UPDATED 22 July 2021
Since our last update a few weeks ago, there’s been more changes to Australia’s state borders. We’ve tried to explain the mind-bogglingly confusing rules in plain English, below. Note some states are now barring residents from returning, unless they obtain an exemption.
As ever, please visit the official sites for more detailed information, the latest updates (particularly from so-called hotspots) and directions for any permits or exemptions you might have to apply for.
Victoria is now in lockdown. Anyone entering Victoria from anywhere in Australia now needs to apply for a permit here. The state’s traffic light system means that your ability to enter depends on where you’ve travelled from, and whether it’s categorised as red, orange or green.
In a new, significant change, anyone who enters the state after 11:59pm on Tuesday, 20 July 2021 and who has been in a red zone in the 14 days before entry, will require an exemption, exception or eligible permit to enter Victoria. This now includes Victorian residents, meaning they no longer have a right to return home necessarily. Red zones now include all of NSW, the ACT and SA.
The traffic light system:
Those from a red zone cannot enter without an exemption. If you are granted permission to enter, you must self-quarantine for 14 days on your return.
Those travelling from a designated orange zone must apply for a permit to enter Victoria. You cannot apply for a permit if you have coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms, nor if you have visited a red zone. You are allowed to travel through a red zone for the purpose of transit. After arrival, you must take a COVID test within 72 hours of arrival and remain in isolation until you receive a negative result.
Those travelling from a designated green zone must apply for a permit to enter Victoria. You cannot apply for a permit if you have coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms, nor if you have visited either a red or orange zone.
NSW is open to all states, however there are restrictions for those living in Greater Sydney and surrounding areas leaving to visit regional areas. Much of NSW is currently in lockdown.
People who have been in a hotspot in the last 14 days or since the start date identified for the hotspot (whichever is shorter), will only be able to enter the state if they are a returning Queensland resident or required to enter for a limited range of essential reasons. Queensland residents returning to Queensland from a hotspot must quarantine for 14 days on entering Queensland in government arranged accommodation at their own expense
Queensland has declared all of SA and all of Victoria hotspots. All of NSW will be declared a hotspot from Friday, 23 July.
WA has designated NSW, Victoria, SA and Queensland as medium risk. This means people, including residents, cannot enter WA without an exemption. If you are granted a pass, you must self isolate for 14 days.
There are currently restrictions in place for travel to and from NSW, Victoria, Queensland and South Australia. Those entering from these areas must self-isolate for 14 days and complete an online declaration form. See exact locations here.
The NT has declared much of NSW, Victoria and SA as hotspots. See a list of exact council areas here. Those entering from these areas must quarantine in a “supervised” government facility.
The state has declared SA, Queensland, Victoria and NSW as “high-risk” areas. See a detailed list here. High-risk areas can require either quarantine in a government-designated facility (level 1) or a suitable premises (level 2). Different parts of the aforementioned states are level 1 or level 2.
Otherwise, Tasmania is now open to all other states, though all entrants must complete the Tas e-Travel form.
SA is currently in lockdown and has now shut its border to all of Victoria, the ACT, NSW and Greater Brisbane. Residents cannot enter at all unless an exemption is obtained.
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