The Australian government has different types of visa policies for different nationality holders. While some foreigners can enter the country visa-free, others are required to have valid travel authorization to visit Australia.
Recently, Australia has started the visa waiver program, allowing foreign nationals, including Hongkongers, to enter the country with a traditional visa. All you need is an electronic travel authorization (ETA) to travel to Australia!
Australia ETA Requirements for Hong Kong Citizens
Hong Kong is one of the 8 countries that are eligible for an Australian ETA. An ETA is a travel authorization that permits holders to enter the country without getting a paper or stamp visa. It works as an e-visa, providing all the rights of traditional Australia visas to Hong Kong passport holders!
That being said, there are some personal, health, and character requirements that you must fulfill to get an ETA. According to the Australian immigration department of home affairs, Hong Kong nationals are required to meet the following conditions to get an ETA:
You must have a valid passport with at least 3 months of remaining validity.
You need to be free from diseases that may be threatening to the general public.
You don’t require community or health care services.
You don’t have a criminal record.
You are not threatening, harassing, or molesting any other person.
How to Apply for an Australian ETA from Hong Kong?
If you are eligible for an electronic travel authorization, you can apply for this travel document online. This means you don’t have to visit the Australian embassy or follow complicated steps. An ETA is designed to make the visa application process fast and convenient.
To get an Australian ETA, you need to visit VisaHQ, select your citizenship, and follow the following simple steps:
Fill out the ETA Application Form - you are required to provide personal, contact, travel, and passport details to fill out an online application form.
Pay the ETA Fee - As this entire process is streamlined, you'll need online payment methods to pay the embassy fee as well as the visa service fee. To do so, Hong Kong nationals can use a debit card, credit card, or PayPal account.
Submit Your Application - Finally, submit your application with supporting documents. The supporting documents might vary depending on your purpose of visit.
Once you submit all the necessary information, the Australian embassy will process your application. Upon approval, you'll receive your travel authorization via email. It's recommended to save the approved ETA on a mobile device as well as take a printed copy with you while traveling to Australia!
Before you enter Australia, you are required to complete an IPC - Incoming Passenger Card. An IPC includes your contact information as well as the address where you'll be staying in Australia. You will also need to declare the cash above a certain amount in your IPC!
ETA Application Form
To get an Australian ETA, Hong Kong nationals are required to complete an online ETA application form. To do so, you'll need to provide personal, contact, travel, as well as passport details, including:
Date of birth
Place of birth
Passport issue and expiry date
You'll also need to answer some personal and security questions. Make sure to double-check your provided online information prior to submitting your application. This is because if there are errors in your ETA application form, your ETA will more likely be delayed or denied!
The processing time for an Australian ETA varies from applicant to applicant. While some Hong Kong citizens can get their travel authorization within 3-5 business days, others may have to wait a little longer. Therefore, it's recommended to apply for an ETA at least 2 weeks prior to the intended departure date!
Other Visa Options for Hong Kong Nationals
If, for some reason, you have been denied an Australian ETA, you'll need to apply for a traditional visa. In the past, you were required to visit the Australian embassy to apply for regular visas. However, you can now partner up with VisaHQ to submit your application online!
The Australian government offers the following types of visas to Hongkongers:
Tourist Visa - This multiple-entry travel document allows a holder to stay in the country for 90 days. It is valid for tourism purposes, such as visiting relatives and exploring the country.
Business Visa - For professional and commercial activities, Hong Kong passport holders can apply for a business visa. This one permits holders to attend seminars, conferences, and business meetings in Australia.
Working Holiday Visa - If you want to work and spend holidays in Australia, you can apply for a working holiday visa. It allows you to stay in the country for 12 months within a 1-year period!
Visit VisaHQ to check out the visa requirements for the above-mentioned visa options!