Fantastic surfing beaches, a coffee culture, laid-back residents, adorable koalas, and shockingly rigorous quarantine rules may all be found in Australia. Here is our list of essential information for a trouble-free journey to Australia. Use this handy checklist before your flight to Australia.
1. Visa prerequisites
No matter how long you intend to stay in Australia, including for brief layovers, you must have a valid visa to enter the nation. Some visas, such as a visitor visa, eVisitor visa, or Electronic Travel Authority visa if you’re traveling as a tourist, can be applied for online. For longer visits, you’ll need a different kind of visa if you’re planning to work or study in Australia. Check out the Visiting Australia page on the Department of Home Affairs website of the Australian Government to examine which visas are offered in order to determine which one is best for you.
2. Strict quarantine regulations
Australia is a lovely island with distinctive topography that is free of pests and diseases. The Australian government takes quarantine regulations very seriously because it wants to keep it that way and maintain a healthy farm business. To make sure nothing dangerous is unintentionally brought into Australia, you must disclose all food, plant material, and animal products when you arrive. This applies to grains, fruits, feathers, leathers, skins, and wood products. On your flight, you’ll be given an Incoming Passenger Card, which you’ll need to complete and declare any items you have with you.
The things will be given back to you if they are determined to be low-risk. However, if the airport’s biosecurity staff feels they pose a threat of any kind, they will be seized and you might be charged a fee. Additionally, you risk receiving substantial fines if you bring illegal items on your trip but fail to declare them.
Before you pack, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with Australia’s quarantine regulations. If you’re unsure of whether to declare an item or not, still declare it.
Notably, there are border quarantine regulations for each Australian state and territory, and you must declare specific foods and plant products before you enter another state or territory or transit between states.
3. Dress for the conditions.
Tasmania, New South Wales, Victoria, and occasionally even Queensland have snowy areas. For the majority of the year, the Top End is quite hot and humid up north. Melbourne is renowned for its four distinct seasons (think hot and sunny, then windy, then rain and storms, then sunshine again in less than 48 hours). Additionally, most of Australia experiences hot, occasionally arid summers where temperatures regularly exceed 40 degrees celsius several times a year. In other words, be ready and look up the weather predictions for the areas you’re traveling to.
If you don’t dress appropriately for the weather, you could get sunburn, become dehydrated, or even have heat stroke. Australia has particularly potent UV rays, so it’s critical to use sunscreen, reapply it frequently (the majority of sunscreen marketed there has an SPF of 50+), and drink lots of water throughout the day to stay hydrated.
4. Make travel plans; Australia is a large country.
Do you intend to fly into Sydney, stop in Melbourne, explore the Great Ocean Road, see Uluru the following day, and then go snorkeling on the Great Barrier Reef? Wrong. The size of this island continent is sometimes overlooked by tourists. You must be ready for lengthy travel times since Australia is the sixth-largest country in the world and is about the same size as the US.
Give yourself plenty of time to tour the nation while organizing your trip. There’s no way you could see everything in Australia in just two or three weeks. Flying is your best option if you want to visit several cities (unless you’re contemplating a long road trip). From large cities like Melbourne or Sydney, you can arrange trips that visit some of the most significant Australian landmarks, such as visiting Uluru in the Outback, but there will still be a significant amount of travel time. Knowing the distances between locations before your journey will make planning easier and help you avoid disappointment.
(When you arrive)
5. Be aware of your available transportation options.
An airport transfer is a simplest and most practical way to get to your destination after you step off the plane, whether you are an international or domestic traveler. You may compare and reserve your transfers at Jayride.com to assist you with that portion.
Australia’s states each have their own public transportation systems. You can utilize Melbourne’s trains, buses, and trams by acquiring a Myki card. With an Opal card, you can travel throughout Sydney on trains, buses, and ferries. A Go card is available in Brisbane. You’ll run into some issues if you attempt to use your Melbourne Myki card in Sydney because each state-specific public transportation card is unique to that state.
6. Do you tip anyone?
Tipping is not required in Australia, unlike in the United States Instead, it is typically saved for instances of great service. The majority of waiters, taxi drivers, bartenders, and hotel employees in Australia make a respectable, living minimum salary, so they are not dependent on tips as supplemental revenue (the minimum wage in Australia is one of the highest in the world).Of course, tips are always appreciated if you thought the service was excellent. You can round up your bill when you pay at the end, or tip in the jars seen at many bars, restaurants, and cafés. If you do tip, the average range is between 10 and 15 percent.
- When Daylight Saving Time begins, Australia’s three time zones become five (October–March). When looking up flight and airport transfer schedules, be careful to take into account your current time zone.
- Dial 000 for police, fire, or ambulance in case of an emergency.
- Driving in Australia is done on the left side of the road. When driving on country roads, keep an eye out for wildlife like kangaroos and wallabies, especially around dawn and dusk, when they’re most active and most likely to be hit.
- A yeast-based treat called vegemite is typically smeared over toast. Don’t spread it too thickly if this is your first time using it! If you don’t want a strong taste of salty, malty flavor, a tiny smear of butter will do.