When Australians are likely to be able to travel overseas again
Australia’s top health bureaucrat says the country is unlikely to reopen its international borders until at least 2022.
Health Department secretary, Brendan Murphy, has cast doubt on the likelihood of international travel resuming this year.
“I think we’ll go most of this year with still substantial border restrictions,” he told ABC News Breakfast on Monday.
But some are holding out hope that international travel will resume much sooner.
CEO of Australian Federation of Travel Agents, Darren Rudd, says he’s “quite confident” his international trip, which is scheduled for September, will go ahead.
“I’m quite confident that, with the vaccine rollout program, the uptake of that, and the confidence wave that we hope will come from that, people will start thinking like I am and start contacting a travel agent to plan their trip,” he told Ross and Russel.
“At some point we have to think about, as other countries take up the vaccine inoculations and they start to travel for reunions with family and friends, that we want to be in the position to be able to do that for our citizens as well.”
Australia is scheduled to begin rolling out COVID-19 vaccines in February.
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CEO of the Flight Centre Travel Group Graham Turner also expressed confidence international travel will return soon.
“I’m pretty confident with widespread vaccination that we will be able to travel,” he told Neil Mitchell on 3AW Mornings.
“I think if you read between the lines… It’s really widespread international travel, you probably won’t be able to go everywhere until early 2022.
“But certainly, if you take the UK, it’ll be fully vaccinated in the next few months… So it’s really just up to when we can get vaccinated.”
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