Free travel within or outside Australia has not been allowed since the border closed on March 20, 2020 – almost 600 days ago.
The return however depends on the destination in Australia, all except NSW, Victoria and ACT still requiring hotel quarantine and therefore strict flight limits.
The Weir family does not go on vacation but reunites with their family.
Ms Weir, her husband Kieran and their children Farran, nine, and Niven, seven, are desperate to see their loved ones in the UK.
“For the children, seeing their grandparents for the first time in three and a half years will be emotional,” Ms. Weir said.
Ms. Weir admitted that she was “excited but also a little terrified” to travel amid all the rules again.
“Until we’re in the air, I don’t feel like we can completely relax,” she said.
The family have been traveling to Australia since Mr Weir lost his video game job earlier this year and will return home to Sydney from the UK on December 31.
Because the family has permanent residence, they were prohibited from leaving like citizens.
While exemptions could be claimed, a severe lack of seats on planes due to strict travel rules made returning difficult, so a gamble to leave.
There are currently 46,800 Australians registered with authorities as wishing to return.
The travel ban meant Ms. Weir missed her grandfather’s funeral.
“I’m not sure this is something that I will ever recover from,” she said.
Now that they are almost on their way to England, her children have a special dream.
“My children are praying for a white Christmas,” she said.
First flights to and from reopened states
The first flight to Sydney, where passengers will not be quarantined by police and charged up to $ 5,000 for a family, will be the QF12.
It lands from Los Angeles at 6 a.m. tomorrow with celebrations expected.
Some airlines have continued to fly to Australia throughout the pandemic, but with only a handful of passengers allowed on each incoming plane, cancellations have been likely and prices high.
The earliest flight from Sydney is at 9:05 am on Singapore Airlines to Singapore.
Melbourne Airport will also be busy next week.
The airport said 13 airlines are expected to carry up to 34,000 passengers – with five other carriers carrying up to 94,000 per week, by Christmas.
‘Freedom Day’ in photos: drinks, haircuts, gyms and shopping