Summer is well and truly here and for many Australians, this means it’s time for a well deserved break for the holiday szn.
Yet as we all know, for COVID, the hustle never sleeps, and there’s still a sh*t load of question marks surrounding where we can go and what we can do.
Now, I’d made a list and checked it twice but because each state and territory is working with their own set of COVID-related rules, it was hard to summarise them all – SO I have kindly compiled this V comprehensive list that also includes V necessary links to more info on each government’s website (which is probably safer than listening to me, anyway).
So buckle yourself in as I take you on the most boring blog post of your life xoxox
AUSTRALIAN CAPITAL TERRITORY
ENTERING: Starting with the Aussie capital, what you’re required to do when ENTERING is dependent on your vaccination status and if you have been to an identified high-risk area in the last 14 days…or an exposure location in the ACT…or any other state or territory (a full, frequently updated list of these places can be found HERE)
Unvaccinated residents who have been to a high-risk geographical area are required to obey stay at home orders for 14 days (sorry boo boo)
Good news for visitors entering from WA or Jervis Bay tho because you guys are free to roam the ACT as you please.
LEAVING: If you’re planning to GTFO of the ACT, good news, there are no rules or restrictions in place to prevent you leaving, however, ACT Health advises that any travel to high-risk geographical areas should be undertaken with caution (obviously).
NEW SOUTH WALES
The fact NSW is still standing after the most cooked few months of COVID is a dang miracle. But hey, miracles exist and so do travel restrictions depending on your vaccination status.
ENTERING: Entry into NSW is restricted when a NSW Health identifies affected areas, areas of concern and places of high concern, so be sure to check out the COVID-19 Concerns Notice before you travel.
If you are allowed to travel to NSW from a location that appears in the COVID-19 Concerns Notice (currently being VIC, ACT and QLD), when you arrive in NSW you mighttttttt be required to comply with:
- Stay at home rules if they apply to you
- Self-isolation rules if you are required to self-isolate
- Face mask rules
- Follow the COVID-19 rules and restrictions that apply in NSW
- Get a COVID-19 test if required to do so.
People over the age of 16 travelling into NSW from Victoria for holiday and recreation must also be fully vaccinated – sooooo yeah.
For those planning on heading to NSW from SA, WA, Tasmania and The NT…ya’ll are good. Fine, in fact. So welcome back.
A full list of rules for anyone already in NSW, residents returning to NSW or non-NSW residents planning to enter NSW can be also be found HERE and is defs worth checking out.
LEAVING: Yeah look, I highly recommend checking out each government’s website prior to traveling from NSW. Although a lot of places have ‘laxed their restrictions with NSW…it’s better to be (COVID) safe, than sorry.
ENTRY: To slow the spread of COVID, the QLD Government has restricted entry into Queensland for the best part of 2021…controversial, I know, yet things have relaxed a bit since Monday.
So the tea is that if you’re entering into Queensland from a declared hotspot within the past 14 days, you’re still welcome into the Sunshine State, provided you:
- Are fully vaccinated
- Have a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken within the 72 hours prior to arrival into Queensland.
- Agree to get a COVID-19 PCR test on day 5 following your arrival into Queensland.
Those entering from a hotspot must be fully vaccinated, apply for and receive a Queensland Entry Pass, return a negative PCR test 72 hours prior to their arrival in Queensland and get another PCR test on Day 5, or as close to Day 5 as practical, after arriving in Queensland.
Also, you may arrive into Queensland by any means, including by road, and there’s no quarantine required if you meet these criteria.
Queensland residents, or those relocating to QLD, who do not meet these criteria will continue to need to arrive by air, and complete 14 days of hotel quarantine (sorry about it). This also applies to Queensland residents, or those relocating to Queensland, who are in the ✨NSW border zone✨.
For a full list of updates applicable to Queensland residents travelling to and returning from the NSW border zone; NSW border zone residents travelling to QLD and arriving into Queensland from anywhere else in Australia (non-hotspots), you can see the T&Cs HERE.
LEAVING: I know, I know, so many rules, so little time, but if you’re travelling from Queensland it’s important to understand the restrictions that apply to domestic travel. To find out more about travel into other states and territories, including applying for border passes, click HERE.
ENTRY: You guys don’t know how bad I wanna caption an Instagram photo ‘C U (IN THE) NT’ – and with restrictions to the Top End looking to ease a l’il, my dreams may soon become a reality.
From December 20, anyone who is fully vaccinated (ily) can enter the Northern Territory without having to quarantine, however, you must:
- Complete a Border Entry Form before arriving in the NT
- Have a negative PCR test up to 72 hours before arriving in the NT and be able to show proof of the result on arrival
- Have a PCR test within 72 hours after arriving in the NT
- Have a PCR Day test on Day 6 after arriving in the NT
- Stay within an approved high vaccination zone for 14 days.
Alice Springs, Katherine and Greater Darwin are approved high vaccination zones
- Use the G2G Now app and stay in a location that has reliable access to 4G internet connection.
Currently, ONLY fully vaccinated people, Territory residents and people unable to be vaccinated (such as children under 12 years) are able to enter the Northern Territory – which is understandable.
Exemptions apply, including for unvaccinated Territory residents travelling from a green zone – who will still be able to enter the NT but will be required to travel to a suitable place of quarantine, get tested for COVID-19 and remain in quarantine until a negative test is returned (bummer).
Those people who arrive in the Northern Territory, who are unvaccinated and are not a returning resident or who have not received ‘Approval to enter the NT’ from the CHO, will be required to leave the Territory (cya later m8).
For more info, including compulsory online border entry form info and home quarantine deets for interstate arrivals, plus to find out whether or not you have been in an interstate Public Exposure Site– click HERE.
LEAVING: TBH I had a solid look around and I think so long as anyone travelling from the NT adheres to the relevant rules/guidelines of wherever they’re traveling to, you’re good to go (except for WA where you have to quarantine, soz).
HOWEVER, this is super important to note when travelling within the NT:
As there are a high number of low-vaccination-rate remote community (any community with a vaccination rate under 70% or any of the 29 communities controlled by the Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (ACCHO)), anyone who enters one of these communities must wear a mask at all times in public for 7 days after they arrive.
Anyone entering these communities from Darwin, Alice Springs, Katherine or any location outside of the Northern Territory must also have a rapid antigen test 72 hours before entering the community.
For more info, click HERE and follow the links to the Remote Work and Travel tab.
ENTRY: Ah yes, the wild, wild west. This state confuses me TBH, simply because I know it’s real BUT I also wouldn’t be surprised if one day it was announced it was all a simulation…or that quokkas were running the place (welcome 2 my brain).
ANYWAY, the grand plan for WA initially was to safely ease the border controls once a 90 per cent double dose vaccination rate is achieved, and, well, they’re currently at nearly 81%.
But in a Big Bo$$ move by their Premier, Mark McGowan, it was recently announced WA will open up to fully vaccinated interstate and international travellers from February 5, 2022…(my bday, btw).
In a very “down with the cool kids lingo” move, the WA Government brought in a G2G Pass; an online application that basically is mandatory for everyone to complete prior to entering the state which is then scanned prior to exiting the airport when you touch down in WA.
Also, atm, only Tasmanians can enter the state without having to quarantine (lol) while QLD and NT residents need to be fully vaxxed, self-quarantine for 14 days AND return a negative COVID test within 48 hours of their arrival and on day 12 of quarantine.
SA, ACT, NSW and VIC residents allllllll require permission to enter the state before even being able to quarantine.
LEAVING: I mean, sure, go, be free, but maybe re-read the above because wherever ya go…there’s going to be rules comin’ back.
ENTRY: South Australia has opened its borders to vaccinated travellers. COVID-19 vaccination requirements apply to all travellers over 12 years and 2 months of age, including returning SA residents.
If you are travelling to South Australia from interstate, you gotta complete an EntryCheck SA application. You can complete your application 14 days before your planned arrival, and it is recommended you apply at least 72 hours before your planned arrival (just to be safe).
Fully vaxxed ppl can travel to South Australia from interstate, but depending on where you are travelling from and your level of risk, you may need to complete quarantine. You can find out more HERE regarding entry conditions, including what ya got to do if you’re unvaxxed.
LEAVING: South Australians travelling interstate must also complete an EntryCheck SA application before returning to the state. EntryCheck SA will then assess your COVID-19 risk and advise of any entry conditions (how nice of them!?)
ENTRY: From literally yesterday, the conditions and processes to enter Tasmania will change, although all travellers will need to register to enter the state. Unvaccinated travellers will also need approval to enter the State, so yeah, deal with it.
For vaxxed travellers, if you’re aged 12 years and two months and older, you will not need to quarantine on arrival. However if you have spent time in a high-risk area in the 14 days before your arrival, you’ll need to return a negative COVID-19 PCR test result within 72 hours before departure to Tasmania.
This applies to all travellers aged 5 years and above.
Travellers who have been in a high-risk area and out of the State for 7 days or fewer are required to undertake a COVID-19 PCR test within 24 hours of arrival in Tasmania AND they are also advised to stay home or in their accommodation until a negative test is returned.
More info can be found HERE, including what unvaccinated travellers need to do (it’s a lot so I CBA).
LEAVING: Like the NT, I think Tasmanians are in the clear when it comes to being able to leave the state as they damn please. However, I gotta reiterate how important it is to DOUBLE CHECK each government’s rules and restrictions when planning to head there – even if you’ve been double vaxxed and given the all-clear on the COVID front.