Australians finally have a glimpse of the light at the end of the tunnel for the resumption of international travel. For the first time since March 2020, Australian carrier Qantas Airlines has reopened bookings for international flights to the United States starting in July.
The carrier has also reopened bookings for flights to the UK starting July 1st. The move came earlier than expected as it originally estimated that it would be October before long haul international flights resume.
Australians Could See Their Freedom To Leave The Country Restored
The reopening of bookings is the first positive sign Australians have seen that resumption of international travel is on the horizon. Australia has been one of the most locked down countries in the world not allowing their citizens to leave the country for tourism or non-essential travel. Australians have had to apply for special permission before being approved to travel internationally.
The Australian Government Has Not Lifted The Travel Ban
While the move by Qantas to reopen bookings is positive, the Australian government will have the final say on if international travel can resume.
Qantas plans to restart international travel by July 1st but it is unknown at this time if the Australian federal government will lift the overseas travel ban.
Routes Qantas Is Planning To Restart In July
Qantas flights are expected to resume July 1st to the following destinations if the Australian government gives the go ahead:
- United States
- United Kingdom
- Hong Kong
“We continue to review and update our international schedule in response to the developing COVID-19 situation,” Qantas said in a statement to news.com.au.
“Recently we have aligned the selling of our international services to reflect our expectation that international travel will begin to restart from July 2021.”
Proof Of Vaccination Will Be Required To Fly
Qantas is the first airline in the world to announce that it is likely to require its passengers to provide proof of vaccination against COVID-19 before traveling.
Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce said in an interview that “We are looking at changing our terms and conditions to say for international travelers, we will ask people to have a vaccination before they can get on the aircraft,” and that he believes that other airlines will follow suit in this demand.
New Zealand is the only international destination that Qantas is operating.
Currently Australia allows travelers from New Zealand to visit the country for tourism purposes. A proposed tourism bubble could come into effect early this year which would see Australians be able to leave the country for the first time for recreational travel to New Zealand.
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Disclaimer: Current travel rules and restrictions can change without notice. The decision to travel is ultimately your responsibility. Contact your consulate and/or local authorities to confirm your nationality’s entry and/or any changes to travel requirements before traveling. Travel Off Path does not endorse traveling against government advisories