Taxpayers save millions as travellers pay for hotel quarantine



QUEENSLAND taxpayers have saved up to $3.7 million since the Palaszczuk Government started charging domestic travellers for their 14-day mandatory hotel quarantine.

New figures show more than 1300 people from declared domestic hot spots have crossed into Queensland since the government started enforcing "pay your stay" regulations last month.

The state government had paid $24 million covering the cost of accommodation, food, cleaning, health care, transport and security of more than 15,000 international and domestic arrivals since February before baulking at the escalating tab.

Griffith University economics professor Tony Makin said governments could not keep paying expensive accommodation costs but the system relied on travellers being honest about where they had been.



"I think we're just going to have to expect people to be more responsible for their own action because there's a limit to how much government's can pay for all of this," he said.

Interstate residents are not allowed to cross the border if they have been in the hot spots while returning Queenslanders who have been in outbreak zones have to complete 14 days in hotel quarantine.

Individuals are hit with a $2,800 bill for the two-week stay while two adults staying in the same room pay $3,710.



The cost for two adults and two children sharing a room is $4,620.

CCIQ economist Jack Baxter said the state government's border closure coupled with paying for hotel accommodation had cost the Queensland economy $17 million a day.

"We cannot afford to go back to blanket statewide shutdown where we are losing out on the small businesses revenue put into the economy," he said.

Commonwealth Bank head of Australian economics Gareth Aird said stage three restrictions, which were in place across Melbourne before the city went to stage four on the weekend, cut about 10 per cent from GDP.


Originally published as Taxpayers save millions as travellers pay for hotel quarantine