First tourists to fly to Rarotonga as bubble opens



Stuff NZ Newspapers

National News

The first tourists flewto Rarotonga from New Zealand yesterday as quarantine-free travel between the nations resumed. More than 200 passengers were booked onto Air NewZealand flight NZ946 at 8.45am from Auckland, five months after travelwas halted because of the Covid-19 Delta outbreak in August. Before then, the Cook Islands and New Zealand travel bubble had been in place for three months, following a 15-month border closure due to the pandemic. Oirua Tiniwas returning home after visiting family in NewZealand. He had with him ‘‘a very important box filled with KFC’’, to take back. ‘‘We asked what theywanted, and they said, ‘KFC’. So I’mtaking back KFC,’’ Tini said. He said locals were excited about tourists returning, but asked for respect and good sense when they were on the island.