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Flying Davao -> Manila -> Australia...


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Peabody Strange

Flying davao -> manila -> Australia... chance of success... maybe 30% (my estimate)

I'm trying to get back to Australia after being here just over a year now.  I have an air-nuigini flight booked leaving manila on Sunday 24th January.  Originally planned to fly to manila a week before and get a covid test done there prior to departing philippines but that has proved to be close to impossible so new plan.. Fly from Davao to Manila on Sunday morning and as I'm not staying in manila, I don't need so much permissions and paperwork however I still need the following:

1. Baranguay clearance, so I can get...

2. Health clearance which enables me to get a...

3. PNP clearance.

4. Covid test must be done within 72 hours of departure (Sunday night)

Getting all this done within the time limits is challenging especially with the flight leaving on a Sunday.  So the plan is:

Thursday do the health check, the result is available the next day.  Where I am, the only way to get the pnp thing is to upload the documents to a facebook messenger account (wtf??) and supposedly the pnp certificate will be sent to me within a few minutes.  So in theory, I get the health clearance result on friday and then immediately upload it and hope they send me the pnp thing before 4pm when they close.

The covid test I have to do Friday morning to fit within the 72 hours prior to departure and supposedly I can get the result on Saturday.

So in theory if all the times I've been told are accurate and there's no delays, I will have everything I need for Sunday.  Then I just need to worry about flights being cancelled.  There's so many places for this to fail I think at best my odds of making to Australia are 30/70.  The paperwork is an annoying nuisance but the time limits are what makes it damn near impossible.

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Let's see....A $100 a night to the hotel and $100 to the politicians for assigning the dive as a quarantine hotel. Bet the politicians never ate a meal there nor spent a night. Always good money to be

Includes basic 3 meals a day, no choice of menu, e.g. Breakfast is cereal and milk.  Lunch is a sandwhich.  Dinner I suppose varies, but last night it was 2 tired looking sausages with some watery mas

ADDENDUM: Finally arrived in Cairns but was picked by customs for a thorough reaming. i.e. Every bag opened, laptops and phones content examined, the full 9 yards.  Everything passed except my ni

Ozepete

Please let us know how this goes for you.... good luck. 

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I X my fingers for you. Please keep us informed. And good luck.

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BossHog

Sounds like a hassle even when/if you can make it back to Australia. I've had friends who did it and they said the mandatory quarantine for incoming passengers was limited, somewhat expensive, and very strict. Like five thousand bucks to stay in a hotel room by yourself for two weeks.

Do you even get to choose your accomodation beforehand or do they just take you to some random accredited quarantine hotel to sit your 14 days out?

Sounds pretty imposing and, well, boring but I suppose if you got a compelling reason to return you gotta just accept the hassle.

Good luck to ya.

 

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cookie47
1 hour ago, Peabody Strange said:

I'm trying to get back to Australia

Trip report please.(I'm in Cebu) Good luck.

I assume you managed to get arrivel approval from the department of Foreign affairs (or whatever the correct website is ?).…..

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Peabody Strange
2 hours ago, BossHog said:

Sounds like a hassle even when/if you can make it back to Australia. I've had friends who did it and they said the mandatory quarantine for incoming passengers was limited, somewhat expensive, and very strict. Like five thousand bucks to stay in a hotel room by yourself for two weeks.

Do you even get to choose your accomodation beforehand or do they just take you to some random accredited quarantine hotel to sit your 14 days out?

Sounds pretty imposing and, well, boring but I suppose if you got a compelling reason to return you gotta just accept the hassle.

Good luck to ya.

 

It's 2 weeks quarantine for $3k.  Not optional, no choice of hotel.  

1 hour ago, cookie47 said:

Trip report please.(I'm in Cebu) Good luck.

I assume you managed to get arrivel approval from the department of Foreign affairs (or whatever the correct website is ?).…..

Unless I've missed something, as a citizen of Australia I don't need permission to return.  I just need to have all the right bits of paper.  So no I haven't applied for any approvals from the oz government.  Of course there are numerous forms I expect to fill in.  Reminds of a few years ago, there was a requirement for all incoming passengers to fill in a brief form basically asking if they had any symptoms of some virus or other.  Interestingly, when you handed in the form it went straight in the rubbish bin.  Apparently because those who love making rules neglected to detail what the forms would be used for so those at the sharp end opted to bin them in the absence of any other guidance.

Like I said, I think the odds are against me; too many weak links so I won't be disappointed if I fail to make it back this time.  But we'll see.

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to_dave007
1 hour ago, Peabody Strange said:

Like I said, I think the odds are against me; too many weak links so I won't be disappointed if I fail to make it back this time. 

I know it's not Australia.. but if it makes you feel any better my Swiss friend was able to fly Cebu>Manila>Dubai>Zurich on January 8 without any issue. He would have required all the same Philippines paperwork as you need to depart for Australia, plus the covid test, etc.  No question, the week he left was busy, as he gathered all the papers he needed.  He lives about 3 hours out of Cebu City, and had to bus in and out of the city several times to get it done.  But ultimately, the flight (Emirates) happened on schedule, and he was on it.  

One LESSON I take from his experience.. and yours..  is don't book an exit flight for Sunday if it can be avoided.  Friday (maybe Saturday) is likely the best exit day.. simply from the point of view of getting everything done prior to the flights.

Good luck..

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cookie47
8 hours ago, Peabody Strange said:

So no I haven't applied for any approvals from the oz government.  Of course there are numerous forms I expect to fill in

 

See this website.(and others). Requirements have changed back and forth so much in recent days / weeks due to Covide numbers up and down..It would seem you still have to "register" to return otherwise boarding an aircraft might be an  issues.

 

https://www.smartraveller.gov.au/COVID-19/trying-get-home

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Peabody Strange
3 hours ago, cookie47 said:

 

See this website.(and others). Requirements have changed back and forth so much in recent days / weeks due to Covide numbers up and down..It would seem you still have to "register" to return otherwise boarding an aircraft might be an  issues.

 

https://www.smartraveller.gov.au/COVID-19/trying-get-home

According to that link, registration is optional.

In the registration FAQs:

"I’m planning on returning to Australia but I don’t need assistance. Do I need to register with DFAT?

No. You don’t need to let us know you’re coming back to Australia. Australian citizens and Australian permanent residents don’t need to apply for an exemption to enter Australia."

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contraman
46 minutes ago, Peabody Strange said:

According to that link, registration is optional.

In the registration FAQs:

"I’m planning on returning to Australia but I don’t need assistance. Do I need to register with DFAT?

No. You don’t need to let us know you’re coming back to Australia. Australian citizens and Australian permanent residents don’t need to apply for an exemption to enter Australia."

Australia (Well Sydney, Perth and Brisbane) have this week halved the number of returning citizens and yes yo have to get a permit to return>
If disembarking in those nominated cities and want to go to Melbourne, You need  an additional "Traffic Light" pass.

The situtation is changing daily, There are about 5000 that have been waiting for approval to return, some for over 6 months, so I guess you would have to get in the queue :)

it appears, the best way to jump the queue is to travel Business Class, This appears to be working beter than cattle class passengers.
 

I dont like your chances, but best of luck and keep us informed as there are many that would like you know how you go

 

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cookie47

My take on this IS... 

 You fill in a Travel declaration form prior to travel that States your intentions BUT this can still be rejected (which many  Australian citizen's have). This is based on the current level of Quarantine position's (Eg  hotel rooms) and other facilities being available. And that changes or differs depending on what state you nominate to arrive. The restrictions were ONLY put  in place to control and stop quarantine and the health system getting overwhelmed should the Covide situation get desperate in Australia (which relatively speaking it hasn't)...

I read recently talk of army barrack's being mooted for use to increase capacity which may have changed the landscape completely..

Good luck and look forward for more information...

 

 

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Peabody Strange

Nothing I have seen suggests I need to get permission to return to Australia.  The quote from the DFAT FAQs indicates no such permission is needed.  However, my flight may very well be cancelled due to the limits put in place by the Aussie government.  That's up to the airline.  I would be very interested if anyone can quote from an official source that states I need to apply to the Aussie government before I can board a flight.

The "Travel declaration" is one of the forms required to be done prior to flying.  BUT my understanding is it is not asking for permission and submitting the form cannot result in rejection.  It is necessary to do, but it is for data collection purposes.

See: https://covid19.homeaffairs.gov.au/australia-travel-declaration

 

Incidentally, I can't see how there can be any "queue" as it is not possible to fill in a travel declaration more than 7 days from the date of departure.  The severe limits being but on weekly numbers of returning expats causes airlines to pick and choose and cancel the less lucrative passengers.  That's the danger.  No applying for permission at all as far as I can see.  

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mikewright

 

59 minutes ago, cookie47 said:

My take on this IS... 

 You fill in a Travel declaration form prior to travel that States your intentions BUT this can still be rejected (which many  Australian citizen's have). This is based on the current level of Quarantine position's (Eg  hotel rooms) and other facilities being available.

Cookie, I think this is the Australian Travel Declaration you mentioned. Seems you must open an account and submit the form at least 72 hours prior to flying out, and you then receive an email which you may have to show before being allowed to board the flight. And if you get bumped from your flight, for any reason, you have to lodge another declaration with new flight details.

https://covid19.homeaffairs.gov.au/australia-travel-declaration

Quote

Australia Travel Declaration

Before you travel to Australia, you should complete the Australia Travel Declaration at least 72 hours before your departure for Australia.

The Australia Travel Declaration collects your contact details in Australia, flight details, quarantine requirements and your health status.

This information helps the Australian Government determine your quarantine arrangements (if required) and also allows the relevant health departments to contact you if someone you travelled with tests positive for COVID-19.

The Australia Travel Declaration is for all travellers entering Australia, including:

  • Australian citizens and permanent residents
  • people who are automatically exempt from the travel restrictions
  • people who have been granted an individual exemption to the current travel restrictions.

Before you commence the declaration you will need to have the following information ready:

  • passport details
  • trip information
  • destination details
  • contact details.

You will need to create an account, which will allow you to manage your current and future declarations in one place. However, you cannot update your Australia Travel Declaration answers once it has been submitted.

Each declaration is for single use and only valid for one flight or journey for the traveller named on the declaration.

Each adult should complete their own declaration. However, parents should complete a declaration for any child under 15 years of age.

If you are transiting through Australia, you need to complete the Australia Travel Declaration.

You do not have to pay for an Australia Travel Declaration — it is free.

Once you’ve completed the Australia Travel Declaration, you will receive an email with details you can show (either electronically or printed) before you board your flight and on arrival in Australia.

If you do not complete the declaration you may not be able to board your flight, or you may experience delays when you arrive in Australia.

The Department has authorised a third party to collect the Australia Travel Declaration information on its behalf. You will be redirected from this page to an external Australia Travel Declaration page. Once you’ve submitted your declaration, you will receive your confirmation email from 'AU- Health Aero [email protected]'

 

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Peabody Strange

I'm actually flying to Cairns because supposedly seats on airnuigini flights to Cairns are going begging so less likely to get cancelled.  Probably because nobody lives in Cairns.  Or nobody that matters anyway.

After the 2 weeks quarantine, getting home (a LONG way from Cairns, in a different state), is another problem.  But one step at a time...

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cookie47

 

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2021-01-11/australia-international-arrival-caps-covid-19-flight-booked/13046728

 

Something from the ABC Yesterday.

Yes I know it's not a Government website. Maybe the info hadn't been updated on Smart Traveller.

The last paragraph I put in Bold..and yes it's the Airline that's seems to be the controlling party via DEFAT thus without that approval from DFAT ,in your hand at the Airline counter ??.

 

Cap on international arrivals to Australia has been slashed. So what does it mean for those still overseas?

By Bridget Judd

Posted Yesterday at 7:56am

Until next month, the number of international arrivals into New South Wales, Queensland and Western Australia will be halved

Under recent changes to the rules around international arrivals, the number of flights returning to Australia has been reduced.

Until next month, the number of international arrivals into New South Wales, Queensland and Western Australia will be halved "to manage the flow of returning Australians and other travellers who have been potentially exposed to the new variants" of coronavirus.

So what does this mean for those trying to return home? And what should you do if you have a flight booked?

What's changing?

Until February 15, NSW will be allowed to take a maximum of 1,505 people a week into hotel quarantine.

Queensland will be allowed a maximum of 500 people weekly, while Western Australia will cap numbers at 512.

Scott Morrison announces a cap on international arrivals.

In contrast, the Northern Territory has announced it will increase its intake to 850 international arrivals a fortnight (up from 600), after the Federal Government agreed to pay to increase capacity at the Howard Springs quarantine centre near Darwin.

The Commonwealth will make individual agreements with the ACT and Tasmania, while there will be no change in Victoria or South Australia.

Returning Australians and other travellers to Australia must also return a negative COVID-19 test prior to departure.

"Exemptions will only be applied in extenuating circumstances, such as seasonal workers where there is limited access to testing," the Federal Government said.

What if I'm supposed to come home this week?

The Federal Government says international passenger caps will be halved from no later than January 15.

But on January 8, when the announcement was made, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said it was expected to take about a week for arrival numbers to be reduced.

"Regarding the reduction in the caps over … a four-, five-week period, it will take about a week because of the flights that are already in the pipeline, to ramp that down," Mr Morrison said.

Read more about coronavirus:

Which vaccine are you likely to get and what's the difference?

Here are Australia's current border closure rules

When you still need to wear a mask in Greater Brisbane

Can I still book a flight home?

Yes, but Smart Traveller has warned that it is up to airlines — not the Federal Government — to decide who it sells tickets to, and that this could affect your flight into Australia.

"We understand you may have to wait longer than you planned to access these flights, and that they may be expensive," it said.

Smart Traveller has warned that it is up to airlines — not the Federal Government — to decide who it sells tickets to.(AAP: Bianca De Marchi)

"Continue to check with your airline or travel provider to discuss your flight options."

For those still stranded overseas, relevant Australian embassies have provided information on what carriers are operating, and whether government-facilitated flights are available from those locations.

(See: United Kingdom, United States and Hong Kong).

Could my flight get cancelled?

Yes.

While noting the cap on international arrivals is temporary, Smart Traveller has warned that it "could affect your flight into Australia".

Smart Traveller has advised returning travellers to confirm their itinerary and travel plans with their airline or travel agent.(ABC News: Natasha Johnson)

"If you're scheduled to fly home to Australia in the coming weeks, confirm your itinerary and travel plans with your airline or travel agent," it said.

For those trying to return home, it has advised:

For questions about visas and other entry and exit requirements, contact the relevant foreign embassy or consulate.

For up-to-date advice on local conditions and information on available flights to Australia, check the website of your nearest Australian embassy or high commission and follow them closely on social media.

Subscribe to Smart Traveller's travel advisories and news.

Make sure you've considered all your available options, and be prepared to put in place alternative arrangements in case your flights are cancelled at short notice, or while en route.

If you're receiving an Australian Government payment, you may be eligible to request an extension so that you continue to receive your payment. Contact Services Australia to discuss your situation.

When will the cap be eased?

The cap will remain in place until February 15.

"Arrangements on international passenger caps will be reviewed by National Cabinet in early February," the Federal Government said.

If you're overseas and have been trying to return to Australia, you can register your details with Smart Traveller via its registration portal.

However, Smart Traveller has cautioned that "registering your details with DFAT does not guarantee" that it can facilitate your return to Australia.

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