Reopening of international travel to students

Australia’s borders will reopen to fully vaccinated international students and Temporary Graduate (subclass 485) visa holders from 15 December 2021.

On 22 November 2021, the Prime Minister announced the easing of border restrictions to enable the return of international students to Australia. Due to the emergence of the Omicron variant of concern, on 29 November 2021 the Australian Government announced the necessary and temporary decision to pause the reopening of Australia from 1 December 2021 until 15 December 2021.

This will allow education providers to plan for the return of international students, and for students to arrive in Australia and complete pathway courses prior to the commencement of the 2022 academic year.

International students who are taking part in a State or Territory International Student Arrivals Plan, and have been granted an exemption, will still be able to travel to Australia.

International students will be subject to Australian Government border restrictions and any State and Territory quarantine requirements in response to the new Omicron variant. Quarantine arrangements for States and Territories are frequently changing. International Students are advised to visit www.Australia.gov.au/states to ensure they have the most recent information.

International students are an important part of the Australian community, and we look forward to welcoming them back to our classrooms, campuses and communities.

The Department of Education, Skills and Employment has developed a factsheet on the reopening of international travel to students.

From 15 December 2021 fully vaccinated international students with a valid visa no longer need an exemption to travel to Australia.

More information on Australia’s vaccination requirements for eligible visa holders and travel exemptions can be found on the Department of Home Affairs website.

Information on foreign vaccination certificates is available on the Australian Passport Office website. 

Following the Government’s announcement on changes to border restrictions for fully vaccinated international students, the future role of the Protocols and Preconditions for International Student Arrivals is under consideration.