Minister of Health Greg Hunt painted an ambitious picture of what international travel would look like by the end of next year.
Australia has secured access to four different coronavirus vaccines, all of which are running ahead of schedule through their clinical trials.
Australia hopes to get its entire population vaccinated against coronavirus by the end of 2021, due to the success of both of them.
And if the world is willing to follow suit, Mr. Hunt said that by the end of next year, he might see international travel return to normal.
“What vaccination does, is it opens up the possibility of travel for Australians, so they can travel safely, they can return safely. It reduces the need for hotel quarantining, if somebody has been vaccinated. And these are really profound differences.”
Although “the disease will not disappear from the world overnight”, Mr. Hunt said that the positive news about vaccines meant that Australians should look to the future.
“We can add progressive layers of safety. We have opened a travel bubble with New Zealand. We are looking at opening travel bubbles with other low-risk countries. Then we will look at, above all else, bringing all Australians home,” Mr Hunt said.
“But then we will open up for students progressively, which for the University of Queensland and others is so critical, then progressively, the general population.
“It will be a progressive opening through the course of 2021. In an ideal world, if the vaccination strategy is completed, as we anticipate, then by the end of 2021, we will be very close to, let me put it this way, widespread international travel.”