Have you ever dreamt of visiting the Land Down Under? Australia is home to plenty of tourist spots, and there are also a number of Filipinos living there as well.
ALSO READ: How to Apply for a US Tourist Visa In Qatar
So, whether you want to visit your relatives, go to beaches, or see the Sydney Opera House, it’s time to plan your trip to Australia accordingly. The first step to accomplish is to apply for a tourist visa.
Australian Tourist Visa for Filipinos
Australia may be the smallest continent but it is full of attractions that you can visit. From the outback to museums, you will never run out of places to go. For Philippine passport holders, it is necessary to obtain a visitor visa (subclass 600) to travel to Australia.
You can apply for your visitor visa online. Alternatively, you can also apply for a visitor visa under the Sponsored Family Stream.
According to the Department of Home Affairs of the Australian Government, the visitor visa is the appropriate stream for tourists entering the country. The main requirements for application include being a genuine tourist and having sufficient funds to support your stay and departure from the country. You can apply for a visitor visa outside of Australia or have a family member sponsor your trip.
Here are the requirements:
- Philippine passport
The passport should be valid for at least 6 months. You can also present your old passports, especially if they show your previous entry and exit from other countries. While not all officers may ask to see the old passport, it may be helpful to have it available.
- Previous visas (if available)
- Birth certificate
- Marriage certificate
- Bank certificate (should be issued in the last 3 months)
- Income tax return
- Certificate of employment or Employment Contract
- Proof of self-employment (if applicable)
- Certificate of enrolment for students
- Proposed itinerary
- Cover letter explaining your reason to go to Australia
- Letter from your employer certifying that you will return to your job after your vacation in Australia
- Airline and hotel reservations – there is no guarantee that your application will be approved. But if you present a return ticket, you will prove to the immigration officer that you will depart Australia after your visit
Take note that all documents you will present should be written in English.
Additional Requirements for those Applying for Sponsored Stream Visa
If you are planning to visit Australia using the Sponsored Stream option, there are additional requirements to consider. Here are some of the documents that may be needed:
- Letter of invitation from your sponsor – some travelers suggest that you can also prepare photos of you and your sponsor as proof of relationship
- Proof of identification of the sponsor
- Proof of funds that will prove your sponsor can support your trip to Australia
Procedure for Visa Application
- The Department of Home Affairs offers a comprehensive guide on how to apply for a visitor visa. According to their website, it is advisable to check your passport and other official documents before you begin the application process. You can also start preparing for your medical examination, which can be taken before applying or as instructed by Australian Homeland officials.
- For your character reference, you may be required to present a police certificate.
- When submitting documents or photos, scan them in color. If a document consists of multiple pages, combine them into a single file for submission.
- Once your documents are ready, it is time to apply for the visitor visa online. You can create or log in to the ImmiAccount using this link. Ensure that you provide accurate information regarding your identity and documents to avoid visa application refusal.
- The homeland officials will notify you upon receiving your application. Remember that you must not be in Australia while your visa application is under review. During this period, you may be informed of the requirement to provide biometrics, which incurs a service fee.
- Additionally, you might be asked to undergo health examinations and may be required to submit additional documents. If you discover any mistakes in your application, you can go back to your ImmiAccount to update your details. However, please note that you need to notify any incorrect answers before you can make updates.
- You will receive a written communication to inform you that your visa application is approved
Fees for Visa Processing
The payment for processing the visa is AUD 150 up to AUD 1,020. If you are applying for the sponsored family stream, your sponsor may have to pay a security bond.
Reminders on how to Succeed in the Visitor Visa Application
The Department of Home Affairs has shared some tips for visa applicants to increase the chances of a successful application. They have dedicated a webpage on their website to provide advice on expediting the visitor visa application process. Here are some of their tips:
- Provide truthful and accurate information and documents
- Allow sufficient time for your documents to be available. Some certificates may not be immediately accessible when requested from government offices. It may also be necessary to translate certain documents into English, as per homeland requirements.
- Double-check the spelling of your name, ensuring it matches the spelling in your passport
- When entering dates on the application form, use the format dd/mm/yy
Additional Reminders when Using the ImmiAction
Here are some additional reminders to consider when using the ImmiAccount for your visa application:
- Check if you have given consent to receive electronic communications.
- If someone else has completed the application on your behalf, ensure that your representative provides your contact details so that homeland officials can easily reach you if needed.
- Ensure that you can still access your ImmiAccount throughout the application process.
- Do not share personal details, particularly your ImmiAccount password, with anyone.
- Regularly check your ImmiAccount for any updates, additional questions, or requests from officials. Timely responses on your part will help expedite the processing of your application
How to get to Australia from Qatar
Travel time from Doha to Sydney, Australia is approximately 16 hours. Some of the airlines flying to Sydney are: Qatar Airways, Etihad Airways, Philippine Airlines, Oman Air, Air India, Srilankan Airlines, Malaysia Airlines, and IndiGo. The average ticket price is from $1,500 to $1,800.
Famous Attractions in Australia
As mentioned earlier, you may be required to include your proposed itinerary as part of your visa application. In this section, we will share some popular attractions in Australia that you can consider adding to your itinerary. Here are a few examples:
- Sydney: Visit the iconic Sydney Harbour Bridge and explore the Sydney Opera House.
- Melbourne: Take a ride on the City Circle Tram in the Central Business District. For history enthusiasts, Melbourne offers attractions such as the Melbourne Museum, Shrine of Remembrance, and the Melbourne Cricket Ground
- Canberra: As the capital city, Canberra offers historical institutions like the Parliament House, the National Museum of Australia, and the National Gallery of Australia. Don’t forget to explore the local cuisine and wines as well.
- Northern Territory: If you’re seeking an outback experience, the Northern Territory is a must-visit destination. It is home to national parks, including the iconic Uluru, where you can immerse yourself in the beauty of the natural landscape.
The Department of Homeland Affairs also shared a video to guide applicants. You can watch it here: https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/check-twice-submit-once
Meanwhile, in this YouTube video from Happy Irish, we’ll find out the process of applying for a visitor visa from someone who sponsored a family member to come to Australia. A few years ago, she was able to go to the country through a sponsor as well. While her instructions are for an applicant coming from the Philippines, it is also worth watching the video because we can still get valuable tips on how to succeed in applying.
One of the points she emphasized was that Australia is an expensive country to visit. Thus, having proof of funds that you can support your trip is important.
You can watch the full video here:
Disclaimer: The information posted here is based on personal experiences that the vlogger shared in the video. Please let this post serve as a guide only. If you have specific questions, you may ask the vlogger by commenting on their video or on their social media accounts.
Frequently Asked Questions
- How long is the visa application process?
The visa processing time can be lengthy, particularly if there are additional documents or details that you need to provide. It may take at least a month to receive the result, so it is advisable to allow ample time before your planned travel.
- How much money should I have in the bank before applying for a visitor visa?
As mentioned in the YouTube video, you should have at least AUD 10,000 in your account. Additionally, you will need to submit a bank statement for the last three months to support your application. However, if you have sponsors, they will be responsible for providing proof of their ability to support your trip.
Filipinos who wish to visit Australia need to apply for a visitor visa. The application process is conducted online by creating an account with ImmiAccount. You must scan and submit the required documents electronically. After submitting your application, it is important to regularly check your account for any additional instructions from the Australian government. Once approved, you will receive written communication from the immigration officials confirming the approval of your application.