While no one would be silly enough to say it’s anywhere near over yet, there are clear signs that Australia’s ongoing battle with the Covid virus is moving to a new phase.
With rising vaccination rates, even states that have largely avoided serious outbreaks are contemplating opening up borders and ‘living with Covid’.
Queensland, for example, has said that it will allow vaccinated interstate visitors without a quarantine requirement from December 17. That is the date when the Sunshine State expects to have vaccinated 80% of its over-16 population.
Similarly, Tasmania has just announced it will allow vaccinated interstate and international arrivals without a need for quarantine from December 15, as long as they have returned a negative Covid-19 test.
While the likes of Western Australia have yet to announce their own roadmap to Covid-normality yet and have indicated that vaccination is likely to be a requirement for interstate visitors, it is clear that Australia is at a turning point,
For most grey nomads, many of whom have had a torrid time over the past couple of years – particularly in the very early days of the pandemic – this change in approach will come as something of a relief, and will at least provide a degree of certainty.
One of the biggest fears of travellers in the past year or so has been suddenly finding themselves trapped in a lockdown or a suddenly closed border.
However, the new reality will mean things are different. The knowledge that the virus is definitely circulating in the places that travellers will visit means things will not be quite the same.
The rules around mask wearing, shared facilities, and vaccination requirements are yet to be fully set out … and are liable to change frequently.
Already some caravan parks have announced that they will not be opening their doors to unvaccinated travellers.
* Do you think the grey nomad lifestyle will be completely different once all borders are open and the virus is circulating everywhere? Will you, for example, be more wary about meeting new people and sharing a Happy Hour drink? Comment below.