Prime Minister Scott Morrison is set to stare down premiers and chief ministers at national cabinet on Friday, after declaring they would need to take an extra 2000 international arrivals each week.
International and local borders will be on the agenda at the meeting, with pressure on state leaders to open up borders to each other, and increase the number of places in their hotel quarantine programs.
Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack wrote to state leaders on Wednesday asking them to increase their hotel quarantine caps, but only South Australia agreed, with West Australian Premier Mark McGowan reacting angrily.
But the Prime Minister was bullish on Thursday and said "it's a decision, it's not a proposal".
"The planes will land with people on them and they'll be arriving."
More than 26,000 Australians are stranded overseas wanting to come home, some with expired visas and homeless, but Mr Morrison said chartering government flights wasn't necessary.
"There are plenty of commercial planes ... it's the caps that were stopping the planes."
Mr Morrison has also softened his language dramatically on Queensland's popular border closures.
After spending months criticising the restrictions, the prime minister now says Queensland and others must bring down their borders eventually.
"I have never said they had to bring them down immediately," Mr Morrison said.
- With AAP