In this edition we begin a new column, ‘Better moments make the world smile’ in association with Mars Wrigley International Travel Retail. In this regular new feature we will cast the spotlight on memorable human moments from around the world of travel, aviation and travel retail.

The restart of travel – and its positive impact on travel retail and airport commercial activities – is a fitting jumping off point for our new eZine column, which will appear each month in association with Mars Wrigley International Travel Retail. For this first ‘Better moments make the world smile’ column, we’ve chosen to home in on the delight among consumers and industry partners at the opening of the trans-Tasman bubble between Australia and New Zealand last month. Celebratory and emotional scenes were played out at airports on both sides of the Tasman Sea, with the recommencement of quarantine-free travel between the two neighbours. The huge media exposure in both countries, and the vast social media coverage orchestrated by the media teams at the region’s leading airports, underlined the significance of the occasion. The images on this page, taken mainly at Sydney and Auckland airports, illustrate the importance of travel in forging and reestablishing vital human connections – in this case reuniting family and friends who had not seen each other in well over a year.

““It is an indescribable feeling to have welcomed our team and customers safely back.”

Human connection: Joyous scenes in Sydney and Auckland as travel resumes

The excitement among travel retailers at a return to business (airport duty free stores in both markets had been closed for the previous 13 months) was as notable as the thrill among travellers themselves. ARI Auckland Head of Retail Operations Melanie Rutherford said: “It is an indescribable feeling to have welcomed our team and customers safely back to the store.” ARI CEO Ray Hernan said: “We have been waiting for this day for a long time. There has been a great sense of anticipation for a safe reopening of The Loop Duty Free at Auckland Airport. I am immensely proud of the team, they have worked non-stop around the clock to ensure that customers of The Loop are greeted with the warmest, safest welcome and are treated to a world class shopping experience.”

Heinemann Australia Managing Director Richard Goodman also welcomed the ‘travel bubble’ launch. While Heinemann’s shops at Sydney Airport have been operating on a limited basis since October 2020, this was the first time in over a year that Heinemann’s Gold Coast Airport location opened to customers. “We are delighted to welcome the first travellers on the trans-Tasman bubble to our shops after a long year,” he said. “This is a significant first step towards the recovery of our industry and we hope this is the first of many travel bubbles to come. We are pleased to be collaborating with our brand partners on a number of campaigns in Sydney and Gold Coast Airports to celebrate the return of quarantine-free travel over some of the most important routes to our customers.” Brisbane Airport Corporation CEO Gert-Jan de Graaff said the travel bubble is vitally important as New Zealand is one of Queensland’s most important international markets. He said the launch marked “an incredible day for the many families and friends who will be able to reunite, but also for the thousands of businesses in Brisbane, the regions, and across Queensland who rely on tourism.”

*If you work in the travel retail industry and wish to nominate a moment or event for our new ‘Better moments make the world smile’ column please email Dermot Davitt at

Partner's message


The Moodie Davitt eZine Issue 296 | 26 May 2021

The Moodie Davitt eZine is published 15 times per year by The Moodie Davitt Report (Moodie International Ltd). © All material is copyright and cannot be reproduced without the permission of the Publisher. To find out more visit and to subscribe, please e-mail

Share this article: