A Mission Manager’s Log: Quarantine in New Zealand

Our team goes to great lengths to serve our customers, and even a global pandemic won’t stop them.

In New Zealand, where our upcoming Rocket Lab launches will take place, getting through the border has been extremely difficult because there are few opportunities to book your MIQ (Mandatory Isolation and Quarantine) stay.  For example, the MIQ reservations for the entire month of November opened up unannounced in the middle of the night for US time zones.  By the time we woke up in Seattle, the entire month was booked out.  It’s compounded when you need an entire team to support the launch campaign.  The extremely limited MIQ reservations has forced us to compress the launch schedule and stack as many launches together as possible, because we can’t just leave and come back as one launch campaign ends and the next one begins. 

As a result, this team is all-in for all three launches.  We are working towards an unprecedented back-to-back-to-back launch campaign which could not be possible if it wasn’t for Rocket Lab’s quick turn on the launch cycle and our team’s dedication.

One of our mission managers, Lisa Middlebrook, chronicled her stay in MIQ. Take a look at what several weeks of her life in the hotel looked like:

Mission Manager Extraordinaire, Lisa Middlebrook

Dining in quarantine is also an experience. Lisa and the team relied on the hotel to deliver meals, but they got some fun choices.

We don’t get these in the US!
Sushi delivery!
Surprise! Here’s breakfast.

Let’s take a look at outdoor time for our team in quarantine. Below you can see the outdoor area where our team are allowed to walk up to 30 minutes a day (max), if you can get an appointment. Because this is downtown, real estate is a premium with little open area, and since this is a large hotel, there’s little time for the guests to get outside. Not all hotels serving MIQ are like this, some have park like settings and more access to the outside. All hotels are fenced in with blackout panels between us and the general population, though.

Finally, MIQ came to an end! With one more final negative COVID test, Lisa and her team headed out to the launch site for the integration campaign for the next launch.

Freedom awaits! And integration.
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