Kyabram Free Press
International travel returns in November
Hundreds of thousands of dollars in travel credits held by travellers could be released in the coming months with the Prime Minister’s announcement of a reopening of international travel for Australians.
Travel agents are holding money in trust accounts for clients, or directly with airlines that were not willing to refund the money and have, instead, provided credits for travel.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced last week the end of the international travel ban, which is managed by the Federal Government and was originally in place until December 17, had been brought forward.
In response Qantas, on Friday, announced it would bring forward the resumption of international flights by a month, to November 14.
It will begin with three return flights a week from Sydney to London and Sydney to Los Angeles.
In July the national cabinet agreed to gradually reopen international travel once 80 per cent of people aged 16 and over were vaccinated nationally and in the relevant state.
Mr Morrison also said states and territories would roll out seven-day home quarantine for returning travellers who were fully vaccinated.
There will be 14 days managed quarantine for anyone not vaccinated or who had a vaccine not recognised by the Therapeutic Goods Administration.
“We will also work towards completely quarantine-free travel for certain countries, such as New Zealand, when it is safe to do so,” he said.
“Testing is expected to continue to be a requirement of international travel, but subject to further medical advice, rapid antigen tests may be used.”
Travel agents have been fielding consistent inquiries since the announcement was made, as people desperate to travel react excitedly to the information.
Australians will soon have access to a proof-of-vaccination document to use if they wish to travel overseas and it will have a QR code that is globally readable.
The new digital travel certificate would replace the “yellow book”, which was previously in place for areas such as Africa and South America.
A final version of the certificate to be used as the international standard is expected before the Australian border reopens for travel.
Travel agents have regularly booked people on multiple occasions, unsuccessfully, before deciding to advise clients to await a “concrete” date.
A rush of bookings is expected in November, when it will become better known what conditions of travel will be put on Australians.
Any full reopening to travel within Australia will come down to vaccination numbers, but it appears certain international travel will come before domestic travel.