Tourism businesses are pushing for regional NSW to be immediately turned green under new Victorian travel arrangements.
Most of NSW is 'orange' in the Victorian government's new traffic light system, meaning non-border residents who go there and then enter Victoria with a permit must get a COVID-19 test and isolate until they get a negative result.
The change from red to orange for areas not in hotspots helped Victorians who were locked out of the state, but meant businesses like the Corowa Whisky and Chocolate Factory remained off the list for Melburnians.
Managing director Dean Druce said allowing free travel to border towns would be helpful, but lifting the border closure was a must.
"Everyone along the border makes their money during the summer-time and the rug has really been pulled out from under us," he said.
"We were trading quite nicely.
"As soon as they put the border closure in and made that public on New Year's Eve, we had six weddings cancelled within the next hour.
"They're not postponing anymore ... they've had too much of this turmoil.
"Unfortunately, it's the same as the first lockdown, where everyone along the border is paying for Melbourne, Sydney or Brisbane."
Murray Regional Tourism chair Wendy Greiner said the change to 'green' was a matter of urgency.
"Our bookings were the best they've been for many, many years and that's all come to a grinding halt," she said.
"There's Australia Day and February is still a good month ... there's still opportunities.
"It's so inconsistent between the states, we'd like to see some national guidelines available; at the moment there is a traffic light system and we need it 'green'."
Federation mayor Pat Bourke said in border towns, "hope and excitement went out the window" when Victorians were given an order to come home.
"It's really affected those river economies, but not only those river economies; as far as Urana, on New Year's Eve there were thousands of cars coming through with caravans and boats," he said.
"Business owners bought extra stock for the holiday period and that night everyone was gone."
Cr Bourke said he was supportive of controls to reduce the spread of COVID-19 but urged governments to stop "treating states like countries".
Victorian Emergency Services Minister Lisa Neville said her government was trying to "make tough decisions to minimise the impact on Victorians" and "protect what we've done".
The NSW government will not be adopting Victoria's new traffic light system, and Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt said it was "very much a Victorian approach".
"The Commonwealth Chief Medical Officer has laid out a national hotspost definition and that's the one which we have put on the table," he said.
IN OTHER NEWS:
"Some states and territories have been very clear they reserve the right not to adopt that national approach.
"But we have set out a clear, singular, precise, national definition."
Mr Hunt said vaccinations were on track and outlined Tuesday was a day that Australia had six cases of community transmission compared to more than 600,000 globally.
"We will have hospitals ... but we will also have the very strong community roll-out," he said.