Hospitality Business Magazine

Air NZ domestic passengers will need to be vaccinated

Domestic travellers on Air New Zealand services will need to be fully vaccinated or provide a negative Covid test prior to travel, the airline has announced.

The airline is planning to have the change in place by December 14 for an initial period until March 31 2022. 

It will apply to all passengers aged 12 or older travelling on an Air New Zealand aircraft within New Zealand. All vaccines and tests approved by the New Zealand Government will be accepted. 

Those not fully vaccinated will need to provide evidence of a negative covid test taken within 72 hours before departure, from either free community testing or their GP. If customers are unable to provide proof before their flight, they can put their fare into credit or get a refund, if they have purchased a fare that allows them to apply for a refund. 

Air New Zealand chief executive, Greg Foran said the change is about reducing the spread of Covid-19 ahead of what is expected to be a busy summer as Kiwis reconnect with friends and family. 

“Delta has really upped the stakes. What once kept us safe is no longer enough and we need an extra layer of protection. That’s why we’re taking a step further to keep our customers safe, while allowing all Kiwis to fly.” 

The airline said the change was motivated by overwhelming feedback from customers and employees calling for more protection during travel. 

“We’re doing it to protect vulnerable communities, for those with weakened immune systems or who can’t get vaccinated, for the elderly in our rest homes and our wee tamariki at home,” Foran said.

“Customers will be flying this summer for a number of reasons, and it’s our role to get them there. We don’t want to leave anyone behind, which is why we’re giving customers the choice to either be fully vaccinated or present a negative test.” 

The company encouraged customers to download the Air New Zealand mobile app to make it as easy as possible to connect their vaccination status in the government’s My Vaccine Pass with booking details, which will allow check-in.

 It has also been announced that Spark subsidiary Mattr had been appointed by the Ministry of Health to create the My Vaccine Pass system for domestic and international use.