Australia – update on restriction of movement due to Coronavirus (COVID -19)

16 March 2020 – This notice has been copied from the MIA (Migration Institute of Australia) as it provides the most up to date information.

Please feel free to disseminate this notice to all potential travellers to Australia whether they be clients, friends, family or work colleagues.

Travel Bans

  • The current travel bans for those arriving from Mainland China, Iran, South Korea and Italy remain in place.
  • As of midnight, 15 March 2020 all those arriving in Australia are required to self isolate for 14 days. Some states have already introduced heavy penalties for those who do not comply.  See note below.
  • International cruise ships are now also banned from arriving at Australian ports for the next 30 days.
  • Special arrangements are in place for airline and maritime crew staff where specific containment arrangements are in place.

Note – Corporates will have to take into consideration the proposed delay of 14 days from date of arrival for anyone from overseas so you will need to take this delay into account before the person is able to commence work.

Australian citizens and permanent residents

Australian citizens and permanent residents are not prevented from entering Australia at this stage.

Those arriving in Australia will also be required to self-isolate for 14 days.

Immediate family - spouses, minor dependants or legal guardians only - holding permanent visas may travel to Australia, however will be required to follow self-isolation guidelines.

Partners and immediate families of Australian citizens and permanent residents holding temporary visas

Partners and immediate families of Australian citizens and permanent residents - spouses, minor dependants or legal guardians only - holding temporary visas are being dealt with on a case by case basis by the Department.


Visa holders onshore

The Department has announced that onshore visa holders wishing to extend their stay in Australia should apply for an 'appropriate' visa. In many cases this may be a visitor visa.

No Further Stay waiver conditions 8503, 8534 and 8535

The Department has also announced that extra resources have been diverted to the No Further Stay waiver section to deal with the increased volume of requests for waivers to allow onshore visa holders to extend their stay.

MIA members are reporting the waivers are generally being processed within days.


Visa holders offshore

Visa holders offshore required to enter Australia by a specified date

Visa holders required to enter Australia by a specified date and prevented from doing so by the travel restrictions should contact the section of the Department that issued the visa and request an extension to the entry date.

  • Details for Departmental contact mailboxes are listed on the MIA's website under Member resources 'Contacting the Department'. Members will need to log in using their password to access this section of the MIA site.

Bridging Visa B holders offshore

  • Bridging Visa B holders offshore unable to return before expiry date may consider applying for a visitor visa to return to Australia. Bridging Visas A should then be applied for again when onshore.

SHEV, TPV and PPV holders offshore

  • SHEV, TPV and PPVV holders with travel conditions attached and who are affected by travel restrictions should contact the Department as soon as possible by emailing

The Department will consider individual circumstances and assist where possible with extensions to return dates or delay in travel dates as appropriate.

Applicants required to be onshore for lodgement of visa

Applicants required to be onshore for the lodgement of visa will need to assess whether travel to Australia and 14 days self isolation onshore is viable to their specific situation.

Those wishing to travel from countries where Australia already has travel bans in place, will be required to spend at least 14 days in a third country where travel bans to Australia are not in place before proceeding to Australia.

Department of Home Affairs COVID-19 Updates

The Department's website has specific information posted to its COVID-19 Update pageThis information is current up to 13 March 2020 and an imminent update is expected given this afternoon's announcements by the Government.

Source: MIA 15 March 2020.

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