14 December 2021

Fully vaccinated arrivals from the eight southern African countries of concern will no longer have to enter 14 days hotel quarantine from 6am tomorrow, bringing all international arrivals under the same requirements.

Fully vaccinated people from the countries of concern who are already in hotel quarantine on Wednesday, 15 December will have to remain there until at least 72 hours after their arrival in NSW.

Any passengers arriving from overseas aged 18 years and over who are not fully vaccinated must go directly into 14-day mandatory hotel quarantine.

Chief Health Officer Dr Kerry Chant said all fully vaccinated international arrivals must also still self-isolate for 72-hours. They must not leave self-isolation (except for seeking a COVID-19 PCR test) until 72 hours have passed and they have a negative result from a test taken within the first 24 hours of arrival. They must avoid high-risk settings for seven days and have a PCR test both within 24 hours of arrival and on day six.

“NSW Health also strongly encourages all international arrivals to have another test 12 days after arrival,” Dr Chant said.

“With the festive season upon us and people starting to gather in larger numbers, I urge everyone to maintain their vigilance and to continue to come forward for testing with even the slightest symptoms and to follow the public health advice.”

Previously, all travellers arriving in NSW who had been in South Africa, Lesotho, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Namibia, Eswatini, Malawi, during the 14-day period before their arrival in NSW were required to enter hotel quarantine for 14 days, irrespective of their vaccination status.

The Omicron variant continues to spread internationally and has been identified in arrivals to NSW from southern Africa, as well as travellers from other countries. NSW also has local transmission of Omicron.

Penalties for non-compliance with the isolation, testing and quarantine requirements have increased to $5,000 for individuals (from $1,000), and $10,000 for corporations (from $5,000).