What does the travel bubble between New Zealand and Cook Islands mean for us

It brings much excitement that quarantine-free travel is now available between New Zealand and the Cook Islands. From 17 May 2021, travellers from both sides do not have to go into isolation when arriving into either New Zealand or the Cook Islands.  

Travellers will however need to have been in New Zealand or the Cook Islands for 14 consecutive days prior to departing. A large amount of work has gone into making sure the two-way bubble was safe for travellers and the Cook Islands were in a position and prepared for this.

Two-way quarantine-free travel is a significant step in both countries’ COVID-19 recovery, and a direct result of both New Zealand and the Cook Islands’ successful response to the pandemic.

The fact we can take this step in our recovery so soon after opening the trans-Tasman bubble highlights the benefits of our COVID-19 management, and the opportunities it is now providing New Zealand and our neighbours. – Jacinda Ardern, NZ Prime Minister

What does this look like for those travelling to the Cook Islands?

With the Cook Islands preparing itself with reopening borders for tourism, they have developed ‘The Cook Islands Promise’.  This is a joint commitment to protect not only the residents of the Cook Islands, but international visitors from COVID-19, who are visiting this slice of paradise.

While the Cook Islands are confident to reopen borders to New Zealand, visitors and tourism operators must place importance on physical distancing and good hygiene measures when visiting. 

The Cook Islands Promise is a joint commitment between hosts and guests to safeguard the health of our island communities and our visitors. The actions of our promise will endeavour to keep the Cook Islands safe. I urge all our visitors to honour your part of our promise and enjoy a safe and enriching experience – Prime Minister Hon. Mark Brown

The borders are only open to those who meet certain requirements and you can learn more about this under the current 2021 Travel Advisory.

Similar to New Zealand, contact tracing in the Cook Islands is required and the two official contact tracing systems over there are called CookSafe and CookSafe+.  CookSafe uses a specific QR card for tagging in at CookSafe stations. The CookSafe+ version uses Bluetooth technology on smartphones to register other contact tracing app users in your area. Read more about these apps before travelling to the Cook Islands here.

It will mean families can reconnect, commercial arrangements can resume and Kiwis can take a much-welcomed winter break and support the Cook Islands’ tourism sector and recovery. – Jacinda Ardern

What does this mean for us?

This means our Future Leaders Academy Student Leadership Course to the Cook Islands is now open for registrations. The next one-week course is held from 2 October to 9 October 2021 in Rarotonga, Cook Islands.

Who is this course for?

Whether you are a Prefect, Peer Support Leader or an Aspiring Student Leader who is keen to experience and learn more – this is a unique opportunity to receive leadership training in a cultural setting.

The aim of the Student Leader Programme is to equip students with life-long leadership skills that stay with them beyond the course and carry over to their future endeavours. Participants will join other young leaders in the beautiful Pacific Islands, connect with new networks and gain leadership training that will last a lifetime.

 What will the students learn on this week-long course?

  • Advanced leadership skills
  • Decision making
  • Planning and goal setting
  • Building on resilience
  • Leading a diverse team
  • Cultural awareness
  • Embracing Pasifika culture
  • Taking action on real local issues
  • Learning to think critically & strategically
  • Community building
  • Enhancing communication
  • Establishing resilience & adaptability
  • Provide access to exclusive members community
  • Improving your career prospects
  • Financial support options available

If you are interested in learning more about our upcoming Student Leadership Course in Rarotonga, please visit: https://flacademy.com/pacific-student-leaders-program/

Further useful resources on Cook Islands travel:

Tip five experiences in the Cook Islands

Contact Tracing in the Cook Islands

Cook Islands Travel Safe

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