Learn about the Australian visa, customs and quarantine regulations. This includes types of visa applications, what to declare and what is prohibited in Australia.
Do I need a visa to enter Australia?
Unless you are an Australian or New Zealand citizen, you will need a valid Australian visa to enter the country. New Zealand passport holders can apply for a visa upon arrival in the country. All other passport holders must apply for a visa before leaving home. You can apply for a range of visas, including tourist visas and working holiday visas, at your nearest Australian Embassy or Consulate. You can also apply for certain types of visas on the Australian Department of Immigration and Border Protection website.
What type of tourist visa should I apply for?
There are a variety of visas available to travellers to Australia. The type of visa you should apply for depends on the length of your stay, your passport and the purpose of your visit.
eVisitor (subclass 651)
This is a free visa for multiple visits to Australia for tourism or business purposes for up to three months at a time within a 12-month period. This visa is available to passport holders from a number of European countries and it cannot be extended.
Electronic Travel Authority visa (subclass 601)
This visa allows you to visit Australia as many times as you want, for up to a year, and stay for three months each visit. This visa is available to passport holders from a number of countries and regions, who live outside Australia. There is no visa application charge for an ETA, however a $20 service charge applies for online applications only.
Visitor visa (subclass 600)
The Visitor visa is designed for people who are not eligible for the eVisitor or Electronic Travel Authority visa. This visa allows you to visit Australia, either for tourism or business purposes, for up to three, six or 12 months. The base application fee for this visa ranges from $135 to $340.
For more information visit the Australian Government Department of Immigration and Border Protection website.
Can I extend my stay on a tourist visa?
If you are already in Australia and hold a valid Electronic Travel Authority visa (subclass 601) you can extend your stay by applying for another visa, such as a Visitor visa (subclass 600). An eVisitor (subclass 651) cannot be extended.
See the Australian Government Department of Immigration and Border Protection website for details.
What visa do I need to work legally in Australia?
The Working Holiday Maker program encourages cultural exchange and closer ties between some countries by allowing young adults (18 to 30 years old) to have an extended holiday supplemented by short-term employment.
There are two types of Working Holiday visas:
Working Holiday visa (subclass 417)
For applicants with a passport from Belgium, Canada, Republic of Cyprus, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Republic of Ireland, Italy, Japan, Republic of Korea, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Taiwan and United Kingdom.
Work and Holiday visa (subclass 462)
For applicants with a passport from Argentina, Bangladesh, Chile, People’s Republic of China, Indonesia, Israel, Malaysia, Poland, Portugal, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Spain, Thailand, Turkey, USA and Uruguay.
Do I need a student visa to study in Australia?
If you intend to study in Australia, you will need to apply for a Student visa (subclass 500). If you are the parent, guardian or relative of a student, you can apply for a Student Guardian Visa (subclass 590). If you would like to travel to Australia for a visit and short-term study, you may be eligible for a visitor visa. Training and Research visas (subclass 402) are also offered for people who want to come to Australia to take part in structured workplace-based training.
Visit the Australian Department of Immigration and Border Protection website to apply for the correct visa to meet your individual circumstances.
What items am I prohibited from bringing into Australia?
Australia's customs laws prevent you from bringing drugs, steroids, weapons, firearms and protected wildlife into Australia. Some common items such as fresh or packaged food, fruit, eggs, meat, plants, seeds, skins and feathers are also prohibited. For more information visit the Australian Government Department of Immigration and Border Protection website.
How much money can I bring into the country?
There is no limit on the amount of currency that you can bring into Australia, but you will need to declare amounts over $10,000. Find out more and obtain a reporting form on the AUSTRAC website at www.austrac.gov.au/travellers.
What happens to goods you declare?
Goods that you declare will be inspected by a biosecurity officer, who will assess the level of risk associated with the goods. In most cases, goods are low risk and will be returned to you after the inspection. However, if a biosecurity officer deems the goods to have some risk you can pay for the goods to be treated, pay to export the goods, or voluntarily dispose of the goods.
What is the duty-free concession limits for people entering Australia?
General goods: $AUD 900 worth of goods per adult (18 years or over); $AUD 450 worth of goods per child.
Alcohol: Up to 2.25 litres (0.5 imperial gallons or 0.59 US gallons) of alcoholic beverages (liquor, wine and Champagne) per adult.
Tobacco: 50 cigarettes or 50 grams (1.76 ounces) of cigars or tobacco products per adult.
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