Australia is on tenterhooks as it enters school holidays battling COVID-19 outbreaks in several states and territories while vaccine supply continues to fall short of demand.
It would normally be a time of increased travel and economic uplift but in several corners of the country people are isolating or just too nervous to see plans through.
All outbreaks can be linked back to the hotel quarantine system or the movements of international airline staff and most state leaders have called out the shortage of vaccines in the past few days.
In NSW, all residents of for the next fortnight with the exception of four essential reasons.
State borders reopen to Victoria in time for school holidays
South Australia and Queensland today announced their state borders would reopen to Victoria in time for the school holidays. Victoria's Chief Health Officer Professor Brett Sutton said the state recording zero new local cases of coronavirus today was "terrific news"."As outbreaks stand, we are at a 98 per cent clearance for primary close contacts in the City of Whittlesea, Port Melbourne and the West Melbourne branches of the outbreak," he said."They are stabilising, but we are not all clear yet.
Millions of people are in isolation not only in NSW but all over the country, as anyone who has recently returned to their home state or territory from Greater Sydney is subject to isolation orders (which differ between states and territories).
The restrictions are already having a devastating impact on regional tourism.
The Murray Downs Resort, on the NSW side of the border, is a nine-hour drive from Sydney but only 5 kilometres from Swan Hill in Victoria and has copped many cancellations from people in NSW, Victoria and South Australia.
Manager Nicole Slattery said the risk of having to quarantine was too much for some people.
However, some travellers have already broken the rules aimed to contain the dangerous Delta variant of COVID-19.
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Three travellers from NSW were arrested in the South Australian outback town of Coober Pedy after trying to fly into the Northern Territory.
SA Police said two women and a man had flown from Griffith to Coober Pedy in a private plane on Thursday, even though they were not allowed to enter South Australia.
They were denied entry to the NT on Friday and returned to the outback opal mining town.
Police found them in a karaoke bar early this morning and say they have posed a major risk to vulnerable outback communities.
The NT is also facing a serious situation at a large gold mine 540 kilometres north-west of Alice Springs.
The Newmont-owned Granites has been put in lockdown and 900 FIFO workers are isolating after a worker tested positive to COVID-19.
The worker stayed at a Brisbane quarantine hotel and then travelled by charter plane to the mine in the Tanami Desert before learning the hotel he stayed in was an exposure site.
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The man immediately went into isolation at the mine yesterday but around 900 FIFO workers had already left the mine and travelled interstate to places including Brisbane, Perth, Alice Springs and Darwin.
Victoria is also in nervous territory after two positive cases linked to a birthday party in Sydney were identified yesterday.
The Oakleigh man tested positive after attending a family gathering in Sydney's West Hoxton which has been dubbed a "superspreader" event by officials and he then passed the virus onto his co-worker at the Sandringham Dry Cleaners.
"This is the critical time in running down this NSW-seeded Delta into Victoria," Health Minister Martin Foley said,
Another case was recorded on Saturday but the person was already quarantining as they were a close contact of a known case.
The case was linked to the outbreak at a Southbank apartment complex which has been in lockdown for almost a fortnight.
Queensland is also working to contain a cluster that began after a flight attendant from Portugal tested positive after completing 14 days of hotel quarantine.
Australians have a 'vaccine passport' to avoid border closures. We're not using it. Yet
Bruce Springsteen gigs, packed football matches and European travel – an app on your phone could unlock them all, but there are no plans yet to use it in Australia.But, from next week, 14 countries in the European Union will open quarantine-free travel to people who are fully immunised against COVID-19, something they will prove using a digital 'vaccine passport'.
The woman visited the Brisbane Portuguese Family Centre in Ellen Grove and the virus has now been transmitted to seven people.
But authorities say they are confident they can keep a grip on this outbreak as all contacts were in quarantine while infectious.
Chief Health Officer Jeannette Young said she was more concerned about people from NSW getting into Queensland.
The COVID-19 outbreak in NSW has ballooned to more than 80 cases, with the index case being a limousine driver who was transporting international airline crew.
He was not vaccinated nor was he wearing a mask and on Saturday NSW Police announced he would not be charged.
The public health order was yesterday extended to make it mandatory for private drivers coming into contact with international arrivals to wear masks and be vaccinated.
This infection has triggered the "scariest" situation for NSW since the pandemic began, according to the Premier, who says she was left with no choice but to lock much of the state down.
But she has assured the people of NSW they will not have to worry about their financial situation over the next fortnight.
Anyone in the Greater Sydney area is now eligible for the Federal Government's COVID-19 disaster payment if they will not get paid due to restrictions.
People over the age of 17 are eligible for $500 a week if they usually work more than 20 hours a week, and $325 if they work less than that.
They also need to satisfy the eligibility criteria, which includes having less than $10,000 in liquid assets, and they can not receive the payment if they are receiving other welfare support.[Zendesk COVID form embed]