As Australia reopens its borders after the COVID-19 pandemic, around 80,000 international students have returned to the country since the middle of February. In fact, the previous week alone witnessed 13,500 coming back.
This took place after the Western Australian government ruled out a new pathway that would not only ease border restrictions but ensure the health of safety of both the students and local residents.
This involves various accommodations such as state-run hotels, on-campus accommodations, approved hotel partners, and other premises approved by the government.
Of course, these students need to comply with requirements such as being double or triple vaccinated, testing negative for Rapid Antigen Test within 24 hours from their departure from their country of origin, and having undergone quarantine.
The easing of border restrictions was postponed on Feb. 5 due to the Omicron variant. Since then, however, the situation has eased gradually and border restrictions have been relaxed.
Of course, students, education institutions, and health authorities are still cautious, saying that the country is not out of the woods yet. Apart from the quarantine period being imposed on arriving international students, everyone is required to comply with health and safety protocols. Yet officials say international students pose a low risk.
While the number of international students is a milestone in itself, some 6,000 or so more are expected to return within the coming weeks. Australia’s borders are expected to be fully reopened by Mar. 3, 2022.
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