From Monday, 1 November, Australians will be allowed to leave the territory of Australia without having to obtain an exemption first, and thus travel to countries that allow them to enter, including here the countries of the European Union and the Schengen area.
The decision was announced only this week by the Australian government’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, which also noted that the “do not travel” warning has been removed once and for all.
“And we are updating travel advice levels for 177 destinations based on the latest risk assessment – both COVID-19 and other threats to safety and security,” the department notes.
Just like the United States, Australia also has four levels of advice about traveling abroad for its residents as follows:
Level 1: Practice normal safety precautions Level 2: Exercise a high degree of caution Level 3: Reconsider the need to travel Level 4: Do not travel
Currently, all EU and Schengen area countries are placed at level 2, except Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, which are placed at level 3.
Commenting on the changes to overseas travel, the Minister for Health and Aged Care, Greg Hunt, said Australians are demonstrating they have been vaccinated in order to be allowed to travel abroad.
“Australian citizens and permanent residents who wish to travel abroad will need to provide proof that they have been fully immunized with a TGA approved or recognized vaccine, with the second dose occurring at least seven days before travel. These changes will also facilitate children’s travel without 12 years old
While Australians have not been allowed to travel to Europe since the start of the pandemic, the European Union, on the other hand, has allowed entry to Australians since June, when the list of epidemiologically safe third countries was first drawn up.
Currently, all countries of the European Union and the Schengen area allow entry to Australians, and most of them allow immunized Australians to enter their territory completely without restrictions.
However, there are some countries that apply stricter entry rules to Australians, such as Norway. On September 18, Norway removed Australia from its list of purple countries, meaning that Australians can no longer enter for non-essential purposes.
According to an EU-funded report on travel trends in the EU, there were 22 million Australian guests arriving at EU accommodation establishments in 2017. Australians also spent €28 billion on overseas trips in 2016, the sixth largest market spending.