- General advice
- Advice for vaccinated travellers
- Advice for unvaccinated travellers
- International border requirements and travel disruptions
- Overseas cruises
COVID-19 remains an ongoing global health risk
Despite increasing vaccination numbers, countries and territories continue to experience sudden disease outbreaks. New variants may pose an added risk.
If you're considering travelling overseas, you must understand the risks of contracting COVID-19 in your destination and the financial implications this may have on you, and those travelling with you. Know what to do if you test positive while travelling.
You need to take special care when travelling. Infectious diseases, including COVID-19, can have a serious impact on your health. Healthcare systems in other destinations can be quickly overwhelmed in an outbreak, making them harder to access for any health concern.
You can minimise your risk of becoming unwell by ensuring that your travel vaccinations are up to date. This includes being vaccinated against COVID-19.
We encourage all travellers to be up to date with COVID-19 vaccines before travelling anywhere overseas.
Follow local health advice and continue to take simple hygiene and infectious disease control steps, such as:
- wearing a mask
- frequently washing your hands
- physical distancing.
Plan your travel carefully. Read our travel advice to check the risks and requirements specific to your destination. We continue to monitor the situation closely. Subscribe to Smartraveller for updates to stay informed if something changes.
Returning to Australia
Travellers arriving in Australia from China, including Hong Kong and Macau, will be required to undertake a COVID-19 test within the 48 hours prior to travel and show evidence of a negative test result. This applies regardless of your vaccination status and includes Australian citizens.
For information on these measures visit:
- Travellers from China, Hong Kong and Macau (Department of Health and Aged Care)
It’s also important to regularly check the rules in any destination you’re travelling to or transiting through, as they may have rules in place for passengers arriving from China, including Hong Kong and Macau.
For the latest details on entry and exit conditions, you should contact your airline or travel provider, or the nearest embassy or consulate of the destination you're entering or transiting through.
Advice for vaccinated travellers
Vaccines provide protection, but there's still a risk of you contracting the virus. When travelling:
- follow local public health orders
- monitor for symptoms
- wear masks as advised and in appropriate settings
- practise good hand hygiene
- get tested if symptomatic.
It's important to regularly check the rules in the destinations you're travelling to.
Advice for unvaccinated travellers
If you're unvaccinated, be fully informed of the health risks of contracting COVID-19 while you're travelling.
You're at greater risk of severe illness due to COVID-19 if you're unvaccinated. Sudden outbreaks of COVID-19 pose an added risk to you, particularly in destinations with low vaccination coverage. Health services can also be difficult to access.
Reconsider your need to travel if you're:
- not vaccinated against COVID-19
- ineligible for vaccination because of age
- medically exempt from vaccination.
If you still choose to travel, take all possible precautions to avoid contracting the virus. This may include:
- avoiding crowds
- limiting social interactions, particularly in indoor settings
- ensuring physical distancing
- monitoring for symptoms
- correctly wearing a mask at all times, particularly where physical distancing is not possible
- exercising frequent and good hand hygiene
- getting tested if you have symptoms.
Some destinations have different rules for vaccinated and unvaccinated travellers.
Given the evolving situation and the speed at which outbreaks can occur, it's important that you closely monitor the COVID-19 situation in destinations you're travelling to.
International border requirements and travel disruptions
Every country or territory decides who can enter and leave through its borders. Some destinations remain closed to foreign visitors. Entry and exit rules can change at short notice. You may need to:
- show proof of vaccination as a condition of entry and access to certain venues
- isolate for a period of time on arrival
- provide negative COVID-19 tests
- show proof of COVID-19 travel insurance.
Vaccination requirements may vary depending on your destination. Always check you meet the requirements of your destination before travelling.
Foreign governments may put movement restrictions in place that prevent you from leaving. If you, or someone in your travelling group, test positive for COVID-19, you may be required to isolate at your own expense. Be prepared for the possibility you may be in your destination longer than planned.
It's your responsibility to learn about all the destinations you're visiting and plan for your safety. This includes entry requirements and understanding any risks. It's also your responsibility to stay informed in case things change.
Infectious diseases such as COVID-19 spread quickly onboard cruises. You're more at risk of exposure than in other settings. This is due to large numbers of passengers living and socialising in close quarters over a long period.
If an outbreak of COVID-19 occurs onboard your cruise ship, you could be subject to quarantine procedures on the ship or in a foreign country. You could fall seriously ill if you're exposed. Our ability to provide consular services on board the ship is likely to be limited.
Read our advice on cruising during COVID-19. Contact your travel agent or cruise operator for specific information on their COVID-19 safety protocols.
The Australian Government continues to monitor the international health situation for COVID-19 and other infectious diseases. This is to ensure we can respond quickly and effectively to any emerging health risks.
- Read our travel advice for the most up-to-date information on entry measures and local risks.
- Subscribe for updates to stay informed, and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
- Make sure you know the facts about COVID-19.
- If you’re up to date with COVID-19 vaccines, get your International COVID-19 Vaccination Certificate.
- Check your travel insurance policy to see what’s covered, particularly in the event your travel is disrupted or there’s a change in travel advice level.
- Read more about Australia's biosecurity and border controls.