Travellers to Australia need a valid passport or similar certificate of identification. Everyone, except travellers with Australian or New Zealand passports, requires a visa or an ETA (Electronic Travel Authority) to enter Australia. New Zealand passport holders apply for a visa upon arrival in Australia. All other passport holders must hold a visa or ETA before travelling to Australia.
Visas & ETA's
An ETA is equivalent to a visa, but there is no stamp or label to your passport and there is no need for you to visit an Australian diplomatic office to submit an application. If you are eligible, the ETA is issued electronically by the Department of Immigration and Multicultural and Indigenous Affairs (DIMIA) of Australia. To make things easy for you the Australian Government has made it possible to arrange an ETA via the Internet - no application forms and no contact with an Australian visa office is necessary.
There are strict laws prohibiting or restricting the entry of drugs, steroids, weapons, firearms, protected wildlife and associated products. If you are unsure about anything declare it to Customs upon arrival.
Passenger Movement Charge
Australia's Passenger Movement Charge (departure tax) is pre-paid with your international airline ticket. Exemptions apply to children under 12 years and 24 hour transit passengers.
There may be other government, airport taxes and levies applicable which are usually included in your ticket.
Vaccinations are not required unless you have come from, or visited a yellow fever infected country or zone within six days before arrival. No other health certificate is required to enter Australia.
Australia has a Goods and Services Tax (GST) of 10 per cent. Prices in Australia are shown as inclusive of GST. International and domestic flights purchased overseas, by non-residents, are GST free. Continuous domestic legs of international journeys are also GST free.
GST is payable on tourism services such as accommodation, day tours, guides, ground transport (including coach, rail and cruise), translators and meals. The tax applies to pre-booked and pre-paid goods and services in Australia, which are purchased before arrival in Australia, for example your tour (including accommodation). The prices quoted for your holiday in Australia will already include the Goods and Services Tax (GST).
Tourist Refund Scheme
Departing travellers may be able to claim a refund for GST and WET (Wine Equalisation Tax) paid on goods purchased in Australia. The refund is applicable to goods, totalling $A300 (GST inclusive) or more that are being taken out of Australia. The goods must have been purchased no earlier than 30 days before leaving Australia. Tourist Refund Scheme (TRS) facilities are located at international airports. To claim, travellers must show their passport, international boarding pass, retailer's tax invoice and the goods. Other conditions may apply.
Australian currency ($AUD) is decimal with the dollar as the basic unit (100 cents equals one dollar). Notes come in $100, $50, $20, $10 and $5 denominations. Coins come in $2, $1, 50c, 20c, 10c and 5c denominations. Prices are rounded to the nearest 5c.
The most commonly accepted credit cards are American Express, MasterCard and Visa.
Banks and various locations have ATMs (Automated Teller Machines). Credit cards may need to be enabled for international access so contact your credit card provider.
Exchange facilities are available at international airports. Changing foreign currency or traveller's cheques can be done at most banks.
Hitchhiking is strongly discouraged throughout Australia. Public and private transport operates between most cities and towns.
Travel insurance, with comprehensive health cover, is strongly recommended by authorities and is a requirement of your participation in Nature-Bound Australia's journeys. Comprehensive insurance should be taken out before departure.
Medicare is Australia's public health care system. Eligibility is generally restricted to permanent residents of Australia. Australia has Reciprocal Health Care Agreements with Finland, Italy, Malta, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland.
While every effort has been made to verify the accuracy of the above advice, details and policies can change at any time. We therefore recommend you personally verify with appropriate authorities, any important details that may be impacting on your journey to and within Australia.