Australia opens borders to vaccinated tourists after two years

Sydney, Australia, Feb 20 (EFE).- Some 56 international flights will land in the next 24 hours in Australia, which tomorrow will open its borders to foreigners and tourists vaccinated against Covid-19 for the first time since the start of the pandemic in 2020, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said Sunday.

“There are more than 1.2 million people around the world who have visas and can come (…) Tourists are coming back and my message is: pack your bags, come and have some of the best experiences you can imagine,” Morrison said at a press conference.

He added that the number of flights will increase over time, mainly in Sydney and Melbourne, the largest in the country.

Travelers must have a vaccination certificate against Covid-19 showing that they completed their scheme at least 14 days before the departure of their flight.

In addition, they must complete a sworn statement and present a negative PCR test result carried out a maximum of 72 hours before the departure of the flight.

Australia applied some of the toughest border closures and confinements in the world to control Covid-19 at the start of the pandemic, but in recent months it has been relaxing measures in the face of increased vaccinations.

The relaxation of the restrictions was seen Sunday in the celebration of Mardi Gras, the parade in Sydney in favor of the LGTBI collective, where many didn’t wear a mask.

With 95 percent of the population over 16 fully vaccinated against Covid-19 and the strong campaign to inoculate a third jab, Australia reported more than 23,000 infections Friday, including 45 deaths.

The country was hit hard by the omicron variant when it began reopening its borders in November, going from fewer than 2,000 a day in December to an average of more than 100,000 in mid-January.

Since the start of the pandemic, it has registered more than 3 million infections and more than 4,800 deaths. EFE


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