Australia travel advice
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- Risk level
- Safety and security
- Entry and exit requirements
- Laws and culture
- Natural disasters and climate
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Australia - Take normal security precautions
Take normal security precautions in Australia.
Safety and security
Violent crime is low.
Petty crime, such as pickpocketing and bag snatching, occurs mostly in larger cities. Vehicle break-ins are common.
Robberies of safe-deposit facilities are common at inexpensive hotels and hostels.
- Ensure that your personal belongings, including your passport and other travel documents, are secure at all times
- Never leave personal belongings, such as money, credit cards, cell phones and other electronics, unattended
- Exercise caution in popular tourist areas
Scammers have duped tourists into transferring money to an overseas bank account in exchange for renting accommodation in Australia.
When renting accommodation, beware of online scams.
Demonstrations may occur. Even peaceful demonstrations can turn violent at any time. They can also lead to disruptions to traffic and public transportation.
- Avoid areas where demonstrations are taking place
- Follow the instructions of local authorities
- Monitor local media for information on ongoing demonstrations
There is a threat of terrorism. The Government of Australia maintains a national terrorism threat advisory system. Individuals or groups have developed both the intent and capability to conduct a terrorist attack in Australia. Terrorist attacks could occur at any time.
Targets could include:
- government buildings, including schools
- places of worship
- airports and other transportation hubs and networks
- public areas such as tourist attractions, restaurants, bars, coffee shops, shopping centres, markets, hotels and other sites frequented by foreigners
Always be aware of your surroundings when in public places.
Australian National Security – Government of Australia
Spiked food and drinks
Never leave food or drinks unattended or in the care of strangers. Be wary of accepting snacks, beverages, gum or cigarettes from new acquaintances, as they may contain drugs that could put you at risk of sexual assault and robbery.
Coastal waters can be dangerous. Riptides are common and can be dangerous. Several drownings occur each year.
In certain areas, sharks, crocodiles, jellyfish and other wildlife pose a risk to swimmers.
- Avoid unsupervised beaches
- Follow the instructions and warnings of lifeguards
- Respect the flag warning system, which provides notice of water conditions and safety risks on beaches
Beach safety – Government of Australia
Diving and snorkelling
You must provide a medical declaration for diving or snorkelling.
Follow the instructions and warnings of local authorities.
Safety information for divers and snorkellers – Government of Australia
Trekking and mountaineering
Weather conditions may be dry during the summer. You should be prepared for hot weather.
If you intend on trekking or mountaineering:
- never do so alone and always hire an experienced guide from a reputable company
- buy travel insurance that includes helicopter rescue and medical evacuation
- ensure that your physical condition is good enough to meet the challenges of your activity
- ensure that you’re properly equipped and well informed about weather and other conditions that may pose a hazard
- inform a family member or friend of your itinerary, including when you expect to be back to camp
- obtain detailed information on trekking routes before setting out and do not venture off marked trails or slopes
Some regions in Australia’s interior are very isolated and have small populations. Services are scarce.
You may have difficulty getting adequate mobile phone coverage if you travel there by car.
- Avoid travelling alone
- Inform relatives of your itinerary
Road conditions and road safety are very good throughout the country. Exercise caution when driving in rural areas at night. Drivers often drive at excessive speeds. Roaming animals and road trains pose further hazards.
Access to some remote locations may be impossible during severe weather conditions. Due to the great distances between settlements and the isolation of many outback areas:
- avoid travelling in extreme heat conditions
- plan your overland route carefully
- provide a friend or relative with your itinerary, and ensure that your vehicle is in good repair
- carry a first-aid kit and personal medication
- carry sufficient fuel, water, and food supplies
- bring a satellite phone or an emergency position indicating radio beacon (EPIRB)
We do not make assessments on the compliance of foreign domestic airlines with international safety standards.
Entry and exit requirements
Every country or territory decides who can enter or exit through its borders. The Government of Canada cannot intervene on your behalf if you do not meet your destination’s entry or exit requirements.
We have obtained the information on this page from the Australian authorities. It can, however, change at any time.
Verify this information with the Foreign Representatives in Canada.
Entry requirements vary depending on the type of passport you use for travel.
Before you travel, check with your transportation company about passport requirements. Its rules on passport validity may be more stringent than the country’s entry rules.
Regular Canadian passport
Your passport must be valid on the day of entry into the country.
Passport for official travel
Different entry rules may apply.
Passport with “X” gender identifier
While the Government of Canada issues passports with an “X” gender identifier, it cannot guarantee your entry or transit through other countries. You might face entry restrictions in countries that do not recognize the “X” gender identifier. Before you leave, check with the closest foreign representative for your destination.
Other travel documents
Different entry rules may apply when travelling with a temporary passport or an emergency travel document. Before you leave, check with the closest foreign representative for your destination.
Tourist visa: not required for stays up to 90 days
Business visa: required
Student visa: required
Canadians entering Australia without a visa need to get an electronic travel authority (ETA) to visit Australia. Ensure that you travel with the same passport used to apply for your ETA.
A health examination might be necessary to obtain certain visas.
- Electronic Travel Authority – Government of Australia
- Department of Home Affairs – Government of Australia
Children and travel
Learn more about travelling with children.
Learn about potential entry requirements related to yellow fever (vaccines section).
This section contains information on possible health risks and restrictions regularly found or ongoing in the destination. Follow this advice to lower your risk of becoming ill while travelling. Not all risks are listed below.
Consult a health care professional or visit a travel health clinic preferably 6 weeks before you travel to get personalized health advice and recommendations.
Some of these vaccinations include measles-mumps-rubella (MMR), diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, polio, varicella (chickenpox), influenza and others.
Pre-travel vaccines and medications
You may be at risk for preventable diseases while travelling in this destination. Talk to a travel health professional about which medications or vaccines may be right for you, based on your destination and itinerary.
Yellow Fever - Country Entry Requirements
Yellow fever is a disease caused by a flavivirus from the bite of an infected mosquito.
Travellers get vaccinated either because it is required to enter a country or because it is recommended for their protection.
- There is no risk of yellow fever in this country.
Country Entry Requirement*
- Proof of vaccination is required if you are coming from or have transited through an airport of a country where yellow fever occurs.
- Vaccination is not recommended.
- Discuss travel plans, activities, and destinations with a health care professional.
- Contact a designated Yellow Fever Vaccination Centre well in advance of your trip to arrange for vaccination.
Yellow Fever Vaccination Centres in Canada
* It is important to note that country entry requirements may not reflect your risk of yellow fever at your destination. It is recommended that you contact the nearest diplomatic or consular office of the destination(s) you will be visiting to verify any additional entry requirements.
Hepatitis B is a risk in every destination. It is a viral liver disease that is easily transmitted from one person to another through exposure to blood and body fluids containing the hepatitis B virus. Travellers who may be exposed to blood or other bodily fluids (e.g., through sexual contact, medical treatment, sharing needles, tattooing, acupuncture or occupational exposure) are at higher risk of getting hepatitis B.
Hepatitis B vaccination is recommended for all travellers. Prevent hepatitis B infection by practicing safe sex, only using new and sterile drug equipment, and only getting tattoos and piercings in settings that follow public health regulations and standards.
In this destination, rabies may be present in some wildlife species, including bats. Rabies is a deadly disease that spreads to humans primarily through bites or scratches from an infected animal.
If you are bitten or scratched by an animal while travelling, immediately wash the wound with soap and clean water and see a health care professional.
Before travel, discuss rabies vaccination with a health care professional. It may be recommended for travellers who will be working directly with wildlife.
Measles is a highly contagious viral disease. It can spread quickly from person to person by direct contact and through droplets in the air.
Anyone who is not protected against measles is at risk of being infected with it when travelling internationally.
Regardless of where you are going, talk to a health care professional before travelling to make sure you are fully protected against measles.
Japanese encephalitis is a viral infection that can cause swelling of the brain. It is spread to humans through the bite of an infected mosquito. Risk is very low for most travellers. Travellers at relatively higher risk may want to consider vaccination for JE prior to travelling.
Travellers are at higher risk if they will be:
- travelling long term (e.g. more than 30 days)
- making multiple trips to endemic areas
- staying for extended periods in rural areas
- visiting an area suffering a JE outbreak
- engaging in activities involving high contact with mosquitos (e.g., entomologists)
The flu occurs worldwide.
- In the Northern Hemisphere, the flu season usually runs from November to April.
- In the Southern Hemisphere, the flu season usually runs between April and October.
- In the tropics, there is flu activity year round.
The flu vaccine available in one hemisphere may only offer partial protection against the flu in the other hemisphere.
The flu virus spreads from person to person when they cough or sneeze or by touching objects and surfaces that have been contaminated with the virus. Clean your hands often and wear a mask if you have a fever or respiratory symptoms.
Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is an infectious viral disease. It can spread from person to person by direct contact and through droplets in the air.
It is recommended that all eligible travellers complete a COVID-19 vaccine series along with any additional recommended doses in Canada before travelling. Evidence shows that vaccines are very effective at preventing severe illness, hospitalization and death from COVID-19. While vaccination provides better protection against serious illness, you may still be at risk of infection from the virus that causes COVID-19. Anyone who has not completed a vaccine series is at increased risk of being infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 and is at greater risk for severe disease when travelling internationally.
Before travelling, verify your destination’s COVID-19 vaccination entry/exit requirements. Regardless of where you are going, talk to a health care professional before travelling to make sure you are adequately protected against COVID-19.
Safe food and water precautions
Many illnesses can be caused by eating food or drinking beverages contaminated by bacteria, parasites, toxins, or viruses, or by swimming or bathing in contaminated water.
- Learn more about food and water precautions to take to avoid getting sick by visiting our eat and drink safely abroad page. Remember: Boil it, cook it, peel it, or leave it!
- Avoid getting water into your eyes, mouth or nose when swimming or participating in activities in freshwater (streams, canals, lakes), particularly after flooding or heavy rain. Water may look clean but could still be polluted or contaminated.
- Avoid inhaling or swallowing water while bathing, showering, or swimming in pools or hot tubs.
Insect bite prevention
Many diseases are spread by the bites of infected insects such as mosquitoes, ticks, fleas or flies. When travelling to areas where infected insects may be present:
- Use insect repellent (bug spray) on exposed skin
- Cover up with light-coloured, loose clothes made of tightly woven materials such as nylon or polyester
- Minimize exposure to insects
- Use mosquito netting when sleeping outdoors or in buildings that are not fully enclosed
To learn more about how you can reduce your risk of infection and disease caused by bites, both at home and abroad, visit our insect bite prevention page.
Find out what types of insects are present where you’re travelling, when they’re most active, and the symptoms of the diseases they spread.
- In this country, risk of dengue is sporadic. It is a viral disease spread to humans by mosquito bites.
- Dengue can cause flu-like symptoms. In some cases, it can lead to severe dengue, which can be fatal.
- The level of risk of dengue changes seasonally, and varies from year to year. The level of risk also varies between regions in a country and can depend on the elevation in the region.
- Mosquitoes carrying dengue typically bite during the daytime, particularly around sunrise and sunset.
- Protect yourself from mosquito bites. There is no vaccine or medication that protects against dengue fever.
Some infections, such as rabies and influenza, can be shared between humans and animals. Certain types of activities may increase your chance of contact with animals, such as travelling in rural or forested areas, camping, hiking, and visiting wet markets (places where live animals are slaughtered and sold) or caves.
Travellers are cautioned to avoid contact with animals, including dogs, livestock (pigs, cows), monkeys, snakes, rodents, birds, and bats, and to avoid eating undercooked wild game.
Closely supervise children, as they are more likely to come in contact with animals.
Stay home if you’re sick and practise proper cough and sneeze etiquette, which includes coughing or sneezing into a tissue or the bend of your arm, not your hand. Reduce your risk of colds, the flu and other illnesses by:
- washing your hands often
- avoiding or limiting the amount of time spent in closed spaces, crowded places, or at large-scale events (concerts, sporting events, rallies)
- avoiding close physical contact with people who may be showing symptoms of illness
Sexually transmitted infections (STIs), HIV, and mpox are spread through blood and bodily fluids; use condoms, practise safe sex, and limit your number of sexual partners. Check with your local public health authority pre-travel to determine your eligibility for mpox vaccine.
Medical services and facilities
Health care is excellent. Service is available throughout the country.
Payment is expected at time of service.
Make sure you get travel insurance that includes coverage for medical evacuation and hospital stays.
Keep in Mind...
The decision to travel is the sole responsibility of the traveller. The traveller is also responsible for his or her own personal safety.
Be prepared. Do not expect medical services to be the same as in Canada. Pack a travel health kit, especially if you will be travelling away from major city centres.
Laws and culture
You must abide by local laws.
Learn about what you should do and how we can help if you are arrested or detained abroad.
Canada and Australia are signatories to the Convention on the Transfer of Sentenced Persons. This enables a Canadian imprisoned in Australia to request a transfer to a Canadian prison to complete a sentence. The transfer requires the agreement of both Canadian and Australian authorities. This process can take a long time and there is no guarantee that the transfer will be approved by either or both sides.
Penalties for possession, use or trafficking of illegal drugs are severe. Convicted offenders can expect lengthy jail sentences and heavy fines.
Imports and exports
There are very strict rules and quarantine measures regarding the importation of food and animal products. Information about items which you can and cannot bring to Australia is available from Australia’s Department of Home Affairs.
Immigration and Citizenship – Government of Australia
Traffic drives on the left.
Local authorities accept your overseas driving licence if the names on your licence match exactly those in your passport.
You must apply for a local licence if you intend to stay in Australia longer than 3 months.
Permits are required when travelling on Aboriginal territory.
You should carry an international driving permit.
- Driving with an overseas licence – Government of Australia
- More about the International Driving Permit
Dual citizenship is legally recognized in Australia.
If you are a Canadian citizen, but also a citizen of Australia, our ability to offer you consular services may be limited while you're there. You may also be subject to different entry/exit requirements.
International Child Abduction
The Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction is an international treaty. It can help parents with the return of children who have been removed to or retained in certain countries in violation of custody rights. The convention applies between Canada and Australia.
If your child was wrongfully taken to, or is being held in Australia, and if the applicable conditions are met, you may apply for the return of your child to the Australian court.
If you are in this situation:
- act as quickly as you can
- contact the Central Authority for your province or territory of residence for information on starting an application under The Hague Convention
- consult a lawyer in Canada and in Australia to explore all the legal options for the return of your child
- report the situation to the nearest Canadian government office abroad or to the Vulnerable Children’s Consular Unit at Global Affairs Canada by calling the Emergency Watch and Response Centre
If your child was removed from a country other than Canada, consult a lawyer to determine if The Hague Convention applies.
Be aware that Canadian consular officials cannot interfere in private legal matters or in another country’s judicial affairs.
- List of Canadian Central Authorities for the Hague Convention
- International Child Abduction: A Guidebook for Left-Behind Parents
- Travelling with children
- The Hague Convention - Hague Conference on Private International Law
- Canadian embassies and consulates by destination
- Emergency Watch and Response Centre
The currency of Australia is the Australian dollar (AUD).
Natural disasters and climate
Bush and forest fires
Bush and forest fires are common between October and April, particularly in areas covered by bushes, long grass or coastal scrub. Elevated fire danger ratings and alert levels may be applied to affected areas. The air quality in areas near active fires may deteriorate due to heavy smoke.
In case of a major fire:
- stay away from the affected area, particularly if you suffer from respiratory ailments
- be prepared to modify your travel arrangements or even evacuate the area on short notice
- follow the instructions of local emergency services personnel
- monitor local media for up-to-date information on the situation
For current information, consult the relevant state or territory authorities.
- Australian Capital Territory
- New South Wales
- Northern Territory
- South Australia
- Western Australia
The rainy season extends from November to April. Severe flooding occurs annually, especially in the inland parts of the following states:
- New South Wales
- Western Australia
Seasonal flooding can hamper overland travel and reduce the provision of essential services. Roads may become impassable and bridges damaged.
- Monitor local news and weather reports
- Follow the instructions of local authorities, including evacuation orders
Australia Rainfall and river conditions – Bureau of meteorology, Australian government
Cyclones usually occur from November to April. They may occur along the coastal areas of Queensland, the Northern Territory and Western Australia.
During this period, even small storms can quickly develop into major cyclones. These severe storms can put you at risk and hamper the provision of essential services.
If you decide to travel to Australia during the cyclone season:
- know that you expose yourself to serious safety risks
- be prepared to change your travel plans on short notice, including cutting short or cancelling your trip
- stay informed of the latest regional weather forecasts
- carry emergency contact information for your airline or tour operator
- follow the advice and instructions of local authorities
- Bureau of Meteorology – Government of Australia
- Tornadoes, cyclones, hurricanes, typhoons and monsoons
- Large-scale emergencies abroad
Australia is located in a seismic zone. Earthquakes may occur.
Dial 000 for emergency assistance.
Canberra - High Commission of Canada
Australian Capital Territory, Victoria, South Australia, Western Australia, Tasmania, Guam, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, New Caledonia, Northern Marianas, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu
Sydney - Consulate General of Canada
New South Wales, Queensland and Northern Territory
For emergency consular assistance, call the High Commission of Canada in Australia, in Canberra, or the Consulate General of Canada in Sydney and follow the instructions. At any time, you may also contact the Emergency Watch and Response Centre in Ottawa.
The decision to travel is your choice and you are responsible for your personal safety abroad. We take the safety and security of Canadians abroad very seriously and provide credible and timely information in our Travel Advice to enable you to make well-informed decisions regarding your travel abroad.
The content on this page is provided for information only. While we make every effort to give you correct information, it is provided on an "as is" basis without warranty of any kind, expressed or implied. The Government of Canada does not assume responsibility and will not be liable for any damages in connection to the information provided.
If you need consular assistance while abroad, we will make every effort to help you. However, there may be constraints that will limit the ability of the Government of Canada to provide services.
Learn more about consular services.
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