Register your overseas travel and/or residential details here.
New Zealanders making short term visits to Australia should buy comprehensive travel insurance to cover non emergency health care costs, including repatriation and ambulance costs.
You automatically get a Special Category Visa when you arrive in Australia provided you meet certain security, character and health requirements. Getting an arrival stamp in your passport is the only evidence that you hold this visa. If you use SmartGate (an automated border processing system that allows you to self-process through passport control) you are granted a Special Category Visa but you do not get an arrival stamp in your passport. If you wish to obtain a stamp you can do so by asking a Customs and Border Protection Officer.
You can then stay and work in Australia indefinitely as long as you remain of good character.
Make sure you have proof of identity in addition to your passport, such as a birth certificate or driver’s licence, so you can open a bank account and other set up activities.
If you receive New Zealand Superannuation, Invalid’s Benefit, or a Veteran’s Pension you may qualify for payment in Australia. You must advise Work and Income of your plans.
Information about New Zealand assistance is available from the Work and Income website.
For information about Australian assistance check the Centrelink website.
You can get free emergency hospital treatment but New Zealanders without a Medicare card have to pay the full cost of any non-hospital treatment such as doctors’ visits or pharmaceuticals.
Automatic permanent residence for New Zealanders stopped in 2001. New Zealanders who arrived in Australia after 26 February 2001 are generally considered to be non-protected SCV holders and are considered to be on a ‘temporary visa’ unless they apply for a permanent visa/residency.
Without permanent residency you are not entitled to receive the full range of Australian social security benefits including the unemployment benefit (‘Newstart Allowance/Youth Allowance’), the parenting payment, the special benefit and the sickness allowance. Non-protected SCV holders who have lived in Australia for at least ten continuous years since 26 February 2001, may be eligible to receive a one-off payment of Newstart Allowance, Youth Allowance or Sickness Allowance for up to six months (see www.centrelink.gov.au for more information).
For information on the Special Category Visa / applying for permanent residence in Australia: www.immi.gov.au
New Zealand citizens who intend to live in Australia long term should apply for a Medicare card on arrival. For more information go to www.medicareaustralia.gov.au
If you receive New Zealand Superannuation, Invalid’s Benefit or Veteran’s Pension and intend to live in Australia you must apply to Centrelink within a set time of arrival. For more information go to:
New Zealanders who get into difficulties overseas, including in Australia, are eligible for consular assistance but there are limitations. See Our Services.
New Zealand Government offices in Australia have no funds to assist New Zealanders in financial difficulty. New Zealand agencies such as Work and Income NZ are unable to pay emergency benefits to assist people outside New Zealand.
Further information for New Zealanders in Australia is available from the New Zealand High Commission Canberra website.
Page last updated: Thursday, 02 May 2013, 11:30 NZST