Air New Zealand has operated its first flight between Auckland and Sydney as part of the new Safe Travel Zone agreement, a one-way travel bubble between New Zealand and New South Wales in Australia.

Under the Safe Travel Zone agreement, passengers travelling from New Zealand can enter New South Wales without having to quarantine on arrival in Australia. However, those returning to New Zealand will still need to quarantine for 14 days upon return, provide payment for quarantine and register their managed isolation accommodation requirements via the New Zealand government’s website.

Passengers travelling from New Zealand will also be required to complete a health declaration  form stating they have been in New Zealand the preceding 14 days. Health screening will also take place on arrival in Sydney.

The airline has introduced “quarantine” and “quarantine-free” flights for the new arrangement. The quarantine-free flights will be for travellers originating from New Zealand who are flying from Auckland to Sydney and are not required to quarantine on arrival in Australia, while the quarantine flights will be open to passengers who do not meet the Safe Travel Zone criteria and will be required to quarantine on arrival in Australia.

Air New Zealand says it is currently operating eight return flights between Auckland and Sydney per week and will look to operate two quarantine flights per week, while the remaining flights will be quarantine-free.

Between October 16 and October 24, the airline will operate three quarantine flights – on October 17, October 22 and October 24, and all other flights will be quarantine-free. On October 22 the airline will operate both a quarantine-free and a quarantine flight. The airline says it is “working through” flights from October 25.

“Passengers planning to travel interstate beyond New South Wales will need to ensure they have checked state and territory travel restrictions and have the appropriate exemptions/approvals to travel as these continue to change,” reads a statement from the carrier

Due to Australian State restrictions, fares beyond Sydney to destinations within Australia are not available to be booked via Air New Zealand, the carrier said.

More information on those eligible to travel to New South Wales as part of the Safe Travel Zone can be found here.