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Tuesday, 09 November 2021

From the Office of the Mayor: Mayor Boult Delighted at Air New Zealand Announcement

Mayor Jim Boult welcomed the recent news about domestic travel and proof of full COVID-19 immunisation or a negative test result.

Queenstown Lakes Mayor Jim Boult welcomed the news that from 14 December all passengers[1] on domestic Air New Zealand flights will need to show proof of full immunisation against COVID-19 or a negative test result with 72 hours of flying.

Mayor Boult said he was both delighted and reassured by the announcement this morning from Air New Zealand Chief Executive Greg Foran.

“The folk in our district have been stepping up to do their bit in the fight against COVID-19 to protect what we love – and that includes whānau, friends and loved ones from across Aotearoa New Zealand. That commitment and compassion can clearly be seen in the latest update that Queenstown Lakes had a stunning 98.9% of the eligible population single dosed and 87.4%[2] doubled dosed, and was the leading area in New Zealand for vaccination rates. It’s only a matter of time before we hit my own personal target of 95% double dosed to be the safest place in the country,” he said.

Mayor Boult reflected that he had heard of a few locals concerned about visitors from areas such as Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland, Waikato and Northland that have seen varying degrees of community spread of the virus.

“Hospitality and the visitor industry make up a significant part of our district’s economy so there has been some uncertainty between balancing how we see that prosper again whilst keeping employees and locals safe. Mr Foran’s announcement today is truly pleasing as it brings reassurance that businesses can extend the very warm welcome you would expect from visiting places such as Wānaka and Queenstown, knowing that everyone flying here and the airline itself are all playing their part to stop the spread of COVID-19.”

“It’s yet another reminder of the need for us all to get fully vaccinated as soon as possible so we can protect what we love and get back to doing the things we enjoy. My thanks to each and every one of you who has already reached that goal and I encourage anyone hesitating for a second jab, or booking their first appointment, to speak to a medical professional regarding their concerns without delay. I particularly wish to thank those who were reluctant to be vaccinated yet did so for the benefit of others.”

“I, for one, am looking forward to a safe and enjoyable summer as friends and whānau reconnect here in Queenstown Lakes. I’m sure many of our locals are too,” said Mayor Boult.

ENDS|KUA MUTU.

Media contact: communications@qldc.govt.nz or call 03 441 1802.

[1] Aged 12 and over

[2] Source: Southern District Health Board (3 November 2021)