Western Australia’s Premier Mark McGowan has announced that the state’s borders will re-open on Saturday, 5 February.
The announcement has been welcomed right around Australia as well as at home in WA where the AHA WA says that the announcement delivers certainty for WA’s accommodation hotels and hospitality businesses, particularly given that trading is to return with few restrictions.
AHA(WA) CEO Bradley Woods welcomed the removal of WA’s controlled border and the announcement that very few restrictions will return even as the state prepares for the inevitable arrival of COVID-19 into the community.
“When WA’s border reopens on 5 February we will do so with high levels of vaccination, removing the need for strict measures that disproportionately impact the hospitality industry, such as capacity restrictions and widespread mask wearing requirements.”
“Hospitality businesses and the business events sector across the state can now put in place plans for the return of visitors and tourists. Guest and traveller bookings can be made with confidence and the year ahead can be approached with a far greater degree of certainty, which is important for the recovery period ahead,” he said.
International arrivals will be required to have a negative PCR test result within 72 hours of departure, and be tested 48 hours after arrival in WA and on day six.
There will be no quarantine for double vaccinated international arrivals but unvaccinated arrivals numbers will be capped significantly lower than current caps for international arrivals.
Domestic arrivals must be double vaccinated or ineligible or medically exempt, with proof of vaccination requirements for anyone 12 and over.
“There are sensible obligations on interstate and international travellers regarding their vaccination status, which will allow business and leisure visitation to restart and provide much needed support to accommodation hotels who have been severely disrupted by the pandemic,” said Mr Woods.
“The reopening of the border will help alleviate the dire labour shortages throughout the hospitality industry, while the meetings, conference and events market will welcome the fact that they can plan for the future with a high degree of confidence.”