Travel advice from ABTA Magazine as tourism restarts.
Australia is as naturally diverse as it is large. Home to rainforests, desert islands, bushland and, of course, the dusty wilderness of the Outback, plus species of wildlife unique to the country nature-lovers will be in their element. Elsewhere, its cities are hubs of art, culture and gastronomy, and its beaches unmatched.
As lockdown continues to ease, the government has revealed a list of countries from which inbound tourist and returning travellers do not need to self-isolate (also known as the travel corridors list) – ending its blanket 14-day quarantine policy. However, it is not necessarily the case that Britons can enter the countries on the exemptions list without needing to quarantine, or that flights are even currently available (research suggests as little as a third of the countries can be visited without restrictions). Although firm favourites Spain and Italy made it on to lists revealed by the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) and the Department for Transport (DfT), the USA and Portugal were notable exceptions.
Australia is exempt from the FCO advice against all non-essential international travel, meaning when returning to the UK, travellers will not need to self-isolate for 14 days. However, entry to Australia is closed making holidays to the country all but impossible – with only Australian citizens, permanent residents or those with an exemption visa able to travel. All travellers entering Australia need to undertake a mandatory 14-day quarantine at a designated facility (such as a hotel) at their port of arrival, according to the FCO.
Face masks are now mandatory in Melbourne after a surge in Covid-19 cases, while restrictions have been tightened in Sydney. Although flights are still running between the UK and Australia for those covered in the above exceptions, Qantas has recently pulled all international flight until March 28, 2021. It says it does not expect flights to resume in full until July 2021.