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Visas, Migration and Citizenship
Travellers of all nationalities, except citizens of Australia and New Zealand, will need to obtain a visa to travel to Australia. Some visas are able to be lodged online, while others need to be made at the AVAC in Singapore (details below).
If you do not know what type of visa you may be seeking or whether you can apply online, a good starting point is the “Finding a Visa” link in the main Department of Immigration and Border Protection website. This site will guide you and lead you to general visa information, and includes a self-guided “Visa Finder”.
If you have a reasonable idea of what type of visa suits your purposes, and you are planning on making an application in Singapore, you can access locally produced information about lodgement and application requirements in the Singapore AVAC website. The AVAC website includes information on all applications that can be lodged in Singapore, including:
• Visitor Visas (tourism and business)
• Transit Visas
• Medical Treatment Visas
• Temporary Work (Short Stay Activity) Visas
• Temporary Work (Long Stay) Visas
• Student Visas
• Resident Return Visas
• Migration Visas (Partnet/Child/Other Family)
• Registration of Australian Citizenship by Descent
Australian Citizenship Applicants
The only citizenship applications that can be lodged in Singapore are applications for Registration of Australian Citizenship by Descent. These should be lodged at the Australian Visa Application Centre (see below). Please note the Singapore-specific application checklist in the AVAC website.
All other types of citizenship application (for example, grant of citizenship, renunciation of citizenship, resumption of citizenship and evidence of citizenship) must be lodged in Australia. For details, see Australian Citizenship.
Lodging an Application in Singapore
Applicants who are not able to apply online and who are eligible to lodge their application in Singapore should do so at the Australian Visa Application Centre (AVAC) [note that the Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) and all other online applications are not handled by the AVAC - for ETA Frequently Asked Questions, see the FAQ link on this page]:
Australian Visa Application Centre (AVAC)
135 Cecil Street
The AVAC provides convenient access to Australian immigration services for clients through greater access to information, improved facilities, extended service hours and a convenient location.
Applicants applying at the AVAC will also benefit from an online application tracking facility, and for a small additional fee, tracking by SMS notification.
Note that although applications are lodged at the AVAC, all applications continue to be assessed and decided at the Australian High Commission. AVAC staff have no involvement in assessments or decisions.
While applications are able to be lodged at the Australian High Commission by mail or by leaving completed applications in the drop box at the guard house (with credit card details), the High Commission is not able to offer the shorter service standards or facilities provided by lodging applications through the AVAC.
Applicants who require interviews (eg. Partner Migration) will also benefit from the AVAC’s ability to pre-schedule interview appointments at the High Commission. This facility is not available for applications sent directly to the High Commission.
THE AVAC website INCLUDES ALL APPLICATION FORMS AND ALL CHECKLISTS FOR THE APPLICATION TYPES THAT CAN BE LODGED IN SINGAPORE. YOU SHOULD READ THE RELEVANT CHECKLIST FULLY AS THE CHECKLISTS IN THIS WEBSITE ARE SINGAPORE-SPECIFIC. APPLICATIONS THAT DO NOT INCLUDE ALL THE INFORMATION DESCRIBED IN THE CHECKLIST WILL MOST LIKELY NOT BE FINALISED WITHIN THE PUBLICISED SERVICE STANDARD. IT IS THE APPLICANTS' RESPONSIBILITY TO MAKE SURE THE APPLICATION IS COMPLETE AT TIME OF LODGEMENT, AS PER THE RELEVANT CHECKLIST.
You should not book flights or make travel commitments until you have a visa to travel to Australia. The department will not be liable for any financial loss incurred by clients whose visa application was finalised later than expected or where an application is unsuccessful.
WHAT AVAC and DIAC STAFF CAN DO FOR YOU
• Help guide you to where you can find the latest information for you to decide what visa best suits your purposes
• Guide you to the relevant checklist that relates to the visa/application you have chosen to apply for
• Explain the application process to you
• Run through the checklist with you at lodgement
• Assist you with other value-added services related to your application
WHAT STAFF CANNOT DO
• Tell you what visa you should be applying for
• Help you complete your application
• Tell you what answers to provide in your application
• Advise you of the likely outcome of your application
WHAT YOU CAN DO FOR STAFF
• Provide clear information about your objective in seeking a visa for Australia (eg. to work, study, tour, migrate)
• Read the relevant checklist before applying
• Provide complete applications in accordance with the relevant checklist
• Show respect and courtesy, as will our staff when speaking with you
Online lodgement for Visitor visas (Subclass 600) and Temporary Work Short Stay (Sub class 400)
The online visa lodgement system is available to applicants at their convenience, seven days a week, without the need to apply in person or send in application forms by mail. Applications can be made at www.immi.gov.au (see: Online Services). Please note that you will need access to a credit card to pay for an online application. A third party may complete an online application on your behalf with your consent. For more information about online visas and which nationalities are eligible to make online applications, see:
Online lodgement for Citizenship By Descent applications
You may now lodge an application for Citizenship by Descent online. Please follow this link for more information:
Frequently Asked Questions
For a comprehensive list of frequently asked questions and answers:
Update - Australians adopting in Singapore
Australians considering adopting a non-Singapore citizen child whilst living in Singapore are advised to email firstname.lastname@example.org before starting the adoption process. Australian migration requirements in respect of adopted children are quite specific, and an adoption that does not meet these legal criteria may result in the child not being able to migrate to Australia nor acquire Australian citizenship. To meet migration visa requirements, amongst other criteria, Australians would be expected to have adopted a non-Singapore citizen child through the formal and legal adoption process in the child’s home country – a Singapore court adoption order for a non-Singapore citizen child is unlikely to meet Australia’s migration requirements.
Australia’s visa label policy
The Australian Government does not require holders of Australian visas to have a visa label in their passport.
We electronically record all visas issued to non-citizens providing them permission to travel, enter and/or remain in Australia. This means that evidence of a visa grant in the form of a visa label is no longer routinely issued to visa holders. Instead, electronic visas are linked to a visa holder’s current passport which enables us to provide accurate, secure and real-time information about a visa holder’s visa details. It is also more secure than issuing a visa label as it reduces the risk of fraud.Having this electronic connection also enables online checking of visa details by visa holders, airlines, registered Australian organisations and Australian government agencies.
Application Forms and Fees
All visa applicants must submit the correct form and fee when applying for a visa or Australian citizenship. Forms and local fee information (in SGD) are available at the Australian Visa Application Centre (AVAC) and through the AVAC website under the respective Visa Types tab. For a complete list of official forms issued by the Department of Immigration and Citizenship:
See: All Forms
Changes to application forms
Application forms are sometimes changed and it is important that you use the latest version, particularly if there has been an “essential change”, as an obsolete version may not be legally acceptable. Whilst our website will always only include links to the current version of application forms, to check if you are using the latest version, you may refer to the forms updates in the Department's main website.
Note that most application fees change on 1 January and 1 July each year
For a full list of current prices, see: Fees and Charges
The AVAC website includes information on these fees in Singapore Dollars, for those applications able to be lodged in Singapore.
Credit Card Surcharge
The Department of Immigration and Border Protection has introduced a credit card surcharge from 19 April 2014 to recover costs associated with providing a credit card facility.
This surcharge is only applicable to any Visa Application Charge paid in AUD using a credit card and to all online applications.
Visa, MasterCard, American Express, JCB and Diners credit cards will all incur the surcharge, including pre-paid credit cards.
The surcharge will vary by card type and full details of all costs are available on the Department’s website on the “How to Pay’ pages at the following link: www.immi.gov.au/Help/Pages/fees-charges/how-to-pay.aspx
A Visa Application Charge paid in SGD only using a credit card will not incur the surcharge as in Singapore; imposition of a surcharge on credit card transactions is not lawful.
New ImmiAccount Facility
A new ImmiAccount faciluty was introduced in December 2013. ImmiAccount provides a single entry point to the department's online visa application systems. ImmiAccount is a self-service web portal that enables users to create, submit, pay for and manage all online applications in one online system.
To create an account or to log-into an existing account, see: ImmiAccount
Check Your Own Visa Status and Entitlement Online - VEVO
The Visa Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO) system is a free online service that gives holders of Australian visas, employers and other registered organisations easy and quick access to visa entitlements and status information, 24 hours a day.
Holders of current and valid Australian visas can use VEVO to see their visa validity and entitlements. Organisations including employers, migration agents, education providers and government agencies can use VEVO to see a visa holder’s entitlement and status information. Organisation users need to provide a reason and a valid Australian Business Number to register for VEVO. They also need to obtain the permission of the visa holder before they conduct an entitlement or status check through VEVO.
For further information, see: VEVO
Methods of Payment
Full details of payments methods are included in the AVAC website. You should note that payment is by cash or bank draft (drawn on local banks only). Unfortunately credit card payments are not available for the moment. Note that bank drafts drawn on international banks outside Singapore are not acceptable as they take longer to be cleared and often incur additional charges for clearing.
See also: How to Pay
Health Requirements and Medical Examinations
Detailed information regarding health requirements for visa applicants is explained thoroughly on the main website:
See: Health Requirements
Medical examinations conducted overseas are only acceptable if conducted by approved panel doctors. A panel doctor is a doctor or a radiologist who has been appointed by the Australian Government to perform medical examinations on visa applicants who have applied from outside Australia. For a list of Australian approved Panel Doctors.
See: Panel Doctors
Not all applications require a medical examination. You should not have a visa medical examination until you have been formally requested to do so by the Australian High Commission or other office processing your application.
In some cases, you may be required to provide penal clearances to meet our character requirement from countries in which you have resided for 12 months or more during the last ten years. For further information on how and where to obtain these clearances
Updating New Passport Details, Requesting a Copy of Travel Records, and Requesting Visa Cancellation
Please see these topics under the Frequently Asked Questions link above.