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Reminder about validity of passports when travelling to Australia
Australia requires that your passport must be valid only for the period of your intended travel in and out of Australia. There is no requirement for your passport to be valid for six months after your travel.
Travelling to Australia
Immigration and visas
All travellers, except New Zealand citizens, must obtain a visa or travel authority before travelling to Australia.
All passports only need to be valid for time of travel inside of Australia and have the appropriate visa if required.
For information regarding living in Australia please follow this link to our 'Living in Australia' page.
What if I am a New Zealand citizen and have a criminal history?
If you are a New Zealand citizen with criminal convictions, no matter how long ago your convictions were, or whether they have been removed from government records, you are required to obtain written confirmation from DIAC (Department of Immigration and Citizenship) before you travel to Australia.
Convictions in New Zealand
Please download the Consent to Disclosure of Information (NZ Police) Form. This will allow the New Zealand police to provide the Australian Consulate-General with details of your criminal history. Complete the form and post it to:
Pricewaterhouse Coopers Tower
186-194 Quay Street
You will be informed in writing whether or not you are required to lodge an application for a visa to enter Australia prior to travel. This process takes approximately three weeks from the date the completed form is received by the Consulate.
Convictions in any other country
If you have convictions in any other country, including Australia, you are required to provide a police clearance from that country to DIAC. You will then be informed in writing whether or not you need to lodge an application for a visa to enter Australia.
Please visit this website for instructions on obtaining the appropriate police clearance: www.immi.gov.au/allforms/character-requirements/
If a visa application is required, a visa application form,including a checklist, will be sent to you. However, if you are intending to live, work or study in Australia you will need to visit www.immi.gov.au and download the appropriate application form.
New Zealand citizens who intend to apply for a Visitor or Transit visa, are to lodge their application with the Australian Visa Application Centre (AVAC). Initially, the processing of applicaitons will begin at the Australian Consulate-General in Auckland. The application will then be forwarded to the Visa Applicant Character Consideration Unit (VACCU) in Melbourne, Australia, for character assessment. Before applications can be forwarded to VACCU, applicants must meet all other applicable visa criteria.
The timeframe for the assessment of your character by VACCU will vary depending upon the specifics of your circumstances, but can take several months.
For more information on character assessment, please visit: www.immi.gov.au/media/fact-sheets/79character.htm#d
Customs and quarantine
The Australian Customs Service manages the security and integrity of the Australian border and assists people and cargo to move in and out of the country. At the border Customs protects against the movement of illicit drugs and prohibited imports, collects customs duty payable by travellers and performs services for other agencies including the Australian Quarantine and Investigation Service (AQIS). AQIS is part of the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry and is charged with protecting Australia from exotic pests and diseases.
Information for international travellers. Information about what items must be declared for inspection, what happens if you fail to declare or dispose of any quarantine items or make a false declaration, what happens to siezed items and what can't be mailed to Australia.
The Australian Government Guide to Visiting Australia is available at www.immi.gov.au/visitors and includes guidance on health coverage available to visitors.
Planning your trip to Australia
Plan your trip with australia.com, the official Tourism Australia website, offering a wide range of travel information and planning tools including over 2000 images, a currency converter, daily weather updates, interactive maps, suggested holiday itineraries, holiday deals, specialist travel agents and more. Available in nine languages. Most state tourism agencies have offices in Auckland, New Zealand, including:
Tourism New South Wales - 64 9 307 7040
Tourism Victoria - 64 9 379 0425
Tourism Queensland - 64 9 374 1780
South Australia Tourism Commission - 64 9 914 9848
Tourism Tasmania - 64 9 379 5535
Northern Territory Tourist Commission - 64 9 303 2207
Australian school holidays
Health care and travel insurance
There is a Reciprocal Health Care Agreement between Australia and New Zealand that covers some (though not all) health care issues for New Zealand visitors to Australia. Go to the the Department of Health website for details of the scheme.
Please note: it is highly recommended that all visitors to Australia from Reciprocal Health Care Agreement countries buy health and travel insurance designed for overseas visitors.
There is no agreement for pensioner/senior citizens cards to be used by New Zealand citizens or residents travelling in Australia or vice versa. Any granting of concessions to overseas visitors is at the discretion of the business/concession provider concerned.
Driving in Australia
The holder of a New Zealand driver's licence will generally be allowed to drive in Australia without having to obtain an International driver's licence. However as each state in Australia have slightly different rules towards international drivers and slightly different road rules, it is very important to check with the licencing agency in the particular state that you are planning on visiting. See the list below:
New South Wales www.rta.nsw.gov.au
South Australia www.transport.sa.gov.au
Western Australia www.dpi.wa.gov.au
Northern Territory http://www.transport.nt.gov.au/
Tourist Refund Scheme
The Tourist Refund Scheme enables you to claim a refund, subject to certain conditions, of the goods and services tax (GST) and wine equalisation tax (WET) that you pay on goods you buy in Australia.
A gateway to information ranging from citizenship, health, settlement help for migrants, working conditions to buying a home in Australia.
Foreign embassies and consulates in Australia
Information on the embassies and consulates in Australia is available here.