A recent announcement by the Department of Immigration regarding the simplification of tourist visasindicates a reduction in the number of visas available to holiday makers, temporary workers and persons seeking medical treatment.
Visas that are no longer available are:
- Business (Short Stay) (subclass 456) visa
- Sponsored Business Visitor (Short Stay) (subclass 459) visa
- Tourist visa (subclass 676) visa
- Sponsored Family Visitor (subclass 679) visa
- Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) (Business—Long Validity) (subclass 956) visa
- ETA (Business—Short Validity) (subclass 977) visa
- ETA (Visitor) (subclass 976) visa
- Medical Treatment visa (Short Stay) (subclass 675) visa
- Medical Treatment visa (Long Stay) (subclass 685) visa
New Australian Visitor Visas
As of the 23rd of March 2013, visitor visa applicants must now choose from the list of visas below.
- Temporary Work (Short Stay Activity) (subclass 400) visa
- Visitor (subclass 600) visa
- Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) (subclass 601) visa
- Medical Treatment (subclass 602) visa
- eVisitor (subclass 651) visa
Pathways to visitor visas have been unaffected by the recent changes. If a visa applicant was eligible before the changes were implemented, they will still be eligible for a visa under the new structure.
Now that the changes have occurred, the difference between work and business visas is much clearer. The new Visitor (subclass 600) visa, the ETA (subclass 601) visa and the eVisitor (subclass 651) visa will not allow work to be undertaken, but will allow business activities to be conducted such as:
- making a general business or employment enquiry
- investigating, negotiating, entering into, or reviewing a business contract
- an activity carried out as part of an official government-to-government visit
- participating in a conference, trade fair or seminar in Australia unless the person is being paid by an organiser for participation
If you currently hold a valid visitor visa that was granted before the 23rd of March you do not need to do anything, your visa will remain valid until the expiration date. You can view the status of your visa by visiting the Visa Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO).