Visiting for a Holiday or Family Reason

You can visit Australia for tourism or other recreational activities such as holiday, sightseeing, social or recreational reasons, to visit relatives or friends or other short-term non-work purposes (including short-term study).

Visitor visa options

For a short stay visit

  • a Tourist (Short Stay) visa, subclass 676 – for a stay of up to three months.
  • a Sponsored Family Visitor visa, subclass 679 – for a stay of up to three months. To apply for this visa, you must be outside Australia and have an eligible sponsor.
    OR
  • an Electronic Travel Authority (ETA), subclass 976 (Visitor ETA) is equivalent to a Short Stay Visitor visa. To apply for a Visitor ETA, you must be outside Australia and hold a passport issued by an ETA-eligible country or region.

For a long stay visit

  • a Tourist (Long Stay) visa, subclass 686 – for a total stay of more than three months.

Applying for a Visitor ETA or Visitor visa from outside Australia

There are a number of ways to obtain an ETA or a Visitor visa.

Travel agents or airlines may arrange an ETA or a Tourist (Short Stay) visa:

  • If you hold one of the listed ETA-eligible passports, you can ask your travel agent or airline to arrange a Visitor ETA for you.
  • The department has a convenient ‘online service’ available to selected travel agents and airlines to apply for a Tourist Short Stay visa on behalf of their clients. This online service is currently available only to eligible passport holders of the following countries: the Czech Republic; Republic of Cyprus; Estonia; Hungary; Kuwait; Latvia; Lithuania; Poland; Slovakia; Slovenia; and the United Arab Emirates. A number of travel agents and airlines in these countries have registered with the department to access this service. If you wish to use this option, ask your travel agent or airline.

Applying over the Internet

  • If you hold an ETA-eligible passport (Visitor ETA) –
    See: ETA website
  • If you hold one of the following eligible passports (the Czech Republic; Republic of Cyprus; Estonia; Hungary; Kuwait; Latvia; Lithuania; Poland; Slovakia; Slovenia; or the United Arab Emirates (Tourist Short Stay visa) –
    See:
    Online Services – Visiting Australia (Tourist Short Stay visa)

Applying in person or by mail

If you are not eligible to apply for an ETA or a Tourist Short Stay visa over the Internet, or if you wish to apply for a Tourist (Long Stay) visa, you may apply for a visitor visa in person or by mail.

  • If you wish to apply for a Tourist (Short Stay) subclass 676 or a Tourist (Long Stay) subclass 686 visa, use form 48 or 48R, Application to visit Australia for tourism or other recreational activities, and lodge your application at an Australian overseas mission. Please refer to the website of your nearest Australian overseas mission for details of the application procedures that apply to you.
  • If you wish to apply for a Sponsored Family Visitor visa to visit a relative in Australia, complete form 48S, Application to visit Australia as sponsored family visitor. Your sponsor will need to complete and sign form 1149 and send it to you. Both forms must be lodged at an Australian overseas mission.

Extending your stay in Australia as a visitor

You must apply for a new visa before your current visa expires. The best time to apply for a new visitor visa is about two weeks before the expiry of your current visa. However it should be noted that the grant of a further stay visa (if granted) will cease any visa/ETA currently held and the entitlements attached to that visa/ETA.
See: Form 985i, Visitors in Australia, further stay

Applying over the Internet

  • If you are currently in Australia on a valid Visitor ETA or valid Tourist Short Stay visa, and your visa does not have the ‘No further stay’ – 8503 condition, and you wish to extend your stay in Australia for a further period so that the total duration of your stay in Australia is 6 months or less (from the date when you last entered Australia), you can apply to extend your stay in Australia over the Internet.
    See: Online Services – Visiting Australia (extension to a visitor visa or extension to an Electronic Travel Authority (ETA))

Applying in person or by mail

  • If you are not eligible to apply to extend your stay over the Internet, or if you wish to extend your stay in Australia beyond a total stay period of six months, you may apply for a Tourist (Long Stay) visa in person or by mail.
    See: Form 601, Application for further stay as a visitor

Visa validity and conditions

Visitors to Australia must be willing and able to abide by the visa validity and conditions while in Australia. If you do not abide by these visa validity and conditions, your visa may be cancelled or you may be subject to other penalties.

If you have any questions or concerns about your visa validity and conditions, you should contact the office that granted the visa before travelling to Australia.

You can find information about the validity and conditions of your visa on the visa label in your passport or on the letter advising you of the grant of your visa.

Visa validity

  • A Visitor ETA is valid for multiple visits within 12 months from date of issue, and the maximum length of each visit/stay is three months
  • A Sponsored Family Visitor visa is valid for one single visit and allows a stay in Australia of up to 3 months
  • A Tourist (Short Stay) normally allows a stay in Australia of up to 3 months. It may be granted for a single entry or multiple entries
  • A Tourist (Long Stay) normally allows a stay in Australia of up to 6 months. It may be granted for a single entry or multiple entries

Visa conditions

  • 8101 – The holder must not engage in work in Australia; and
  • 8201 – While in Australia the holder must not engage, for more than 3 months, in any studies or training; and/or
  • 8205 – If the holder is at least 11 years of age and:
    • (a) is from a country other than a country that is designated, by Gazette Notice, as a country in relation to which this condition does not apply; and
    • (b) intends to study in a class-room environment for a period greater than 4 weeks;

    the holder must, before commencing that study, pass a chest X-ray examination carried out by a medical practitioner who is qualified as a radiologist; and/or

  • 8503 – The holder will not, after entering Australia, be entitled to be granted a substantive visa, other than a Protection visa, while the holder remains in Australia.

There may be other conditions depending on the purpose of your visit.

Frequently asked questions about visitor visas
Visiting Australia for Medical Treatment
Family Visitor Network
Transit visa requirements – for passengers passing through Australia