New Caledonia, Tahiti end pre-departure tests for tourists


(NZ Herald) — New Caledonia and French Polynesia are the latest countries to remove Covid-19 pre-departure testing for visitors.

Passengers flying to Noumea from New Zealand will no longer need to show proof of a negative covid test to board a plane.

Travellers will still need to be vaccinated and travelling from a ‘green’ or ‘orange’ risk country to qualify. All arrivals will still have to take a RAT within 48 hours of entering the country. These can be obtained for free from pharmacies with a plane ticket or other proof of travel.

The French overseas territory restarted air links this month, with the first Aircalin flight arriving in New Zealand on May 8. Air New Zealand is set to return to Noumea from July.

Tahiti has also abolished pre-departure tests for inbound traveller from the US, New Caledonia and New Zealand. As of 18 May, vaccinated tourists will no longeer need to show results of a Covid-19 test prior to travel.

Unvaccinated travellers from low-risk countries will also be allowed to enter French Polynesia, without a “compelling reasons” declaration. However unvaccinated tourists, over 12, will still need to provide a negative RT-PCR result from less than 72 hours before travel.

National carrier Air Tahiti Nui resumed flights from Papeete to Auckland this month and will be increasing schedule to three times a week from July when Air New Zealand also restarts routes Tahiti.

Passengers must still complete an “Attestation sur l’honneur” before flying with traveller details before travel to New Caledonia.

Currently New Caledonia is not listed on the Pacific Islands exempt from Covid-19 testing and travellers to New Zealand still require pre-departure tests.

The New Zealand Government has announced its intention to remove pre-departure testing by August. Travellers should check official advice before travel.

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