Australia reopens international borders for the first time

aAustralia will reopen its international borders in November for the first time since the start of the coronavirus pandemic. Fully vaccinated citizens and people residing in the country can once again travel abroad. Upon their return, they must be in home quarantine for seven days instead of the previous 14 days in isolation in an expensive facility. This was announced by Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Friday. The reason for the long-awaited relaxation is that in most regions of the country, a vaccination rate of more than 80 percent will be achieved. Previous quarantine rules apply to those who have not been vaccinated.

“It’s time to put Australians back on their feet,” said the conservative politician. People would have made “great sacrifices,” but they also saved many lives as a result. A year and a half ago, authorities completely closed the country’s borders and largely isolated Australia from the rest of the world. They followed the “zero covid strategy”, which worked well until the spread of the delta variant. For a long time, citizens enjoyed many freedoms that seemed unthinkable in other countries.

The costs of flights and quarantine are very high

The downside: Many Australians have been unable to travel home and visit relatives and friends since the pandemic began because the costs of flights and quarantines were so high and permits were difficult to obtain. Conversely, nearly 25 million Australians are largely stuck in the country with no possibility of staying abroad.

She added that the government in Canberra is also working on the possibility of establishing quarantine-free travel corridors with different countries. Such regulation is already in place in April with neighboring New Zealand. The so-called ‘trans-Tasman bubble’ was halted again in July after Australia reported rising case numbers. It is still not clear when tourists from all over the world will be able to travel to the fifth continent again.

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