Revealed: Most searched destinations by Kiwis in the month before COVID-19 closed

It's been one year since Aotearoa's borders were closed.
It's been one year since Aotearoa's borders were closed. Photo credit: Newshub/Getty (file)

Today marks one year since New Zealand closed its borders to international visitors and overseas travel was put on hold indefinitely due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

As Kiwis anticipate the opening of a trans-Tasman bubble, data taken from from the month before our borders closed reveals a snapshot of where New Zealanders were wanting to visit internationally, just before they stopped being able to.

The information may be a good sign of where New Zealanders will be heading soon when borders reopen.

Todd Lacey,'s NZ manager, said the range of countries in the top 20 international destinations shows Kiwis have a strong appetite for exploration when restrictions change.

"While we are all extremely grateful to be on New Zealand shores during the COVID-19 pandemic, 2020 saw many Kiwis give up on their OEs, destination weddings, honeymoons, and holidays with families and friends overseas," Lacey said.

"Whether we were hopping on a plane for a quick trip across the ditch or heading on a longer journey further afield to the UK, Bali, Japan, or the UK, the variety of international destinations we were planning to visit in 2020 speaks to Kiwis' preparedness to cross the world in search of the ultimate holiday." 

NZ's top 20 most searched international destinations pre-COVID-19:

  1. Sydney, Australia 
  2. Gold Coast, Australia
  3. Melbourne, Australia 
  4. London, United Kingdom 
  5. Singapore
  6. Seminyak, Bali 
  7. Honolulu, Hawaii 
  8. Brisbane, Australia 
  9. Dubai, United Arab Emirates 
  10. Denerau, Fiji 
  11. Toyko, Japan 
  12. Nadi, Fiji 
  13. Los Angeles, USA 
  14. New York, USA 
  15. Paris, France 
  16. Ubud, Bali 
  17. Amsterdam, Netherlands 
  18. Bangkok, Thailand 
  19. San Francisco, USA 
  20. Rome, Italy 

Has your preferred travel destination changed since the pandemic?  Let us know what destinations led your travel bucket lists before COVID-19, and what places are at the top now. Visit the Newshub Travel Facebook Group.