Most people around the world have been impacted by Covid-19 in some way. They may have had the virus, have missed seeing family and friends due to lockdowns or have not been able to come home due to border closures. One group of people that has also been severely impacted by the ramifications of Covid-19 are international students.
There are a few issues that are of concern for international students.
With Australian borders currently closed, international students overseas are unable to enter Australia for study. International students currently holding a study visa and enrolled in an Australian school are still paying international school fees yet are only able to do their lessons online. Given they are paying for face-to-face learning, it’s a case of not getting what they paid for.
There are some instances where a travel exemption may be granted for international students to attend educational institutions in Australia. For further information on travel exemptions for international students read our previous article https://www.visasolutions.com.au/news-blog/posts/international-students.
While there are many students overseas unable to come to Australia, there are also many international students currently in Australia wanting to go home but are unable to do so. With lockdowns in various parts of Australia occurring regularly, all students are required to study online during those times. For many this disruption may be easier to cope with if they were at home with family.
The lack of international students in Australia has a flow on effect. A lack of international students has resulted in some institutions having to close down due to a downturn in revenue. The lack of international students has also meant that student accommodation has remained empty, businesses that rely on international students such as cafes and restaurants that surround educational institutions are suffering. There are many consequences which all circle back to international students and the impact on the Australian economy.
While international students are low on the priority list when it comes to international arrivals into Australia, the NSW International Student Arrival Plan could see international students welcomed back into New South Wales by Christmas.
NSW International Student Arrival Plan
The International Student Arrival plan has received support from the Australian and NSW governments. Under the plan, 250 international students studying with NSW education providers will return each fortnight from early December 2021.
While not many details about the plan have been released, it is understood that students will need to be fully vaccinated with a TGA recognised Covid-19 vaccine before arriving in Sydney. They will then be required to quarantine in purpose-built student accommodation in Sydney and follow the same health and quarantine requirements set by the Australian Government for returning Australians. The NSW International Student Arrivals Plan will not displace any returning Australians.
If you would like to learn more about any aspect of migration, contact Visa Solutions Australia on 1800 828 008.
While Australian borders are currently closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, travel exemptions may apply under the following circumstances:
- A traveller has a compassionate or compelling reason to visit Australia
- Overseas workers holding a Subclass 482 or 400 visa are required to undertake a job in Australia that cannot be filled by a local employee.
Visa Solutions Australia has been successful in acquiring a broad range of exemptions, from critical workers to those needing to travel on compassionate grounds.