We are delighted to see news this week announcing a travel bubble between New Zealand and our Pacific Island neighbours, the Cook Islands, from May 17th 2021. This comes after the successful opening of a travel bubble between Australia and New Zealand in mid-April.
Samoa Tourism welcomes this announcement as an important step towards establishing our own two-way quarantine-free travel bubble with New Zealand in future months. We are anticipating a travel bubble this year and are working hard to ensure we are ready when it is confirmed.
The health and safety of both our local Samoan Aiga (family) and New Zealand travellers is our highest priority. We are confident that with national COVID-19 vaccinations currently underway throughout Samoa, alongside the introduction of increased procedures – including contact tracing and regular testing – a strong framework has been developed.
From July 1st 2021, all travellers into Samoa must be fully vaccinated before they arrive, on instruction from the Samoa National Emergency Operations Centre. The testing capabilities of the Scientific Research Organisation of Samoa (SROS) have also been recently boosted. This will ensure our locals and visitors have even more protection, and the risk of COVID-19 spreading through the community is minimised.
The past year has proved tough for our small island nation, but the commitment of New Zealand in helping to ensure the safety of the Pacific nations by preventing the spread of the virus in our communities has been paramount.
New Zealand has recently assisted STA in travel ready preparations through health, safety and disinfectant training, ensuring upskilling of local staff. The assistance is part of the NZ Government’s ongoing commitment to support the tourism sector in anticipation of borders reopening.
As the original social distant friendly destination, with zero COVID-19 community transmissions, Samoa’s untouched beauty and authentic nature is the perfect place for Kiwis to feel a world away, without venturing far from the safety of their doorstep once the travel bubble has been established.
The establishment of a Pacific travel bubble will provide crucial mutual benefits for both nations in rebounding from the economic challenges presented by the global COVID-19 pandemic.
We are looking forward to rebuilding the strong cultural connections between Samoa and our Pacific neighbors in New Zealand and welcoming Kiwi visitors to our shores once again soon.
Source: Samoa Tourism Authority