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Who Needs To Obtain A Travel Exemption To Travel To Australia?

This article aims to summarise who needs to obtain a travel exemption to travel to Australia and what are the exceptions.  Facts on travel exemption to Australia The department of Home Affairs announced that from 15 December 2021, eligible visa holders can travel to and from Australia without needing to apply for a travel exemption. […]

Who Needs To Obtain A Travel Exemption To Travel To Australia?

Who Needs To Obtain A Travel Exemption To Travel To Australia?

This article aims to summarise who needs to obtain a travel exemption to travel to Australia and what are the exceptions. 

Facts on travel exemption to Australia

The department of Home Affairs announced that from 15 December 2021, eligible visa holders can travel to and from Australia without needing to apply for a travel exemption. Prior to that date, Australia’s international border was largely closed, and persons arriving into Australia had to obtain special permission to enter the country.

Who does not need to seek a travel exemption? 

If you are able to verifiably show that you are fully vaccinated with a vaccine recognized in Australia and you are automatically exempt from Australia’s travel restrictions, then you may be able to travel to Australia without seeking a travel exemption. 

Who is automatically exempt from Australia’s travel restrictions?

Here are some of the exemption categories. The list is not exhaustive:

  • An Australian citizen
  • A permanent resident of Australia
  • An immediate family member of an Australian citizen or permanent resident
  • A New Zealand citizen usually resident in Australia and their immediate family members 
  • A  person who has been in New Zealand or Australia for 14 days or more immediately prior to arrival by air in Australia
  • A person transiting Australia for 72 hours or less
  • Airline crew, or maritime crew including marine pilots
  • A diplomat accredited to Australia, including their immediate family members (each member of the family unit must hold a valid subclass 995 visa). 
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What are the countries designated as Safe Travel Zones?

From 15 December 2021, if a person is an eligible citizen of the following countries and is fully vaccinated, the person will be able to arrive from either of these countries to Australia without seeking a travel exemption to participating states or territories:

  • Japan
  • New Zealand
  • Singapore
  • South Korea

What is the current definition of Fully Vaccinated acceptable to Australia? 

A person is considered to be fully vaccinated for travel to and from Australia if the person has completed a course of a vaccine approved or recognized by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA). This includes mixed doses. At the time of writing, currently approved recognized vaccines and doses accepted for travel are:

  • Two doses at least 14 days apart of:
  • AstraZeneca Vaxzevria
  • AstraZeneca Covishield
  • Pfizer/Biontech Comirnaty
  • Moderna Spikevax or Takeda
  • Sinovac Coronavac
  • Bharat Biotech Covaxin
  • Sinopharm BBIBP-CorV (for people under 60 years of age on arrival in Australia)
  • Gamaleya Research Institute Sputnik V.
  • Or, one dose of the Johnson & Johnson/ Janssen-Cilag COVID vaccine.

(This list may change)

For vaccinated people, how long must have passed since the final dose of vaccine was administered? 

For a person to be considered fully vaccinated, at least 7 days must have passed since the final dose was administered for that person.

What are the exceptions for children and others?

Those with acceptable proof they cannot be vaccinated for medical reasons, and children under 12 can access the same travel arrangement as fully vaccinated travellers. In some states or territories, arrangements are also in place to allow unvaccinated or partially vaccinated children aged 12-17 years to travel with a fully vaccinated adult. You need to check the quarantine arrangements for the state or territory prior to the commencement of your trip. If the child is travelling with unvaccinated adult family members, then the entire family group will be subject to managed quarantine and passengers caps. 

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Children aged under 12 years count as fully vaccinated for travel purposes. Their passport will be used as proof of age at the airport. 

NOTE: The situation for overseas visitors who do not fall within these categories, or those who want to come to Australia for employment is frequently changing. We are always up to date with the current situation, and if you require legal advice or assistance in applying for a visa to enter Australia please contact us.

Further details about the travel exemptions/vaccinated- travellers to and from Australia visit the following link:

https://covid19.homeaffairs.gov.au/vaccinated-travellers

For advice or assistance with all immigration matters and the latest update contact the Immigration Law Team at Aylward Game Solicitors today on 1800 217 217

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