TRAVEL ALERT PRIOR TO VISITING
With the current challenges facing our tourism industry and uncertainty on what the next 6-12 months will look like for global travel, it’s now more than ever that we need to band together and look after one another.
Please don't hesitate to reach out to our team email: email@example.com phone: 02 4981 2964 or the Port Stephens Council Business Support team email: firstname.lastname@example.org phone: 0428 115 124.
There is so much information regarding COVI-19 (Coronavirus) that the following quicklinks might help you find the information faster.
Australian Government - latest updates
NSW Government - COVID-19 (Coronavirus)
Business Australia - Business guide to COVID-19 (Coronavirus)
NSW Coronavirus Health Information - 1800 020 080 (general advice)
Healthdirect - 1800 022 222 (if you have symptoms)
Smart Traveller - 1300 555 135 (within Australia) +61 2 6261 3305 (outside Australia)
MyGov - 13 23 07
Lifeline Australia - 13 11 14
Beyond Blue - 1300 22 4636
Moneysmart - moneysmart.gov.au
National Debt Helpline - 1800 007 007
Safe Work NSW - 13 10 50
Tenants Union of NSW - 1800 251 101
Australian Banking Association - 02 8298 0417
Fair Work Ombudsman - 13 13 94
Law Access and Legal Aid NSW - 1300 888 529
On 24 March 2020, the Prime Minister announced a ban on Australians travelling overseas under the Biosecurity Act 2015. This will help prevent travellers returning to Australia with coronavirus.
There are limited exceptions, for example to allow people to return home if their normal place of residence is overseas. This process is managed by the Department of Home Affairs.
If you do secure an exemption and plan to depart Australia, be aware that flights may be difficult to find. Read our travel advice for your planned destination before booking, as many countries have closed their borders to foreign citizens or have changing entry requirements.
Australians must avoid all non-essential domestic travel. Read our travel advice for within Australia.
For advice on travelling outside of Australia, visit Smart Traveller
Self-isolation means you must stay at home for 14 days. You must self-isolate if you have COVID-19, or you have been in close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19, or you arrived in Australia after midnight on 15 March 2020.
How to self-isolate information.
For all visitors to Port Stephens we ask you to follow the Government guidelines currently in place regarding travel, social gatherings and social distancing.
We will try and keep as up to date as possible, however things are changing on a daily and sometimes an hourly basis.
While some of our local operators have made the tough decision to temporarily shut down until further notice online purchases for travel in the future, when the bans have been lifted are still available, however, if you are in doubt we recommend you contact the business direct.
While the Port Stephens Visitor Information Centre is closed to the public, our team are available Monday to Friday to help with any enquiries you may have. You can phone directly on 1800 808 900 or email email@example.com
For all general travel enquiries relating to the current COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic please visit the Smart Traveller Site.
For further health advice and downloadable assets on being prepared for COVID-19, protecting yourself and others from getting sick and coping with stress during the outbreak. Information and downloads are available here.
If you have any health questions regarding COVID-19, you can call the National Coronavirus Helpline on 1800 020 080. Healthdirect have resources that can answer your Frequently asked questions (FAQs)
Advice on the COVID-19 (coronavirus) infection for people living, working and visiting NSW.
What you need to know about the virus, statistics, confirmed cases, symptoms and getting tested.
The NSW Government has put together a simple 'find the facts'.
How to protect yourself and others from Coronavirus.
Businesses impacted by COVID-19 can call the hotline 13 28 46.
From Friday 15 May, the following is allowed:
For businesses that can open, each business owner can make decisions about what makes the most sense for their situation.
Venues where a large number of people are in one place can increase the risk of spreading viruses.
An indoor gathering takes place within a single enclosed area (a single room or area). Essential activities include: essential workplaces, health care settings, pharmacies, food shopping, schools and universities, public transport and airports. These essential indoor gatherings must apply social distancing and good hygiene practices and be able to maintain a distance of 1.5 metres between people.
A full list of essential and nonessential gatherings can be found at the NSW Government.
In response to the issues facing our local business community as a result of COVID-19 (coronavirus), Council has established a Business Support Service to connect business with information on government support, advice and professional services.
Call our Small Business Support Hotline on 02 4988 0255 or email firstname.lastname@example.org and our team will help connect you with the advice you need.
It is a challenging time and the tourism industry is being widely impacted by measures introduced to control the spread of COVID-19.
Destination NSW will provide regular updates to keep industry informed via this website, our industry newsletter Insights (with frequency increased to twice weekly - Wednesday and Friday), and Destination NSW’s social media channels (LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter).
In response to the coronavirus pandemic, Tourism Australia is hosting a series of weekly webinars with different guest speakers. Please subscribe to Essentials to get updates on how to register for future webinars.
The Government is providing financial assistance to Australians to support them through the economic impact of the Coronavirus. The Government is temporarily allowing individuals affected by the Coronavirus to access some of their superannuation.
Eligible pensioners, seniors, carers and student payment recipients will receive two separate $750 Economic Support payments.
Retirees whose savings are being affected by financial market volatility can take advantage of a temporary reduction in minimum superannuation drawdown requirements.
Social security deeming rates are also being reduced in recognition of the impact of low interest rates on retiree savings.
The Government's economic response targets areas:
Visit the Australian Treasury Economic Response to the Coronavirus for detailed information.
$2.3 billion health boost and economic stimulus.
This package has two key components — $700 million in extra health funding and $1.6 billion in tax cuts to support business and jobs.
The key elements of the Help for Small Businesses are available to read in full detail.
Eligible employers can apply for a wage subsidy of 50% of the apprentice’s or trainee’s wage for up to 9 months from 1 January 2020 to 30 September 2020. Where a small business is not able to retain an apprentice, the subsidy will be available to a new employer that employs that apprentice.
Visit the Australian Government supporting apprentices and trainees for more information.
Eligible individuals affected by the coronavirus can access up to $10,000 of their superannuation in 2019-20 and a further $10,000 in 2020-21. You will be able to apply for early release of your superannuation from mid-April 2020.
Individuals will not need to pay tax on amounts released and the money they withdraw will not affect Centrelink or Veterans’ Affairs payments.
Early access to superannuation details can be found here.
The cashflow boost will assist businesses to manage cashflow challenges and help businesses retain their employees.
The Government is providing up to $100,000 to eligible small and medium sized businesses, and not-for-profits (including charities) that employ people, with a minimum payment of $20,000. The payment will provide cash flow support to businesses with a turnover of less than $50 million that employ staff.
The ATO will deliver the payment as a credit to your business upon lodgment of your activity statements. Where this places the business in a refund position, the ATO will deliver the refund within 14 days. The payment will be tax free.
For more information, visit the Australian Government Business website - Boosting cash flow for employers.
Cash flow assistance for business fact sheet.
Last updated Sunday 22 March 2020 - Easy to read factsheets
Temporarily reducing superannuation minimum drawdown rates fact sheet.
Boosting cash flow for employers fact sheet.
Temporary relief for financially distressed businesses fact sheet.
Supporting apprentices and trainees fact sheet.
Support for Coronavirus-affected regions and communities fact sheet.
Supporting the flow of credit fact sheet.
If you are having some financial difficulty Australian banks have hardship teams ready to help. If you’re dealing with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic there are practical ways your bank can help. The type of assistance will depend on individual circumstances.
Australian banks will defer loan repayments for small businesses affected by COVID-19 for six months.
If your small business has been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic and lock downs, contact your bank online today.
The Australian Banking Association has a list of small business FAQs.
Coronavirus is likely to have a big impact on the mental health of business owners. In these challenging times, it is inevitable that many of us will struggle, including experiencing anxiety, distress, and concern in relation to the coronavirus (COVID-19) and its impacts.
Support and resources are available to you at all times. You are not alone.
Here is some information on your mental health & wellbeing during the Coronaviris COVID-19 outbreak.
Lifeline — 13 11 14
Beyond Blue — 1300 224 636
MensLine Australia — 1300 789 978
Suicide Call Back Service — 1300 659 467
Kids Helpline — 1800 551 800
Headspace — 1800 650 890
Mates in Construction - 1300 642 111
Yacaaba Centre - 02 4984 2176
Tomaree Neighbourhood Centre - 02 4984 6220
Find out about workplace entitlements and obligations if you or your workers are affected by the outbreak of COVID-19.
Information including stand downs from work, working arrangements, entitlements, WHS (Work, Health and Safety) and obligations.
Australian Government Fair Work Ombudsman - Call 13 13 94
Fair Trading NSW - Call 13 32 20
Now is the time to learn as much as you can about your business. The online information is endless.
Here are just a few ideas of social channels to follow, newsletters to sign up to, resources, webinars, tips and tricks.
The page will be updated regularly with new opportunities and resources.
Training and Education
YouTube channels to follow -
Facebook pages to follow -
Subscribe to the following newsletters -
Destination Port Stephens webinars and notes;
Money Smart COVID-19 making financial decisions https://moneysmart.gov.au