FAQs for students returning in 2022

We've prepared information about popular topics to assist you with planning your return to Australia in 2022.

State Government arrival information

Information about returning to the various Australian states is available at the following websites:

Who can come to Australia

Eligibility criteria

From 15 December 2021, fully vaccinated eligible visa holders can travel to Australia without needing to apply for a travel exemption. This includes eligible visa holders in Australia seeking to depart and return.

From the beginning of Tuesday, 21 December all fully vaccinated international travellers will be required to undertake a COVID test soon after arrival. This differs between states. Please check the state and territory quarantine requirements at covid19.homeaffairs.gov.au/vaccinated-travellers.

  • Victoria - PCR or RAT within 24 hours of arrival
  • New South Wales - RAT as soon as practicable
  • South Australia - PCR test within 24 hours of arrival
  • Queensland - PCR or RAT within 24 hours of arrival

Quarantine requirements in Australia are determined by State and Territory governments. Generally, you are required to isolate until a negative test result is received however this does vary by state. Please check the state and territory quarantine requirements at covid19.homeaffairs.gov.au/vaccinated-travellers.

You are required to be double vaccinated with a vaccine approved or recognised by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA).

TGA recognised COVID-19 vaccines are:

  • AstraZeneca Vaxzevria
  • AstraZeneca Covishield (Serum Institute of India)
  • Pfizer/Biontech Comirnaty
  • Moderna Spikevax
  • Sinovac Coronavac
  • Sinopharm BBIBP-CorV
  • Bharat Biotech Covaxin.
  • Johnson & Johnson/Janssen-Cilag COVID Vaccine.

Spouse and/or dependent travellers

If your spouse and/or dependent travellers meet the eligibility criteria, they are welcome to travel with you to Australia. Visit the Australian Government website for the latest information.

Evidence of a negative COVID-19 test

As of Sunday 23 January, all inbound passengers must provide a negative accepted COVID-19 test result. These tests can be either:

  • A nucleic acid amplification (NAA) test, such as:
    • polymerase chain reaction (PCR, or RT-PCR) test
    • Transcription mediated amplification
    • Loop-mediated isothermal amplification; or a
  • A rapid antigen test (RAT) (also described in some countries as a lateral flow antigen detection test or similar). This must not be confused with a lateral flow antibody detection test. For the purposes of pre-departure testing it must be an antigen test.

Serology tests are not accepted.

The NAA test must be done within 3 days before the day of the flight’s scheduled departure.

The RAT must be done within 24 hours of the flight’s scheduled departure time.

Information about pre-flight testing is available on the Commonwealth Department of Health website.

Vaccination requirements

Recognised vaccines

Vaccinated international arrivals will need to demonstrate their vaccination status to the Commonwealth with a vaccine approved or recognised by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA).

TGA recognised COVID-19 vaccines are:

  • AstraZeneca Vaxzevria
  • AstraZeneca Covishield (Serum Institute of India)
  • Pfizer/Biontech Comirnaty
  • Moderna Spikevax
  • Sinovac Coronavac
  • Sinopharm BBIBP-CorV
  • Bharat Biotech Covaxin.
  • Johnson & Johnson/Janssen-Cilag COVID Vaccine.

If you are not vaccinated with a TGA recognised COVID-19 vaccine, we recommend you explore your options for meeting Australian vaccination requirements prior to planning to travel to Australia.

It is compulsory for all Federation University students and staff to be fully vaccinated before returning on campus. We are working through implications for overseas passport holders and Commonwealth systems to verify vaccination status.

Proof of vaccination

If you are an international traveller and are fully vaccinated with an approved or recognised vaccine, you can use a paper or digital certificate issued by an overseas government authority or an accredited overseas government vaccination provider that shows:

  • your name as it appears in your passport
  • your date of birth or passport number
  • the vaccine brand name
  • date of each dose, or the date on which a full course of immunisation was completed.

Your certificate must be written in English or accompanied by a certified translation.

Keep a hard copy or an electronic copy of your vaccination certificate whilst travelling to Australia. Airlines will check this when you check-in to your flight.

Australia is a vaccinated economy and conducts vaccination checks at many venues and locations. You may be required to show proof of vaccination in places such as eateries, retail, university, other venues and whilst attending events. If you cannot provide proof of vaccination you may be refused entry. You will also be required to check in to most of these places. Checking in is easy and can be done by downloading the appropriate state government app and scanning the specified QR code at the place you are attending.

Quarantine requirements

Quarantine requirements

Testing and quarantine requirements differ by state and territory. To check if you will be subject to quarantine on arrival visit your local state or territory's website:

What to expect in quarantine

The relevant department will communicate with you if you are required to quarantine. This will include information about what you should/cannot bring into quarantine if you are required to quarantine in a government managed quarantine facility.

You should also make yourself familiar with airport transit arrangements and testing requirements as they vary depending on each state.

Flights to Australia

Flight arrangements

From 15 December 2021, if you meet the eligibility criteria outlined by the Australian Government, you are permitted to enter Australia on any flight of your choosing. This may be direct to your destination or include a lay over. You are advised to book your flight yourself or via your own preferred travel management company.

If transiting on a non-direct flight, you are responsible for checking airline, departure, testing and proof of vaccination requirements in any countries you transit.

There is no confirmation or permission required from Federation University to book your flights. However, we suggest to try and book direct flights and arrive in Australia as close to business hours as possible to maximise connecting with transport operating hours to your accommodation. Please see our Airport transfers section for more information.

We encourage you to check flight availability while referencing our official cut off dates for arrival.  If you are unable to arrive by orientation, you will need to defer to the next intake.

Please note there are different quarantine requirements for different states and territories in Australia.

If you are planning on traveling onwards to or through a different state or territory when you arrive in Australia, you need to check domestic travel restrictions. States and territories can apply their own travel restrictions.

Visit the Australian Government website for the latest information.

Arriving in Australia at the airport

There are different processes depending on which airport you are arriving at.

If arriving into Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane or Adelaide, you will undergo the standard arrivals procedures. Find out more at

If travelling to a state that requires quarantine, you will be greeted by Department of Human Services staff directly after disembarking the plane. They will assist you with information about how to stay COVID safe and information about the next steps. You may notice a police presence but please do not worry as they are all here to assist you to transit to your quarantine hotel.

Airport transfers

You’ve safely arrived, now to navigate to your accommodation. There are different transport options depending on your destination and the campus you’re studying at. If you’re studying at our Ballarat, Berwick or Gippsland Campus, there are shuttle bus and public transport connections if you arrive during the operating times. If you’re travelling to our Brisbane Campus, you’re in luck! There is a skyrail train that will take you directly to Central Station or if you contact us, we will pick you up too.

Find out more on our Victorian campus travel from the airport website and Brisbane campus facilities and services website.

Study requirements for 2022

Face to face study in 2022

We are committed to offering face-to-face teaching at all campuses in 2022. This includes students commencing or returning to study in Semester 1, 2022.

If you have already applied to study with us and received an offer letter, please note that when your offer was issued, we advised that if you were unable to travel to Australia you could commence studies online. As border restrictions have been lifted, and once your visa is granted, you must now travel to Australia to commence your studies.

Important cut off dates

It is anticipated there will be delays in visa processing and securing flights may be difficult. With this in mind, we strongly encourage you to progress your application and provide all requested documentation and/or information as soon as possible to keep your application progressing. Below are our cut off dates for applications commencing in Semester 1, 2022.

Offshore applicants and onshore applicants without a valid student visa

2022 important dates
Semester 1 2022

Ballarat Berwick Gippsland
Federation campus locations

Brisbane Federation campus

Application submission
8 weeks before program commencement date.
All required application documents, must be provided by:

28 January 2022

18 February 2022

GTE assessment*
7 weeks before program commencement date. All required pre-visa assessment documents, should be submitted by:

4 February 2022

25 February 2022

Acceptance/payment and CoE issued for high-risk markets*
6 weeks prior to program commencement date. The student must receive payment confirmation from Federation University and meet all conditions on the offer letter by:

*A maximum 1 week extension can be granted for applicants on a case by case basis.

11 February 2022

4 March 2022

Onshore applicants with a valid student visa

2022 important dates
Semester 1 2022

Ballarat Berwick Gippsland
Federation campus locations

Brisbane Federation campus

Application submission
3 weeks before program commencement date.
All required application documents, must be provided by:

4 February 2022

25 February 2022

GTE assessment
2 weeks before program commencement date. All required Pre-visa assessment documents, should be submitted by:

11 February 2022

4 March 2022

Acceptance/payment and CoE issued*
1 week before program commencement date.
The student must receive payment confirmation from Federation University and meet all conditions on the offer letter by:

*A maximum 1 week extension can be granted for onshore applicants, on a case by case basis.

18 February 2022

11 March 2022

You must be in Australia to commence your course. If you have not arrived in Australia by orientation, you may need to defer to the next available intake. Intakes vary for each course. Visit the Course Finder website for further information about available intakes.

Visas

For students who do not have a visa, visa processing times have increased. The average processing time is approximately 52 days, however we expect this to increase as more students prepare to travel to Australia.

We encourage you to apply for your visa as soon as possible.

Please note you must be in Australia to commence your course. If you have not arrived in Australia by orientation, you may need to defer to the next available intake. Intakes vary for each course. Visit the Course Finder website for further information about available intakes.

For the latest information and visa processing times, please visit the Global Visa Processing Times website.

Visa Application Charge refunds for students arriving before 19 March 2022

  • The Australian Government has announced students who arrive in Australia between 19 January 2022 and 19 March 2022 will be eligible for a refund of their visa application charge. This also applies to dependent visa applicants who travel during this period.
  • This measure applies to students who already have a visa, and may have already travelled to Australia on that visa before returning to their home country during the pandemic. It will also apply to students who apply after today, provided they are granted a visa and travel to Australia before 19 March 2022. It does not apply to students who are already in Australia.
  • Eligible travellers will be able to apply for this refund up until 31 December 2022.

Travellers to Australia are required to make a declaration regarding their vaccination status, and be able to provide acceptable proof. Student visa holders must meet Australia’s vaccination requirements, or have an approved travel exemption. Information on entry requirements is updated regularly so it is important that travellers check the Department’s website for the latest requirements before they travel.

Accommodation

There are a variety of accommodation options for when you arrive in Australia. Depending on your campus, you may choose to live on residence with FedLiving. You may also prefer to live off campus in private accommodation. These options range from single rooms in a share house to renting a house or apartment on your own or with a group of friends. Visit our Accommodation website for all the details and helpful tips to find the right place for you.

Fed assistance prior to departure

Pre-departure information

Our dedicated International Student Support team will be in touch with you direct to assist with preparing you prior to your departure. You can also find some helpful information about getting prepared, your new home and staying COVID safe whilst on campus on the Future Students website.

You should check any requirements, particularly isolation or quarantine requirements, in the state or territory to which you are travelling as this will impact your travel arrangements.

Travellers to Australia should complete an Australia Travel Declaration (ATD) at least 72 hours before departure.

Keep a hard copy or an electronic copy of your vaccination certificate whilst travelling to Australia. Airlines will check this when you check-in to your flight.

There is no requirement for a travel support letter from Federation University.

Fed assistance when you arrive

You’ve safely arrived, called home, had a sleep and eaten. The next step is to let us know you’ve arrived! When you arrive, visit our International Student Support office on campus or send us an email to let us know you’ve arrived. This is also a great opportunity to ask any questions ahead of orientation.

We’ve prepared some tips about what to do on your first few days after you arrive. Find out more on the When You First Arrive website.