Council provides clarity on border bubble travel

NSW Police personnel man the Victorian border crossing during earlier lockdowns with Bega Valley Shire Council clarifying border-bubble travel.
NSW Police personnel man the Victorian border crossing during earlier lockdowns with Bega Valley Shire Council clarifying border-bubble travel.

Bega Valley Shire Council wishes to clarify the current cross-border travel permissions for residents of border communities in Victoria and New South Wales following the recent closure of the Victoria/New South Wales border.

People who live in a border community who have not left the border area in the last 14 days can travel to another border community in the 'border bubble' without a permit. This means that anyone who is a resident of a Victorian border community is able to travel to a NSW border community to holiday or work, and residents of the Bega Valley and other NSW border communities who wish to travel to a Victorian border community can do so.

You must carry valid photo identification that shows your current address, such as a drivers' licence, as evidence that you reside in an exempt border community. Once you have reached your intended border community, you cannot travel out of it unless you are returning home. Victorians who travel beyond the border bubble into greater NSW cannot return to Victoria without a permit for 14 days.

It is strongly recommended you take proof of where you are staying as you may be asked for this.

Residents of the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) do not require permission to enter the border bubble or to re-enter the ACT after doing so.

Council strongly recommends that all residents and visitors check the latest rules before travelling.

East Gippsland Nationals MP Tim Bull also released a statement on social media in an attempt to clear up some of the confusion.

"What was poorly communicated in the border "closure" was the border bubble remained in existence, meaning that people in border bubble shires (like East Gippsland Shire) are allowed to travel to border bubble shires on the NSW side (like Bega and Snowy Monaro Shires).

To break it down more, if you are a resident of Bairnsdale or Lakes Entrance and were holidaying in Merimbula or Bega, you could have stayed there as residents of border bubble shires were - and remain - exempt if they are only traveling to a NSW border bubble shire. This has become clear today and I, like most, was not aware prior to this morning as it was never mentioned in any announcements around the border closure, nor where those manning the road blocks made aware."

Residents of the following border communities (local government areas) are exempt from needing a permit to travel withing the border bubble across the two states:

VICTORIA:

Alpine Valley, Benalla, Bendigo, Buloke, Campaspe, East Gippsland, Gannawarra, Indigo, Loddon, Mildura, Moira, Shepparton, Swan Hill, Towong, Wangaratta, Wodonga, Yarriambiack.

NSW:

Albury City, Balranald, Bega Valley, Berrigan, Broken Hill, Edward River, Federation, Greater Hume, Hay, Lockhart, Murray River, Murrumbidgee, Snowy Monaro, Snowy Valley, Wagga Wagga, Wentworth.

FURTHER ADVICE AND SUPPORT

You can also contact the NSW COVID-19 Support Line on 1800 318 248 for further advice.