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How to stay healthy and safe while travelling abroad during COVID-19

Blog post | 03 Aug 2022

When international borders closed to protect us from COVID-19, we travelled vicariously through movies and books. Now that Australian borders are fully open, we can once again run with the bulls in Spain and snorkel in Fiji’s crystal-clear waters. But thanks to coronavirus variants, the risks of travelling abroad are still here.

Learn how to stay healthy and safe when travelling abroad with answers to these 5 highly searched questions.

1. Do I need permission to leave and enter Australia?

No — you don’t. Whether you’re vaccinated or not, you don’t need to apply for a travel exemption to leave or enter Australia. You also don’t need to complete a Digital Passenger Declaration.

Just like the good old pre-pandemic days, you must have a valid passport or travel document. And if you need a visa, make sure you get it before travelling.

Although states and territories have scrapped most, if not all, of their border rules, use the Restriction Checker to find out which ones may still be in place.

2. Do I need to get vaccinated to travel overseas?

Currently, you don’t need to get a COVID-19 jab to enter or leave Australia. In fact, you no longer need to show evidence of your vaccination status at the Australian border.

But if you’re not vaccinated, you have a higher risk of contracting COVID-19. And if you do get very sick from COVID-19 while overseas, you may not find the support that you need. Access to health services may be limited or too costly for you.

Before you jump on the plane, get up to date with your COVID-19 vaccinations. Book an appointment with a doctor or pharmacist for the jab. If you’re eligible, get a COVID-19 booster shot for the best protection.

Some countries, airlines and vessel operators may have different vaccination rules to Australia. Check them before travelling.

3. Can I travel if I have COVID-19?

No — you’ll have to delay travelling until you recover from COVID-19. You’ll need to self-isolate, stay home and separate from others for at least 7 days.

If you get COVID-19 while you’re overseas, you must isolate immediately. You should also contact the local health authority for advice on what to do. If COVID-19 will affect your travel, contact your airline or other travel provider.

4. How can I build up my immunity before I travel?

The best way to strengthen your immune system is to eat a balanced diet and get more sleep. The average amount of sleep that adults need is 8¼ hours.

To help avoid COVID-19 — especially when you’re in busy airports and on crowded planes — you should practise good hygiene and wear a face mask when it’s required or when you can’t stay 1.5 metres from others. You should also stay up to date with your COVID-19 vaccinations (which may include a booster shot, if you’re eligible).

5. Is it safe to go on an overseas cruise?

Cruising around the world is back on! Before buying your ticket, research the cruise boat’s COVID-19 safety measures. COVID-19 can spread quickly on cruises because you’re mingling with others in close quarters.

When on the boat, take care of your health and practise COVID-19 safe measures. This includes wearing a mask when not in your cabin and washing your hands often. Also, check the vaccination requirements before departing.

For more tips on how to have a healthy holiday, download this infographic on holiday tips.

Holiday tips
Click here to download this infographic in PDF format

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