July 18, 2024

Kilkenny woman stranded in New Zealand due to Covid-19 lockdown

A young Kilkenny woman says she has been trapped in New Zealand after she was told she had come in contact with someone with Covid-19 and could not fly home to Ireland.

Lynn Boland (26), who is from Thomastown, and her partner Dublin partner Oisín (25) are in Wellington since April on working holiday visas which are due to expire at the end of the month but had decided to return home early.

But then they were both told to self-isolate after Lynn was informed that she had come in contact with a person who potentially had Covid-19 and that both of them should self-isolate, forcing them to cancel their flights booked home for last Sunday.

They have since been told the person tested negative and they were free to leave but there are now no flights back to Ireland leaving them “in limbo”.

“There’s literally no flights, any flights are either crazy prices or there’s a lot of confusion about where you can transit through,” Ms Boland told The Irish Times.

“Basically the only transit area that we can still see as open is the US. We applied for ESTAs [visas]; they were granted but then there are no flights.

“We don’t know how long we’ll be stuck here for. Both of us are out of jobs. New Zealand goes into full lockdown from tomorrow, which means that all non-essential businesses are closed,” Lynn added.

The Irish Embassy in New Zealand have assured the couple that they would be  left stranded.

“If we have to stay in New Zealand until commercial flights are back up and running at a steady pace . . . what supports are there for us to maintain our rent, our food supply, being able to support ourselves essentially,” she said.

Picture from Irish Times


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