Important COVID information

Australian government agencies will continue working closely to support and inform students and education providers and explore every possible option for the safe return of international students to Australia.

Recent updates

30 November 2020

First international students return to Australia

The Northern Territory Government and the Charles Darwin University (CDU) have welcomed 63 international students back to Australia, with a flight from Singapore landing in Darwin (NT) on Monday, 30 November 2020.

CDU Vice-Chancellor, Professor Simon Maddocks, welcomed the arrival of the new and continuing students from mainland China, Hong Kong, Japan, Vietnam and Indonesia. The students are enrolled in a range of VET and Higher Education programs in Law, Nursing, IT, Education, Accounting and Engineering.

CDU has a comprehensive support program for students during their quarantine period including care packages, safety briefings, daily phone calls, virtual coffee catch ups and exercise classes, along with English language and employability workshops.

We offer every newly arrived student our warmest welcome – it’s so good to have you back with us! We look forward to seeing you on campus very soon. Read more

Australian states and territories are working directly with education providers to develop plans to welcome you back.

23 November 2020

  • We are very much looking forward to welcoming you back to Australia’s classrooms, campuses and communities as soon as we can, and careful planning is continuing in preparation for your safe arrival.   
  • Even though the global COVID-19 pandemic makes travel difficult right now, Australia’s strong public health response means we will be able to offer you a COVID-safe on-campus study experience, in line with Australian public health advice, as soon as conditions allow.
  • Australian states and territories are working directly with education providers to develop plans to welcome you back. The Northern Territory and South Australia will be the first jurisdictions in Australia to start small trial reopening programs.
  • Despite the current travel restrictions, the Australian Government has recommenced granting student visas.
  • If you are a new student, please first enrol at an education institution and then apply for a student visa, so that you are ready to travel to Australia when it is possible.
  • If you already hold a student visa and you are currently located in your home country, you may wish to consider continuing or commencing your studies online. Australian education providers offer a range of online learning and study load options – please refer to your education institution for further details.
  • Please remember that if you do already hold a student visa, online study done outside of Australia due to COVID-19 can count towards the Australian study requirement for a post-study work visa.
  • If you have already commenced studying online and do not have a student visa, we encourage you to apply for a student visa now, so that when borders re-open you can travel to Australia to continue your studies here.
  • It is important you are able to financially support yourself throughout your studies during your time in Australia. As a guide to calculate your living costs while living and studying in Australia, we recommend you consult www.studyinaustralia.gov.au/English/Live-in-Australia/living-costs
  • If you are already located in Australia, health and wellbeing support is available to all international students through education providers, government and community services. For further information, please visit www.studyinaustralia.gov.au/english/study-in-australia-student-support/health-and-wellbeing/health
  • We encourage you to stay in contact with your education provider to seek information and updates, and to continue to visit this website for national updates: www.studyinaustralia.gov.au/English/student-support
  • We recognise that this is a really challenging time for you, particularly when you and your family have made significant sacrifices for you to take up a world-class education in Australia.
  • Australia prides itself on being a safe, welcoming and multicultural country and we really look forward to welcoming you back as soon as possible.

21 July 2020

On 20 July the Australian Government announced a number of changes to student visa arrangements to support international students.

The changes are:

  • The Government will recommence granting student visas in all locations lodged outside Australia. This means when borders re-open, students will already have visas and be able to make arrangements to travel.
  • Eligibility requirements for a post-study work visa (Temporary Graduate visa (subclass 485) will be relaxed for applicants who are enrolled with an Australian education provider and have been impacted by COVID-19 and associated travel restrictions. Under these arrangements:
    • Existing and new student visa holders who undertake online study outside Australia because of COVID 19 will be able to count this towards the Australian Study Requirement.
    • Eligible graduates affected by travel restrictions will also be able to apply for and be granted a Temporary Graduate (subclass 485) visa outside Australia.
  • Additional time will be given for applicants to provide English language results where COVID-19 has disrupted access to these services. Additional time will also be provided to undertake biometric collection and health checks where COVID-19 has disrupted access to services

Australia prides itself on being a welcoming nation with a world-class education system and some of the lowest rates of COVID-19 in the world. These changes will help give international students confidence in their visa arrangements so that they can make plans to study in Australia when it is safe to do so.

We are here to help you make informed decisions about studying and living in Australia. No matter where you are in Australia or around the world, we are all #InThisTogether.

We encourage international students to visit the Department of Home Affairs website for visa updates and http://australia.gov.au for the latest news, updates and advice from government agencies across Australia (English and in-language).


Know where to go for the right information.

1.     Download the Australian Government’s "Coronavirus Australia" app for the latest official advice and real-time updates directly to your mobile phone. It is available via the Apple App StoreGoogle Play, or via a WhatsApp channel on iOS or Android.

2.     Whether you're in Australia or abroad, follow us at @StudyAUOfficial for the most up to date information. 

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3.       If you are concerned about your enrolment, fees or other issues related to your studies, contact the Australian Government dedicated email international.students@dese.gov.au or hotline for international students 1300 981 621 (8am to 8pm AEDST Monday to Friday - calls within Australia only).

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