What you need to know to travel in COVID times

by possandruby

As Australian COVID-19 lockdowns and travel restrictions ease and borders open, we can once again start to consider getting out and exploring our wonderful Aussie backyard. If there is anything positive from the global pandemic, it has highlighted all the amazing things that you can see and do in Australia. Every one of our states and territories has so much to offer for all interests areas and age groups, from foodies to history buffs. We have seen first-hand that planning travel during these uncertain times is very challenging with snap border closures, lockdowns, and varied restrictions but there is hope that we can all do some form of travelling at this time. Road trips are increasingly accessible and the mini-break or long weekend is perfect for a little escape to new destinations maybe a nearby town, city, or National Park.

Travel is definitely not impossible but a lot more planning and research are involved in pulling together adventures in COVID times.  Here are our top tips for travelling safely (and legally) within Australia throughout the pandemic.

Solo travel Tasmania

1. Follow all government restrictions

Despite Australia being one country, each State has differing requirements and restrictions for entry. Each one will ask you to complete a border arrival form (primarily for contact tracing purposes) and the automated service will usually send you an authorised entry permit for a set period of time.  Be aware that obtaining this permit can take some time, especially if you are entering during a busy period, so make sure you allow enough time for your permit to be processed.  Visit the relevant state websites to access the most up to date information, see the links below:









2. Cancellation policies

When booking accommodation and flights ensure you are aware of the cancellation policies and how they affect you if you are unable to travel due to COVID-19 travel restrictions. Many services have now put in place robust cancellation policies which are available at the time of booking. In most cases, you will be offered a credit before a refund.  Read the fine print to know exactly how this will affect your booking!

3. Have a contingency plan

You have booked your leave from work, arranged the pet sitter, organised the family so ideally, you don’t want to have to cancel the plan completely. It is always worth having a plan B in these uncertain times. Consider staying somewhere a little closer to home within your State, taking a road trip instead of a flight, days trips instead of an extended stay – even a backyard camping staycation is better than no break at all!

4. Be COVID-19 prepared when travelling

Travel responsibly with your own PPE (personal protective equipment) including face masks, hand sanitiser, antibacterial wipes and any other items you feel may be required to keep you safe and healthy. Ensure you follow all guidelines provided by airlines and other businesses i.e. wearing a face mask during flight and in airports or maintaining social distance at cafes and restaurants – it simply helps keep everyone safe.

5. Support local small businesses

Many businesses have suffered significantly due to the travel restrictions and the limited numbers of visitors moving around the country. Be mindful of supporting local businesses from the takeaway food shops, cafés and restaurants to the boutiques and gift shops. They could all use a little economic injection so try to do your bit.

6. Be prepared and agile

Plans may change quickly as we have seen in the past with snap border closures within hours of announcement and changes in restrictions. It is best to be prepared for these circumstances. Monitor the news channels daily, keep phones charged, maintain food supplies, keep the car fuelled to ensure you are able to enjoy your travels and comply with any restrictions.

We recognise that these are uncertain times and even periods when travel will be completely out of the question, but when it is safe and legal to do so we encourage you to plan a trip, pack your bags and have an amazing adventure or two! 

Need some inspo? Here are some road trips to consider.

Ruby on the road

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