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Travel News: International Travel Ban Extended To December

By:
Joanna Hall
 

The Federal Government has extended Australia’s international travel ban for three months, with the coronavirus pandemic expected to continue well into next year. The human biosecurity emergency period, which came info effect on March 18, affects overseas travel and cruise ships entering Australian waters, and will now continue until at least December 17. Health Minister, Greg Hunt, said the decision was made due to specialist medical and epidemiological advice provided by the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee. “AHPPC has advised that the international and domestic COVID-19 situation continues to pose an unacceptable public health risk,” he said.“The extension of the emergency period is an appropriate response to that risk.”

The four key areas affected including restrictions on overseas travel, restrictions on the entry of cruise ships into Australia, restrictions on retail stores at international airports, and protections for the supply and sale of certain essential goods. Currently, in order to travel out of Australia you will need to obtain an exemption from the Department of Home Affairs, however, in order to be eligible you must meet certain criteria. This ranges from your travel being necessary as part of the response to the COVID-19 outbreak, to it being on compassionate or humanitarian grounds. You are required to provide evidence to support your claims, and even with a permit, there are limited flights to and from Australia right now, making an exit even more difficult - not to mention expensive. In addition, all travellers returning to Australia are subject to mandatory quarantine for 14 days at a designated facility on arrival, even if they are planning onward travel within the country. Travellers may also be required to pay for the costs of quarantine, which can be as much as $3000 for one adult in New South Wales, and $2800 in Queensland.

 

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