In a sign that we might be one step closer to international travel, NSW premier Gladys Berejiklian has announced this morning that once the state hits our 80 per cent double-dose target, travellers returning from overseas will likely be able to quarantine at home. Today, NSW achieved 50 per cent double-vaxxed status.
A trial of the home-quarantine system will begin at the end of this month, and Berejiklian says it's a step towards allowing citizens to leave the country for holidays for the first time in more than 18 months.
"[It's for] Aussies returning home through Sydney airport but also our citizens having the opportunity to go overseas when previously they weren’t able to," she said in this morning's press conference.
The home-quarantine system will be in place for those travellers who have been fully vaccinated – and unlike hotel quarantine, people will only need to quarantine for seven days. The trial will begin with 175 people, including Qantas aircrew. People in quarantine will be monitored via location-based apps on smartphones, and facial recognition technology.
"Today is an important step in the reopening of New South Wales to the rest of the world," said NSW tourism minister Stuart Ayres. "Our road map is really driven by the fantastic vaccination take up rate by New South Wales citizens and because of that, today we are able to announce the next step on the reopening strategy."