Experience with Australian border controls leaving the country

PineappleSkip

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Got my result back, similar experience to BrettMCG. Put the application in afternoon of Saturday just gone for travel in Jan, thought I might hear back this week sometime. Approval came back 7.05 am Sunday, travel out via any port. I noted that the advice in the application process/form was to NOT book until I had an approval.

Category was FIFO/existing work contract, which they appear to be interpreting sensibly. I am travelling on the second amendment to a March 2020 (post ban) call down contract made under a 2018 framework agreement. Wasn't sure how they would go with that, presumably FIFO covers it.

cheers skip
 
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debgow

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I commute between Aus and PNG. This will be my second time travelling out of Aus since Covid. Took 45 mins to get permission. Said husband was working on an important project, I usually reside there. Departing mid Dec. Said wouldn’t be back till March. Only sent copy of my residence visa.
 

dajop

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as we approached the area where the check in counters were, we were stopped by two Border Force staff, who were inspecting passports, and requesting exemption letters. As we are non-resident of Australia citizens (and no exemption letter), they then phoned or radioed someone to verify we were OK to leave (presumably by looking at our immigration records). At the check in counter they also check with Border Force before issuing BPs (and verified our ability to enter Singapore).

Whilst it seems the process has been streamlined for exemptions it has become more difficult for those who don't require such an exemption.

I left again recently, and whilst in August it was relatively straightforward, this time it was anything but.

This time:
- No Border Force people checking exemption letters or passports, entirely up to check in staff
- At check-in, as I don't require an exemption letter, the check in staff had to call border force to check that I was OK to leave. I was not as apparently I had already used my exemption (WT#?). Agent was advised to find border force staff on the ground,
- Agent wandered off to try and locate border force staff. After 5 mins, she had located them and returned and was told to wait for a call back from someone as the person doing that was out to lunch
- Call back came after a few minutes, and she was told I was OK to leave, but she would have to call some other number to get the override code
- Called another person who gave the override code and I was good to go!

Caused a little stress, but got there. But definitely a deterioriation of what was a simple process in August.
 

MEL_Traveller

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- At check-in, as I don't require an exemption letter, the check in staff had to call border force to check that I was OK to leave. I was not as apparently I had already used my exemption (WT#?).

That's an interesting issue! I wonder if the intention for non-residents was a single 'one off' to allow them to leave? The alternative is that it allows, in theory, those who are non-resident to come and go without legal restriction. (Quarantine, often at both ends, is an issue.)
 

dajop

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That's an interesting issue! I wonder if the intention for non-residents was a single 'one off' to allow them to leave? The alternative is that it allows, in theory, those who are non-resident to come and go without legal restriction. (Quarantine, often at both ends, is an issue.)

I think it was just confusion, as I was never granted an exemption to leave in August (as I didn't need one) and this time it wasn't a problem once the agents spoke to the right person in Border Force.

But essentially, yes both in theory and in practice non-residents citizens can come and go without legal restriction (providing they don't spend too long in total in Australia), assuming they are able to get a seat on a flight to fit within the quarantine quotas (and pay for quarantine).

What the intention was, who knows. I do know several others in similar situations who returned to Australia, left again, returned again to Australia and left again. There was a guy on our flight from SIN-SYD who talking to another pax mentioned this was his third stint in hotel quarantine :eek: .
 

MEL_Traveller

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There was a guy on our flight from SIN-SYD who talking to another pax mentioned this was his third stint in hotel quarantine :eek: .

Yeah! A month in quarantine will limit the number of times you can come and go I guess. However in China my friend was able to quarantine at home, so not too much of an imposition.
 

dajop

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Yeah! A month in quarantine will limit the number of times you can come and go I guess. However in China my friend was able to quarantine at home, so not too much of an imposition.
My “quarantine” in Singapore on return this time was the best... required to isolate at home until test results come back. I can home went to bed and by the time I woke up an email was waiting for me with negative result and was good to go 😀. Only took 4.5hrs for the email to be sent.

With this arrangement it’s easier, the guy I mentioned said it was his third stint in quarantine in a Sydney hotel!
 
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My “quarantine” in Singapore on return this time was the best... required to isolate at home until test results come back. I can home went to bed and by the time I woke up an email was waiting for me with negative result and was good to go 😀. Only took 4.5hrs for the email to be sent.

With this arrangement it’s easier, the guy I mentioned said it was his third stint in quarantine in a Sydney hotel!

I experienced the same on my flight returning to Oz. One dude was lining up for 3rd time around in quarantine in Sydney. He normally resided overseas and was coming and going as he pleased.
 
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PineappleSkip

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At the check in counter they also check with Border Force before issuing BPs

No Border Force people checking exemption letters or passports, entirely up to check in staff
I can see the sense in this. When I checked in last week, border force checked my exemption email and verified it on their laptop. Then at checkin I was directed to the service counter after they checked me in, where they called Canberra and got a number which they duly recorded. Only after this second check did I get my boarding passes.

They said the second number was a new procedure for Australian passport holders. I presume it is to verify those who bypassed the first check (e.g. noone there).

cheers skip
 

sydneyads

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Can anyone speak to the transit experience in Brisbane for international travel.

I am arriving in Brisbane from PNG, then taking a flight to Dubai. I have a layover of 12 hours, which is outside the 8 hours I am allowed to remain in the departure lounges. Apparently, I need to therefore leave the airport to a transit hotel, then return to catch my DXB flight.

Is this requirement being enforced? I would prefer to just remain in the lounge until my flight is called.
 

jacobrice

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Hey everyone,

Has anyone had a +3 month travel permit granted and can you please share what you did? I will be living in Turkey for a year (leaving May) and need to get a statutory declaration...apparently.

Thanks
 

Pushka

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Hey everyone,

Has anyone had a +3 month travel permit granted and can you please share what you did? I will be living in Turkey for a year (leaving May) and need to get a statutory declaration...apparently.

Thanks
Son had his name on a UK lease. A letter from us (not sure if that made a scrap of difference). Letter from employer (turned out due to UK lockdown it could never be acted on); and application for UK working visa for 2 years.
 

jakeseven7

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Has anyone had an exemption approved recently? (last few weeks?). Keen to understand current processing timelines.
 

Pushka

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Has anyone had an exemption approved recently? (last few weeks?). Keen to understand current processing timelines.
I have read elsewhere - anecdotal - that approval if achieved, is still within the 24 hour period but all documentation provided.
 

ithongy

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Supposed to fly out to USA in Sept 2020 but have postponed trip till March 2021. Have obtained travel permission back in Aug 2020 & wondering if I need to obtain another one prior to flying out? Am a US LPR, still have a US Cell phone, DL, checking accounts & credit cards still active, that might be enough to leave Australia?
 

mviy

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Your exemption should say on it how long it’s valid for I would think if there is an expiry. 7 months is a long time after getting an exemption.
 

PineappleSkip

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My exemption didn't refer to a particular date of travel, indicating it is open dated, but I had to specify an estimated date of travel in the application. If your exemption is in the current system you should be able to log in and check its status. If not in the current system, IIRC you may have to submit a new application and I would call ABF and check
 

HappyFlyerFamily

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Hope it’s still valid as it says I do not need to re-apply if flight change.

View attachment 242326
I think @dajop is a similar situation to you.

If I understood dajop’s situation, technically there was no permission to leave required. I recall dajop didn’t need a letter to leave. So it does seem to sound you didn’t get an exemption but they confirmed you can leave.
 
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