COVID-19: US tells Americans to 'reconsider travel' to New Zealand

The United States has updated its travel advice for New Zealand, telling Americans to "reconsider travel" here.  

The US State Department uses a four-tiered travel system to provide country-specific advice to citizens planning travel.

The specific advisory on the US State Department website said: "Reconsider travel to New Zealand due to COVID-19-related restrictions. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has determined New Zealand has a high level of COVID-19. There are restrictions in place affecting US citizen entry into New Zealand."

COVID-19 cases in New Zealand have been fluctuating between 5000 and 10,000 infections over the past month. On Monday, the Ministry of Health announced 6636 new COVID cases with 480 people in hospital.  

All of New Zealand is currently at orange of the COVID-19 Protection Framework - otherwise known as the traffic light system - with limited restrictions in place.

There are no indoor or outdoor gathering limits and no face mask requirements at a gathering, except for workers and volunteers.

New Zealand is one of 44 countries under a "reconsider travel" advisory with China, Poland, Vanuatu and the Solomon Islands some of the other countries on the list.  

The US had previously upgraded their travel advice for New Zealand to level three "reconsider travel" in April last year.

Monday marked the first day anyone vaccinated from a visa waiver country, which includes the US, was able to enter New Zealand quarantine-free since the COVID-19 pandemic began.