Travelers with eyes on visiting Australia rejoice, as the country has just removed all of its strict Covid-19 related entry requirements. The Land Down Under has made headlines throughout the pandemic for its strict, no-nonsense approach to dealing with the spread of the virus. From all but closing its borders to international travelers to implementing city wide lockdowns over a handful of cases, the country took extreme measures with the aim of keeping its people safe – but it looks like, at long last, its days of arbitrary entry restrictions have finally come to an end.
For the first time in years, it means that all visa-holding travelers will now be able to visit Australia and sample all the sunny, culture-filled country has to offer – and it comes just in time for summer. Here’s a look at the changes Australia has made to its Covid-19 related entry restrictions, including which entry requirements are on their way out, which other restrictions travelers should be aware of plus a look at the current Covid-19 situation in the country.
Australia Removes Entry Barriers – What Travelers Should Know
Up until recently, Australia boasted some of the strictest entry requirements in the world. On February 21st – when other countries were beginning to drop their entry requirements completely – Australia only made it possible for fully vaccinated travelers to enter, making entry to the country impossible for millions of unvaccinated or only partially vaccinated travelers. However, as of Wednesday, these strict entry requirements are set to be a thing of the past.
On Sunday Australia’s home affairs minister, Clare O’Neil, announced that the country would be removing all of its Covid-19 related entry requirements, making visiting the country not only much easier, but much more of an attractive proposition for millions of potential arrivals. In doing so, Australia has joined the likes of popular destinations such as Portugal, Thailand and several other countries who have also made changes to their entry requirements over the past few days.
That means that from Wednesday July 6th, travelers will no longer need to show proof of vaccination in order to be able to enter the country, allowing all visa-holding or visa exempt travelers to be able to enter for the first time since the pandemic took hold. With the country already having removed the requirement to take a Covid-19 test, it makes entry into the country just as easy as it was prior to the pandemic.
That’s not the only entry requirements change that Australia is set to make. Also from Wednesday, the country will be removing the requirement for inbound travelers to complete the Digital Passenger Declaration, or DPD. The DPD has long since come under fire ever since it was rolled out for being not very user friendly. However, the Minister Clare O’Neill stated that the system will likely make a comeback in the future to replace the paper-based incoming passenger card.
Travelers should be aware that state specific rules also apply in Australia and could be subject to change. Whilst there are no longer any rules in place regarding cafes, bars and restaurants, face masks must be worn when on public transport in each of Australia’s states, apart from the Northern Territory and Tasmania. Travelers will also have to wear masks when flying on both international flights to Australia and domestic flights within the country. More information on specific requirements for each state can be found here.
The number of Covid-19 cases in Australia has remained high yet steady for several weeks, with the country reporting an average of just below 33,000 positive cases of the virus per day. According to the US Travel Advisory system, Australia is a Level 1 country, meaning it is amongst the safest destinations to visit in the world.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com