Since COVID-19 began in March, the state and territory governments have been enforcing their own border control measures to limit travel from various coronavirus hotspots around Australia.
Over the past eight months, the border restrictions have changed a number of times to adapt to emerging coronavirus clusters. If you’re at a loss of where we’re at with all this change, especially with the holidays fast approaching, don’t worry. We’ve created a guide for you below.
Queensland has confirmed that they will open borders (finally) to all of Victoria and NSW, including Greater Sydney. According to reports, this change will kick off from December 1st.
On wider border rules, Queensland has announced that certain restrictions will soon be relaxed and that there is a hope to open more borders before Christmas.
Premier Anastasia Palaszczuk advised that the state’s Chief Health Officer, Jeannette Young, would be making a decision on borders later in November.
A number of areas in South Australia are still considered hotspots by QLD. You can find the full list here. The Queensland Government advises that “If you were in South Australia before 11:59 AEST 8 November there is a class exemption that exempts you from quarantining”.
South Australia’s borders are open to travellers from the Australian Capital Territory, New South Wales, Northern Territory, Queensland, Tasmania and Western Australia.
However, all interstate visitors (and returning locals) of South Australia are required to complete a Cross Border Travel Registration form. This will determine if you are able to arrive into SA without restriction, if you must self-quarantine or if you will be denied entry.
SA announced an early end to its lockdown after it was discovered that a man who said he had contracted coronavirus after purchasing a pizza actually worked in the pizza restaurant.
All visitors to Western Australia must complete a G2G PASS to obtain permission to enter the state.
Western Australia was set to ease restrictions on travel between South Australia, but in response to a recent increase in cases have named the state “medium risk”. If approved to visit, South Australians will be required to self-quarantine for 14 days and complete a COVID-19 test.
From November 14, WA eased its restrictions allowing those from very low-risk jurisdictions (TAS, QLD, ACT and NT) to enter without quarantining. Those coming from NSW and VIC will need to self-quarantine for two weeks on arrival. They’re also encouraged to wear masks until they have arrived into quarantine, and are asked to present for a COVID-19 test on day 11 if still in the state. This of course is pending the numbers of community transmission in the coming weeks.
New South Wales
Visitors from South Australia are required to complete a NSW entry declaration form before entering the state. Residents of NSW returning from SA who have been in one of the nominated “areas of concern” are asked to get tested and to self-isolate. Non-residents visiting from areas of concern are not permitted to enter the state unless “transiting through”.
Borders between NSW and Victoria opened on November 23.
Tasmania’s border restrictions eased on October 26, allowing travellers from low-risk areas including ACT, NSW, NT, QLD, WA and NZ to enter the state. Visitors from these areas must still register through Tasmania’s Tas-e-Travel system.
South Australia and Victoria are considered “medium risk” by Tasmania. Visitors from these states are required to quarantine, however, they may be able to gain approval to self-quarantine in certain circumstances.
The Tasmanian Government writes:
“The most effective way of registering your intended quarantine location is through the G2G PASS system.”
Tasmania’s border is scheduled to open to Victoria from November 27, provided that coronavirus cases stay low.
The Northern Territory has revoked South Australia’s status as a hot spot.
At the moment, the Northern Territory considers regions of Victoria to be COVID-19 hotspots. Anyone coming from or travelling through a hotspot into NT will be required to complete hotel quarantine for 14 days. All Northern Territory arrivals must complete a Border Entry form and those coming from COVID-19 hotspots will have to quarantine upon arrival.
The ACT asks that visitors from South Australia register their travel before departure. Non-essential travel is discouraged at present.
The ACT has no restrictions for those coming from other states at the moment.
Victoria has declared South Australia a COVID-19 hot spot. It will not close borders between the states but requests a permit from anyone visiting or returning from SA.
Victoria currently has no border restrictions to other states or territories but bear in mind that if you enter Victoria you may need to quarantine or apply for an exemption when returning to another state.
All international travellers arriving into any Australian state or territory will need to go into government arranged hotel quarantine for two weeks. Inbound international flights to South Australia have been suspended. At present, international flights into Victoria have also been diverted.
This article has been updated with additional information.