Visitors to Australia must have a valid passport and the appropriate Australian visa. The type of visa depends on the purpose of the visit. Overseas visitors seeking to attend or participate in a Conference or event in Australia should, in most cases, apply for a short stay business visitor visa (subclass 456). You must apply for your visa early to ensure that details are confirmed prior to your departure for the Conference.
Information about this important requirement can also be found on the Australian Government website at http://www.immi.gov.au/ . Some participants will be able to obtain an Electronic Travel Authority (ETA). You can apply for an ETA via the Internet www.eta.immi.gov.au or through a travel agent, an airline office or a specialist service provider to arrange an ETA on your behalf.
Invitation Letter and Visa
If you require an invitation letter for visa purposes please indicate this on your registration form or contact the Conference secretariat. Please note this procedure is intended to assist participants who need to obtain a visa or permission to attend the Conference.
It is not an official invitation covering fees and other expenses.
It does not imply any financial support from the Conference.
Decimal currency is used in Australia – dollars and cents. Current exchange rates can be obtained from your bank and on-line at www.xe.com
Most banks in Australia are open Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm. Some banks are open on Saturday. Exchange facilities are available at airports and most major hotels. Automatic Teller Machines (ATMs) are available at a wide variety of outlets. All major credit cards are widely accepted in Australia.
Travel and Health Insurance
It is strongly recommended that you take out insurance policies to cover medical and travel expenses. If necessary, consult your travel agent.
Electricity in Australia is 220-240V AC 50Hz. The sockets are three pin and you may need an adaptor. Universal outlets for 240V or 100V shavers are found in most leading hotels. Multi-voltage appliances as well as adaptors are readily available in department stores and luggage shops.
Most stores on the Gold Coast are open Monday to Saturday from 9am to 6pm. Some retailers may remain open until 9pm week nights and between 10am to 4pm Sundays. Grocery and department stores generally open seven days a week with late night trading until 9pm on week nights.
A Goods and Services Tax (GST) of 10% applies to all consumer goods and is included in retail prices. Overseas visitors may be able to claim a refund of the GST through the Tourist Refund Scheme (TRS). Further information is available at: http://www.customs.gov.au/site/page4646.asp
Tipping is acceptable in Australia but it is not compulsory.
The water in Australia exceeds the standards for safe drinking water set by the World Health Organisation. It is safe to drink water straight from the tap.