NT Border Controls

This information has been taken from the Northern Territory Government's dedicated webpage for Coronavirus information.

Updated as of 30 April 2020 

As per the road map to the new normal, bio security areas within the Northern Territory are due to open on June 18th. This means people within the Territory can travel from place to place outside of their bio security areas. At this point, anyone entering the Northern Territories borders will still have to force quarantine for 14 days in a hotel. This rule remains in place for the forseeable future. 

This helpful infographic has been put together to help simplify the stages of the adjustments of the Road Map to the New Normal. 

Updated as of 2 April 2020

Forced quarantine


Overseas arrivals

Arrivals in the NT from overseas after 28 March will be escorted to hotels and monitored for 14 days of quarantine.

If you arrive after 3 April, you will need to pay for quarantine costs.

Interstate arrivals

Arrivals in the NT from interstate from 11:59pm 1 April will be escorted to hotels and monitored for 14 days of quarantine.

If you arrive after 3 April, you will need to pay for quarantine costs.

Exemptions apply for individuals engaged in specific work with specific skills. Read about border controls to see if you qualify for an exemption.

Had contact with a COVID-19 case


If you have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive to coronavirus (COVID-19) you must self-quarantine for 14 days.

How to self-quarantine

You must stay at home to prevent the possible spread of the virus to other people.

Staying home means you:

  • do not go to public places such as work, school, shopping centres, childcare or university
  • ask someone to get food and other necessities for you and leave them at your front door
  • do not let visitors in — only people who usually live with you should be in your home
  • do not need to wear a mask in your home, but do wear one if you have to go out (for example to seek medical attention)
  • should stay in touch by phone and online with your family and friends.

If you are not staying in your home to self-quarantine, you must stay in suitable accommodation.

Accommodation must be self-contained so that you don’t have to leave to use a bathroom or kitchen.

Accommodation with shared facilities is not suitable.

Camping is also not suitable. You cannot self-quarantine in NT parks and reserves.

Compliance checks

Every person required to be in self-quarantine will be checked to make sure they are doing the right thing.

People carrying out compliance checks will be displaying appropriate identification. They don't need access to premises.

Anyone asking to access your premises should be refused. If you have concerns you should contact the police on 131 444 or 000 in an emergency.

Monitor symptoms

When in quarantine, monitor yourself for symptoms.

What to do if you get sick

Call your doctor for an urgent assessment if you develop symptoms.

Find out more about what to do if you are unwell.


Being in isolation for 14 days can be stressful and boring.

Suggestions include:

  • keep in touch with family members and friends via telephone, email or social media
  • learn about coronavirus (COVID-19) and talk with others
  • reassure young children using age-appropriate language
  • where possible, keep up normal daily routines, such as eating well and exercise
  • arrange to work from home
  • ask your child's school to supply assignments or homework by post or email
  • do things that help you relax and use isolation as an opportunity to do activities you don't usually have time for.

Find out more about self-care.



25 March 2020. 

Border Controls 

From 4pm on Tuesday 24 March 2020, strict border controls will apply in the Northern Territory (NT) for all access points by:

  • road
  • rail
  • air
  • sea.

What the restrictions mean 

If you are a non-essential traveller arriving at a Northern Territory border, you must self-quarantine for 14 days unless your situation is covered by an exemption category.

You must be able to prove your status as an essential traveller before you will be granted an exemption from self-quarantine.

If you are returning home to the NT or are a non-essential traveller. 

What will happen when you arrive

Anyone seeking to enter the NT must fill in a border arrival form to declare:

  • where you have travelled in the last 30 days
  • your personal and contact details
  • information about where you intend to stay whilst in the Territory.

Get the border arrival form PDF.

This form will also be available at border access points.

Who is exempt

Some people are exempt from the requirement to self-quarantine including:

  • national and Northern Territory security and governance
  • health and emergency services
  • transport, freight and logistics
  • defence and policing
  • flight crews and freight – with strict guidelines in place to monitor and manage this
  • people with specialist skills that are critical to maintaining key government services, industries or businesses.

Read more about the exemption categories.

Apply for an exemption

An exemption may be granted on compassionate or medical grounds.

Find out how to apply for an exemption.

Moving through the Territory

If you are intending to move through the Territory, you should have a travel plan that details:

  • where you have come from
  • where you will be travelling in the Territory - including overnight stops
  • when you are likely to be leaving.

You only need a travel plan if you are transiting through to the next state where you intend to self-quarantine.

You should only stop in townships and take the main roads. Do not travel through remote communities.


If you are staying in the Northern Territory, you must self-quarantine at the nearest available suitable accommodation.

Accommodation options are available throughout the Territory, with a number of roadhouses and wayside inns offering rooms suitable for self-quarantine purposes.

For two full weeks, you will need to stay in accommodation with a bathroom and not leave the room.

Accommodation providing shared bathroom facilities and/ or communal kitchens are not suitable for the purpose of self-isolating.


Under new restrictions, hotels and roadhouses do not have dining facilities available.

As part of your self-quarantine measures, you will need to arrange for meals to be delivered to your room if required.

Fuel stops

When stopping for fuel, you are reminded to exercise good hygiene practices and self-distancing measures:

  • cover your sneezes and coughs with your elbow or use a tissue
  • remain a minimum of 1.5 metres from others at all times and don’t make physical contact with anyone
  • remember to wash your hands thoroughly and often with soap - instructions for correct handwashing techniques are now available in all roadhouses and fuel stops throughout the Northern Territory
  • cashless transactions are the preferred option at this time, so make sure you have your card with you.

Travelling to a remote community

Special rules and restrictions may apply if it is your intention to cross the border into the Northern Territory and then travel to a remote community.

If this applies to you please be familiar with information specific to remote community travel.

Rules for freight coming into the Northern Territory

Freight will continue to come in and out of the Territory. This will not impact the delivery of essential goods and services.

Food and freight including petrol will continue. Supermarkets and stores will remain supplied.

Rules for fly-in fly-out (FIFO) workers

If you are a Territory resident FIFO worker and believe you fall into one of the essential traveller categories, you can apply for exemption.