The limit on the number of international arrivals coming into Australia via commercial flights, the so-called “passenger cap”, will be halved from July 14 due to concerns around the Delta variant of Covid-19.  The new cap will be 3,035 international arrivals per week, and each major airport will be subject to these caps:

  • Sydney: 1,505 per week
  • Perth: 265 per week
  • Adelaide: 265 per week
  • Melbourne: 500 per week
  • Brisbane: 500 per week (plus 150 surge capacity)

Other things to note in the latest announcement made by the current Administration are:

  • Australia is unlikely to increase incoming passenger arrivals back to their current level (6,070 a week) until early 2022.
  • Until early 2022, additional repatriation flights to return Australian citizens will be offered by the federal government.  These flights will be in addition to the above cap numbers, with quarantine likely to take place at Howard Springs in the Northern Territory.
  • A pilot program will be introduced for returning vaccinated travelers requiring 7 days home quarantine (rather than the current 14 days hotel quarantine).  These pilots will be administered by each state.
  • Australia has, for the first time, set a roadmap to re-open borders.  The 2nd step (of 4 to reopening borders to pre-pandemic levels) is dependent on Australia reaching a minimum vaccination threshold which is to be determined by public health experts.

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