7 April 2020:
All overseas travel is currently banned, with few exceptions.
If you’re overseas and want to return, we urge you to do so as soon as possible while flights are available.
Where there aren’t options, we’re working to make flights available for you.
We acknowledge it may be necessary for some of you to stay where you are longer than you might have planned. Stay safe and follow the advice of local authorities.
We’re currently seeing tens of thousands of Australians return home from overseas each week.
But in many countries, the window of opportunity is closing. Our advice is clear: if you want to come back to Australia - and commercial flights are available - travel home as soon as possible.
International Aviation Network
Working with Qantas and Virgin, the Australian Government has now established a network of regular flights from four major cities – London, Los Angeles, Hong Kong and Auckland. These flights will continue throughout April to help get Australians home.
Planning your trip home
If you need to transit another city on your way home, check our advice for your transit location first. A number of major transit hubs are now closed to transit passengers. Singapore, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Bangkok and Hong Kong all either do not allow transits or have severe restrictions in place.
No flights out?
Many travellers are having difficulty getting home because of flight cancellations or movement restrictions.
If you’re one of them, we know it’s a stressful and difficult time.
In countries where airlines have stopped operating, we are working with the airline industry and other governments to help Australians find ways to get home. Our focus will be on those places where Australians are most vulnerable.
Check the website of nearest Australian embassy or high commission and follow their social media pages for any updates on departure options. Some of our embassies or high commissions will ask you to email them to register your interest in flights.
Over the past few weeks, we’ve also worked with cruise operators and other governments to bring home thousands of Australians from cruise ships. We’re working to bring the remaining Australians home safely as soon as possible.
Staying where you are
In some cases, you may need to make arrangements to stay where you are for a longer period, until your departure can be arranged or border closures are lifted.
We understand this is a very challenging situation. Our Ambassadors, High Commissioners and consular officials are doing all they can to assist those most in need.
The scale and complexity of this crisis is greater than anything we have faced before. With the global shutdown of borders and transit hubs, it won’t be possible for every Australian traveller to get home until the travel restrictions are lifted.
In some cases, particularly if you’re living and working overseas long-term, you may have the support, accommodation and income you need to remain where you are through this period.
If for whatever reason you’re staying somewhere longer than you planned, follow the advice of local authorities and take care to protect yourself from exposure to COVID-19. Stay in touch with friends and family back home so they know you’re safe, and continue to monitor www.smartraveller.gov.au and the social media accounts of your closest Australian diplomatic mission.
Please be aware that our ability to provide our usual consular services in many places is limited during this time. In some countries, our embassy buildings are closed to the public or offering limited consultations by appointment only. This is due to tight restrictions on local services and movement, including of our embassy staff.
While we can’t always get out and about in the way we normally would, rest assured our staff are hard at work behind the scenes. We’re focused on sharing the most up-to-date local advice and information for Australians, providing consular and passport services in situations of genuine need and working with other governments on the international effort to combat COVID-19.
The Foreign Minister decided on 26 March to direct the departure to Australia of all remaining dependants and non-essential staff from a number of Australian embassies and high commissions in countries where there is significant pressure on local health systems and reducing transport links. This will not affect the provision of services to Australians in these locations.
Travel plans in the coming months?
If you have future travel planned or are considering going overseas, cancel or postpone these plans. A ban is in place. The risks to your health and that of others is too great.
For non-urgent inquiries, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
For urgent consular assistance, contact your nearest Australian embassy, high commission or consulate or call DFAT’s Consular Emergency Centre on 1300 555 135 from Australia or +61 2 6261 3305 from overseas.
- See our COVID-19 information for Australian travellers
- See our advice for what to do when you can't get home
- Read our advice for Australians living, studying or working overseas
- Find out more about COVID-19 and consular services overseas
- Read about Medical assistance overseas