NSW International Arrivals Pilot

La Trobe University Sydney Campus has been working closely with the New South Wales (NSW) Government to safely bring international students back to campuses through the NSW International Student Arrivals Pilot Plan. We are delighted that a small number of our students will be able to return to La Trobe University Sydney Campus through this pilot scheme.

Please find below important information about how this pilot will work.

Frequently asked questions about the return of international students

What is the NSW International Arrivals Pilot Program?

The Australian Government has now approved a pilot program for the return of a limited number of international students to continue their studies in NSW.

Initially the International Arrivals Pilot Program will welcome two flights of 250 students back to several different NSW campuses in December 2021. As participants in the program, La Trobe University Sydney Campus will be allocated a small number of places on these flights for our own students.

Further flights will occur as part of the ongoing pilot if the December flights are considered to be successful.

The students returned as part of the process will be above the current caps for returning Australian citizens, and as such will not reduce the numbers of Australians able to return home.

Who will be eligible to return?

To be eligible to return to Sydney, students must satisfy and agree to some requirements:

  1. Students will need a valid passport and a valid Australian Student Visa.
  2. Students will need to return a negative COVID-19 test pre-departure.
  3. Students are required to be fully vaccinated with a Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) approved or TGA recognised vaccine. See FAQ below for vaccine requirements.

For the initial flights in December, students with offers for 2022 that have not yet started their studies will not be included. However, we encourage you to complete the EOI form (see below) to inform us of your interest in returning to Australia as additional student return programs may become available in the coming weeks and months.

How will students be selected to enter Australia via this program?

All current international student visa holders identified as currently located offshore will be contacted directly by La Trobe University Sydney Campus, via email, and asked to complete an Expression of Interest Form (EOI Form) to indicate their interest in participating in this program.

We will select as many students as possible to return to Australia but given the small scale of the initial flights in December, not all students will be able to participate immediately.

For further information about the Expression of Interest process, please see below.

Will students returning via this program have to complete mandatory quarantine?

Eligible students will be required to complete the mandatory 14-day quarantine period. For more information on quarantine arrangements, please visit our travel partner, FCM Travel, frequently asked question’s page.

Please do not contact FCM directly unless you have been selected by La Trobe University Sydney College to participate in the International Student Arrivals Program.

This Arrivals Program is supported by the NSW higher education sector and Study NSW and will be run in parallel to the current arrangements to return Australian citizens to Australia. The proposal has been approved by NSW Health, NSW Police and the Australian Government.

Expression of interest process

What is an Expression of Interest form?

The EOI Form is how current students can register their interest in participating in arrivals programs. This includes the flights planned for December, as well as possible opportunities in the future.

How do I complete an Expression of Interest form?

All current international students will be contacted by the college with information about how to express an interest in returning to Australia as part of this program.

Please note: Completing this EOI Form is not a commitment or a guarantee by La Trobe University Sydney Campus of participation in the Arrivals Program nor is it a confirmed registration. This EOI Form is only an expression of students’ interest and preparedness to return.

We will keep all students up to date with information as it is available to us.

When should I fill out the EOI Form? Is there a deadline?

We encourage you fill out the EOI Form as soon as you can to ensure you are considered in the program. Expressions of Interest submitted before Friday 15 October will be given priority.

What happens if I don’t fill out the EOI Form? Will I have a chance in future rounds?

We understand your circumstances may change, so we are planning multiple rounds of interest check-ins with international students.

We would encourage you to complete the EOI Form regardless, even if you are not interested in coming to Australia to continue your studies or if you are unsure if you are ready to participate. This will help us in determining future plans.

I believe I should have received an EOI email but did not, who do I contact:

Please contact us with your enquiry via studentservices-sydney@latrobe.edu.au .

When will I need to take a COVID test to prove a negative result before flying?

FCM Travel have detailed information about testing requirements on their FAQ page

Vaccine requirements

Which vaccine will I need to have to be eligible?

The Arrivals Program requires all inbound international students to be fully vaccinated with a Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) approved or TGA recognised vaccine.

The current list includes:

  • SPIKEVAX manufactured by Moderna
  • VAXZEVRIA manufactured by AstraZeneca – this includes VAXZEVRIA manufactured outside such as Covishield
  • COMIRNATY manufactured by Pfizer
  • Janssen (or Johnson & Johnson) manufactured by Janssen-Cilag
  • CORONAVAC manufactured by Sinovac

The TGA website includes a full list of vaccines approved for use in Australia and this page lists vaccines that are recognised (for the purposes of incoming travellers) by Australia but not administered here.

What if I have a mix of vaccines?

Students who have received two different TGA approved vaccines will be considered as fully vaccinated. Additionally, students who have had non-TGA recognised vaccines could get a single 'booster' of Johnson & Johnson and be considered as fully vaccinated for entry into Australia as the Johnson & Johnson vaccine (COVID-19 Vaccine Janssen) requires only a single dose.

I have the right vaccine; how do I prove I am vaccinated?

Students will be required to provide official evidence of their vaccination status before booking their flight (e.g. vaccination certificate). Students must ensure that the evidence:

Guidance on how to add overseas immunisations to the Australian Immunisation Register (AIR) is available on the Services Australia website.

Will I need to show proof of vaccination when I arrive?

At this time, it is a requirement that all COVID-19 vaccinations are reported to the Australian Immunisation Register (AIR). Advice for individuals on how to access their AIR history statement is available on the Australian Government Services Australia webpage. The Australian Government has also announced the introduction of an upcoming internationally recognised International COVID-19 Vaccination Certificate. NSW Health anticipates more information regarding the International COVID-19 Vaccination Certificate in the coming weeks.

What if I don’t have an approved or recognised vaccine?

Students who are unable to access to a TGA-approved or TGA-recognised vaccine for COVID-19 are encouraged to continue studying remotely until such time that circumstances allow for them to travel to Australia.

We would also encourage you to fill out the EOI form as this will help us with planning and preparation for welcoming international students back to Australia.

Please visit the Study NSW Return Program for further information about the program to return international students to Sydney.