Tuesday, May 18

Australia News Live: New Zealand Travel Bubble Opens; national cabinet meets on Covid vaccine | Australia News





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17:43

Hello from gate 31 at Sydney * international * airport.

By the time you read this, I’ll be on my way to Auckland, New Zealand, aboard Jetstar flight JQ201, the first jet to leave Australia as part of the round-trip bubble established between the two countries.

If, like me and basically everyone else on the planet, you haven’t been through an airport check-in process in a while, I’m here to tell you that … it still sucks. I’m not sure what I was expecting when I showed up here, maybe nature had reclaimed the terminal like in an apocalypse movie. But everything is mostly how I remember it, down to the substandard coffee I paid $ 8.60 for.

But obviously there is a lot of anticipation among the people waiting to board. So far I have come across a mix of those returning to New Zealand after more than a year separated from their family, as well as the highly enthusiastic tourists desperate tourism providers hope will provide crucial financial livelihoods.

But there is also a first day back to school atmosphere. Everybody seems a little giddy from doing this again that we all took for granted for so long.

Passengers check in for Air New Zealand Flight 246 to Wellington.

Passengers check in for Air New Zealand Flight 246 to Wellington. Photograph: Lisa Maree Williams / Getty Images

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