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Australia is one of the most popular tourism spots in the world, and Australia has put in place a visa system for tourists and visitors to encourage visitors to Australia to come and enjoy the country.

Depending on where you are coming from and other factors, you may apply for an Australian visitor visa either electronically or via the application.

Note that if you wish to visit Australia primarily for business purposes, you should consider an Australian Business Visitor visa.

Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) and eVisitor Visas

Visitors from selected countries may apply for an Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) or eVisitor Australian visitor visa.

These visas are generally valid for a maximum length of any trip of 3 months, and multiple trips may be taken within the 12 month period from the date of issue. They have requirements for health and character issues, and are intended for people who wish to visit Australia for tourism or to visit family and friends.

Visitor Visas

The Australia visitor visas (subclass 600) is intended for people from countries that are not eligible for an ETA, or people who are not approved or eligible for an ETA. This visa subclass is also used to extend a stay for an applicant who is already onshore on an ETA, eVisitor or previous subclass 600 visa.

Applicants are required to demonstrate that they have sufficient financial ability to cover their costs for the trip, and must meet character and health requirements. Australian Visitor visas are issued for a period of 3, 6 or 12 months depending on the applicant. Visitor visas issued for 3 or 6 months less than 12 months may be extended for a total duration of 12 months depending on the applicant. Generally visitor visas may not be extended past 12 months. Visitor visa holders are not allowed to work.

Working Holiday Visas

These classes of visas allow a visitor to come to Australia for a trip of up to 1 year in duration and undertake casual work during their stay in Australia.

Applicants must be between the ages of 18 and 30, and have citizenship from a country on the approved list of countries for this type of visa. Limitations apply to the type and duration of work that can be undertaken on this visa.

Sponsored Family Visitor Visa

The Sponsored Family Visitor (679) visa allows an Australian citizen or permanent resident to sponsor an offshore family member to visit Australia for a period of up to 12 months. As a sponsor, you must be a relative of the applicant, including a partner, parent, child, brother, sister, grandparent, grandchild, aunt, uncle, niece, nephew, or the “step” or adopted equivalent of any of these.

Applicants are required to demonstrate that they have sufficient financial ability to cover their costs for the trip, and may be asked to post a security bond which is refundable after the visitor has left Australia and complied with all the conditions of the visa.

Applicants must meet character and health requirements, and this visa is issued for a period of 3, 6 or 12 months depending on the applicant. With this visa it is possible to request a specific period of up to 12 months upon application. This visa is valid for a single entry only in Australia; holders cannot leave Australia and re-enter during the period of the visa. Visa holders are not allowed to work under this visa.

Visitor visas issued for 3 or 6 months less than 12 months may be extended for a total duration of 12 months depending on the applicant. Generally, visitor visas may not be extended past 12 months.

Visitor visa holders are permitted to study in Australia for a period not exceeding 3 months.

Other Visitor Visas

Australia provides visas for a wide range of short-term visitors including people visiting Australia for long-term or short-term medical treatment, special events, and people transiting through Australia.


To start the process of your migration to Australia and get answers to your migration questions, schedule your private consultation with migration lawyer Mark Northam today by Skype, phone, or at our offices in Sydney.

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