Anyone who is not an Australian citizen needs a
valid visa/Electronic Travel Authority (ETA - see below) to enter and
spend time in Australia.
Before traveling to
With the exception of New Zealand citizens traveling
on New Zealand passports, all foreign
nationals must obtain a visa/ETA before traveling to Australia.
(New Zealand citizens are issued with a visa on arrival in
Visas are available from Australian visa
offices such as Australian Embassies, High Commissions and Consulates.
They are also available, in ETA form, from travel agents and airlines in
Please note that:
airlines may refuse to allow travelers to
board their aircraft without valid visas/ETAs and passports;
it is recommended that intending visitors first
obtain a visa/ETA before purchasing airline tickets, Olympic and
Paralympic tickets, or entering into any other financial commitments
dependent upon entry to Australia;
Visas/ETAs are issued subject to a range of
tourists are not allowed to work during their
visit to Australia. Penalties apply to tourists who breach this 'no
The type of visa you will need depends on how
long you wish to stay in Australia and what you want to do during your
Visas (for up to 3 months). Australia provides short stay visas
in two forms - the Electronic Travel Authority and the
non-electronic 'label' visa, as described below.
An ETA is an electronically
stored authority to travel to Australia for a short stay and no visa label
is placed in the passport.
ETAs are available from
participating travel agencies when making travel arrangements, or though
participating airlines, as well as at Australia visa offices
ETAs are available to
holders of the following passports approved for ETA: Andorra, Austria,
Belgium, Brunei, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong
Kong SAR, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg,
Malaysia, Malta, Monaco, Netherlands, Norway, Singapore, South Korea,
Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, AUK-British Citizen, UK-British
National (overseas), USA and the Vatican.
Note that holders of Taiwan
passports can only be processed for an ETa if resident in and applying in
Taiwan. Holders of UK passports which indicate their nationality to be
British National (overseas) cannot be processed for an ETA by a travel
agent or airline outside Hong Kong.
ETAs are available for
tourism and short stay business purposes. Tourist ETAs and short validity,
single entry business ETAs, are free of any Government charge. There is a
charge for long validity business entry ETAs.
If you do not hold a passport approved for ETA,
you will need to apply for a 'label' visa. There are two main types of
short stay 'label' visas.
visas - usually provide for a stay of up to 3 months on
each visit. However, in limited circumstances it is possible to obtain a
tourist visa for a stay of more than 3 months. A tourist visa does not
permit you to work in Australia. A non-refundable Australian Government
application fee is charged.
Short stay business
visas - provide for a stay in Australia of up to 3 months
for business purposes. This visa allows you to take part in meetings or
conferences on behalf of your business in your home country, and also
allows you to take part in some short-term projects or events. If in
doubt, the purpose of the visit should be discussed with the Australian
visa office overseas. A non-refundable Australian Government application
fee is charged.
The business ETA and visa
is available to people intending to come to Australia temporarily to
undertake some highly-skilled activities involving very short term
projects or events. This applies only to visits of up to 3
For people wanting to come
to Australia for more than 3 months, there is a range of temporary
residence visas available. Sponsorship from an Australian organization or
prospective employer may be required. There are temporary residence visas
available to cover the following:
sport - for amateur or
professional sport people with an established reputation in their
field of sport, who have been invited to take part in competitions
or training programs or undertake
media and film staff - for
correspondents and other professional media staff posted to
Australia by overseas news organizations, and photographers and film
and television teams making documentaries or commercials exclusively
for overseas markets;
entertainment/cultural - for
people involved in the entertainment industry and in cultural events
and activities. The need to protect the employment of Australians in
the industry is taken into account when visa grant is
study - for people who want to
undertake registered courses on a full-time basis;
working holiday maker
for young people from countries with which Australia has reciprocal
WHM agreements, who wish to holiday in Australia for an extended
period and to supplement their funds through incidental work;
employment - for employers to
recruit key personnel and overcome temporary skilled labor shortages.
further visa and entry information, please contact an
office or visit the website http://www.immi.gov.au/.
Don't overstay your
visa! If your visa is about to expire, you should leave Australia or
seek advice from a Department of Immigration and Multicultural Affairs office.