Visas

Whether you are coming to Australia for GEO Week 2019 or decide to stay for a holiday, you must have a valid Australian visa to enter the country.

You can find information on visas on the Department of Home Affairs website. Applications are located in the Individuals and Travellers section. To find out what type(s) of visa(s) you may qualify for, please complete this online questionnaire.

IMPORTANT: Visa processing could take up to 4 months for attendees from or who have visited certain countries. Please allow enough time and apply for your visa well in advance.

Visa types for GEO Week Attendees

1. ETA (601)

Application type: Online application. Further information on the ETA can be found here.
Processing time: Quick.
Eligibility: Determined by the country of passport that the applicant holds.
Fee: AUD$20 service provider charge, and/or a further charge if applied for through a travel agency, airline agency or specialist service provider.

2. eVisitor (651)

Application type: Online application. Further information on the eVisitor visa, including how to apply online, can be found here.
Processing time: Quick (one working day for low-risk applications).
Eligibility: Determined by the country of passport that the applicant holds. The eVisitor visa is an online visa process, with a one working day processing time for low risk applications.
Fee: There is no visa application charge or service fee.

3. Visitor Visa (subclass 600) in the Business Visitor stream

Application type: Online or paper application.

Passport holders who are citizens of the countries listed here  are eligible to submit an online application for a Visitor Visa (Subclass 600). Online applicants can lodge their request through ImmiAccount (view application guide and document checklist and attachment instructions).

Participants who not eligible to apply for their visa online will need to lodge a paper Visitor (subclass 600) visa application with the nearest Australian Visa Office. A list of the responsible Australian Visa Offices for each country, including details on how to lodge a paper-based visa application can be found here.

Processing time: One month.
Eligibility: Passport holders who are not eligible to apply for an eVisitor or an ETA should apply for a Visitor Visa (subclass 600) in the Business Visitor Stream.
Fee: AUD$140

Things to consider before applying

Invitation and registration to attend the Summit

Although this is a separate process to lodging your visa application, the Department may take into account whether you are registered or were invited to attend the Summit when assessing whether you meet the visa criteria. Confirmation of registration, or a copy of your letter of invitation, should accompany visa applications. To request a letter of invitation please contact Jennifer Lynch at jenniferl@icmsaust.com.au.

Cut-off date for lodging paper-based applications

You should apply for a visa at least 3 months prior to the intended date of departure, or 4 months prior if there are any character or health concerns. More information about visa processing times is available here.

Health and character requirements

All visa applicants must be assessed against Australia's health and character requirements. These requirements are designed to protect the safety and security of the Australian community.

Health requirements: As part of the visa application process you may be required to undertake a medical examination, chest x ray and/or other health checks. The Department of Immigration and Border Protection will advise you of applicable health checks (if any), based on your individual circumstances. Information on which health checks may apply to you is available here.

Character requirements: As part of the visa application assessment process the onus is on you to satisfy the character requirements set out in Section 501 of the Migration Act 1958. Further information on the character requirement is available on the department's website here.

If you are unsure whether you satisfy the character requirements because of prior criminal convictions, you should lodge a paper-based application at the Australian visa office nearest to your current place of residence at least three months prior to the Summit start date.

Travel sanctions

For information on countries subject to travel sanctions, please refer to the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. Nationals of these countries may not be permitted to travel to and enter Australia.

Biometrics Programme

Biometrics may need to be collected at an Australian Visa Application Centre for visitors and business people lodging a visa application from the countries listed on the department's website. If you apply online, the department will advise you in writing if you need to provide your biometrics.

Obligations of visa holders

On arrival at Australia's border you must identify yourself, present your travel documents, and complete an Incoming Passenger Card (IPC). The IPC requires visitors to declare their health status and any prior criminal convictions. If you do not meet immigration clearance requirements, you may be refused entry to Australia. More information on immigration clearance processes at Australia's borders is available here.

You must comply with your visa validity and visa conditions while in Australia. When you receive your Australian visa you are issued with a visa grant notice that explains the conditions of the visa including period of validity and entry requirements. You are advised to carry this visa grant notice when travelling for your own reference. Your visa may be cancelled if you breach any of the conditions.

If your visa expires while you are still in Australia, you become an unlawful non-citizen. Unlawful non-citizens are liable to be detained and removed from Australia.