Coronavirus: Queenstown tourism operators 'delighted' by Government's travel announcement

Tourism operators in Queenstown are full of excitement after the Government announced domestic travel will be allowed under alert level 2, which begins on Thursday.

On Monday Jacinda Ardern revealed New Zealand would be entering level 2 in two days and businesses would be able to reopen.

The Prime Minister is recommending Kiwis "visit tourism sites and support local business" after the industries took massive financial hits during the lockdown.

Queenstown Mayor Jim Boult says he was overjoyed to hear the popular tourist destination could be seeing travellers as soon as Thursday.

"I'm thinking of going to the airport and welcoming the first flight back in," he says.

"We're delighted to have Kiwis coming back here and holidaying and we will be rolling out the red carpet."

Ian Paterson from Spinnaker Bay Apartments says they are already getting bookings, their accommodation is half-full for July.

"They're still committed to wanting to have that family get together and they're selecting Queenstown to do that.

"In general all the bookings are coming from within NZ and right through the country."

Australians are also beginning to book winter holidays in New Zealand despite no date being released yet for the trans-Tasman bubble.

"Reports of quite a reasonable level of bookings obviously primarily from the domestic market but a few Australian bookings as well obviously anticipating the trans-Tasman bubble," Mayor Jim Boult says.

The first flight to Queenstown will be out of Christchurch on Thursday, then the Auckland to Queenstown route commences on Saturday.