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Completing two weeks of quarantine in a small hotel room has been the norm for returning travellers for months, but home quarantine is apparently on the horizon.

The announcement by Prime Minister Scott Morrison that some international travellers may soon be able to quarantine at home has given hope to plenty of Australian expats and may encourage more to come home.

But with only returning travellers from some "safe" countries set to be eligible, where does that leave the others? And what of interstate travellers?

We spoke to some prospective travellers to get their take on home quarantine.



Jan Browne is one of those travellers. She is well versed in the art of quarantine and hopes Australia adopts a Hong Kong-style approach.

On June 22, she flew from her home in Queensland to Melbourne to see her daughter just as Victoria's case numbers were starting to spike and the state locked down.

After a month-and-a-half in lockdown there, she flew to Hong Kong in August to be with her husband, Nigel, where she went through two weeks of quarantine at their home, which she described as "a fantastic system".

After getting to Hong Kong she was given a wristband — "like when you go to a music festival" — with a QR code on it that paired with an app on her phone. Then she had a saliva test at the airport and just 12 hours of hotel quarantine while her results came in.



Hers were negative and she was put in a taxi to reunited with her husband at their home.

"When you walked in your door, you activated the app to say you were home and you stayed inside for the 14 days," she said.

"They only called me once just to check that I was OK, but other friends, if they wandered out to their terrace and they lost connection, they were called straight away to get back into wi-fi. They were really onto it.

"And then on day 10 you submitted another COVID test and, all being well, you were able to go out on day 14."

She said at no point did she feel like she was being watched and she was glad to be in her "home environment" rather than isolated in a hotel.

Nigel was still working with Cathay Pacific at the time but, as he has just retired, the pair are now looking to move back home to the Gold Coast.

Cathay helped with their repatriation and she stressed they were not a "hardship case", but their October 15 flight still comes with some anxieties.

"We're still not confirmed. We're still waitlisted after his 25 years with Cathay, but I'm presuming we will get away," she said.

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2020-10-03 00:28:00Z

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