From today, Australia has slashed its limit on international arrivals

It just got much harder for Australians stranded overseas to make their way home.

By David Flynn, January 15 2021
From today, Australia has slashed its limit on international arrivals

Australia's tighter restrictions on international arrivals come into effect today, with the weekly cap slashed from around 7,500 to less than 5,000 for the next four weeks.

The decision, announced last week, was made "to manage the flow of returning Australians and other travellers who have been potentially exposed to the new variants" of coronavirus, said Prime Minister Scott Morrison.

These 'mutated' strains are estimated to be 70% more transmissible, and "we anticipate that this will become the more dominant strain of the virus globally," Morrison said.

"Indeed, 80 per cent of Australians registered overseas are now in countries where that new strain is evident."

New South Wales, Queensland and Western Australia have halved their weekly arrivals limit to a total of 2,517 passengers per week. South Australia remains pegged at 490, while Victoria continues to operate at less than half of its capacity, with some 1,120 arrivals per week.

However, the Northern Territory's dedicated Howards Springs quarantine camp – which has become the new hub for Qantas' repatriation flights from the UK, Europe, the USA and India – will see a slight increase from 425 international arrivals a fortnight, up from 300.

Morrison has said the previous weekly arrivals limits will be reinstated on February 15.

"This is a temporary suspension of those higher levels of intake, as we learn more about what's happening here and what's going around the world and this isn't the only new strain."

However, the move represents a further setback for many of the 37,000 Australians overseas currently registered with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade as wanting to return home.

Airlines flying into Sydney, Brisbane and Perth must now halve the number of passengers they carry, leading to more instances of people being  booted off flights booked long ago.

PREVIOUS [January 8, 2021] Australia will reduce the number of overseas travellers accepted into the country until the middle of February in the face of new highly-transmissible strains of COVID-19 now appearing in several countries.

In addition, all international passengers will have to show a negative result for a pre-flight COVID test before being allowed to travel.

The current caps on international arrivals into New South Wales, Queensland and Western Australia will be halved until February 15, Prime Minister Scott Morrison revealed following today's meeting of the National Cabinet.

The weekly limit on arrivals into NSW, which to date has accepted more travellers than any other state, will be reduced to 1,505; Queensland's arrivals will be down from 1,000 to 500; in Western Australia, it will be 512.

Victoria and South Australia will continue accepting travellers at their current rate, with Morrison noting that Victoria was "already operating at less than 50% of their current capacity."

"In the smaller jurisdictions - the ACT, the Northern Territory, Tasmania - they are very bespoke arrangements in relation to those airports, and they'll be settled between the Commonwealth and those jurisdictions specifically," he added.

Morrison was unable to say when the reduced caps would take effect, given that many flights were already underway and others would soon be taking off with their previously-approved number of passengers.

He stressed this would be a short-term reduction, with the arrival caps automatically returning to their previous levels on February 15.

"This is a temporary suspension of those higher levels of intake, as we learn more about what's happening here and what's going around the world and this isn't the only new strain."

"80% of Australians registered overseas are now in countries where that new strain is evident. This virus continues to write its own rules, and that mean we must continue to be adaptable in how we continue to fight it."

Read more: Pre-flight COVID test required for all flights to Australia

David

David Flynn is the Editor-in-Chief of Executive Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.

XWu
XWu

09 May 2020

Total posts 468

So to be specific, until today, every week of all inbound international travellers who are Australian residents

NSW is taking in 3010 

Vic is taking in less than 50% of their “official” 1100 quota which started on 7 Dec

Qld is taking in 1000

WA is taking in 1024

SA is taking 980 


The population of Australia of 25M

NSW 32%

Vic 27%

Qld 21%

WA 11%

SA 7%


In 2019, of the 9.4M international arrivals to Australia 

47% visited NSW 

Vic 33%

Qld 29%

WA 10%

SA 5%

( NB: adds more than 100% as many visits at least 2 states)


Certainly food for thought about who is doing the majority of the lifting, who is taking on more than their fair share (and those who aren’t)

XWu
XWu

09 May 2020

Total posts 468

Oops,

I meant SA is taking in 490 weekly 

XWu
XWu

09 May 2020

Total posts 468

And from today the quota for every week of all inbound international travellers who are Australian residents

NSW is taking in 1505

Vic is taking in less than 50% of their “official” 1100 quota which started on 7 Dec

Qld is taking in 500

WA is taking in 512

SA is taking 490


QF

11 Jul 2014

Total posts 694

XWu and is it fair to say NSW is being treated unfairly by the other states for doing the right thing?

XWu
XWu

09 May 2020

Total posts 468

@UpUpAndAway

In my opinion, yes.

And more importantly, one particular state seemed to get off very lightly in their obligation, consistently throughout the entire 6 months since the introduction of capped arrivals 

11 Jul 2020

Total posts 75

XWU, you forgot about Darwin, Canberra, and Tasmania, and perhaps Carins. All have the capacity to accept international flights with returning Aussies. At the national cabinet meeting, ALL Premiers from each state agreed to take x amount of returning Aussies, Yet we see Glady's and John all having a bitch about doing the heavy lifting when this is what they signed up for and agreed too. 

Further, we could argue that perhaps the percentage of returning Aussies actually live in our 2 biggest capital cities Sydney and Melbourne with the largest airports in the country and our main international hubs. Instead of our politicians bitching about it, the federal government should have made a more conscious effort when they announced they would be bringing stranded Aussie home before Christmas with more flights and or capacity, and perhaps we would have dodged this new strain of the virus. 

To me, the most practical thing to do now, would be testing our stranded Aussies at their origin with a rapid covid-19 test if negative, give them the first shot of the covid-19 vaccine put them in a hotel close to the airport for 2 days, and if no side effects test them again. Another negative result prior to boarding, and they board their flight home, have another test on arrival and go into home quarantine if negative or hotel quarantine if positive this theory should allow bigger aircraft to be utilized and bring more home at a time. Yes this might cost the Government/Taxpayer some cash but this way you limit the virus getting out into the public in each state and prevent future hard lockdown and the hit to people's lives, the economy,  people's jobs, and unrestricted movement around the country.

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 1393

Ozoeke I agree with all except the rapid test bit. They are shown to be useless hence the requirement for a PCR test which can get a same day result. I would also add a day 3 and 11 test as well. Home quarantine should involve statements about who else is in the household and they be isolated and tested as well. How to check on visitors is tricky but a big enough fine to the visitors and host may deter.

11 Jul 2020

Total posts 75

Patrickk whatever tests work for detecting covid quickly and accurately.

11 Jul 2020

Total posts 75

They would have to isolate from other household members and no visitors to the home during the quarantine period. Another test at the end of the quarantine period on all household members.

Singapore Airlines - KrisFlyer

02 Dec 2016

Total posts 52

Disgraceful actions by the National Cabinet. Home quarantines must be considered again for Aussie citizens and PRs.

16 Nov 2018

Total posts 31

How would you enforce home quarantine rules?

05 Oct 2017

Total posts 485

Easy. Using tracing apps or wristbands, which are compulsory in some countries. However, I highly doubt the Australian government will allow home quarantine again for some time to come. In fact, I believe that we're eventually going to go directly from facility quarantine to quarantine-free, when the government decides. Same thing happened with NZ arrivals in October. Straight from facility quarantine to quarantine free from one day to the next.

16 Nov 2018

Total posts 31

Sure, with wristbands you are confined to your home. How do you stop your mother from visiting you?

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 1393

Freq the issue with tracing apps and wristbands is they don’t stop visitors to quarantine peoples houses and this latest version of the bug is particularly nasty if it gets out and as we have seen it is incoming passengers and flight crew who are bringing it in.

jason526

why do you need to enforce home quarantine ? Corona won't kill you unless you are unhealthy. Just stay away from vulnerable types.

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 1393

Regular that is the  point of quarantine which is to keep you away from vulnerable types which is everybody. It is much less about being killed 1-3% but more about being hospitalised which  is 20-30% and as the UK is finding is the issue.

ah no. Vulnerable are:- elderley with low immunity, cancer patients, diabetics, obese etc. Most of population is not vulnerable at all.

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 1393

The data on infections suggests that many more than that catch the bug and get sick and end up in hospital. The groups you refer to are more likely to die. The data is there in any number of official websites. Many of the public  figures who we know got it and ended up in hospital don’t fit your list. 

11 Jul 2020

Total posts 75

In my state, they used dedicated police officers along with members of the ADF to check up on people, with a huge fine given if you were not home when they called.

24 Oct 2010

Total posts 2543

If anything, I suspect the rise of these new and more infectious mutated strains of COVID-19 could push back plans for home quarantine. Home quarantine also faces some challenges which we mentioned in this article: https://www.executivetraveller.com/news/australia-considers-home-quarantine-isolation

The keys ones are of course enforcement - which some countries are doing via wristbands and other via apps, along with door-knock visits from police - and how to effectively isolate unless you live alone. I doubt that very very few people who live with a partner or family could properly self-isolate to the degree outlined by medical experts.

We could always follow the actions taken by the PRC and seal people inside their homes with metals bars. Hopefully there is not a fire, medical emergency, or home delivery hot pot required.

Perhaps we could follow the incredible response taken by the independent RoC who clearly do the job of virus elimination, quarantine, and tracking better than the PRC. 

XWu
XWu

09 May 2020

Total posts 468

While not directly commenting on the merits of some suggestions, I thought fellow readers should be aware of some information:

Generally the COVID-19 vulnerable age group is 70 years old and older (no major health conditions), 65 years old and older but with chronic health problems.

In both UK and Australia they roughly are about 1 in every 7 residents

They are more likely to vote, and politically active

Despite the majority not in paid work, they account for a large proportion of unpaid activities, and social minding.

Despite the majority not in paid work, they are more likely to spend more money than people under 30 years, their spending likely to generate cash flow in rural area than those under 30 years 

Isolating 15% of the population, (potentially 20% of the voting bloc) telling them to lock down while the rest of the country carry on for months hoping to get herd immunity is socially and politically not acceptable by those “vulnerable” people and their families here and in UK.

Ironically Sweden, the country many people accused of trying to achieve herd immunity by natural infection, had 20% population 70 years and older. And part of the actual strategy (not truly herd immunity by natural infection like others claimed) is to ask those 70 years and older to limit interaction with others. 93% of them self reported  as following that “recommendation” (and NOT rule/law) to some extent.

Sure, Australia did very well with lockdown and closed borders.

UK with lockdown but not much closure of borders didn’t do very well

Sweden with not much lockdown, no border closure didn’t do as well as Australia, but certainly did better than UK, by death per 100,000 overall population.

Hence one idea that works one place doesn’t mean it works elsewhere; it had to be tailored to each country 

25 Oct 2010

Total posts 23

@XWu I agree about nuance and different degrees of response may work in different places.  But the decisions should be based on medical advice not who votes, more.  And...in Australia "more likely to vote " is not a thing.  Everyone votes.  Our turnout rates are 98-99% (because it is compulsory).

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 1393

XWu the situation in Sweden is now appalling and much much worse than its neighbours. The Swedish policy has been a failure and tge government is seeking a parliamentary authority for a lockdown well after the horse has bolted.

17 Jun 2020

Total posts 248

Terrible decision that shows Australian citizenship is worthless and useless, as the government will abandon you overseas at a time of crisis. 

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

30 Nov 2015

Total posts 4

As someone overseas and had a number of discussions with the local consulate, this isn't too far from reality.

17 Jun 2020

Total posts 248

It makes me ashamed that this is the reality Australians are facing in being able to travel back home. The lack of empathy (especially from Victorians and Queenslanders) about leaving people stranded is terrible. I hope your situation improves soon. 

05 Jan 2018

Total posts 47

people have lost their ever-lovin minds over this bug. apparently w/o much fanfare or any nobel prizes being handed out, the world has managed to totally eradicate the flu. amazing.

Has anyone clarified when this starts FROM as we have travellers in the next 24-48 hrs and need t advise urgent C19 test and reconfirm flights - if bumped now it will be months to get another seat! Called SQ & QR and they have not been advised yet!

25 Oct 2010

Total posts 23

My son has an SQ flight tonight!!   Yikes.  When does this start? I called the COVID hot line,  they don't know. Called the embassy, they don't know.  Called DFAT, they don't know. Called the Foreign Minister's office staff in Canberra, they don't know.   SQ showing the flight as on.  Curse you Scotty for making this announcement without a start time!!!

XWu
XWu

09 May 2020

Total posts 468

@TimHughes

I doubt those scheduled to ARRIVE (not depart) within 24-48 hrs will be affected as it will not be practical to get the details of the other new rules sorted out including the preflight testing which most pax will have trouble finding private testing at short notice so they can’t roll out a half baked policy with no details 

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 1393

Tim, get your son to get a PCR test and pay more to get a quick turnaround result. They can do it in a couple of hours if pushed/paid enough.

25 Oct 2010

Total posts 23

@patrick - cheers, yes, done.  Was posting here while racing through the streets of BKK on the way to a rapid drive through testing location.

24 Oct 2010

Total posts 2543

Hi Luxtraveller: ScoMo didn't name a date at the media briefing, but he did indicate it wouldn't be happening in the next 24-48 hours as there were already flights underway and others where passengers were all set to travel based on the airline's approved capacity under the current limits.

25 Oct 2010

Total posts 23

David - do you have a link to where he said that? Thanks!

24 Oct 2010

Total posts 2543

No mate, sorry, I was watching the livestream on ABC News 24 and frantically typing notes ands quotes, so I am paraphrasing what he said but it definitely wasn't that the axe would swing tonight.

25 Oct 2010

Total posts 23

For what it is worth,  I called back to the Foreign Minister's office.  Spoke a staffer.  He said it will start on Jan 15. 

XWu
XWu

09 May 2020

Total posts 468

@TimHughes

Great tip!

It will stop the unnecessary worrying since if it’s gonna happen, it’s gonna happen!

05 Oct 2017

Total posts 485

Interesting. So now they're requiring all passengers, even Australian citizens, to test prior to boarding a flight to Australia. However, what if you test positive? Surely an Australian citizen can't be refused entry to their own country?

This is why some countries like Thailand and Myanmar, have different policies in place for locals vs. foreigners. Locals don't need to test prior to boarding a flight. They'll be tested in quarantine. Only foreigners require a pre-boarding Covid negative test.

XWu
XWu

09 May 2020

Total posts 468

@TheFreqFlyer

I am no legal expert so the the following is pure fantasy which I will indulge 

If the resident is at the airport on Australian soil then they have to let them come in.

But if the carrier fail to follow the rules in checking in pax with the requirements then the government can impose penalty (administrative and financial) on the airline, so the airline (or the check in staff) becomes the de facto border control for our own residents which is no different from the current arrival cap, which is in effect partly administered by the international airlines, as it is the airline who will refuse to provide the service on the day (but can refund or postpone it to another time, presumably allowed in some legal mumbo jumbo in their T&c)

So a carrier can let in some pax/ AUS residents who did not fulfill the requirements but they will quickly find they wouldn’t be able to do it again.

QF

11 Jul 2014

Total posts 694

@TheFreqFlyer, there are Victorians stuck in NSW because they can't get the exemption papers to travel back to there home and there not even outside of Australia also I was told this morning a factory in Thailand tested it's work force for Covid and 20% (800) had the virus.

United Airlines - Mileage Plus

12 Sep 2011

Total posts 227

So a "local"  boarding an international ight to AU shouldn't need a test?  So thn possibly infectios and potentailly then infect  the entire flight???

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 1393

Freq there is a health emergency so health orders are being applied which as we have seen applies to all. I move from Canberra to Sydney in a few weeks and at the moment is a one way trip. I can’t come back until health orders allow me to.

30 Jan 2021

Total posts 1

Sure the government can't legally refuse Australians from returning, they've just imposed so many rules and barriers that make it very difficult or impossible in practice. 

I understand the need for the quarantine, but the fact that they charge arrivals for the quarantine costs and that they keep the quota so low shows that the government's more concerned with money than about the wellbeing of its oversea's citizens. Why not increase capacity for arrivals i.e. more hotels, or build new quarantine facilities? Money, not the interests of the citizens. And I'm pretty disgusted that the government prioritized international tennis players over Australians desperate to get home.

And I'm also really disappointed with the lack of empathy from many people back in Australia. 'You should have come back in March' blah blah blah. So much for mateship.

P1
P1

24 Apr 2017

Total posts 77

about time, its pretty obvious all the new clusters throughout Australia, that are sending the entire country into lockdown, are coming from overseas arrivals!

12 Feb 2013

Total posts 49

If 15 February (which is a Monday) is when the caps revert back to the upper limit, could the new lower limit will take effect from Monday 11 January and that the weekly caps operate on a Monday to Sunday cycle?

01 Sep 2015

Total posts 4

Why the f##k do we let anyone from anywhere fly into Austalia? When we are not allowed to fly out of Australia.

XWu
XWu

09 May 2020

Total posts 468

@dancer48

Strangely there was an ABCNEWS article I think which says there are actually more people travelling out of Australia than coming in since March 2020, almost double or even triple the arrivals I think

Granted a large proportion of departures will involve foreign nationals but at the end the article suggests more Aussies are leaving than returning 

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 1393

XWu the greater number will be foreign nationals on work visas etc but not permanent residents/citizens who have been finding it easier to get exemptions.

XWu
XWu

09 May 2020

Total posts 468

@patrickk

I would have naturally made that assumption too, if I am not already aware that 34,379 Out of 104,785 applications for travel exemptions were approved from March 27 to Aug 16 2020

And the forum discussion involving travel exemption application shows that many approvals only occur within a few days of departure dates meaning that most people who had approvals leave Australia pretty much within a few days of getting it, ie at least 34k Australian residents had left our shores between March and August 2020 with very few people who already received their approvals still hanging around.

XWu
XWu

09 May 2020

Total posts 468

@patrickk


I would have naturally made that assumption too, if I am not already aware that 34,379 Out of 104,785 applications for travel exemptions were approved from March 27 to Aug 16 2020 (search “‘Definite shift' in Border Force approach to travel ban as approvals surge” on Fairfax news website). Note A request can cover more than one person.


And the Et forum discussion involving travel exemption application shows that many approvals only occur within a few days of departure dates meaning that most people who had approvals leave Australia pretty much within a few days of getting it, ie at least 34k Australian residents had left our shores between March and August 2020 with very few people who already received their approvals still hanging around.

P1
P1

24 Apr 2017

Total posts 77

The article can't be correct. Australian's can't leave except with an exemption, I suspect those largely leaving aren't Australians, but expats and foreign students etc.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

09 Sep 2013

Total posts 181

Doesn’t matter who they are, or how long they’ve been overseas, as decided by the cabinet, there must be a pre-flight certificate showing a negative test, and there should be no such thing as ‘home isolation’.    In WAs case in particular, the only positive cases we have had are from returning citizens.  I would guess that if the current new strain overseas continues, or another develops, the new restrictions will stay in place.

04 Jun 2018

Total posts 25

On the matter of home quarantine, Canada allows arrivals to quarantine at home for 14 days provided they download an app and answer phone/video calls at random times through their stay. Compliance failure could attract a CA$ 750,000 fine and/or jail term, so there are certainly ways to make home quarantine work, but the government just prefers to push through with the current regime despite how little people it can accommodate. Also in our own backyard they made home quarantine work for actors and actresses in NSW and QLD, just not for the average tax payer.

XWu
XWu

09 May 2020

Total posts 468

@vitorsyd

It will be interesting to see if anyone did get that maximum imposed fine of $750k in Canada

But home quarantine arrangements cannot be guaranteed that they do not have visitors unless there are neighbours to dob them in or enough police/parasecurity personnel to physically spot check 

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 1393

Vitorsyd the Canadian covid rates are going through the roof so probably not the best model to follow. How does Canada monitor visitors to quarantine houses.

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 1393

Vitorsyd. The home quarantine for celebrities is on the basis they pay for the cop at their door all the time. Most of us wouldn’t be able to afford that and of course who watches the watcher.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

08 Jun 2016

Total posts 43

Having just escaped from Canada you may wish to check their current case numbers . I don’t think any major fines have actually been imposed and I know of at least 10 people who returned to Canada (Ontario) to supposedly self isolate and they didn’t . The checks were rudimentary at best so the cdn system is highly flawed. In fact many officials keep saying they should take lessons from Australia .

On the 24th September 2020 The Guardian reported that there were 27,000 Australians stuck overseas who wanted to come home. I have heard this figure reported a number of times. The federal government has been urging people to come home since at least March 2020.

According to the figures stated by XWu above; there are around 5,500 people returning WEEKLY.

I am not a "Nobel Prize" winning mathematician, but clearly there is something wrong with the figures somewhere, as everyone overseas should have been home in just over a month - repatriation has been going on in some form for nearly a year??

There needs to be some clear transparency reported about the number of people overseas; the number that are added to the list every week; and the actual number repatriated.

Also, I am not sure what XWu's petty comments seek to achieve; apart from attempting to gain some sort of bragging rights for NSW against Victoria?? Perhaps if Gladys had mandated masks quicker and been more effective at containing the outbreak then other states would be able to take more travellers sooner!!

And for the 50 cent army of keyboard warriors, I do know that there isn't a Nobel Prize for mathematics.

XWu
XWu

09 May 2020

Total posts 468

@landed in Hong Kong

You are right to suggest that what is the quota does not actually reflect the actual numbers of arrival; I will suggest there will be a big discrepancy from the quota if the true numbers are known and I always hope the fury over the cap will force the federal government to reveal the actual numbers sonnet or later (but its been 6 months)

As for your remark of my “petty” posts, if you have been following the pattern and the announced capped numbers by state then you will realise what I meant. I much rather have people do their home work and form their own conclusion rather be the reactive 50 cents keyboard warriors you some accuse of. 

Hence I will neither verify or refute your proposed interpretation of what I said/wrote. A person who read my posts carefully, and go back to historical figures of cap arrivals in the last 6 months, will arrive at the same conclusion as I did, and agreed what I wrote was factually correct.

Whether you would bother is up to you. Same for the rest of the keyboard warriors.

And by the way, to be clear, although I agree there are no Nobel Prize for category of mathematics per se, there are many Nobel Prize winning mathematicians for which the movie “A Beautiful Mind” is based on John Nash who won it under Economics. The Nobel Prizes were awarded not for the technicalities of mathematics involved but the application of the mathematics hence most mathematicians won it under Physics or Economics categories.

I think you have failed to understand my point. The question is not the accuracy of the number of travellers that the states are willing and able to accept. The problem is the snide, nasty little comment you make, and I quote "Certainly food for thought about who is doing the majority of the lifting, who is taking on more than their fair share (and those who aren’t)"; especially as you point out that the actual arrivals do not actually reflect the quota. Your post is inflammatory and inaccurate.

Thank you for your lecture on mathematics, but for completeness you should have mentioned the Fields Medal.

Does your post about how bad some states are earn you a 50 cent credit??

XWu
XWu

09 May 2020

Total posts 468

@landed in Hong Kong


With respect, your assumption that I misread your post is mistaken.

I am aware you are referring to my comment which you call nasty, inflammatory and inaccurate: “Certainly food for thought about who is doing the majority of the lifting, who is taking on more than their fair share (and those who aren’t)"

My previous reply still stands. I invite any open minded person to do their homework, read how I frame my original post and look at the historical published numbers of arrival quota in the last 6 months before further commenting on my comments.

And again with respect, the Fields award is not the Nobel Prize (just like Golden globe or BAFTAs is not the Academy Award), hence I did not bother to mention that or the Abel Prize for that matter, thank you very much.


XWu
XWu

09 May 2020

Total posts 468

Just an additional hint to the very few who would bother to do the homework, the following remark from my previous post in this article 

 And more importantly, one particular state seemed to get off very lightly in their obligation, consistently throughout the entire 6 months since the introduction of capped arrivals ”

Why not just come out and say that you think that Australians who happen to live in VICTORIA should have maintained their intake whilst they all worked really hard and made huge sacrifices to get their state back down to zero cases (before the infected people from NSW ruined this). No need to beat around the bush, we all know that you are having a go at Victorians whilst we battled the virus. Perhaps we should return to pre 1901 and only take residents of our own state??

Your comment is really disgusting from an "Australian" - we are all in this together!!!

Just an additional hint to the very few who would bother to do the homework, the following remark from my previous post in this article 

“ And more importantly, one particular state seemed to get off very lightly in their obligation, consistently throughout the entire 6 months since the introduction of capped arrivals ”

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 1393

XWu that state you are referring to is Victoria which had a complete breakdown of quarantine (and an enquiry to get to the bottom of it) and a massive health emergency with a full lockdown with curfews. I’m no sure what you are suggesting that should have been different beyond not trusting private security companies at the outset.

谢谢你

I maintain that you have two different topics

The factual figures - not disputed

Your narrative and commentary on the states - I am happy that in Australia we have the ability to engage in open debate without interference from the government; so I respect your right to comment on the quota. Likewise i also have the freedom to state that I believe your comments are unnecessary and do little to ensure or promote a national approach to the problem - we are after all, all Australians aren't we??

I wasn't attempting to compare Field with Nobel, I was simply stating that any analysis of past mathematicians who had won a Nobel should also mention the actual award for mathematics, especially given your in depth analysis.

XWu
XWu

09 May 2020

Total posts 468

@landed in Hong Kong 

Thank you for your reply 

My previous reply still stands. Again I invite any open minded person to do their homework, read how I frame my original post and look at the historical published numbers of arrival quota in the last 6 months before further commenting on my comments. As I did not want to promote bias to anyone who may decide to take up my challenge to investigate the issue independently before forming their own conclusion, I had to refrain from addressing your interpretation no matter how much I want to. 

I am just curious if anyone who can gather the data from various reporting outlets freely available in the public domain, would get sufficient information and form the same conclusion as I do.

I am, however, not restrained from responding to your assertion that my “comments are unnecessary and do little to ensure or promote a national approach to the problem”.

What did you think is going on when I wrote with respect to state governments’ quota when I wrote:

who is doing the majority of the lifting, 

who is taking on more than their fair share

 (and those who aren’t)"

Did you think ScoMo tells the states what numbers they would be taking or it’s more of what the states are willing to take?

If there is truly a national (we’re one big happy family and let’s get everybody home) approach then the wait list for returning Australians should be easily sorted in the 6 months. 

Instead the caps meant airlines cannot carry enough people to break even so the natural response for them is to sell only expensive tickets which is one (albeit inequitable) way of choosing who to take while complying with the quota given to the airlines.

So far the National Cabinet put on a brave face talking about consensus, but in many cases, each state takes away their own interpretation of what they supposedly agree on so there is some irony/frustration when ScoMo announced one thing then the next minute in a state premier conference it’s a different spin. Interestingly the arrival quota rarely seemed to have conflicting interpretation but I suspect it’s because it’s a quota not actual figures which is largely set by state government making available of quarantine spots and airline making the expensive seats available.

But my issue here is not the actual arrival numbers, but the quota largely determined by the state governments (in my opinion).

Consider the quota by states

Consider the population by states (whose residents overseas should be roughly of similar proportion)

Consider the proportion of international visits (which reflects the capacity to take in travellers in the capital cities)

Look up the quota numbers from July 2020. 

Look at the changes. Sure some adjustments is needed due to various state crises, some have to reduce, some have to increase (and some increased far more than they need to if you look at the % population of the states concerned)

Despite this, one state, consistently in the 6 months of capped arrival, gave a quota lower than expected by proportion or by capacity. Even when they “increase” in response to interstate crises.

I find it maddening that the public has not called out this state for this failure, and that in order to maintain the appearance of a united front (when it is obviously not), no one, not the PM or his office or other states pointed out this aberration. 

So I would suggest that this invitation is to call out this unAustralian behaviour so that this state will be obliged to take more, and get more people home.

And that is my “national solution”.

This is my last post on this particular matter (but not to this article in general)

(Steps off my soapbox)

The statement following the National Cabinet decision was not that the old caps restart automatically in February, but "Arrangements on international passenger caps will be reviewed by National Cabinet in early February"

It doesn't make sense to automatically reinstate the old cap after a month, it's a response to increases in travellers returning and becoming positive. That won't abate in a month. And it's not Scomi's decision alone, obviously.

The statement also commented that the January changes would be put into place by 15 January. zobviously the airlines would need time to adjust schedules.

cheers skip

10 Apr 2020

Total posts 9

You would have thought with the vaccine we were going to get back to normal.(according to the PR and political spin)

Why cant the following work for returning Aussies to avoid quarantine on arrival.

1. Get covid test and be negative.

2. Get vaccine 

3. You can fly to home to Australia

For tourists/visitors

1. Prove you have vaild vaccine

2. Get covid test and be negative (to be on safe side)

3. Travel to Australia

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 1393

Zigi great idea except we now know we need more than on test and also we don’t know how the vaccine affects infectiousness, as against reducing symptoms which we know they do. So until everyone is vaccinated then the current regime makes sense as, as we have seen, if one infectious person is out there tge bug can get away.

10 Apr 2020

Total posts 9

Just listening to all the political spin saying we can go back to normal once the vaccine is here, now that its here there is another spin to it.

So whats the point in the vaccine and all the time, money being spent on it??? (I just got it, its about the money and control for some)

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 1393

Zigi the vaccine isn't here yet and wont be here for most of us until much later in the year. And the point of the vaccie is to stop you getting very sick and clogging up hospital beds and the health system more broadly.

11 Jan 2021

Total posts 2

Hi Zigi.

Firstly because the vaccine isn't widely available to the "general public" at the moment, certainly not here in Europe, and other less wealthy nations, well it could take up to a year for them to be vaccinated.
And secondly, the vaccine isn't 100% effective (or so they say). 
Instead my question would be; why are Australians who are desperately trying to get home being blamed for the spread of the new strain(s)? If they test positive, well aren't they supposed to be quarantined/hospitalised for more time? From all accounts, this is where the system is failing. Europe have been asking for a negative PCR test before flying for months, I've no idea why Mr Morrison has only just now decided to implement that no brainer!
The quarantine system needs to be managed a lot better, with better testing procedures, better discharge procedures, and all hospitality employees should be trained in PPE, tested regularly, and to be positioned in one qt premises only. 

I find it's easy for Aussie, who are currently in Australia, to say "get a flight" or "buy a business class ticket", but the reality is a much different story. I have Aussie friends in London, who had flights cancelled 4 times, and the airline are refusing to refund their money. (A$10k+). 

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

21 Jul 2018

Total posts 16

Girls, girls, girls!!!!   Please settle your petty little diatribes and get back on subject.    

I find it astounding that the Federal government has been unable or unwilling to utilize an available resource in the form of military barracks accommodation at NO COST to any repatriated Australian.    Bulk catering would provide the necessary nourishment, if necessary (probably) barbed wire enclosure could contain breakouts while giving the inmates opportunity for fresh air and exercise while accommodating HUNDREDS of incoming arrivals on a fortnightly rota.   Perfect example being Tindal Air Base which is remote and under utilised but capable of accepting the largest of aircraft which, when carrying pre-tested negative cases only, could fly at capacity loads with minimal risk.    

All capital cities have nearby similar facilities which currently stand empty because of our depleted Defence Force numbers, thus THOUSANDS of Australian citizens could be repatriated in very short time frame while non-Australians can pay the exorbitant costs imposed by the current policy.

don't think many people are actually paying for quarantine.

11 Jan 2021

Total posts 2

Here is an article about the lower passenger caps, which will be finished by Monday Feb 15th (apparently)


https://www.executivetraveller.com/news/australia-to-temporarily-cut-international-arrivals

And as an Aussie currently overseas, I have to say that those people saying there are "plenty of flights" have absolutely no idea about a) the cost of a flight; b) the absolute certainty that any flight, once booked, has a 75% chance of being cancelled or rescheduled for MONTHS later; and c) transit hubs tend to change their rules about accepting transiting passengers on a daily, if not hourly basis.

Also consider that for some Aussies, depending where they are in the world, airports simply aren't operating as normal. AND, that when Mr PM announced "come home" was some time after the northern hemisphere declared a lockdown, hence flights were already compromised. Please please please stop blaming Aussies for not coming home "when told to" or  "as soon as possible" because you don't know people's personal or financial situations. 
And for those saying close the borders to everyone, it's obvious you don't have family or loved ones overseas. 

j13
j13

13 Jan 2021

Total posts 7

Hypocritical to allow tennis players into Victoria and yet deny Aussies from returning home

05 Feb 2020

Total posts 28

Why not just get serious and start vaccinating people for the virus. The sooner Australia gets on board the sooner these draconian rules can be left behind.


Hi Guest, join in the discussion on From today, Australia has slashed its limit on international arrivals