With the ACT now out of lockdown, the rules for travel between the Territory and New South Wales have changed.

On Thursday night, NSW Health announced the declassification of the ACT as a COVID-19 area of concern, which would allow the free travel of Canberrans across regional parts of the state.

However, different rules apply to returning ACT residents and NSW residents living in an approved postcodes who wish to be able to re-enter the Territory.

EXPLAINER:

People entering NSW from the ACT will no longer need to complete a declaration form on entry into the state or follow stay-at-home rules on arrival.

However, under ACT health directions, NSW remains a declared COVID affected area.

A ‘border bubble’ has been established around the ACT, allowing travel to and from a list of approved postcodes without the need to quarantine or seek an exemption.

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ACT residents travelling into NSW, who travel beyond our approved border postcodes, will be required to seek an exemption prior to their return to the ACT and quarantine for 14 days.

NSW residents who’ve traveled within their own state but beyond the ACT’s border bubble within the past 2 weeks, will not be able to enter the ACT without an exemption and the need to quarantine.

Canberrans travelling to NSW who wish to return without quarantine must limit their travel to within the border bubble and only travel for the following reasons:

  • undertake work in the surrounding NSW region (as permitted under NSW public health orders),
  • access childcare or school, including boarding schools, early childhood education and care and out of school hours care (as permitted under NSW public health orders),
  • access health care services,
  • child access arrangements,
  • provide or receive care and support to or from another person,
  • visit another household (as permitted under NSW public health orders),
  • fulfil any legal obligations,
  • attend a wedding or a funeral (as permitted under NSW public health orders),
  • essential animal welfare (e.g. to feed pets or livestock that live elsewhere),
  • inspect a potential new residence,
  • move between a residence and a new principle place of residence,
  • assist with or participate in an investigation or other action by a law enforcement agency.

NSW residents who live within an approved postcode can freely enter the Territory for the following reasons:

  • undertake work or study,
  • access childcare or school, including boarding schools, early childhood education and care and out of school hours care,
  • essential shopping or to access other personal care services,
  • access health care services,
  • child access arrangements,
  • provide or receive care and support to or from another person,
  • visit another household in line with the ACT household gathering limits,
  • essential animal welfare purposes
  • access care services not available in the region from which the person is travelling (e.g. housing support or domestic violence services),
  • fulfil any legal obligations,
  • attend a funeral or a wedding ceremony,
  • inspect a potential new residence
  • move between a residence and a new principle place of residence
  • to assist with or participate in an investigation or other action by a law enforcement agency.
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The ACT will consider a further easing of these rules in the coming weeks, with another expansion of the border bubble likely from October 29.

Further information about the cross border arrangements can be found online here.

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