Most of regional NSW, including the Riverina, has so far been spared from most border closures as coronavirus exposure sites through the Northern Beaches and Greater Sydney area continue to grow.
Here is where each state and territory stands as at December 24 in regards to travel from regional NSW:
There is no ban on travel to the Sydney region, including the Blue Mountains, Central Coast and Illawarra-Shoalhaven. However, there is a growing list of exposure sites in this region and the Murrumbidgee Local Health District has urged Riverina residents to reconsider travel to the area saying they may be required to isolate upon their return if the situation escalates. From Christmas Eve until Boxing Day, Sydney households can have 10 people over, plus any children under 12. Travel to the Northern Beaches area north of the Narrabeen Bridge and east of the Baha'i temple on Mona Vale Road is banned, however from Christmas Eve to Boxing Day residents of the southern area of the Northern Beaches can host guests. NSW authorities have strongly encouraged the community to seriously consider whether using these allowances is right for them, with people aged over 70 or with pre-existing medical conditions especially urged to be cautious.
The hard border closure is back with NSW residents needing a permit to travel to Victoria. People who have visited designated 'red' and 'hot' zones around Greater Sydney are subject to restrictions. Checkpoints along the physical border have been reinstated, however designated 'border zone' residents are able to simply show their license to get through. The border zone includes but is not limited to the local government areas of Greater Hume, Hay, Lockhart, Murrumbidgee, Snowy Valleys and Wagga Wagga. Permits to enter Victoria are available here. Information on the Victorian health department website suggests transit through airports is allowed however travellers cannot leave the airport and need to wear a mask.
Those travelling into the ACT who have not recently visited the Greater Sydney, Illawarra-Shoalhaven and Central Coast region do not need to quarantine and currently do not need to fill out a border pass. Those who have visited those areas are advised not to travel to the ACT and if they do, they must fill out a border pass and quarantine.
Those arriving from NSW who have not been in a designated COVID hotspot over the previous 14 days do not need to quarantine but must fill out a border pass. Monday's transition to a hard border means drivers will be stopped at the border and asked to present this pass. Layovers at Sydney Airport are currently permitted as long as the traveller does not leave the airport. While masks are not mandatory on flights, they are strongly recommended.
Regional NSW residents who have not been to a 'High Transmission Zone' around Greater Sydney do not need to quarantine, but must fill out a cross-border registration form. Those transiting through Sydney Airport are exempt from quarantine if they are at the airport for no longer than two hours and wearing a face mask for the entirety of the time they are in transit. All NSW arrivals must be tested for COVID-19 upon arrival and on days five and 12 of their time in SA, however they do not need to quarantine while awaiting test results unless they have symptoms.
All travel from NSW into WA has been banned, with the exception of 'exempt travellers' considered essential. Exempt travellers can apply for an entry pass here.
Those who have not been in designated medium to high risk areas in Greater Sydney do not need to quarantine upon entry to Tasmania, but must fill out this form before their arrival. Travellers from regional NSW are able to transit through Sydney airport without becoming subject to hotspot restrictions as long as they remain within the confines of the airport.
All people entering the NT are required to fill out a border declaration form. On December 24, the NT removed most of Greater Sydney from its list of hotspots, meaning only visitors who have been in several Northern Beaches suburbs considered directly affected by the Avalon cluster will be required to quarantine. Should Greater Sydney return to hotspot status, travellers from other areas will still be able to transit through Sydney airport without becoming subject to hotspot restrictions as long as they remain within the confines of the airport.