Federal Government announces plans for international travel to return in November

Get ready western Sydney! Australia is ready to take its next steps to safely reopen to the world with changes coming to the international border.

With nationwide first dose vaccination rates at over 78 per cent and double dose rates at 55 per cent, the Federal Government has been finalising plans so Australian families can be reunited, Australian workers can travel in-and-out of the country, and the country can work towards welcoming tourists back to Australian shores.

To enable fully vaccinated Australians to travel, the Federal Government is finalising new arrangements.

Following completion of home quarantine pilots in New South Wales and South Australia, it is anticipated that states and territories that are ready to do so will roll out:

  • Seven day home quarantine for Australian citizens and permanent residents fully vaccinated with a vaccine approved for use in Australia or ‘recognised’ by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA).
  • 14-day managed quarantine for anyone not vaccinated or vaccinated with a vaccine not approved or recognised by the TGA.

Australian citizens and permanent residents who cannot be vaccinated – for example if they are under 12 – will be treated as vaccinated for the purposes of their travel.

“I just want to jump on a plane and continue seeing the world!” said Mary Salib who got vaccinated at Qudos Bank Arena Vaccination Centre.

States and territories will begin this program at different times given their varying vaccination rates but the Federal Government expects the system to commence in November.

The Federal Government’s intention is that once changes are made in November, the current overseas travel restrictions related to COVID-19 will be removed and Australians will be able to travel subject to any other travel advice and limits, as long as they are fully vaccinated and those countries’ border settings allow.

Border settings and quarantine requirements in other countries continue to change and Australians are encouraged to closely monitor DFAT travel advice, available on smartraveller.gov.au.

These changes mean there will be no travel restrictions if you are a vaccinated Australian entering or leaving the country.

Australia will also work towards completely quarantine-free travel for certain countries, such as New Zealand, when it is safe to do so.

Testing is expected to continue to be a requirement of international travel, but subject to further medical advice, Rapid Antigen Tests may be used.

Australians who want to travel overseas once restrictions are removed will be able to access an internationally recognised proof of vaccination document in the coming weeks to prove their vaccination status abroad.

More on Australia’s plans to reopen the international border can be read here.

All people aged 12 and up can get their COVID-19 vaccination now – including Pfizer and Moderna vaccines for over 60s. 

Appointments are available at more than 3000 locations across NSW including pharmacies, GPs and NSW Health clinics. Find the next available appointment at a location near you.

If you are a fully vaccinated Australian-based Qantas Frequent Flyer, you are in with a chance to win the airlines biggest ever giveaway. Find out more.