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About Visa Labels
On this page:
• Do I require a visa label?
• How will I know the details of my visa?
• How can I request a visa label?
Do I require a visa label?
Australia’s modern electronic visa system does not require you to have a visa label placed in your passport to confirm your immigration status and entitlements in Australia.
When you check-in to fly to Australia, airline staff will use your passport to electronically confirm that you have authority to travel to Australia prior to boarding the aircraft. More information on label free travel is available on the Department of Immigration and Border Protection’s website. See: About Visa Labels
From 1 October 2012, you no longer need a visa label in your passport to travel to Australia and the Ministry of Public Security have confirmed that Chinese and other nationals in the People’s Republic of China who have been granted an Australian visa without a visa label affixed in their passport will be allowed to depart China in the following circumstances:
- depart from an airport in mainland China travelling on a flight or flights directly to Australia and hold a boarding pass for their final flight to Australia, or a valid Australian visa label; or
- depart from an airport in mainland China travelling on flights indirectly to Australia but with appropriate transit authorisation (including visa grant letter and forward travel itinerary) in order to travel on a flight or flights to Australia, or
- depart mainland China transiting by land or ferry through the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region in order to travel on a flight or flights to Australia.
If you are travelling from an airport in mainland China to Hong Kong (or an international transit destination) en-route to Australia, it is strongly recommended that you carry your visa grant letter and forward travel itinerary when you travel.
The Ministry of Public Security has also advised that any person granted an Australian visa, who intends to travel to Australia by transiting through the Macau Special Administrative Region (SAR), by land or ferry, to board an onward flight, or flights, in the Macau or Hong Kong SARs, will not be eligible for visa label-free travel.
Australian visa holders who are transiting the Macau SAR will require a visa label and must provide evidence of confirmed travel from mainland China by land or ferry to the Macau SAR and confirmed onward flight bookings from the Macau SAR or Hong Kong SAR.
How will I know that I have been granted a visa?
All Australian visa holders are provided with a letter informing them of the details of the grant of their visa (“grant letter”). This grant letter is not considered to be evidence of the grant of a visa for the purpose of travel. However, Australian visa holders are encouraged to keep a copy of their visa grant letter for their own reference.
How can I confirm the details of my visa?
From 24 November 2012, the Visa Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO) service, is being enhanced to allow Australian visa holders offshore access to check their current visa details. Visa holders will be able to access VEVO using any of the following options:
• Transaction Reference Number (currently available)
• Visa Grant Number
• Visa Evidence Number
Visa holders will only be able to check their visa details on VEVO once their visa has been granted. See: Visa Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO)
VEVO also allows you to send a copy of your visa details to email addresses you provide.
How can I request a visa label?
Australia does not require travellers to have a label in their passport, however, clients are still provided with the option of requesting one if it is necessary for transit or exit purposes. It is the traveller’s responsibility to confirm other countries’ transit or exit requirements before travel to Australia.
From 24 November 2012, if travellers request a label they will need to pay a fee for it. This cost for a visa label is called the Visa Evidence Charge (VEC). Travellers can only request and pay for a visa label if they have a current Australian visa. Regardless of when a visa application was lodged or granted, anyone who requests a visa label after 24 November 2012 will be charged. See: Visa Evidence Charge
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Page last updated: 14 October 2013