International Student Arrivals

Information about bringing our international students back to Melbourne and back to campus.

Last updated 2:20pm, 30 November 2021

The Australian Government has announced that upcoming changes to travel arrangements for fully vaccinated eligible visa holders and citizens from Japan and Korea will now come into effect from 15 December 2021. Please see the Department of Home Affairs website for more information.

This webpage is currently being updated to reflect these changes.

There are several ways that students can return to Melbourne. However, changing government requirements will shape the University’s advice and support.  The University of Melbourne will continue to follow the latest health advice and government guidelines to ensure the safety of returning students and the wider community.

Anyone who is not a citizen or permanent resident of Australia, or their immediate family including parents of citizens, and who have been in African countries where the Omicron variant has been detected and spread – within the past 14 days – is not able to currently enter Australia. The countries are: South Africa, Lesotho, Eswatini, Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Malawi.

Those who have already arrived in Australia and who have been in any of the eight countries within the past 14 days must immediately isolate themselves and get tested for COVID-19 and follow jurisdictional quarantine requirements which will include quarantine for 14 days from the time of departure from southern Africa. These restrictions also apply to international students arriving from the safe travel zones we have established with New Zealand and Singapore who have been in any of the above eight countries within the past 14 days.

Victorian Government's International Student Arrivals Plan

Eligible fully vaccinated international student visa holders will no longer need to be part of the International Student Arrivals Plan (ISAP) to enter Victoria. From 15 December 2021, eligible visa holders, fully vaccinated with a TGA recognised vaccine, can travel to Australia without needing to apply for a travel exemption. The list of eligible visa holders can be found on the Department of Home Affairs website.

The ISAP is still active and interested students can still submit an Invitation to Participate.

About the International Student Arrivals Plan

The Victorian’s Government's International Student Arrivals Plan (ISAP) enables our international offshore students and graduate researchers to start travelling to Melbourne and onto campus through an end-to-end travel path.

In line with the Victorian Government roadmap and the Australian Government National Plan to transition Australia’s National COVID-19 Response, the University will continue to follow the latest health advice and government guidelines to ensure the safety of returning students and the wider community.

University-supported option for travelling to Melbourne

We are pleased to introduce UniTravel, the University’s travel program, which is supported by ATPI, the University’s official travel partner.

Like the International Students Arrival Plan, this service has many benefits including access to discounted airfares and up-to-date general travel advice. The service is with you every step of the way, including support with rebooking flights, should your flights be cancelled or rescheduled.

In an added safety and wellbeing measure, flights booked with UniTravel are visible to us here at the University.  This means staff can monitor any significant disruptions or delays to your journey and support you with any changes to your travels plans, right through to your arrival in Melbourne.

If you would like book your travel through this service, please contact student.unitravel@atpi.com or +61 3 9035 5666. This supported service is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Frequently asked questions

Last updated: 2pm, 30 November

Options for booking your flight

  • Who are UniTravel/APTI and why should I book with them?

    UniTravel is the University’s own travel program, supported by Unitravel. We’re very pleased to now extend this University-supported service to students. The service has many benefits including access to discounted airfares and up-to-date general travel advice. The service is with you every step of the way, including rebooking flights, should your flights be cancelled or rescheduled.

    In an added safety and wellbeing measure, flights booked with UniTravel are visible to us here at the University. This means staff can monitor any significant disruptions or delays to your journey and can support you with any changes to your travels plans, right through to your arrival in Melbourne.

    If you would like book your travel through UniTravel please contact student.unitravel@atpi.com or +61 3 9035 5666. This supported service is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

  • Does UniTravel cost more than flights booked under the International Students Arrival Plan or flights I can organise mysel

    Like FCM Travel, UniTravel flights will be priced in line with market demand. The service has many benefits including access to discounted airfares and up-to-date general travel advice. The service is with you every step of the way, including rebooking flights, should your flights be cancelled or rescheduled.

    In an added safety and wellbeing measure, flights booked with UniTravel are visible to us here at the University. This means staff can monitor any significant disruptions or delays to your journey and can support you with any changes to your travels plans, right through to your arrival in Melbourne.

  • Can I get a refund with UniTravel if I find a better deal somewhere else?

    Like other travel services, any booked airfare will be subject to the conditions set by the chosen airline.

    If students choose to explore a booking with UniTravel, all the terms and conditions will be made clear when selecting a flight and communicated by our travel consultants.

  • Can I go ahead and book my flights myself?

    Yes. You are encouraged to review the information available on the Department of Home Affairs site to ensure that you meet the criteria for entry to Australia for fully vaccinated, eligible visa holders.

    Please be aware that increasing travel demand, as well as the limited availability of flights to Australia, is likely to mean limited seats during the coming months, and in some cases, highly variable ticket costs.

  • I am a citizen of a country that has agreed to quarantine-free travel arrangements with Australia and have a valid student visa. Do I need to do anything with the ISAP?

    No. Citizens of countries that have made Safe Travel Zones with Australia can make their own travel plans and enter Australia under these rules.

Flights under the International Students Arrival Plan

  • I have submitted an EOI or accepted the University's Invitation to Participate but not yet paid for a flight. Can I now book my own flights?

    Yes. You are encouraged to review the information available on the Department of Home Affairs site to ensure that you meet the criteria for entry to Australia for fully vaccinated, eligible visa holders.  If you have not yet paid for a flight via ISAP, you are now able to book your travel independently.

  • I have paid for my flight through FCM Travel. Can I now change my date of travel?

    You are encouraged to be as flexible as possible in travelling on the current date of your ISAP ticket. Flight availability to Australia is still very limited and demand for seats remains high. If you are now unable to travel on the date of your confirmed flight, please review the Terms & Conditions of your ticket, and contact FCM Travel to discuss your options.

  • I have paid for my flight through FCM Travel. Can I get a refund?

    You are encouraged to be as flexible as possible in travelling on the current date of your ISAP ticket. Tickets that have already been purchased via the ISAP have a variety of change and/or cancellation rules, which vary from airline to airline.  If you must travel on a different date than your confirmed flight, please review the Terms & Conditions of your ticket, and contact FCM Travel to discuss your options.

  • I have paid for my flight through FCM Travel. Can I get a refund to now book a personal flight for a cheaper price?

    You are encouraged to be as flexible as possible in travelling on your current ISAP ticket. Tickets that have already been purchased via the ISAP have a variety of change and/or cancellation rules, which vary from airline to airline. Please review the Terms & Conditions of your ticket and contact FCM Travel to discuss your options.

  • Now that the Australian Government has eased restrictions, are there any advantages to traveling via the ISAP?
    Students who have purchased a ticket from FCM Travel via the ISAP have a confirmed flight itinerary for their travel to Melbourne, and will be supported by university staff, representatives from the Victorian Government, and FCM Travel in undertaking this journey. This includes support for relevant travel documentation, and entry requirements into Australia.

On your arrival or return to Australia

  • Do I need to quarantine on arrival into Australia?

    From 11.59 pm 27 November, all international travellers arriving into Victoria, who have visited the following countries: South Africa, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Lesotho, Eswatini, Seychelles, Malawi, and Mozambique in the past 14 days are required to undertake 14 days of hotel quarantine, regardless of their vaccination status.

    All other international travellers arriving in Victoria who are fully vaccinated, aged below 12 and 2 months or have a valid medical exemption are required to quarantine for 72 hours upon arrival.

  • Will the University of Melbourne make quarantine arrangements for me?

    If you do not already have confirmed accommodation prior to your arrival in Melbourne, you are encouraged to contact the Student Accommodation Unit.

    The University has committed to supporting students via the Melbourne Welcome Grant, which is available from 1 Dec 2021. From this date, all international students are welcome to apply for the grant upon arrival in Australia, regardless of how they arranged their travel.

  • Who is funding my return?

    There will be a range of costs associated with international students travelling to the University of Melbourne. The University has committed to supporting students by contributing to these costs via the Melbourne Welcome Grant, which is available from 1 December 2021. From this date, all international students are welcome to apply for the grant upon arrival in Australia, regardless of how they arranged their travel.

  • Will it be a requirement for me to be fully vaccinated before I return to campus?

    The University is making COVID-19 vaccinations a requirement for attending our campuses to minimise the risk of COVID-19 to our community. This decision is based on public health advice and is aligned to the Victorian Government’s roadmap, which states that on-site learning for adult education can re-commence for people who are fully vaccinated from 6pm, Friday 29 October 2021.

    From this date, all students attending our campuses will be required to be fully vaccinated. For more information, please visit the Vaccination at the University of Melbourne web page.

  • Do I need a new or specific visa to come back?

    No, you don’t need a new visa, but you must have a current student visa (subclass 500).

    You should also check that your visa does not expire earlier than your expected course completion date. For more information on visas, visit the student visa page.

  • Will the University continue to offer online classes if students are returning to Melbourne and attending on campus?

    Across Summer Term and Semester 1 2022, students will continue to be able to take a large number of subjects online as either online or dual-delivery subjects.

    The 2022 Handbook includes information on the delivery modes for your Summer and Semester 1 subjects.

    The delivery mode for Winter Term and Semester 2 will be updated in 2022 once we have greater clarity on what the second half of the year might look like.

Further queries

If you have further queries that are not answered in the FAQs above, please choose the relevant link for the course you are studying: