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Page last updated on Thursday 29 April 2022

New Zealand now at Orange

Following review, all of New Zealand moved to the COVID-19 Orange traffic light setting at 11.59pm Wednesday 13 April 2022, with the next review due in mid May. 

Changes to COVID-19 Protection Framework

Following review, all of New Zealand moved to the COVID-19 Orange traffic light setting at 11.59pm Wednesday 13 April 2022, with the next review in mid May. 

At Orange, you can continue to do everyday activities, but we need to protect our vulnerable communities by keeping up healthy habits.

You'll still need to isolate if you or someone you live with catches COVID-19. 

The current focus remains on managing COVID-19 safely at home. People should stay calm and go about life as normally as possible. People should continue to shop normally. You are able to visit friends and family and travel around the country.

The COVID-19 Protection Framework was simplified on Friday 25 March, 2022. The new Framework will help us manage our lives with Omicron while also lessening the impact of future outbreaks. Learn more about the changes.

At Orange, you must wear a face mask in many indoor locations. You do not need to wear a face mask outdoors. You can visit cafes and bars, attend gatherings and events, and go to the hairdresser and gym. There are no capacity limits or distancing requirements at venues. Workplaces and schools can open.

From the end of May, people who have genuine reasons for not being able to wear a face mask can access a new personalised exemption card

As of 11.59pm 4 April, New Zealanders no longer need to use My Vaccine Pass. Vaccine mandates for all sectors except health and care workers, prison staff and border workers have been removed. Learn more about vaccine passes and certificates.

Omicron outbreak

New Zealand is now in COVID-19 Omicron Phase 3.

If you're planning to travel within New Zealand, make sure you're prepared in case you or the people you're with get sick. If you develop any COVID-19 symptoms:

  • Get a test. Don't wait until you get home
  • If you need to head home and you travelled by car, you can head directly home, but plan your route and try to stop only at contactless petrol stations for fuel and supplies
  • Be prepared to isolate. If you can't drive directly home, stay somewhere where you can isolate safely for at least seven days
  • Don't use air travel, ferries or public transport and don't make overnight stops
  • Tell your accommodation provider immediately if you test positive so they can make the property safe for the next booking

Learn more about what to do if you get sick while travelling.

The best thing that people can do to be prepared is to get a booster. People who have had a booster are much less likely to require hospital care if they catch COVID-19. If it has been four months since your second shot, you can go to BookMyVaccine to make a booking. Walk-in and drive-through boosters are available from some vaccination centres. Information is available on the Unite Against COVID-19 website.

If you have COVID-19 symptoms, get tested. Testing is free.

You can also call the dedicated COVID-19 Healthline:

For any other health concerns, call the general Healthline number on 0800 611 116. You can call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

People need to make sure they are prepared for a period of isolation at home in the event they catch COVID-19 or they are a close contact. Making sure you have a buddy who can deliver anything else you need while you’re isolating is a good idea. Information on how to make a plan for if you or a member of your household catches COVID-19 is available on the Unite Against COVID-19 website.

You can order Rapid Antigen Tests online or go to a testing clinic.

There are step-by-step instructions available in multiple languages for how to take your Rapid Antigen Test. Most Rapid Antigen Test kits generally follow the same instructions but not all. Please follow the manufacturer’s instructions.

New Zealand Government COVID-19 response

Get the latest information about the New Zealand government's COVID-19 response.