I can't wait for the travel bubble with Australia. I am looking forward to not going. In this time of Covid rebuilding, I believe it is our patriotic duty to spend our holiday cash right here in Aotearoa. When it comes to vacation time, remember this simple rhyme - Don't cross the ditch until Kiwis are rich.
Staying on this side of the Tasman won't be easy. We are a nation of travellers stuck at home for a very long time. Many of us have itchy feet. It would be so easy to nip over to fantastic cities like Melbs, Brissy and Sids. There'll be no quarantine time, cheap flights and Aussies welcoming us with open arms. Don't go. To quote Admiral Ackbar at the battle of Endor, "It's a trap". They want our money. They will use their spectacular tempting country to get it off us. In these difficult times, the tourism and hospitality industries of both countries are hurting. The question is, who are you going to help first? The answer is obvious. We Kiwis who love our country will keep our precious cash on our beautiful shores.
We love our antipodean cousins; this anti-travel rhetoric isn't hateful or personal; Aotearoa welcomes Australians to our shores. They are a wonderful people with wallets rammed full of precious foreign dollars. We must band together as a nation and fleece them. Every cent they spend here is an export. Every cent we spend there is an import. The more exporting and less importing we do, the more prosperous we are as a nation. Don't be a trade deficit, Benedict Arnold. Good Kiwis buy New Zealand-made, holiday locally and milk Australians wherever we see them.
On January 20, 1961, at his inaugural address, John F Kennedy challenged every American to contribute in some way to the public good, stating, "Ask not what your country can do for you – ask what you can do for your country." Not holidaying in Aussie is a small thing you can do for Aotearoa. You can enhance our public good by choosing Gizzy over the Goldie, Queenstown over Queensland, the Mount over Melbourne, Great Barrier Island over the Great Barry Reef, Rotorua over Rottnest Island.
The flora and fauna of that Great Southern Land is the envy of the world, but koalas, kookaburra and kangaroos will keep. For the next year it's kākāpō, kea and kōkako. If you're hanging out for something adorable, check out the Pohatu Penguins. They are small and fluffy, but unlike quokkas, they don't hiff their babies at predators.
If a friend or family member is thinking about a holiday in Australia, it is your national duty to sit them down and talk them around. This dialogue might become confrontational, so I have put together a list of sensible questions you can pose. Start by asking gently, "Do you hate your country?" If that doesn't work, scream "traitor" in their faces. If you still have no luck changing their travel plans, start listing beautiful New Zealand spots to visit instead. A friendly "Is Whangaruru not good enough for you, mate?" Or "Are you scared of glaciers?" I'm sure if you calmly yell Tasman, Central Otago, the Catlins, Bay of Islands, Hawke's Bay, the West Coast, Canterbury, Kāpiti at them, they will eventually give in and stay.
People worldwide spend thousands of dollars and travel a long way to experience our natural beauty and Southern Pacific hospitality. Congratulations, we are lucky enough to be here already. We love our country. We desperately want Aotearoa to bounce back from this stupid virus stronger than we were before. It's a simple fact that the recovery will happen faster if New Zealand dollars stay in New Zealand hands. So do the right thing, forget the transtasman bubble and holiday right here in paradise. Don't cross the ditch till Kiwis are rich.
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New Zealand is a free country; if for whatever reason you do decide to go to Australia for a vacation, that is your choice. I am sure you must have your reasons. Bon Voyage, I hope you get attacked by a crocodile, bitten by a brown snake and choke on a prawn.