Are you ready for an unforgettable adventure Down Under? Look no further than obtaining an Australian visitor visa to embark on a journey filled with breathtaking landscapes, vibrant cities, and unique wildlife. Whether you choose to explore the iconic landmarks of Sydney, immerse yourself in the natural wonders of the Great Barrier Reef, or discover the cultural richness of Melbourne, the first step is securing your Australian tourist visa. In this guide, we'll walk you through the process with a smile, providing you with all the essential information and tips to make your visa application a breeze. Get ready to experience the warmth of Australian hospitality and create memories that will last a lifetime!
Step-by-step to apply for your Australian visitor visa
1. What you should know
To make your travel dreams to Australia come true, you have two convenient options! You can either apply for a visa through the Australia Visa Application Centre (AVAC) or simply apply online for the Electronic Travel Authority (ETA). Remember, for a smoother process, it's best not to apply for a visa at the High Commission of Australia or visit their office directly.
Electronic Travel Authority (ETA):
Great news! With an ETA (subclass 600), you'll have the opportunity to explore Australia multiple times within a year. Each visit can last up to three months, giving you ample time to enjoy all the wonders the country has to offer!
To apply for an ETA, just hop on over to this website: https://www.eta.immi.gov.au/ETAS3/etas. While the processing time can be quick, it's always a good idea to allow at least two weeks for approval. Remember, avoid purchasing flight tickets or making commitments until your visa is approved to be on the safe side.
Now, let's talk about the documents you need to prepare for your ETA adventure:
- Make sure your passport has a minimum validity of six months from your travel date.
- Don't forget to have a valid email address handy.
- You'll need to download the Australia ETA app. It's available to download for free from the Apple Store (Apple) or Google Play store (Android).
- Keep your credit card ready as well. The cost of the ETA application is approximately AUD 20 (around RM59). Isn't that a great deal?
If you prefer the traditional route, no worries! You can download your visa application form right here: http://www.vfsglobal.com/australia/malaysia/index.html. Alternatively, you can also obtain the form directly from AVAC's office.
Address: AVAC, Suite 19.06, 19th Floor, Wisma MCA, 163 Jalan Ampang, 50450 Kuala Lumpur.
Email: [email protected]
Helpline: +603 2166 6550 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm)
You can submit your application from Monday to Friday, between 8am to 3pm, and collect your documents from Monday to Friday, between 10am to 2pm.
To ensure a smooth process, make sure you have the following documents ready:
- Your valid passport and copies of the pages containing your personal information.
- A passport-size photo (35mm x 45mm) with your name written on the back.
- Certified copies of birth certificates for all individuals listed on the application form.
- Supporting financial documents such as bank statements, pay slips, or taxation records to demonstrate your ability to support your stay.
- If you're planning to visit someone, a signed letter of invitation from them will be required.
- An itinerary outlining your stay in Australia.
The visa processing time can take approximately 19 to 24 working days, so be sure to plan accordingly and allow enough time for your application to be processed.
Do I need a transit visa?
Great news for Malaysians! You can enjoy a delightful transit in Australia for up to 72 hours without needing a transit visa. Just make sure you have the necessary travel documents to prove that you'll be leaving the country within that timeframe.
Pro tips / Insider tips:
- Remember, if your passport expires before your ETA, it's essential to apply for a new one.
- Australia is really strict about items brought into the country. To be safe, don’t bring anything edible or items made of animal products with you. We found out even ‘Milo’ has been confiscated before. ☹
- If you’re travelling in a group and applying for a visa at AVAC, you have to make a separate appointment online for each person.
My personal experience
Let's be honest, obtaining a visitor visa to Australia is getting harder these days. When I applied for a visitor visa for my trip to Adelaide last year, I was rejected even though it was a business trip and all the expenses were covered! So, how did I finally get my visa? Let me share with you all my tips!
Include proofs that you'll return to your home country
More often than not, you'll receive an email to include more details about your trip after applying for the ETA. So, be sure to attach every possible document that proves you'll be returning to your home country. For my case, I attached photos of my kid, my husband, and my family as well as proof of employment (you can ask your HR for this). If you own a property, be sure to add the document too! And don't forget your itinerary - this is very important. All you need to do is to show the immigration officers that you intend to return home!
Be sure to name the documents properly
The first time I sent my documents I didn't rename them so it was like img1, img 2, img 3, etc. I am not sure if they're particular about these kinds of things, but what I did differently when applying for a second time is to rename the photos to: My Son, My Husband, My Family, etc.
Make sure you have enough fund
Yes, that's right! You need to show that you have enough funds for your trip. Attach your bank statements as this will prove you do not intend to overstay your visitor visa. In my case, I had my employer write a letter stating it was a sponsored trip to promote Australia. I also attached my pay slips in case they have any doubts.
After applying for my Australian visitor visa for the second time, it took me only a couple of days for the visa to be approved! I hope my tried and tested tips will help you to apply for your visa and have a stress-free trip! Once your visa is approved, start planning your Australian trip with our articles:
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