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India is overcoming the challenges of COVID-19

We all went through nearly challenging 2 years with ups and downs, loosing our loved ones and without able to see our families over the period, due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Fortunately, now we can look at the light of end of the darkest period as the shadow of Covid gradually diminishes from the society.

 Recently India has reported 97 deaths during the past week, which set to record less than 100 deaths from the Covid-19, a first in almost after 2 years of the pandemic. According to this Sunday’s data from Indian states, they have recorded similar result of death toll lastly on 30th March – 5th April 2020, which about 2 years back before the imposition of total lockdown over the nation.

Since, 31st March 2020, the first daily death toll reduced to single numbers on last Sunday, by just reported 8 Covid losses from across India, which just two states are pending to report its data. However, we can see significant change in fatality rate as both weekly and daily death tolls continue to dip down since earlier from this month.

According to the reported figures of active cases over the period, this week (March 21-27) recorded over 11,400 cases, but lowering to the previous week’s tally of 15,820. After April 20-26,2020 (fresh infections of 10,585), this was the least weekly fresh cases count that India has recorded over the time.

Since the peak of 3rd wave of active cases on 23rd January 2022, it’s progressively declining the current active cases within the country as well as in every state and Union territory of India without exclusion. There are around 15,800 active cases still exist of coronavirus in India. But isn’t it a new hope to conquer this pandemic from us?

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Skies reopen, Indians flock to airlines desks

Many flights, even more memories!
International flights will be resuming after a two-year gap. From Sunday 27th March, over 3,249 weekly flights will be operating from India. As the bubble systems are easing for travel destinations, there is an increase in connecting flights, due to the increase, airfares will decrease to a manageable price for example Gaura Travel currently has an offer from India to Australia from just $899 – to book your flights visit Gaura Travel Flights. IndiGo will have the highest international departures on a standalone basis among all airlines, operating 505 weekly flights.

“Very important day’ said Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia as the airline industry returns to normalcy. An important day not just for the aviation companies but also for the common man. Many individuals have been separated from loved ones due to the inability to travel overseas. The relaxation of restrictions is a piece of welcomed news for everyone as airline companies resume to full capacity from the 27th of March.

Short and sweet
As the restrictions are easing, foreign airlines will be able to offer one-stop layovers for travellers flying from India to the rest of the world. Airlines will be utilizing their air hubs to make travellers’ journeys as short as possible as the ‘air bubble’ arrangements meant a longer overall travel time between destinations.

Shorter travel times indicate lesser travel fares, offering an unmissable opportunity for everyone to travel. Though air ticket prices will not lower to pre-COVID-19 costs, they will remain at a comfortable median.

Hello World! India is back in the game
Multiple airlines have applied for approval of their international schedules for this summer which will be effective from the 27th of March to 29th October. Senior DGGA Official said “A total of 1,466 departures per week by six Indian carries have been approved to 43 destinations in 27 countries” offering an endless selection of destinations for travellers to choose from. After a long 2-year gap between pre and post COVID-19 individuals and families are eager to reunite with their loved ones.

Indira Gandhi International Airport is the country’s largest airport, located in the national capital of India is set to witness a significant increase in departures in the first week of April. As Indian carriers are prepared for normal international flights, various foreign airlines, including Emirates, Virgin Atlantic, and LOT Polish have announced their plans to offer flights to and from India.

India is back in the airline game, pushing full steam ahead to get travellers to their destinations and welcome tourists. Sunday 27th of March signifies a monumental day as airlines return to normalcy and resume overseas flights.

Your travel is our best interest
Get booking as Indian skies are open and ready for you! Several airlines are operating flights to and from India with a shorter layover. Embark on a journey with your loved ones this year and fly with Gaura Travel and snag the best deals possible! To book your tickets, visit Flights – Booking them made easier – Gaura Travel for all your travel needs in one place.

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Events Featured Tips for travellers

Australia will recognize higher education degrees completed in India.

The partnership between India and Australia is set to grow
It appears as though the world is returning to some sort of normalcy after the pandemic, on the 22nd March 2022, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi took part in a virtual meeting to discuss the mutual growth for the two countries as Australia is set to invest over $200 million to bump up the economic relations with India. This investment will include partnerships in education, research, green steel, and space.

One of the prominent issues which take Indian international students by halt is the official recognition of their higher education qualification. Proving it tedious to even repeat a few classes to level up to Australia’s education grade. Australia recognizing degrees completed in India exhibits that Indian students continue to be a vital part of Australia’s community. This new advancement will allow international students to use their completed Indian degrees in Australia, giving them a great opportunity to travel to Australia.

Students will be able to travel between Australia and India with no limitations on validating their overseas qualifications.

The two-way degree recognition arrangement truly eases the transition process for students wanting to continue studying in India or Australia, allowing them mobility, web, and in-person blended learning. Coming as a much-needed bonus for international students, ‘This is very important for us because of the number of Indian students in Australia. Mutual recognitions mean you can do a degree in Australia, and it’ll be recognized in India as well.’ Says Mr. Harsh V Shringla, India’s Foreign Secretary.

The new arrangements promise consistent career growth for all Indian International students as there are plenty of career paths in Australia, laying the groundwork for those who wish to study overseas. It is also a great head start for students to plan their travel to Australia or India.

The task force will deliver a mechanism for education qualification recognition between India and Australia by the end of the year, with implementation taking place in 2023.

Opportunity to travel & an economic partnership
Australia’s tourism industry is bound to gain some serious traction from India in the following years due to the investment. Benefiting from investment, international students and travellers will be greeted with much more opportunity than ever. Australia and India are bridging the gap in more than you think, the social and economic growth will grant a bright future for individuals wanting to travel. The multi-million-dollar investment proves to be a substantial growth for the tourism industry.

As the solidarity between the two countries serves as a gateway for more travel opportunities. Economic growth is a leeway to support jobs and business in both countries. The support for jobs and businesses means that there is a mutual connection for individuals from India and Australia.

Plan your journey with Gaura Travel
Are you ready to plan your trip? Well buckle in and start planning your next vacation to India or Australia with your loved ones. Gaura Travel offers a wide selection of travel packages to suit all your travel needs. Make this year a memorable one with your family with Gaura Travel. Visit gauratravel.com.au to book your flights.

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Featured

After a 2 year wait, India resumes international flights.

This is great news for overseas travellers as they can resume their visits to India. The reopening of international borders has been long-awaited, there has been a pent-up need to travel to India for passengers waiting to see their family and loved ones.

After 2 years of suspended travel, India will reopen its international borders on March 27th, 2022. Travel industry professionals expect flight fares will be much lower than exorbitant bubble charges, but travellers are made aware that plane fares are unlikely to be close to their pre-pandemic prices. It is estimated that with the reopening of Indian international borders, there is a high opportunity for more connectivity/choices between countries, leading to lower fares. The Ukraine conflict will undoubtedly cast its shadow on these expectations.

The aviation minister says “international operations shall be subject to strict adherence to (current) health ministry guidelines’ India’s strict health guidelines had prohibited the international borders from opening in December 2021 but was abruptly cancelled due to the COVID-19 variant Omicron.

COVID-19 Restrictions in India

From February 14, Individuals from 82 approved countries (including the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, France, Japan, and Thailand) are no longer required to take a pre-departure test to visit India, however, they must present proof of vaccination. Unvaccinated arrivals will need to provide a negative COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours.

How Russian airspace closure impacts routes to India

Unrestricted travel will give individuals more options to choose from, but the rising fuel costs will increase the overall ticket prices. American Airlines and many other airlines have stopped using Russian airspace to fly to India and making additional stops to refuel. On Monday United airlines announced they are suspending Delhi-San Francisco and Mumbai-Newark flight routes as they are no longer fuel or time-efficient as Russian airspace is out of bounds. They will continue shorter Delhi-San Francisco slights. Air India is one of the few airlines that continues to utilize Russia’s airspace.

source1 source2

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Featured Tips for travellers

Australia Celebrates International Travel

Your Toolkit To A Perfect Travel

Australia is on track with its increase in international arrivals during the second week of borders fully opening. Two years have been too long to wait, and travellers are excited to fly down under. Australia has been the most sorted after destination, offering beautiful scenic visuals and tourist-friendly hot spots to please everyone.

Country Manager for India and Tourism Australia stated, “Our research has consistently shown that there is a huge pent-up demand for travel to Australia amongst Indian travellers.” Confirming the growth of passengers.

It is important to know the latest updates regarding international travel guidelines before passengers arrive in Australia. Gaura has curated a perfect tool kit to ensure all our passengers are well equipped and informed before they board their plane. Stay up to date on the most recent updates for international travel.

We encourage our passengers to be well educated before they travel, to ensure all safety precautions are taken, follow the below checklist and be prepared.

Before departing India, travellers need to provide a:

  • Valid and current visa
  • COVID-19 vaccination certificate with 2 doses (Covishield & Covaxin are recognized by Australia’s Therapeutic Good Administration TGA)
  • Negative rapid antigen test (RAT) under medical supervision which needs to be done 24 hours prior to boarding a plane. Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) tests need to be taken 72 hours before departure.
  • Digital copy of Passenger Declaration is mandatory to be submitted 72 hours before departure.

Upon arrival in Australia:

  • All travellers need to perform a self-monitored Rapid Antigen Test within 24 hours of arrival in Australia. RAT results need to be reported to the respective state authority if the test has resulted positive.
  • Tourists travelling to South Australia will need to undertake a PCR within 24 hours of arriving at SA. Tourists who arrive in Western Australia will need to undertake a RAT within 12 of arrival.
  • Travellers need to comply with the requirements and obligations of the state or territory they arrive in, and any other state or territory they plan to travel to.

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In Over 2 Years, First Tourist Flights Land in Australia.

It is a great day, smiling faces fill Melbourne’s airport. As families reunite and excited travellers wait to explore Australia. Fully vaccinated travellers have been allowed to set foot in Australia and say G’day.

We made it to the other end Australia! The borders are finally open, marking a significant milestone for the nation. International flights will be increasing as individuals choose to travel Down Under. Australia is delighted to welcome fully vaccinated tourists from Singapore, Phuket, Auckland Delhi, Doha, London, Dubai, and Tokyo.

The tourism and aviation industry has been waiting for this moment for over 2 years and is thoroughly joyed to see flights full of international travellers. Individuals visiting their families overseas couldn’t be happier to see their loved ones in Melbourne airport.

In hopes of jumpstarting international travel, Tourism Australia is investing over $40 million on their campaign ‘Don’t go small, go Australia’ to showcase what tourists can expect when they travel Down Under

“As an industry, we haven’t had the summer period we were hoping for, however, in this industry there is always a point in which things start to turn around and today is that point,” said Ms. Jayne Hrdlicka, CEO of Virgin Australia Group.

Tourism Australia data shows that about 9.5 million international visitors had landed in Australia in 2019 before the border closures which put the tourism and aviation industry at a standstill. The decreased international arrivals since the border closure in March 2020 are expected to increase. “In the next 24 hours some 56 flights are going to touch down in Australia and that number is only going to grow”, a former managing director of Tourism Australia, said.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison stated “We are going from COVID cautious to COVID confident when it comes to travel” which is a sign of progression and a breath of relief. Nevertheless, China, one of Australia’s biggest tourism markets will be absent as Chinese travellers are not yet allowed to visit Australia. “That’s why we’re focusing our campaign on those markets that are open to travel to Australia,” Mr. Morrison said.

So far, so good.  Australia has come a long way dealing with snap lockdowns and borders closures, and it is set in stone that we are moving forward in the right direction.

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In nearly two years, Australia has finally opened its borders for international visitors and tourists

Australia has imposed one of the strictest restrictions and travel bans since March 2020 due to COVID-19, but this is all changing today. Prime Minister Scott Morrison celebrates the opening of Australian Borders with a cheerful and optimistic smile. Fully vaccinated travellers and all visa holders can travel down under. The Prime Minister said the condition is you must be double vaccinated to come to Australia,” as he reiterates the rules and expects all travellers to abide by it.

Wait is over for International travellers

This is the perfect opportunity for international families and friends to reunite in Australia as the borders opening is a wonderful news for international families patiently waiting to visit their family. This good news brings forth and opportunity to explore and discover new destinations within Australia, “This is the exciting announcement the aviation sector has been waiting for,” Australian Airports Association (AAA) Chief Executive James Goodwin said.

With the reopening of Australia, international travelers have a few things to look out for, double vaccinated individuals no longer require to quarantine where as unvaccinated passengers are required to complete a 14-day hotel quarantine at their own expense and require a valid travel exemption. Unvaccinated travelers will be subject to state and territory quarantine requirements.

Western Australia opens on 3rd March 2022

Over 50 international planes are scheduled to land on Monday 21st February as all international travellers can enter all Australian states except Western Australia. Western Australia is set to open its borders on the 3rd of March and will require visitors to be vaccinated by the COVID-19 booster shot. Majority of Australian citizens were allowed to fly back since last year, but foreigners and tourists have had to wait the gruelling duration of international travel bans due to the widespread pandemic.

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Featured Tips for travellers

International Border Closures to Finally End, Complete Reopening on February 21st

Prime Minister Scott Morrison has just announced that international borders will reopen for all visa holders who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

Australian borders have been slowly reopening since min December 2021, ensuring that family members of citizens, permanent residents and international students the first to return.

After new medical advice, Scott Morrison has said the new border rules would come into place on 21st February, “The condition is you must be double vaccinated to come to Australia,” he said.

Along with the reopening of Australian borders comes good news for the tourism sector since the past two years have been nothing but drought for the tourism businesses during the border closures.

“Over the next two weeks they’ll get the opportunity both for visitors to be coming and for them to be gearing up to welcome international visitors back to Australia,” Mr Morrison said.

Fully Vaccinated, Travel Easy

Since the borders are reopening this February 21st, the mandate has been to be fully vaccinated which means that you have successfully received two doses of the COVID-19 vaccination. Individuals who have not received two doses of COVID-19 vaccination will need to apply for an exemption to travel into Australia, “If you’re double vaccinated, we look forward to welcoming you back to Australia,” Morrison said during a media briefing.

The decision to relax the Australian Borders was taken as Australia has already been riddled by the new variant Omicron therefore the double vaccinated travellers do not pose extra risks.

Double vaccinated travellers still need to get a negative result on the PCR test three days before travel or perform a supervised Rapid Antigen test 24 hours before travel to ensure exemption from quarantine.

Western Australia is still abiding by the Covid zero strategy and is expected to keep in place the rule of 14 day quarantine and arrival caps which will prevent a large number of international tourists from entering the state.

Strict border rules and snap lockdowns have helped Australia keep coronavirus cases far lower than other comparable countries, in saying that cases have hit a record break height fuelled the new variant Omicron.

Find LIVE updates on:

The Age:

https://www.theage.com.au/national/australia-news-live-barnaby-joyce-text-fallout-continues-nation-s-total-covid-19-cases-continue-to-grow-20220207-p59u9d.html?post=p53bhl#p53bhl

ABC News:

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2022-02-07/international-covid-borders-to-reopen-scott-morrison/100810580

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After Tata takeover, a special message for passengers from Air India ‘welcome to the future of Air India’

The operations department at Air India has stated that this message would be read by pilots on every flight departing today.

The day after the Tata Group took over Air India from the Government of India, a special message was replayed for all passengers travelling on all of Air India’s flights. On Thursday, the aviation company’s operations department stated that this message will be read by all pilots on every flight departing today.

“Dear Guests, this is your Captain speaking… Welcome aboard this historic flight, which marks a special event. Today, Air India officially becomes a part of the Tata Group again, after seven decades,” Captain Varun Khandelwal said to passengers on Air India flight AI665 travelling from Delhi to Mumbai.

“We look forward to serving you on this and every Air India flight with renewed commitment and passion. Welcome to the future of Air India! We hope you enjoy the journey. Thank you,” he added to his message.

The bid of Rs 18,000 which is the highest bid placed by the Tata Group as they took over the airline from the Indian Government on Thursday. The handing over ceremony at the Airlines House was attended by the Tata sons Chairman N Chandrasekaran met Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the national capital before the ceremony.

In a press release, Tata Sons said: “We philosophically agree with the Prime Minister’s vision for the aviation sector, of making it affordable and ensuring it contributes to boosting ‘Ease of Living’ for citizens.”

In an internal letter to Air India employees after the handing over, Chandrasekaran wrote: “My first flight was with Air India in December 1986, and I will never forget how special it felt to be onboard, or the exhilaration as we soared into the sky… today is the beginning of a new chapter. The nation’s eyes are on us, waiting to see what we achieve together. To build the airline our country needs, we need to look to the future.”

Air India’s official Twitter bio read ‘a brand-new chapter unfolds for Air India as part of the Tata Group. Two iconic names come together to embark on a voyage of excellence. Looking forward to soaring high propelled by our rich legacy & a shared mission to serve our nation.

Adding to the good news, we currently have flights available with Air India! Book flights for you and your loved ones and enjoy the beauty of India and experience the quality of Air India.

Book your flights at Flights – Gaura Travel or contact us on 1300 359 463. We’re here for you 24/7 and every step of the way!

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Australia accepting RATs from inbound travellers in crucial overhaul

Australia will be drastically easing its requirements regarding COVID-19 testing mainly for inbound travellers to ease the current situation of how the country manages international travel during the pandemic.

On Friday, the federal government confirmed that returning travelers will be given the option to do a rapid antigen test (RAT) 24 hours before their flight rather than having to take an expensive PCR test within three days before travel.

Travelers who have been infected by COVID-19 overseas will have their down time reduced from 14 days to 7, before they can fly home.

Health Minister Greg Hunt and Home Affairs Minister Karen Andrew made an announcement on late Friday afternoon, confirming by The Age and Sydney Morning Herald that the overhaul was impending. These new changes will come into effect from 1 am on Sunday.

Accepting RAT tests from travelers aligns with Australia accepting RATs as proper diagnosis. “moves within Australia to accept RATs for diagnostic purposes”, the minister said, keeping in mind the current PCR testing difficulties to be reviewed regularly, “taking into account the domestic and international epidemiology”.

Qantas also confirmed on Friday as they were working to ease the requirement that all passengers submit a medical documents 7 days before their scheduled flights, for some stranded customers, this meant they would have to wait 21 days before they could fly home.

“we are looking at removing the requirement for people flying into Australia to submit their medical clearance seven days before travel and instead have their documents verified at the airport before their flight,” spokesman at Qantas said. “We hope to have this in place next week.”

These changes have been forced after The Age and Sydney Morning Herald highlighted multiple cases of Australians who were infected by COVID-19 overseas had long delays in returning home due to government and airline rules.

The rule change of accepting RAT tests for inbound travelers will significantly lower their cost of travelling overseas, as PCR tests from private clinics costing from $150 to $300 per person whereas a RAT test can cost as little as $10.

As it stands, the Australian Government requires vaccinated travelers who have tested positive for COVID-19 overseas to wait 14 days before they fly back to Australia. For those who experience “viral shedding” – meaning the person continues to test positive after the 14 day isolation while being asymptomatic and no longer contagious need a medical certificate to fly to Australia.

Qantas’s 7 day processing period meant that some passengers had to wait 21 days after testing positive to return home. At a federal level, “shedding” travelers will have local testing guidelines to distinguish if they need a RAT or a PCR test.

In hopes of soothing the situation, Dean Long, the Chief Executive of the Australian Federal of Travel Agents, the peak industry for agents and online booking services, said airlines should not further delay people returning home.

“What we would like to see is that all travel providers follow the clear policy of the Australian Government and not place additional restraint or burden on people travelling to Australia,” Mr Long said.

“We also call on the Australian government to reduce the 14-day waiting period given that Australia is no longer following a COVID-zero elimination strategy.”

Melbourne Airport’s chief of aviation, Lorie Argus, called for all inbound international testing to be scrapped, stating that they did not protect public health as Australia was reporting tens of thousands of COVID-19 cases a day.

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Singapore has taken off from the list of Omicron ‘At-risk’ nations

India has removed Singapore from the list of Omicron risk countries

The removal of Singapore from at-risk countries has become a big relief to the Indian diaspora due to pent up travel demand between Singapore and India.

Read More:

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/business/india-business/omicron-singapore-removed-from-the-list-of-at-risk-countries/articleshow/88189567.cms

Singapore no longer in ‘at-risk’ list amid Omicron scare

The central government has removed Singapore from the list of ‘at-risk’ countries which allows international travellers to transfer through Singapore and will not need to undergo further Covid-19 tests or quarantine.

Read More: https://www.livemint.com/news/india/india-removes-singapore-from-at-risk-list-amid-omicron-scare-details-here-11639046679207.html

The current list of ‘at-risk’ nations removes Singapore, by classifying it as one of the countries which can move through for international travellers.

Read More:

https://www.deccanchronicle.com/nation/current-affairs/091221/india-removes-singapore-from-list-of-at-risk-nations.html

The Modi Government removes Singapore from ‘At-risk’ list amid Omicron threat

Read More:

https://www.india.com/travel/articles/omicron-latest-news-today-december-9-india-removes-singapore-from-at-risk-list-amid-omicron-threat-modi-government-covid-coronavirus-uk-south-africa-brazil-botswana-china-ghana-mauritius-ne-5131360/

Singapore dropped from India’s ‘at-risk’ nations list

On Thursday the Union Health Ministry has removed Singapore from the list of ‘at-risk’ countries, by allowing travellers from the Southeast Asian nation. Therefore, they will no longer require to go through additional quarantine measures upon arrival in India.

Read More:

https://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/omicron-singapore-dropped-from-india-s-at-risk-nations-list-details-here-101639052570779.html

In a statement, Singapore Airlines said that move from at-risk nations means “passengers arriving into India from Singapore will no longer subjected to additional arrival protocols specified for countries categorised as ‘at-risk’ by Indian authorities. These additional protocols include a mandatory on-arrival RT-PCR test and seven days of home quarantine, with a follow-up RT-PCR test on day eight.”

So is that the safest place to be at right now? You bet!

And we are pleased to share that we are there for you 24/ 7 and fly our charter flights over the time no matter what!

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Charter Flights

Final Boarding Call For December

Omicron classified as a ‘super mild’ variant

With weeks to go for Christmas and the New Year, travellers and families are scrambling to secure last minute tickets to be with their loved ones and explore the wonders of India.

This is not the time to ‘umm’ and ‘aah’. This is the time to grab these seats before someone else does. We have a number of Charter Flights operating in December, so jump on board!

Book with us and travel to India in December and make up for all that lost time.

The December Effect

There is something about December and travelling to India. There is no better way to mark the end of the year than to spend time with loved ones back home, especially when you don’t have to worry about quarantine or applying for exemptions.

Many families in Australia know that this is the time of the year when things wind down. Work, business and the hectic lives we lead…they all pause for a few weeks before kicking off again in the new year.

Just as we did when all borders were closed, this time as well, we have launched a BRAND NEW series of CHARTER FLIGHTS from Australia to India across the following dates:

  • Friday, 17 December
  • Sunday, 19 December
  • Monday, 20 December
  • Friday, 24 December

Gaura Travel will also directly operate charter flights from India to Australia for the following dates:

  • Thursday, 16 December
  • Saturday, 18 December
  • Sunday, 19 December
  • Thursday, 23 December

In other words this time of the year becomes the perfect time to fly to India and catch-up with those who have missed you and have hoped for you to be able to make it back home.

And then of course there are those who have had to put their plans of holidaying in India on the backburner. But now even they can bring their great Indian vacation dream back to life.

So hurry, book your seats before it all sells out.

The Omicron effect (or the lack of)

As per South African reports, coronavirus experts in the country are excited to see that the new Omicron variant might be less damaging than the Delta variant.

The Omicron variant is seen to be much milder and is seen to be less lethal in its impact on humans. This means that the world only must cope with a mutant that is showing signs of being far less threatening.

Scott Morrison, the Prime Minister of Australia has already categorically denied the possibility of further lockdowns and has instead urged state leaders to continue on with their reopening plans.

Medical professionals do believe that most Covid vaccines, including the Pfizer, Moderna and AstraZeneca jabs, are designed to protect against variants to a certain degree, similar to how they protected against previous variants (Delta, Alpha etc.)

The message is clear – yes, we have a new variant but increased knowledge about its behaviours and keeping the faith in the vaccination rollout and the overall strategy will help us continue with our travel plans with more reassurance on our safety.

Hey travellers, we have dealt with ‘bigger and badder’ villains more effectively; let us not worry about the sidekicks. 

Make this a December to Remember

Flights are a ‘go’ and they will take off as planned. But we hope they do so with you on it!

So, call us and book your seats before we run out of them!

We can guarantee you this: every other person on the plane will be vaccinated and will have just returned a negative COVID test. Is that the safest place to be at right now? You bet!

You can reach our knowledgeable team 24/7. We look forward to talking soon!

Sources:

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Featured

National Cabinet Meeting pursues to a suppression strategy

Recently, National Cabinet met to discuss Australia’s Covid-19 retort and concern on new Omicron strain.

According to the update of Chief Medical Officer Professor Paul Kelly, WHO has declared the Omicron variant first found in Southern Africa on 24 November 2021 and currently six cases have been detected in Australia. All cases found in Australia have mild symptoms or asymptomatic and are in quarantine.

Australia’s Covid-19 vaccine roll out continue to increase and up to date over 39.2 million Covid-19 vaccines doses have been administrated in Australia. National Cabinet noted that majority of susceptible population have received their Covid-19 vaccines and Australia has sufficient supplies of booster shots available in regarding to vaccine roll out program.

Omicron variant and government response

Professor Paul Kelly further advised that Australia is in the initial stage of understanding the new Omicron variant, and at this stage there’s inadequate evidence that vaccines and treatments are less effective against Omicron than other variants. Hence, there’s no clear evidence at this stage that Omicron is a more acute disease.

Therefore, the Commonwealth and states have already acted on medical advice to implement travel restrictions, revised quarantine, and home isolation requirements. The Commonwealth has implemented a temporary travel ban on non-citizens from Southern Africa entering to Australia and Australians return from Southern Africa countries are required to undergo 14 days quarantine under state or territory public health requirements.

Further the Commonwealth has postponed the reopening to international skilled and student visa cohorts and humanitarian visa holders from 1 December up until 15 December as these are temporary precautions to safeguard the national boarders of Australia.

Though, existing plans will continue for Australians, permanent residents, immediate family including parents and other exempt visa holders including travelers through the New Zealand and Singapore safe travel zones and Pacific Labor Scheme participants.

Isn’t it exciting to hear that the National Cabinet agreed that the Commonwealth and the state governments will continue to pursue a suppression strategy, stating the objective is to limit the rate of Omicron invasions into Australia, rather than going back to lock downs?

Read More…

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100 reasons to ‘return’ to India with Singapore Airlines

For a while, it was impossible to travel more than 5km from our houses, especially in Melbourne. At that point, the (almost) 10,000 kms that stood between India and Melbourne felt like a few light years away.

But not anymore. The boundaries have melted away and travel between India and Australia has returned as close to normalcy as possible.

Singapore Airlines, the designate ruler of the clouds, has once again been united with the skies. And with more opportunities to avail the Singapore Airlines experience, it means that you can and must book your return travel today.

Book your return fares with us today

Book with Gaura Travel and you can now avail $100 off your return fare through Singapore Airlines! But hurry this is a  limited-time offer, so get in before it is too late.

To avail the discount, use the offer code: RETURN100 at checkout and you can immediately avail the discount.

Now you can not only travel to where home is, but you can also plan your safe return back to Australia. All the more, when you travel with Singapore Airlines, you can once again receive top-of-the-class service, both in-flight and at the award-winning Changi International Airport.

Over the last two years, two aspects of travel have been a source of a great deal of stress, but not anymore.

No exemptions. No quarantine.

Ever since travel became complicated, one of the most common sources of confusion and stress was the need to apply for exemptions. Over the last two years, our team has been submerged with questions but our 24/7 call centre has helped numerous passengers travel to and back from India.

But the great news is that passengers don’t need to worry about exemptions anymore. Speak to us about your situation to get further clarity if required.

The other added element that created concerns for travellers was having to undergo hotel quarantine – there have been many horror stories about the ‘then mandatory’ 14-day stay in a hotel without any human connection.

Ever since travel became complicated, one of the most common sources of confusion and stress was the need to apply for exemptions. Over the last two years, our team has been submerged with questions but our 24/7 call centre has helped numerous passengers travel to and back from India.

But the great news is that passengers don’t need to worry about exemptions anymore. Speak to us about your situation to get further clarity if required.

The other added element that created concerns for travellers was having to undergo hotel quarantine – there have been many horror stories about the ‘then mandatory’ 14-day stay in a hotel without any human connection.

Talk to us

As always, the rules and regulations are changing rapidly. We live and breathe travel, so we are happy to answer your questions. Don’t forget that we are open 24/7 and are there to help you out. Call us, Australia: 1300 359 463, India: 91 8585 027 970.

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Featured

Light up your travel plans this Diwali

Travel with us this Diwali and you can get up to $500 off

The winds of freedom are blowing and the entire nation is looking forward to travelling without the shackles of restrictions. Well, almost.

And the timing couldn’t be better. Around this time of the year, the Indian community goes into a state of festive overdrive. Through Navratri, Milad Un-Nabi, Dussehra and more, one can only imagine the volume of prayers and vibes that would have sent back into the Universe.

Finally, the Universe seems to have smiled.

A ‘$500’ gift from the Gaura Travel team

With the festival of lights, Diwali around the corner, brightness and happiness has returned in to many households. Many families now know that travelling to and from Australia is at its most relaxed since the pandemic first struck.

As if our $899 fares weren’t low enough already, we want to give our valued travellers more.

For the next ten days, Gaura Travel invites travellers to take part in a fun ‘Spin the Wheel’ activity on the website. And who knows, you might be one of many who can get up to $500 off your fare to India.

This is our way of sharing with you as you prepare to welcome the new rules of freedom (or should we say, lack of rules!).

What does this newfound freedom look like?

586 days. And NOT counting.

That’s right. It has been 586 days since Australia made it necessary for Australian travellers to apply for an exemption to leave Australia. Approval rates were low and many travellers found themselves trapped under the debris of rules and regulations, unable to be there for loved ones in India.

The toll on families and the mental health of the country, and even the world, was hanging by a bare thread. Think famine and then think that first drop of rain. That is what the country is experiencing right now.

Finally, the tables are turning and the human race finally stands a chance against the unseen villains of the virus race. Or at least it certainly feels like that.

Now Australian citizens and permanent residents across the entire country can leave the country without having to apply for exemptions.

Freedom(ish) at midnight.

On November 1 st, 2021, travellers with NSW as the destination, will awaken to newfound freedom. Freedom from hotel quarantine and COVID 19 testing. The only real condition is that travellers must be fully vaccinated. However, it is very important to note that the vaccine itself has to be approved by Australia’s TGA (Therapeutic Goods Administration).

At this stage, India’s Covishield vaccine has been fully approved by the TGA. If your vaccine is not approved by the TGA, mandatory 14-day hotel quarantine conditions will still apply.

If you are looking to travel from India, maybe make it in time to celebrate Diwali with the family or for any reason are planning to travel to Sydney, get on to it immediately.

As always, speak to us if you have any questions.

Interstate Travel from Sydney

Sydney will be a designated ‘orange zone from November 1 which means that fully vaccinated travellers can travel into Victoria with a valid travel permit.

For other states, interstate travellers might still be subject to restrictions and quarantine arrangements of their home state if they intend to head back there.

500 reasons to celebrate!

Don’t forget: for the next ten days, Gaura Travel invites travellers to take part in a fun ‘Spin the Wheel’ activity on the website. And who knows, you might be one of many who can get up to $500 off your fare to India.

We have a large number of flight options to multiple destinations in India with fares as low as $899. Get on that phone, or hit our website and secure your seat. 

Enjoy the freedom, you deserve it.

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Featured

Victorians say ‘Hello home, goodbye quarantine’

No quarantine for fully vaccinated international travellers via Sydney.

Up until even a few weeks ago with surging cases of COVID 19 and unflattering vaccination numbers, for international travellers looking to travel into NSW and Victoria, no travel was complete without mandatory hotel quarantine and a series of COVID 19 testing requirements.

But all of that is set to change. With NSW announcing a few days ago that they would open up to the world, the Victorian government has responded in kind by announcing new regulations that make it easier for travellers from NSW to enter Victoria.

As of this morning, all of Greater Sydney will be ‘downgraded’ to an Orange zone.

For international travellers with Melbourne as the final destination, this presents a viable option to fly into Sydney and then make their way to Melbourne without having to go through hotel quarantine or any testing anywhere. 

The rules at a glance

Orange Zones

All Greater Sydney residents and International Travellers flying into Sydney will fall under the Orange Zone. For international travellers, please note that Gaura Travel will provide you with hotel accommodation in Sydney and also arrange for domestic fights to Melbourne.

Being fully vaccinated certainly does have its advantages – you do not have to quarantine or get tested for COVID 19.  

PLEASE NOTE: To travel into Victoria you will need a valid travel permit. For more information please go to: https://www.coronavirus.vic.gov.au/victorian-travel-permit-system

Also, there will be no restrictions applicable in Sydney as fully vaccinated travellers will be free to do as they please.

If you have any questions, do not hesitate to reach out to our team.

What does all this mean for travellers?

The relaxing of these regulations is a breath of fresh air. This finally means freedom from the shackles of hotel quarantine. This also means no more anxiety about the results of COVID 19 tests.

It really has come down to three simple steps:

  1. Get fully vaccinated, as mandated by the Australian Government
  2. Call and book with Gaura Travel –  we will get you onto a flight to Sydney
  3. Travel to Melbourne – Gaura Travel will organise accommodation and a domestic flight through to Melbourne.

We recommend that you travel with your Vaccination Passport (downloaded from your MyGov account) and have the relevant Victorian Travel Permits.

Once you reach Melbourne, you can head straight to the familiar comforts of your home (and not to a random hotel!).

Once again, if you have any questions, our team is here for you 24/7. As always, we take our responsibility of being your best way home quite seriously.

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Featured

This Dussera, NSW (Rama) vanquishes hotel quarantine (Ravana)

NSW to ‘open up to the world’, scraps quarantine for fully vaccinated passengers

On the occasion of Dussera, could residents of NSW wanting to return to, or travellers wanting to visit the state, have asked for a better gift?

We celebrate Dussera to mark the occasion of Lord Rama defeating Ravana. On that very day Lord Rama was united with Goddess Sita and one can imagine how they might have prepared to travel back to Ayodhya – well you can start packing your bags too, because the state of NSW is ready to welcome you with open arms.

In a very welcome move, NSW premier Dominic Perrottet has announced that fully vaccinated travellers arriving into New South Wales from overseas will no longer have to quarantine from November 1, thereby giving us another reason to celebrate this auspicious day of Dussera.

New South Wales is about to hit its 80 per cent double-dose vaccination target over the weekend and this news comes as an absolute breath of fresh air to travellers and families who wish to fly into NSW.

The reopening of Sydney and NSW to the world, is a giant step towards the resumption of ‘normalcy’, especially for the travel industry, promising a way back to the times before COVID 19 became a household term.

The state of New South Wales has recorded 399 new local coronavirus cases and the case numbers continue to plummet, creating a pathway towards a future without restrictions.

The only thing that matters is double vaccination

In order to qualify and be exempt from quarantine, travellers will need to do a PCR test before boarding a flight and will need to prove their double-vaccination status.

Tourism Minister Stuart Ayres told the press conference there would be no restrictions on where travellers are arriving from. What this effectively means is that regardless of whether you are an Australian Citizen or not, you can travel to NSW.

With vaccination status being the only determinant, the state and its travel industry has made it clear that all travellers are the same in its eyes.

The NSW Government also confirmed that fully vaccinated travellers already in quarantine will be freed on November 1, even if their stay is for less than 14 days.

What does this mean for you?

In simple terms, if you wish to travel back home to NSW, or just want to visit the state, you are welcome to do so after November 1st without you having to go through hotel quarantine, as long as you are doubly vaccinated.

So, if you haven’t booked up for your vaccines, get onto that first. And then give us a call – we will get you on a flight to Sydney / NSW before you can say ‘Happy Dussera’!

Your prayers have been answered. And Gaura Travel looks forward to flying you to NSW and to welcoming you all once again.

And this time, you can drive away from the airport, wherever you wish. Your imagination is the only limitation.

We wish you all the ‘Happiest Dussera’ ever!

Categories
Featured

What will this festive season bring us all?

It is around this time of the year when festivities from the Hindu calendar spring to life.

As a lead up to one of the most popular Indian festivals, Diwali, the majority of India and many Indians settled overseas celebrate Navratri, Durga Ashtami and Dussera.

In the years before COVID 19,  festivities would already have kicked into top gear and the social interaction would have been full of excitement, without any restrictions or boundaries of any kind.

But of course, those times now seem like a different world. A world we probably took for granted, in hindsight.

But having said that, the indomitable human spirit will always find ways to celebrate and honour the divine, regardless of the challenges and restrictions.

Let us take a look at how Indians in Australia celebrate these festivals and the new ways that have been adopted, reflecting the world we live in.

Navratri

The most famous nine nights in India, are symbolized by the victory of Goddess Durga over the evil tyranny of Mahisasura. It is said, that she borrows the power of every God and engages in a dazzling and brutal battle that lasts for nine nights (ten days).

The battle was so mesmerizing that the entire world stood frozen to witness it.

People across India who celebrate this festival, do so in different ways, depending on which part of India you belong to.

In the western part, this festival marks the beginning of the ‘dance’ season in the way of cultural dance forms like Garba, Dandiya etc. In the southern regions, families place divine dolls in the form of a tiered altar called ‘Golu’. In the northern region, special pujas, fasts, meditation, singing, and dancing takes place along with the exchange of sweets, clothes etc. In West Bengal, a five day Durga Puja is also celebrated with great pomp and fervour.

And given the diversity of the country and the cultures within, it is almost impossible to specify what happens in each region. Do let us know how you like to celebrate Navratri.

Durga Ashtami

While Durga Ashtami is celebrated as a separate festival, it really refers to that 8th night in the above-mentioned battle.

A tradition associated with Durga Ashtami is to honour young, unmarried girls (usually a group of five to seven), who are invited into the home. The tradition is based on the belief that each of these young girls represents the shakti (energy) of Durga on Earth.

This festival, a lot like Navratri is a testament to the power of the divine feminine and is a reminder of the wonderful role that women continue to play in all aspects of life. A reminder that it is this energy that sustains and nourishes the very existence we treasure.

Dussera

One of the most popular historical epics from India is the Ramayana. Those who are familiar with the epic know that it is the ultimate fight between the virtuous (represented by Lord Rama) and unrighteous (King Ravana).

Dussera marks the last day of the war where Lord Rama finally kills the demon King Ravana and reunites with his wife, Goddess Seetha.

Given that we have reunited numerous couples over the last two years through our flights, we understand the pains of separation that Lord Rama and Goddess Seetha might have faced.

Here is to the triumph of the virtuous in us, every single time.

But what does all of this mean to us, especially now?

One of the most popular historical epics from India is the Ramayana. Those who are familiar with the epic know that it is the ultimate fight between the virtuous (represented by Lord Rama) and unrighteous (King Ravana).

Dussera marks the last day of the war where Lord Rama finally kills the demon King Ravana and reunites with his wife, Goddess Seetha.

Given that we have reunited numerous couples over the last two years through our flights, we understand the pains of separation that Lord Rama and Goddess Seetha might have faced.

Here is to the triumph of the virtuous in us, every single time.

Categories
Featured

Why you need a new ‘return booking’ strategy

Over the many decades that we have all been travelling, it has almost always been a case of booking a return fare, as opposed to buying two single fares simply because a ‘bundle’ has always been cheaper than the individual parts.

But the last two years have proved that our decades of travelling experience count for nothing.

The Australian Government has announced its imminent plans to open international borders, resulting in a flood of eager travellers who are ready to book and ready to fly.

But a word of caution. Actually, a few words of caution. Choosing the ‘return bundle’ is no longer   the best option. Not right now anyway.

Making any predictions into the future is a risky proposition, especially in the world of travel. But we can explain what all of this means for you in the present-day scenario with a great deal of certainty.

Booking a flight OUT of Australia to India, is by far the cheapest option. As you are aware, airfares are a complex function of several variables, and at present the rates will be low.

But what about the return leg? As things stand, flying back into Australia is an expensive option.

Again, there is very little travel agencies like us can do about it, owing to numerous external factors out of anyone’s control.

I haven’t seen my family in years

We hear you. Which is why we recommend the following:

If you are travelling to India to visit family and friends, we suggest you wait until the return fares become normalised and then book your way back to Australia.

As our customers, you will be the first to know of the changes in the return fares.

Over the last two years, numerous families have been separated geographically. Let us put an end to all the waiting, to all the ‘I miss you’ messages, to the yearning thoughts about loved ones – let us put you on a flight to the country that continues to live on in your heart.

But if you don’t have to rush back to Australia, then we suggest, you wait and watch. While none of us have a crystal ball to read the future, what we know is that as both India and Australia continue to march towards their vaccination targets, the restrictions on the number of passengers will change, along with a few other factors.

It will only become easier to book a cost-efficient journey back to Australia.

So, what should be my new travel strategy?

Book a one-way ticket to wherever home is and we will get you there. Re-unite with your family, celebrate all the birthdays you missed, fill your heart with the smells and flavours of India and wait….until the time is right to book your return flight.

If in doubt, please speak to our friendly staff. We have spoken to thousands of passengers, and we know what you need to have a beautiful trip to India…and back.

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Charter Flights Featured

ANOTHER BENCHMARK OF 75 CHARTER FLIGHTS

Its true when they say, we must embrace pain and burn it as fuel for our journey. Our journey of repatriation has been nothing but the most challenging yet rewarding of all. When the pandemic caused distance between you and your family, it pained us. We knew we had to burn this fuel and set out on our mission to reunite you with your loved ones.

When our first charter flight took off in July 2020, with it also soared our goal to get you all closer to your home. With every flight, we got stronger and the distance weaker. Let’s just say, with every obstacle we grew more persistent on our goal. With your love and support, we have reunited more than 12,000 families till date, and today marks as another benchmark.

Our 75th Charter Flight from India to Australia

It’s a privilege to share that we are now 75charter flights old! Yes, we have reached the platinum on 30th August with the world renowned Srilankan Airlines and IndiGo Airlines.

Then flight departed from the major cities in India – New Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad to Chennai where they all met to catch the flight to Australia and celebrate the success of our charter journey!

The flight will reach Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane on  2nd September and many will be back with their families.  

We Cannot believe we stand at 75 unstoppable flights today. This journey has made us the leaders in repatriation flights between India and Australia. We outpaced all restrictions, border closures and hurdles to be your best way home, and we couldn’t be happier.C

Celebrating With Gaura Family

To  celebrate this glorious occasion, we shared the joy with the our passengers in Chennai, India who were flying with us to Australia! Celebrations took over and there was music, flowers, cake and delicious lunch served. We couldn’t have achieved this milestone without the love and support of our Gaura family.

This has been nothing but a beautiful odyssey for all of us. When one door closed, another opened…and we couldn’t be more grateful to you guys for supporting us at every step.

Seeing the joy on your faces when you unite with your families is what motivates us to work hard everyday. We are not stopping now…our goal is clear. Now that we are on 75, the century isn’t far! With your support we will keep rising and flying with you, and well…century isn’t so far!