The country reopened its borders to tourists arriving by plane in May 2022
New Zealand has welcomed the first cruise ship to return to its shores since the Coronavirus pandemic began, signalling a long-sought return to normalcy for the nation's tourism industry.
New Zealand closed its borders in early 2020 as it sought at first to eliminate Covid-19 entirely and then later to control its spread.
Although the country reopened its borders to tourists arriving by plane in May 2022, it wasn't until August that remaining restrictions were lifted on maritime arrivals.
The end of restrictions allowed Carnival Australia's Pacific Explorer cruise ship to dock in Auckland with approximately 2,000 passengers and crew as part of a 12-day return trip from Sydney to Fiji.
New Zealand Tourism Minister Stuart Nash said: "It's another step in the reopening of our borders and a step closer to resuming business as usual."
Nash went on to say that it would take some time for international tourist numbers and revenues to return to their pre-pandemic levels, when the industry accounted for about 20% of New Zealand's foreign income and more than 5% of the GDP.
For more information, visit www.carnival.com.au