27 Sep 2021

New MIQ system rated just 3.6 out of 10 in Grounded Kiwis survey

5:18 pm on 27 September 2021

Hundreds of people who tried to get a room in managed isolation last week have given the new 'virtual lobby' system an overall rating of 3.6 out of 10.

man on laptop

Photo: Public domain

More than 31,000 people tried to book 3200 managed isolation and quarantine (MIQ) spots last Monday after bookings opened after a long pause.

In total, 5300 people from 117 countries were able to secure a room, but thousands of others missed out.

The new system, protected from bots, randomly allocated people a place in the queue. The lucky ones were at the top, while others waited hours placed 19,000, 22,000 and so on.

The group Grounded Kiwis said 902 people responded to their survey on the new system. Of those, 98 managed to get a voucher - or 11 percent.

A quarter had technical difficulties like a timed out session, or inability to log out.

Those who did not get a voucher described being devastated, heartbroken, disappointed, and frustrated.

Grounded Kiwis said a third of respondents talked about wanting to be reunited with their whānau.

The top response from people who got a voucher was a sense of relief followed by guilt.

The lobby opens again tomorrow.

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