Feb 7, 2022 - World

Australia to reopen to double-vaccinated travelers

Australian Prime Minster Scott Morrison at a press conference held at Admiralty House in Sydney, Australia on February 28.
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison. Photo by James D. Morgan/Getty Images

Australia will reopen its borders from Feb. 21 to foreign travelers who have received two COVID-19 vaccine doses, Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced Monday.

Why it matters: Australia's borders have been shut to most non-residents since March 2020. Its tough pandemic policies made headlines last month when world men's tennis no. 1 Novak Djokovic was deported from the country for being unvaccinated.

  • Morrison's announcement marks the "final step in a gradual unwinding of restrictions on tourists and foreign workers," which began in November, Bloomberg notes. It comes as coronavirus cases and hospitalizations decline across much of Australia.

What they're saying: "The condition is you must be double-vaccinated to come to Australia," Morrison said during a news conference on Monday.

  • "That's the rule. Everyone is expected to abide by it."
  • Home Affairs Minister Karen Andrews added that travelers who had not been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 would be required to show proof of a medical exemption to enter the country.
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