You maybe remember that awful post I did a couple of years ago; well it's happening again and this time the missus is coming with me. All this time grounded enabled me to churn quite a few OzB sourced credit cards and accumulate the 455,000 points necessary for two first class tickets on Emirates from MEL to CDG.
We're currently sitting in the dreadful Marhaba lounge in Melbourne airport; the Qantas First lounge I was posting from 2 years ago is sadly closed, as is the Emirates business lounge. Once we board the plane I expect the experience to improve markedly!
Like last time; I'll post some pics to Instagram as the journey unfolds.
Meanwhile, I'll get the ball rolling by answering a few likely questions:
"How did you get permission to leave Australia?"
It's actually pretty easy to get a travel exemption if you can demonstrate that you're leaving for more than 3 months. Key points are to show that you have the means to support yourself, the necessary visas / passports allowing you to stay etc.
I should be clear about my opinion on this though: I think it's absolutely absurd and outrageous that Australia continues to deny their own citizens agency to leave the country. Were it not so simple to gain an exemption we would have simply left via the NZ "back door".
"What about COVID? It's a global pandemic!!! You're crazy!"
Well, we're both fully vaccinated. We weren't eligible for vaccines when we got them, so we walked in and asked for AstraZeneca and they just gave them to us. Handy to be vaccinated when you're heading to Europe, but let's see how much hassle it is getting them to believe in these super fake looking vaccine certificates the Australian Government gave us.
As for risk; I was actually in Europe for a few months last year also; obviously unvaccinated at the time. It didn't worry to much as I'm not in a risk category. Life goes on.