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Post COVID travel: Which international locations can I fly to?

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Australians are returning to jet-setting mode as international borders reopen and many countries relax COVID restrictions.

But before you drag out the suitcase and pack your toiletries, check the rules for travel to your chosen destination, so your highly-anticipated overseas trip goes smoothly.

Here are the latest COVID travel requirements for some of Australia’s favourite destinations.

Bali

Loved for its nightlife, resorts and surf beaches, Bali is high on the travel agenda for many Australians.

As of March 4, Bali has dumped hotel quarantine requirements for arriving visitors. It’s part of an “island bubble” scheme to boost tourism, which ordinarily makes up more than 50 per cent of Bali’s economy.

As of March 7, visas on arrival became available to foreign tourists again. Anyone who wants to travel on to other Indonesian islands must first stay in Bali for three nights.

Getting ready to take to the skies again. Photo: Getty

The US

Work trips, Disneyland holidays and long-awaited reunions with loved ones – the US is a highly anticipated travel destination for Aussies.

Under requirements for travel state-side, everyone aged 18 and older must be fully vaccinated and provide proof of vaccination, unless they are a US citizen, US permanent resident, or qualify for an exception.

All passengers, even those with full vaccination status, must also show a negative COVID-19 test result taken no more than one day before travel. If you have had COVID recently, you need proof from a  healthcare provider.

Most states have relaxed mandatory face masks indoors. However, Hawaii, Oregon and Washington still have indoor mask mandates.

Britain

If you are fully vaccinated, the good news is you don’t need to take a COVID test before or after you arrive in Britain and there’s no requirement to quarantine upon arrival.

If you are unvaccinated, you’ll need to get a COVID test in the two days before you leave. And be warned – if you don’t have a valid test result, you may face a £500 ($890) fine on arrival in Britain.

All travellers still need to complete a passenger locator form, which can be done online any time in the three days before arriving in Britain.

Australians have been dreaming of international holidays for the past two years. Photo: Getty

Thailand

Dreaming of your next serving of authentic Thai food? It’s all green lights now after flights to Thailand from Australia resumed in January.

Fully vaccinated travellers can apply to enter Thailand under its Test and Go scheme.

But be aware that some areas of Thailand, including the holiday hub of Phuket, still have high numbers of COVID infections. The Australian government’s travel advice website, Smart Traveller, advises wearing a mask, practising social distancing and following government restrictions.

Malaysia

Malaysia will reopen its borders from April 1 with vaccinated travellers allowed to enter without quarantining.

Like Bali, Malaysian’s tourism sector needs reviving and is looking forward to welcoming international tourists back. The country is a favourite with visitors seeking beach holidays and a glimpse of those beautiful orang-utans.

Japan

Japan is cautiously welcoming people through its borders, but not tourists just yet. Fully vaccinated business travellers and students are allowed to enter.

Since March 1, those who have received booster shots no longer need to quarantine or isolate on arrival.

All Australian travellers, including Japanese nationals, need a printed copy of a negative PCR test certificate and an Individual Written Pledge to enter Japan.

Vaccination requirements

If you are a fully vaccinated Australian citizen or permanent resident, you can depart Australia with proof of your vaccination. If you don’t meet vaccination requirements, you must apply for a travel exemption to leave the country.

Children (anyone aged under 17) who are unvaccinated or partially vaccinated can travel with a vaccinated parent or guardian. But those travelling with unvaccinated adult family members will need to quarantine.

Certain countries also still require COVID-related paperwork before arrival and are mandating quarantine periods for unvaccinated travellers.

Where COVID is a greater risk

There is a long list of countries across South America, Asia, Africa and the Pacific where the pandemic is still rife.

The federal government advises Australians to reconsider travel plans to these countries. They include Brazil, Cuba, Guatemala, Mexico, Ecuador, Papua New Guinea, Timor-Leste, Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Malawi, Lesotho the Solomon Islands, Samoa, Tonga, Guam, the Philippines, Vietnam, Egypt, Sudan and Armenia.

For more information, see the Smart Traveller website.

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