Despite soaring ticket prices, an excited group of Canberrans and homebound Adelaidians seized a long-awaited opportunity to fly to South Australia on Thursday night.
The Qantas QF2127 flight scheduled for 6.30pm was the first to leave Canberra Airport for Adelaide since new border rules came in allowing ACT arrivals to enter the state without quarantining.
Keeping family together
Peter and Karen Crouch didn't know what to do with themselves.
The couple visited Canberra for 10 days to see their family, which they had not seen since January.
They booked tickets before changes to border restrictions came into effect, and were geared up to quarantine at their home.
"[The travel bubble is] brilliant, it saves us two weeks," Mr Crouch said.
"So now we have clear schedules - I think we should go somewhere else."
Mr and Mrs Crouch said the ACT-SA travel bubble would keep their family connected.
"That's the best thing, that [our family will] be able to come to Adelaide without quarantining," Mrs Crouch said.
The travel bubble is bittersweet for Tom Wait, who was travelling to Adelaide to see his dying grandmother.
"It comes at a fantastic time, my grandmother is terminally ill and she's taken a bit of a turn today so I'm able to go back and say my final goodbyes," Mr Wait said.
He said changes to travel restrictions means he has the freedom to support his family as they grieve.
Prior to restrictions on ACT residents loosening, Mr Wait tried to get an exemption to visit his grandmother, but he was not granted permission.
"I've been waiting for an opportunity when the government would lift the restrictions so I'd be able to go across freely," he said.
Postgraduate student Shelby Clayton was travelling to Adelaide for her mother's wedding.
"It's crazy. They opened the borders two days ago and Mum's like 'You can come, come, get on the plane now, you're doing it'," Ms Clayton said.
Her mother helped pay for her $1000 return flights to Adelaide.
However, not all of her relatives could travel to South Australia for the wedding.
"Half of [my mother's] family is in Victoria so they can't come," she said.
"She's a bit disappointed but happy that I can come."
Ms Clayton said that scrapping quarantine means she can travel back to Adelaide for her graduation ceremony in October.
"Now I can go and do that without quarantining and spending two weeks over there while still paying rent back here," she said.