Overseas Travel Is Still ‘Unlikely’ For 2021, Even With The COVID Vaccine Rollout Next Month

You can fully scrap your grand 2021 holiday plans, mates, ‘cos it’s looking like international travel won’t be back on the cards ’til 2022, unfortch.

Australia’s top health chief says that despite the steady rollout of the vaccine, overseas travelling won’t be a thing until 2022.

Health Department chief Brendan Murphy said it’s too early to say whether borders can reopen this year.

“I think that that is a big question. I think that the answer is probably no,” he told ABC TV.

“I think that we’ll go most of this year with still substantial border restrictions – even if we have a lot of the population vaccinated, we don’t know whether that will prevent transmission of the virus,” Professor Murphy said.

“And it’s likely that quarantine will continue for some time. One of the things about this virus is that the rule book has been made up as we go.”

Sucky timing, especially considering Qantas recently reopened bookings for international flights and is now taking bookings for flights across its entire international network from July 1, 2021.

In a statement to news.com.au, a Qantas spokesperson said: “We continue to review and update our international schedule in response to the developing COVID-19 situation.”

“Recently we have aligned the selling of our international services to reflect our expectation that international travel will begin to restart from July 2021.”

However, Professor Murphy suggests you don’t pack your bags just yet.

“I was very careful early on and I remember saying this to the Prime Minister – I don’t want to predict more than two or three months ahead. The world is changing. So I think at the moment, we’ve got this light at the end of the tunnel – the vaccine,” he said.

“So we’re going to go as safely and as fast as we can to get our population vaccinated and then we’ll look at what happens.”

Staycation it is then, I ‘spose.