Plans of a Trans-Tasman bubble with New Zealand are back on with flights set to take off within weeks.
Travellers could be allowed to fly in from New Zealand into New South Wales without quarantining as early as November.
It’s understood the federal government will initially only permit New Zealand residents to fly in.
NSW residents will then be allowed to travel across the Tasman by Christmas, The Sunday Telegraph reported.
Transport and Tourism Forum chief executive Margy Osmond hopes flights between Sydney and Auckland will resume by November.
‘It would be fair to say that on both sides of the Tasman, work has been progressing at pace to make sure that when the health requirements are right, we are ready to go,’ she said.
‘It would be a mistake to think that because there’s been a bit of a hiccup on their side and our side that work stopped — it hasn’t.’
The news comes as Trade Minister Simon Birmingham expressed his hopes for a travel bubble between Australia and New Zealand by the end of the year.
But he says ‘first and foremost’ Australian states must open up to one another as great progress is being made.
Senator Birmingham said opening up an international border with New Zealand would be a ‘great step’ and work is being done to make sure this can be done in a safe way.
‘We’re making sure we have all the work done, all the preparations there so that we can safely achieve that bubble with New Zealand,’ the minster told ABC News Weekend Breakfast.
‘It’s up to them as to whether they choose to open up to Australia, but we’re certainly making sure that we’re prepared and I’m hopeful that could be this year.’
News South Wales recorded no new coronavirus cases on Sunday for the first time in four months.
More to come