Government to assist New Zealanders in Philippines to come home

The Government is securing a flight to bring New Zealanders home from the Philippines this weekend, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says.

“New Zealanders in the Philippines are experiencing challenging circumstances under quarantine restrictions, and difficulty in getting home with no domestic transit options. We are working with Philippine Airlines and international partners on flight arrangements to bring New Zealanders and their family members home,” said Mr Peters.

“We are grateful to the Philippines Government and Philippine Airlines for the positive engagement we have had with them so far, and look forward to continued cooperation over the coming days,” said Mr Peters.

“MFAT continues to search for solutions for New Zealanders stranded offshore in an extremely complex global environment. However, Government-assisted flights will only be explored in exceptional circumstances when all other options have been exhausted.”

“We strongly advise that New Zealanders overseas should be seeking to shelter safely where they are or return home by commercial means where possible,” Mr Peters said.

The flight will depart Manila on Sunday 19 April. Transportation options are also being considered for New Zealanders in other parts of the Philippines to be able to meet this flight.

Any New Zealanders in the Philippines wishing to register interest in the flight should email the New Zealand Embassy in Manila: NZEMManila@mfat.govt.nz

Upon arrival into New Zealand, all passengers on this flight will enter immediate quarantine.