COVID-19: Border crossing information


Last updated: 10 Jul 2020 1:17pm

COVID-19 and Cross Border management

Restrictions on non-essential travel and gatherings apply in all states and territories. Penalties apply for non-compliance.

Conditions are changing, and you need to seek advice from the relevant state or territory.

It is vital that individuals and communities remain vigilant and continue to follow health and safety guidelines and maintain physical distancing. For more information see the industry guidelines for COVID safe workplaces or visit the NSW Health website.

For more information on the Public Health Orders and restrictions visit NSW Health.

Temporary border restrictions with Victoria

The NSW government has imposed temporary border restrictions with Victoria to contain the spread of COVID-19 and to protect the health and jobs of NSW citizens.

People entering NSW from Victoria will need a NSW border entry permit. Your permit will indicate if you need to self-isolate for 14 days, get tested for COVID-19, abide by a COVID-19 Safety Plan, or any other conditions.

All persons will require a border entry permit to travel from Victoria to NSW, with the exception of;

  • an emergency or law enforcement services worker
  • or a person entering NSW to avoid injury or escape a risk of harm
  • or a person entering for medical or hospital services
  • or a person that is accompanying a permit holder and they are (i) required to provide care or support to the permit holder, or (ii) because the person is a dependent of the permit holder

Permits will be valid for 14 days from the date of issue and apply to all borders: land, air and sea, as well as river crossings. You will need to keep your permit on you at all times, and carry any supporting evidence associated with your travel.

Special provisions are in place for:

  • residents of border communities
  • people performing critical services
  • interstate residents transiting through NSW

For more information see the guide to border restrictions.

I work in the primary industries sector and cross the Victorian/NSW border. What do I need to know?

The permit eligibility criteria includes;

  • persons providing critical services, including agriculture and forestry, freight and logistics, and
  • seasonal workers

NSW DPI understands that food and fibre processing facilities are considered to be agriculture. For an eligibility list visit Service NSW.

Your permit will indicate if you need to self-isolate for 14 days, get tested for COVID-19, abide by a COVID-19 Safety Plan, or any other conditions. For more information, visit the COVID-19 self isolation guidelines and information.

See the guide to the border restrictions for more information and to apply online.

When applying for a permit, individuals will be advised if there are requirements to self-isolate for 14 days or to be tested for COVID-19. For more information, visit the COVID-19 self isolation guidelines and information.

Visit Service NSW for more information and to apply online.

Agriculture services

Agriculture is classed as one of the critical services and therefore, individuals working in these industries undertaking agriculture and forestry services, including vets, agricultural contractors and shearers, can apply for a permit to cross the NSW-Victorian border. The permit allows people within the agricultural sector to be able to travel between NSW and Victoria for the purpose of their duties without the requirements to self-isolate, provided their employer has a COVID-19 Safety Plan in place.

To keep workers, visitors and customers safe, the NSW Government developed a set of Industry guidelines for COVID Safe workplaces to assist businesses and organisations to create and follow a COVID-19 Safety Plan specific to their industry.

Visit the COVID Safe businesses website for more information on how to complete a COVID-19 Safety Plan for your industry and register as a COVID safe business. You can find information tailored for the agricultural sector on this site.

I have already applied for a critical service permit, do I need to apply again? 

Anyone in this category who has already applied for a permit will need to reapply, and be issued with a revised ‘D’ permit (to replace the ‘A’ permit).

Seasonal Workers

Seasonal workers who are on a temporary limited working visa are not in the same permit category as agricultural services, and will still be required to self-isolate for 14 days immediately after entering NSW from Victoria.

For more information about seasonal workers and entering from other states and territories, visit our seasonal workers page.

NSW Freight permits

NSW has created an additional permit to better support critical workers in the Freight and Transport sector and to clarify terms and conditions.

The permit allows people within the freight and transport industry to be able to travel between NSW and Victoria for the purpose of their duties, providing their employer has a COVID-19 Safety Plan and will not require them to self-isolate.

The new permit is available through Service NSW. COVID-Safe plans and guidelines to assist the industry to align with this additional permit are available here.

Freight operators are reminded to be conscious of the significantly increased health risk in Victoria, and to remain vigilant and continue to follow health and safety guidelines and maintain physical distancing.

I live on the NSW-Victorian border

If residents do not travel outside a community at or near the border, people living within 50 km of the NSW border are eligible to apply for a permit for travel into NSW. Border community permits will allow people to undertake essential travel between their residence in NSW and place of work in Victoria, and safeguard the continued provision of critical services across the border. This also applies for people who live in Victoria, and work in NSW.

See the guide to the border restrictions for more information and to apply online.

What happens if I need to cross a state border?

New South Wales, Queensland, Tasmania, South Australia, Western Australia and the Northern Territory have enacted movement restrictions across state and territory borders.

Some exemptions for cross-border travel allow for cross-border movement from New South Wales to Queensland, Victoria and South Australia for essential travel, workforce movements, freight, and specific compassionate grounds.

For those states and territories with border restrictions, individuals will need to demonstrate legitimate need for travel. Checking officers in these jurisdictions have discretionary authority.

For all cross-border matters, email enquiries@cbc.nsw.gov.au or phone Service NSW 13 77 88.

For the movement of animals, plants, fruit, vegetables, bees, beehives or bee products visit the Interstate Quarantine website, phone 1800 084 881 or email quarantine@dpi.nsw.gov.au.

From June 1, movement within NSW is permitted for regional holidays. Public health orders and restrictions in NSW are available at NSW Health.

I work in the primary industries sector and cross the QLD/NSW border. What do I need to know?

There is a clear commitment from states and territories to ensure essential workers can continue their work and to maintain the freight network and manage supply chains.

Exemptions from border restrictions apply to those engaged in agricultural industries.

These exemptions allow people to undertake essential travel between their residence and place of work. This also applies for people who live in Queensland, and work in NSW.

The Queensland Government has produced this factsheet to explain their border restrictions (PDF, 126 KB).

Apply for a Queensland Border Declaration Pass.