The world has significantly changed in the last 12 months, and understanding what the future of travel looks like isn’t easy. Covid has and will continue to change the way people travel. We have answered some common questions below. Please note this information was correct at the time of publication but is subject to change as regulations change.
Are the Australian international borders opening soon?
On the 1st of October 2021 Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced the ban on international travel will be lifted during November once Australia reaches a nationwide vaccination level of 80% of the population aged over 16 years fully vaccinated. This means that you will no longer need an exemption to travel outside of Australia and the government will be reverting to the smart traveller system used pre-COVID to provide advice on what nations it is safe to travel to.
Each state will need to reach 80% at a state level for borders to open and it is also important to note that some states may chose to keep their borders closed despite reaching this level. NSW is expected to be the first state to welcome back Australian’s from overseas under this new arrangement.
At this stage the travel ban lift only applies to Australian citizens and Australian permanent residents and not overseas based tourists wishing to travel to Australia for a holiday. It does however mean Australian citizens and residents will be able to travel overseas for tourism reasons as well as reconnect with family and friends.
Fully vaccinated Australians with an approved vaccine will be able to home quarantine for a period of 7 days on return to Australia and unvaccinated travellers will undergo quarantine at dedicated quarantine facilities or hotels at their own cost.
Will I need to have had a vaccination against Covid-19?
Some countries, airlines and tours already require evidence of a COVID-19 vaccination before you travel. At the moment it’s not currently a requirement travelling within Australia (with some exceptions based on travelling for a specific occupation in some jurisdictions). Some destinations already require a recent negative COVID test and/or even a live test on arrival. It is likely many airlines will require passengers to be fully vaccinated (or have a medical exemption) to travel overseas.
Some travel providers are even giving you benefits for simply being vaccinated. For example, Qantas frequent flyers are giving you automatic rewards when you update your vaccination status on your profile.
We also have also launched an exciting incentive at Viva Travel for vaccinated travellers which you can read more about here!
How can I keep up with regulations?
For any Australian getaway, we recommend that you follow the state government health websites for both the state you reside in & where you want to travel to. Many Australian states require travellers to fill out border passes or entry forms prior to arrival.
For International trips, we highly recommend checking any current regulations through our Viva CIBT Visas. CIBT Visas offers the most up-to-date and accurate information on what is required to enter safely and securely to the most frequented destinations in global travel.
Of course as a travel agency it is our job to stay on top of things. One thing we know for certain is that things are changing regularly! We ensure to keep abreast of the constantly changing regulations so you don’t have to.
Can I still travel in a group?
Yes, absolutely. Travelling in a small group can be one of the safest and most secure ways to travel. There are a lot of group tours that host a lot of people, but in our experience opting for a smaller group tour will give you a greater sense of safety and personalisation, while still being big enough that you’re bound to be travelling with some like minded individuals.
For those that prefer to travel with close family or friends, customised group trips will be popular in 2022 as it enables people to remain within their existing bubbles.
Will holiday prices rise?
It is difficult at this stage to predict how trip prices might be affected but some increase is very possible. The global travel restrictions will likely mean additional capacity constraints. Destinations that are pronounced safe and open to travel will see additional demand, while many countries will also see an increase in domestic tourism from residents.
However, when you book and pay for a trip with us, that price is held and you won’t pay any more. The price when you book is the price you’ll pay, with an absolute no-surcharge guarantee.
Will I be able to get travel insurance?
New insurance policies have been created by the travel industry to include COVID-19 related claims, increasing customer confidence. Along with rapid testing now available at airports, and our COVID-19 flexibility allowing free date changes if your trip is cancelled, travellers can book trips in confidence knowing that they are protected, should they not be able to travel.