Australian High Commission
Singapore
Singapore

Returning to Australia

Last Updated on 21 February 2022

 

Each State/Territory are managing their own borders and entry requirements. Please see below links to apply for necessary approvals or see if you are eligible to enter your intended State/Territory.

 

What are the current International Passenger Arrival Caps?

Australian borders remain strictly controlled to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. There are temporary caps on the numbers of passengers coming into Australian airports from overseas for unvaccinated travellers. These measures are in place to ease pressure on state and territory quarantine facilities (see below).

The Australian High Commission is unable to help in confirming flights as airlines manage tickets sales and boarding in line with the caps, not the Australian government.

o  Sydney – limit of 210 passenger arriavls per week

o  Perth – limit of 265 passenger arrivals per week

o  Brisbane – limit of 1,000 passenger arrivals per week

o  Melbourne – limit of 250 passenger arrivals per week

o  Adelaide – limit of 320 passenger arrivals per week

 

Who can travel to Australia?

Fully vaccinated Australian citizens, permanent residents and from 21 February 2022 eligible visa holders, who have proof of receiving two doeses of an approved COVID-19 vaccine can travel to and from Australia without needing to apply for a travel exemption.

Unvaccinated travellers will still need to apply for a travel exemption and will be required to undergo hotel quarantine on arrival if granted permission to enter the country.  For further information, please click here

All other people seeking to travel to Australia must apply for a travel exemption.

If you are coming to or from Australia you can check what you need to do before you travel by following the below guides:

See Coming to Australia | Home Affairs COVID-19 website for more information.

 

Who is an immediate family member?

You are only considered to be an immediate family member if you are:

  • a spouse
  • a de facto partner
  • a dependent child
  • a legal guardian

of an Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident or a New Zealand citizen who is usually resident in Australia. Immediate family members must apply for a travel exemption before travelling to Australia.

 

What about parents?

From 1 November 2021, the definition of ‘immediate family member’ will include the parents of adult Australian citizens and permanent residents. This is for the purpose of assessing exemptions to Australia’s travel restrictions only.

The definition of parents of Australian citizens and permanent residents includes:

  • biological parents
  • legal (including adoptive) parents
  • step-parents
  • parents in-law.

Before you can travel, you will need to have your relationship with your adult Australian child confirmed by submitting a travel exemption request. You must submit your request through the Travel Exemption Portal. Select the category ‘I am an immediate family member’ and then ‘parent of adult Australian citizen or permanent resident’.

You will need to provide evidence of:

  • your adult child’s Australian citizenship or permanent residency; and
  • your parental relationship to the Australian citizen or permanent resident.

Refer to ‘Examples of evidence that you can provide’ on the Home Affairs COVID-19 website.

 

My spouse/children are not Australian citizens or permanent residents, can they come to Australia?

Yes, but they must apply for a visa and be granted a travel exemption (if not automaticlly exempt) if they do not hold Australian citizenship or permanent residency. See Immediate family of Australian citizens or permanent residents or New Zealand citizens usually resident in Australia | Home Affairs COVID-19 website for more details.

 

I am not an Australian citizen or Australian Permanent Resident. Can I travel to Australia? 

From​ 21 February 2022 eligible visa holders, who have proof of receiving two doeses of an approved COVID-19 vaccine can travel to and from Australia without needing to apply for a travel exemption.

Unvaccinated travellers will still need to apply for a travel exemption and will be required to undergo hotel quarantine on arrival if granted permission to enter the country. 

For further information on Australian travel restrictions, including applying for an exemption, please refer to the Home Affairs COVID-19 website.

 

I am vaccinated. Can I enter Australia?

You can travel to Australia if you are an Australian citizen, a permanent resident, an immediate family member of an Australian citizen or permanent resident, or a New Zealand citizen usually resident in Australia or hold a valid visa and proof of receiving two doses of an approved COVID-19 vaccine. 

See COVID-19 Vaccinations and Vaccination Certificates for more information.

 

I am unvaccinated. Can I enter Australia?

For Australians that have not been vaccinated, international passenger caps will be maintained. Australian citizens who are not eligible for vaccination, such as those under 12 years of age or who are unable to be vaccinated on medical grounds, will be treated as though they are fully vaccinated for the purposes of border arrangements. This will support families with young children or vaccine ineligible family members seeking to travel together above the caps.

 

What do I need to do to travel to Australia?

 Availability of flights may change as Australian borders open and restrictions ease. Always check with the airlines for seat availability as the Australian High Commission is unable to help in confirming flights as airlines manage tickets sales and boarding in line with the caps, not the Australian government.

Eligible travellers entering Australia will need to complete the following prior to departing. Follow the steps in the traveller checklist when you are preparing to travel to Australia. 

Once you have booked your tickets, you will need to complete the following in order to successfully board your flight to Australia:

  1.  Digital Passenger Declaration (DPD)
  • All passengers arriving by air into Australia should complete the Digital Passenger Declaration, unless they are flight crew. You can start a DPD seven days before your flight to Australia, but you can only submit a DPD within 72 hours before your departure. This is because you must provide your health information and declaration within 72 hours before your flight. The DPD contains declarations that are considered to be critical health information. Passengers must be able to provide evidence that they made this declaration before boarding the aircraft. To complete the DPD, visit: https://covid19.homeaffairs.gov.au/digital-passenger-declaration.  We recommend having hard copies of the completed Digital Passenger Declaration with you for check-in.

 

  1. Negative COVID-19 Test
  • A nucleic acid amplification (NAA) test - such as a PCR test - done within 3 days before the day of the flight’s scheduled departure, or
  • A rapid antigen test (RAT), taken under the supervision of a medical practitioner, within 24 hours of the flight’s scheduled departure time.
    • Serology tests are not accepted.

  • Testing must be conducted at and accredited testing facility, a self-administered COVID-19 test undertaken at home without supervision is not acceptable. 

  • Children 4 years old and younger are exempt from the pre-departure testing requirement. Children 5 years or older must provide a negative test result.
  • Always check your airlines testing requirements and any third country you may be transiting through.

 

  1. Vaccination status
  • Australian citizens and permanent residents who are fully vaccinated with an Australian Government recognised vaccine, or under the age of 12, may be eligible for reduced quarantine arrangements when you return to Australia.
  • You will need to demonstrate your vaccination status at check-in when travelling to Australia.
  • States and Territories are responsible for determining, and managing, reduced quarantine arrangements for vaccinated Australians and permanent residents. This may involve home quarantine for a reduced period. You must check with the State or Territory that you are returning to for their quarantine arrangements.
  • Always check your airlines vaccination policy/requirments as they may differ to the your intended destination.

 

  1. Non-Australian citizens or permanent residents will also require:

 

Some of these documents must be presented at the airport when you check-in and when you arrive in Australia. We recommend having hard copies of the documents (where applicable).

 

Do I have to undergo quarantine on my return to Australia?

Travellers to Australia need to comply with requirements in the state or territory of their arrival, and any other state or territories that you plan to travel to. This includes quarantine and post-arrival testing requirements. Restrictions may change at short notice. 

Quarantine requirements in Australia are determined by State and Territory governments.

For more information:  

 

What about children under 12 years of age who are not vaccinated?

All children aged under 12 years count as fully vaccinated for travel purposes. Special arrangements(link is external) apply for certain returning Australian children aged 12-17 years who are not fully vaccinated.

 

How can I apply for an exemption from Quarantine in Australia?

Each state and territory’s department of health are managing quarantine for that state/territory. Each have their own quarantine exemption process. If you wish to undertake quarantine outside of the government designated facilities, go to the relevant state or territory Department of Health website and navigate to the COVID-19 quarantine page. A link to each of the state's exemption processes can be found here

Further useful state and territory websites are listed on our COVID-19 Useful Websites page. 

 

How do I prove I am "fully vaccinated"? 

Travellers vaccinated in other countries will be able to present certificates in formats that meet the following criteria:

  • Issued by a national or state/provincial-level authority or an accredited vaccination provider
  • Written in English or accompanied by a certified translation
  • Containing at a minimum:
    • name as it appears in the traveller's passport
    • either date of birth or passport number
    • the vaccine brand name, and
    • the date of each dose or the date on which a full course of immunisation was completed.

Paper and digital certificates are equally acceptable.

For travellers to qualify as fully vaccinated, their certificates must show vaccines approved or recognised by Australia’s Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA).  Current approved and recognised vaccines and dosages are:

  • Two doses at least 14 days apart of:
    • AstraZeneca Vaxzevria
    • AstraZeneca COVISHIELD
    • Pfizer/Biontech Comirnaty
    • Moderna Spikevax
    • Sinovac Coronavac
    • Bharat (Covaxin)
    • Sinopharm BBIBP-CorV (for ages 18-60 only)
  • Or one dose of:
    • Johnson & Johnson/Janssen-Cilag COVID Vaccine.

Seven days must have passed since the final dose of vaccine in a course of immunisation. Mixed doses count towards being fully vaccinated as long as all vaccines are approved or recognised by the TGA.  Doses of Sinopharm (BBIBP-CorV) only count towards being fully vaccinated if administered when the traveller was aged from 18 to 60 years.

Travellers who have not been vaccinated with the above doses or schedule do not meet Australia’s definition of fully vaccinated. See Guidance on foreign vaccination certificates for more information. 

 

What if I’ve recovered from COVID with only one vaccine dose?

You do not meet the definition of fully vaccinated unless you have received a full course of vaccine or are medically exempt from vaccination.

 

What if I’m medically unable to be vaccinated?

You will need to provide evidence of a medical exemption. If you cannot provide certifiable evidence, you may be required to quarantine.

 

What visa do I need? 

To be eligible for quarantine-free travel to Australia without seeking an exemption, Singaporean citizens must hold a valid Australian visa.

See Applying for a visa | COVID-19 and the border (homeaffairs.gov.au)

 

I am fully vaccinated.  If I travel to NSW or Victoria, and do not need to quarantine, will I be permitted to travel to another State or Territory?

States and territories can apply their own travel restrictions, including closing state borders and restricting travel into and out of their state, restricting travel into and out of areas within their state, requiring people who have travelled to and from some areas to quarantine for 14 days.  Check with the state and territory governments on the latest travel restrictions:

Coronavirus (COVID-19) domestic travel restrictions and remote area access | Australian Government Department of Health

 

Do I need to have a COVID-19 test before travelling to Australia? 

The Australian government announced that, effective from 0100 AEDT on 23 January 2022, passengers may take a Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) taken under medical supervision or any type of Nucleic Acid Amplification Test (NAAT) to satisfy COVID-19 pre-departure testing requirements for international air travel to Australia. Specific evidence will be required. Until this time, travellers must continue to present a negative PCR test. See: Department of Health website for more information.

  • This applies to all travellers five years of age or older departing on flights on or after 22 January 2021.
  • You must be tested within 72 hours (NAAT) or 48 hours (RAT) less prior to departure and present a negative result when checking in prior to boarding your flight.
  • If you transit through a third country on your return journey to Australia, you should check on any local requirements at your transit destination and follow the advice of local authorities on social distancing and mask wearing while in transit.
  • If you or a member of your travelling group tests positive, you won’t be allowed to travel to Australia.
  • Exemptions to the COVID-19 (PCR) testing requirements will only be applied in extenuating circumstances such as where there is no access to testing.
  • Anyone who has a negative test result and enters Australia must still complete mandatory 14-day quarantine at designated facilities in your port of arrival, in some states. Check with the state or territory that you are entering. 
  • Masks must also be worn on all international flights, including at airports. 
  • For a list of clinics in Singapore that can provide a COVID-19 (PCR) pre-departure test, please click here
  • For more information, including FAQs on these new measures, please click here.

 

Do I need to have a COVID-19 test when I land in Australia?

Yes, you will be required by state and territory government authorities to take place in COVID-19 testing when you arrive in Australia. Each state and territory have different requirements. 

Check with the state or territory that you are entering for COVID-19 testing arrangements. 

 

Digital Passenger Declaration (DPD)

The Digital Passenger Declaration (DPD) has replaced the Australia Travel Declaration.

All passengers arriving by air into Australia should complete the DPD. You can start your DPD seven days before your flight and submit it within 72 hours prior to your departure for Australia. This is because you must provide your health information and declaration (vaccination status and COVID-19 test result) within 72 hours before your flight.

When filling out the DPD, you will need to:

  • provide your contact details, including a contact phone number in Australia
  • make a legally binding declaration in relation to your vaccination status
  • make a declaration regarding your last 14 days travel history
  • make a declaration that you are aware of the quarantine and testing requirements that apply when coming to Australia and in the state or territory you are landing, and the penalties for non-compliance.

Visit Digital Passenger Declaration | COVID-19 and the border (homeaffairs.gov.au)

 

I am studying in Australia, but I am currently in Singapore.  When can I travel to Australia for my studies?

The Australian Government has announced a range of measures to support students. For further information please click here

 

My flight ticket to Australia keeps getting cancelled or postponed. What can I do?

If your flight ticket to Australia keeps getting cancelled or postponed, you should contact your airline or travel agent in order to book a new ticket.  You should also register with DFAT on the smartraveller website here.

 

When I am in Australia, how will I know what the current COVID-19 restrictions are?

Some types of gatherings, activities and businesses have been restricted in Australia to help stop the spread of COVID-19. Follow the advice of local authorities and minimise your risk of exposure to COVID-19. Stay in touch with family and friends so they know you're safe.

Find out what you can and can't do in your state or territory using the COVID-19 Restriction Checker.

 

Can I use the TraceTogether app when in Australia to check-in to restaurants or go shopping?

No, you will not be able to use your TraceTogether app in Australia. 

The mechanisms for using foreign vaccination certificates domestically are still being worked out by Australian states and territories. There is no uniform requirement across Australia for patrons to prove they are vaccinated in order to enter public spaces such as theatres, restaurants and shopping centres. Further information will be provided, when available.

We suggest you carry your proof of vaccination with you in physical or digital form for the time being.  Check with local authorities when you land as they may provide guidance.

You can also consider contacting the Australian National Coronavirus Hotline on +61 2 4018 3442, available 24/7, prior to flying to Australia.