If you’re planning a trip to Queensland before Christmas, there are a few important things to know.
The first is that the date of your second jab could mean the difference between a costly stint in hotel quarantine or 14 days at home.
The new rules apply as soon as 70 per cent of eligible Queenslanders over 16 receive their second dose of vaccine. That could be November 19 or even earlier.
And not all fully vaccinated interstate travellers will get to avoid hotel quarantine.
Here’s what you need to know.
What are the rules for travellers arriving in Queensland?
As soon as Queensland hits that 70 per cent double vaccination target, life gets easier for fully vaccinated people entering the state from hotspots.
For the first time, home quarantine will be an option – but only for those who qualify.
First up, you need to have had your second COVID-19 vaccination at least 14 days before entering the state.
All new arrivals must also return a negative PCR test at least 72 hours before travelling.
And they must have somewhere suitable to quarantine, for example a home with “direct fresh air access to the front door”, such as a standalone home, townhouse or apartment block – not a dwelling accessed via a shared internal corridor.
Everyone in your household must quarantine with you.
You cannot have visitors.
You must also get a COVID-19 test at a drive-through clinic using a private vehicle on days 1, 5 and 12.
How can I enter Queensland?
You must fly direct into any Queensland airport – crossing the border by road will not be permitted.
Your place of quarantine must be within a two-hour drive from the airport – and you must travel to the residence via private or government-organised transport or a contactless hire car.
You are allowed to transit once through Brisbane Airport.
“So if there are no direct flights from interstate, you can fly into the Brisbane Airport, remain at the airport and then transit to one other flight,” Health Minister Yvette D’Ath said.
How will it be policed?
Queensland Health uses a “home compliance check-in service”.
Under the system, participants will receive and need to respond to daily text messages to demonstrate compliance with requirements.
To be marked as compliant, you must respond to a web form link within 10 minutes of receiving the text and be at the address you are supposed to be completing quarantine.
The system uses geo-location technology to see where you are.
What happens after that?
The rules change again from December 17, when 80 per cent of eligible Queenslanders over 16 are expected to have received both doses.
From that date, quarantine will be scrapped altogether for fully vaccinated domestic travellers who return a negative COVID-19 test within the previous 72 hours.
They can cross into Queensland by car or plane.
Anyone who doesn’t meet the criteria will still be required to quarantine in a government-nominated facility.
What about international arrivals?
From December 17, overseas travellers flying directly into Queensland, who are fully vaccinated and have received a negative COVID test within 72 hours, can do up to 14 days of quarantine at home.
Anyone who does not meet this criteria will still have to complete 14 days quarantine in a government facility, including international travellers who fly into other states.
Once 90 per cent of Queenslanders over 16 are fully vaccinated, quarantine will be scrapped for double-dosed international travellers who test negative.
That date is not yet known.
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