New Zealanders cancelling holidays to Australia over COVID uncertainty

A Kiwi woman who's been stuck in Sydney for weeks says the experience has put her off travelling in these uncertain COVID times.

Our Government has stopped all non-quarantine travel from New South Wales as the state struggles to control the virus. As a result many Kiwis have now cancelled their holidays across the ditch.

Danica Young's trip to Sydney to see her sisters she hasn't seen in two years was meant to last one week. It's now been three weeks and counting - and most of that's been in lockdown.

"I'm put off, I'm put off a 100 percent. I won't be coming back anytime soon. And that's what's sad is I think it's going to put off a lot of people," she explains.

She's now waiting to secure a flight back to New Zealand and faces having to quarantine for two weeks.

"That's one of the big things that's making me wanna come home so bad is the guilt of not being able to help out my work," she says.

Travel agents say the uncertainty with Australia's COVID situation is seeing Kiwis cancel trips across the ditch.

"School holidays is normally the busiest time of the year and so there were a number of people heading over to NSW," says Brent Thomas, president of Travel Agents Association of NZ.

New South Wales residents coming here are suffering too as - for now - they now have to do quarantine.

Tourism operators Newshub spoke to say while they can absolutely see why the constant ups and downs of stopping and starting the bubble are frustrating.

"The best term I can use is 'gutting'," says NZ Ski CEO Paul Anderson.

"When that happens we're gutted, we understand the reasons for it but you can't help going 'argh'."

At Queentown's Coronet Peak they're mainly catering to a domestic market as Australians cancel trips down under.

The industry wants to see a plan from the Government about opening the borders once it's safe.

"I think what they need to do is give a better clarity around the pathway out of this situation," Thomas says.

"Of course health comes first but then what is the plan once we get fully vaccinated. What does fully vaccinated actually mean so that we can travel once again?"

The goal is for every New Zealander to be vaccinated by the end of the year.

Until then it's a battle for survival for local tourism operators and a gamble for all Kiwis wanting to head offshore.