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'Start coming home now,' Winston Peters urges 80,000 Kiwis abroad

Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters' advice for 80,000 travelling New Zealanders amid the coronavirus pandemic: "If you can get home, start coming home now." 

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The Foreign Affairs Minister says they should get in before commercial flights get cut off. Source: 1 NEWS

"Transportation options are closing up real fast. They could be stranded there so they need to think about it real hard now," Mr Peters said today. 

The New Zealand High Commission in London and the NZ Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade have advised all Kiwis to avoid all non-essential travel due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

"The travel restrictions and border closures are changing very quickly and the options for New Zealanders to get home are reducing dramatically," an email from Safe Travel said.

Mr Peters said there are more than 80,000 people who come under the category of being overseas for a short-period of time. 

"Plan A is to get them home now on commercial flights while they still can."

He said the Government was "considering every option now" to get New Zealanders back. 

This morning the European Union agreed on a travel ban prohibiting most foreigners from entering for 30 days.

Australia also today upgraded its international travel advice to the highest level, with all citizens being told not to travel overseas because of coronavirus.

On Tuesday, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau closed the country's borders to anyone not a citizen, an American or a permanent resident.