the word MIQ and immediately associate it with heartache,” said Ardern.

“There is no question that for New Zealand it has been one of the hardest parts of the pandemic.

“But the choice to use it undeniably saved lives… MIQ meant not everyone could come home when they wanted to but it also meant that Covid could not come in when it wanted to, either.”

During the conference, Ardern confirmed that these were “firm dates” being announced which would not be changed.

Initially, New Zealand was going to open up much earlier, but extended its border reopening date to late February to ensure more of our Kiwi friends were able to get their third booster shot.

Time to say kia ora and get a bit of NZ in us now that we finally can.

Image: Getty Images