Who needs a visa to come to Australia?

The information in this chapter is intended as a guide only and the rules and regulations concerning visas change frequently, as well as sometimes being ambiguous, confusing and vague.

It’s important to check the latest regulations with an Australian mission or immigration consultant (such as The Emigration Group) before making a visa application.

With the exception of New Zealanders, anyone wishing to enter Australia for any purpose requires a visa. New Zealanders receive a ‘special category visa’ on arrival and nothing is stamped in their passports; there are no formalities and they can live and work in Australia for as long as they wish.

Before making any plans to live or work in (or even travel to) Australia, you must ensure that you have the appropriate visa, without which you will be refused permission to enter the country and sent back to your home country at your own expense.

There are four main categories of visa: visitor, student, temporary residence and migration.

Multiple-entry visas are issued to those who need to visit Australia frequently over a long period, such as businessmen, entertainers, the parents of children living there and sportsmen.

There are fees for almost all visas.
 The processing of visa applications in some categories can take a considerable time in some countries owing to the large number of applications to be processed, and approval can take anything from a few weeks to a number of years.

Information about visas, charges and forms can be obtained from offices of the Department of Immigration and Multicultural and Indigenous Affairs (DIMIA) in Australia ( ) and Australian missions overseas. General information about visa applications is contained in making and processing Visa applications (form 1025i).

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