Permit Overhaul To Make Safe Border Changes
In the most significant overhaul to Victoria’s travel permit system since its introduction in January 2021, fully vaccinated people in New South Wales red zones will soon be able to enter Victoria without facing 14 days’ quarantine – including people who aren’t Victorian residents.
The changes, made on the advice on the Chief Health Officer, come as Victoria rapidly approaches its vaccination targets, with 88 per cent of Victorians aged 16 and over having received one dose of the vaccine and 63 per cent having received two doses.
Under the changes, which come into place at 11.59pm on 19 October, fully vaccinated people entering Victoria from red zones will need a negative result from a test taken no more than 72 hours prior to entry. Once they enter, they must isolate, get tested again within 72 hours, and stay isolated until they get a negative result.
People entering Victoria from red zones who aren’t fully vaccinated – including those with medical exemptions – will need a negative result from a test taken no more than 72 hours prior to entry. Once they enter, they must quarantine for 14 days, get tested again within 72 hours of their entry, and again on Day 13 of their quarantine.
Fully vaccinated people arriving from orange zones will no longer be required to get tested and isolate until they receive a negative result. No requirements will apply to them other than the need to hold a valid permit. Orange zone conditions won’t change for people who aren’t fully vaccinated, including those with medical exemptions.
Previously, red zone permits were only available to Victorian residents, who had to quarantine for 14 days regardless of vaccination status. All orange zone permit holders had to get tested within 72 hours of entering Victoria and stay isolated until they received a negative result.
The outlined changes will also largely carry over to specified worker permits, with relaxed conditions for workers entering from red and orange zones if they are fully vaccinated. People under the age of 12 who aren’t eligible for the vaccine will travel under a parent’s permit. If a parent or guardian they are travelling with is not fully vaccinated, they will be required to follow the requirements that apply to that parent or guardian.
Until the changes come into effect on 19 October, interstate entries will be subject to current Victorian border permit directions. If they intend to enter Victoria once the changes are in place, they can prepare by getting a test no more than 72 hours prior to their entry in their home state if this is required as part of their permit.
Everyone entering Victoria requires a valid travel permit, or an exception or exemption. If you are following reduced restrictions as part of your permit because you are fully vaccinated, you will also be required to carry evidence of your vaccination status while in Victoria. You can apply for a travel permit at service.vic.gov.au.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Health Martin Foley
“Our border settings are changing as we move towards a managed easing of restrictions – and people who are fully vaccinated have a right to reduced requirements because they present reduced risk.”
“Victoria and New South Wales have been through so much over the last few months, and we’re pleased that more families will now be able to reunite and more people will be able to travel in a safe way.”