Pack your fucken bags, mates, and ready to reunite with your loved ones, ‘cos international travel is officially returning nationwide from December 21, Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced this morning.
In a press conference this morning outside an airport hanger, Morrison confirmed that by December 21, international travel will resume across the country. That’s in large part due to our huge vaccination rate, however, Western Australia and another state need to increase their state’s vaccinated population by then.
Qantas CEO Alan Joyce also revealed that staff levels for the prestigious Australian-owned airline will return to full capacity in January.
Over the next few weeks, Qantas will begin to resume some of its long-haul flights from Sydney to London and Sydney to Los Angeles. Flights to Singapore will resume at the end of November, followed by Fiji in early December, South Africa in early January, and Bangkok in the middle of January.
You absolute beauts, I could kiss all 5000 Qantas staff who are being brought back from their extended period of being stood down, but that’s not very COVID safe of me, now is it?
Regarding Singapore, Morrison said that Australia is “in the final stages of concluding an arrangement with the Singapore government”.
“We anticipate that being able to be achieved within the next week or so, as we would open up to more visa class holders coming out of Singapore,” he said.
“We will see that occur. To those ports here in Australia that will be open in the same way as they are here in Sydney and we would expect to see that align pretty much with the timetable that Qantas has announced today regarding when they will have flights going to Singapore.
“Australia is en route to be one of the most vaccinated countries in the world, and here in New South Wales, as well as in the ACT and Victoria charging in behind as well, we are seeing those vaccination rates continue to rise. The national plan was all about opening up Australia safely so we can remain safely open, and that’s what we are seeing here today.”
He continued: “And that means planes get back in the sky, it means people go out and get their hair cut again – as I’m sure they’re doing in large numbers today down in Melbourne and across Victoria. It means that families are coming together again. It means kids are going back to school.
“It means the reunification of our country which I know we have all been so key to see. That begins with this.”
NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet, who was also at the conference, added that we can expect a date announced regarding when people from Victoria will be able to enter NSW “very shortly”. The announcement had been delayed by a few weeks after Sydneysiders were unable to travel to regional NSW until November 1.
Stay tuned for more info.