There are reports of "absolute chaos" in a jammed Sydney Airport as masses of people waited in queues for hours before being able to board flights.
The airport's chief executive Geoff Culbert has issued an apology for the delays, which are being blamed on the school break and Easter period - the first major holiday period since Australia reopened its borders - along with a security staff shortage and passengers forgetting basic COVID-19 measures.
On Thursday night and Friday morning (local time), thousands of people formed long queues that stretched outside terminal buildings while waiting to check in and go through security.
"We're facing a perfect storm at the moment. Traffic numbers are picking up, travellers are inexperienced after two years of not travelling, and the close contact rules are making it hard to fill shifts and staff the airport," said Culbert.
"We encourage everyone to get to the airport early and we ask everyone to be patient as the industry gets back on its feet."
Photos and videos of the queues have been posted on social media with descriptions of what it's like to be caught up in the chaos.
James Ryall captioned his photo: "Sydney Airport is absolutely insane. Security line starts inside and snakes back and forth, then it goes outside and snakes back and forth, then you can go back inside and snakes back and forth. Flights are delayed because they can't get humans through fast enough!"
7 News camera operator Henry Lynch posted a short video captioned: "Travel is back! Very long queues at Sydney Airport this morning as school holidays begin and people make the trip down to Melbourne for the Grand Prix."
60 Minutes reporter Tom Steinfort simply stated: "Sydney Airport WTF."