Visas for Australia
It is a crime within Australia to give immigration advice or assistance unless you are registered with the Migration Agents Registration Authority (MARA).
Never make use of non registered people if you apply for a visa for Australia as only MARA registered agents (that includes laywers) are regulated by the authority to ensure professional standards.
Unique Suggestions: You can check the website of the Migration Agents Registration Authority to see whether the people you are advising you are in fact registered.
You can save yourself a lot of trouble in this way...Related to:
- Study Abroad
- Work Abroad
Import of tobacco products
This tip is also listed in the "Warnings and Dangers" section but I actually see it more of a tourist trap.
I flew out of Melbourne a few days before Sep 1st, 2012 and saw a notice posted in the airport mentioning that, starting on that date, the allowed quantity of tobacco products introduced into the country is being reduced from 250 grams to 50 grams, or 50 cigarettes. Reason for 50 is probably because local cigarette packs are 25 or 50 pieces, which doesn't anyway help with the typical foreign size packs of 20.
I perceive this new regulation as a tool for the Australian government to receive more tax money rather than being aimed at cutting on smoke. The price of tobacco products is very high in Australia, say 3-fold the price in Europe or north America and the reason why I had prevented being ripped off by bringing along my tobacco from home. Can't do it next time!
Alcohol is expensive too. If you're not a saint, be prepared!
Bridge climb, Sydney
The bridgeclimb of Sydney harbour bridge is the greatest tourist trap that I have been tricked to do. It is very expensive and not worth the money, the price needs to go down by 80% for the bridgeclimb in order for the experience of bridgeclimb being worth the money. By the way on the bridge there is a tower you can climb up for 11 Australian dollars and get more or less the same view. So I recommend you do that instead of the EXTREMLY over priced bridgeclimb.Related to:
- Hiking and Walking
- Adventure Travel
Australia Money Exchange
Comparing Malaysia Money Exchange and Australia Money Exchange, Australia Money Exchange rates are way too expensive
Unique Suggestions: You should change your Malaysian currency to Australia currency in Malaysia.Related to:
- Budget Travel
One-way car hire in Western Australia
Just want to warn everyone about car-hire one-way in Western Australia. There is a one-way hire fee of anything from $550 to $1000 from Broome to Perth. We took the lower one, of course, but then found that there was a location fee of 11% charged in Broome. that is understandable because of the isolation and poeeible extra costs but we were not impressed when Europcar charged another 11% of the extra costs we paid in Perth. Car hire from Broome includes 100km per day which is laughable when you consider it is about 2500km from Broome to Perth. Every extra km is 25c. We looked at a few hire companies, but found that they all charged per km over the 100 per day as well as the location fees.
Unique Suggestions: Do your research and see if you can find a car-hire company that has lower fees. However it will still be expensive. Hire a campervan or motor home as accommodation is very difficult to find, due to the mining boom.
Fun Alternatives: Hire a car or motor home in Perth and do a round trip. However you need a four-wheel drive to see some of the places on the inland road. You also need to allow quite a lengthy stay to do this trip adequately. There is a lot to see, but a long distance between each attraction.Related to:
- Road Trip
- Budget Travel
If you have the option, you might care to time your visit so that it does not coincide with school holidays. At these times, beaches and the roads to them can be busier; accommodation is more likely to be fully booked and possibly more expensive; and road policing penalties are higher. In other words, there is less hassle and expense if you can visit outside school holidays.
To complicate the issue, every State has its own education system with similar but often differing timing of holidays. Thankfully, the information on school terms and holidays is given in the following website.
- Family Travel
- School Holidays
Digeridoos - Know what you're paying for.
Digeridoos are available almost everywhere in Australia and the costs vary widely. You can find them in specialty shops, tourist junk shops and even some street vendors have them for sale at the public markets. If you want to buy one ask yourself truthfully if you are buying it to hang on the wall or are you actually going to play it. If you want a wall hanger go for a cheap one but please realize that these are most likely not made by Aboriginies. The vast majority of cheap didges are imported ones from Asia and the decoration probably has no cultural significance at all, just pretty patterns on the wood.
Unique Suggestions: If you want an inexpensive learner didge to see if you can play one, then I'd look into getting a PVC didge and one of the excellent instructional DVD's to go along with it. These plastic digeridoos are fairly inexpensive and easy to play. When I visited the Aboriginal Cultural Center at Tjapukai near Cairns, one of the guys demostrated a PVC Didge and I was impressed with how near in sound it was to a real gum tree wooden one. (Then again I may have a tin ear!)
Fun Alternatives: If you are looking for a didge to purchase as a real musical instrument or as a genuine piece of Aboriginal culture and art, find a reputable shop that supports the Aboriginal community fairly and has sales people that know the instrument. They will be able to guide you to the right didge for you. As with any quality musical instrument expect to pay a premium price for an authentic, handcrafted and correctly decorated Digeridoo.Related to:
Honey Moon Bay-Killer Bay!
This is a dangerous bay which took my friend away. There is no signpost to warn tourists and people who unaware of the danger might get into trouble once they enter the water!
Unique Suggestions: Moreton Island indeed is a beautiful island with a lot of wonderful and breathtaking bays. Nevertheless, there are certain dangerous part which do not suits people to get onto it. Beware of the undercurrents! Beware of the waves!Related to:
- Study Abroad
- Budget Travel
TAKE ALOT OF WATER WITH YOU
If traveling long distances eg Western Australia to South Australia, carry a hell of alot of water with you. While traveling from South Australia to Western Australia I was in shock of the price of a litre of bottle water. You can expect to pay up to $5.00 for a 1 litre of bottle water as the remoteness of the towns and also distances there is no shopping around at the supermarket. And don't be surprise at not being aloud to use the bathroom either if you don't buy a full tank of petrol as well. Fill up before you head off as water is like gold in the outback and also along National Highway One
Unique Suggestions: Fill up bottle before u go
Fun Alternatives: Invest in car esky that runs off the cigarette ligher. It will pay for it self during the tripRelated to:
- Road Trip
Sydney - Bridge Climb
I can believe that climbing the Sydney Harbour Bridge must be an unforgettable experience.
But I believe that the fee they are asking is too much. Someone wants to get rich very quickly.
They asked 185 AUS dollars that is about 110 euros.
Even flying with a helicopter over some mayor landmarks is cheaper (like the Grand canyon in the US).
And for that money you even have to climb yourself. And you are not allowed to take your own camera, so can not make your own pictures while climbing or at the top, Oh no because then you would not buy the overpriced pictures they are making . . .
Unique Suggestions: Just walk over the bridge towards the other side to have some splendid views on the Sydney Opera house and the Skyline.
Fun Alternatives: Sit on a terrace, and enjoy the local beers (Victoria bitter, Coopers Pale Ale, Cascade, XXXX Gold,. . . . )Related to:
- Hiking and Walking
- Road Trip
Vic Hislops shark exhibition - Airlie Beach
The entrance to this exhibition is a giant shark´s jaw which is good for a photo. The exhibition is rather gory and sickening. Vic Hislop is a former salesman turned shark hunter who had a problem with the hunting ban on sharks. He tries to prove that the number of human shark victims is probably much higher than the official numbers; his conclusion is that the big man-eating sharks (White shark, Tiger Shark, Bull shark) are evil creatures that should be eradicated from this planet. While he has a point that the statistics might not be exact, his intention to hunt all killer sharks to extinction is rather weird.
There are some truly brilliant photographs of monster sharks in the exhibit, which might make it worthwile for the shark aficionado despite the dubious general message.
To add insult to injury, the entrance fee is rather expensive.
Unique Suggestions: Have a laugh at Vic Hislop.Related to:
Australiana - folklore and myths
A koala is a marsupial with a pouch - it is not a "koala bear" although it is cute and cuddly like a little fluffy teddy bear.
We do not have kangaroos in our back yards or kangaroos jumping down our main streets - most kangaroos live in the national parks or in the bush. Occasionally a kangaroo will stumble into a residential area and it will be rounded up and let free in the bush.
Unique Suggestions: Kangaroos are dangerous when you are driving on the roads at night - especially if you are in the bush. Try to avoid driving on bush roads on dusk (as the sun is setting) because this is the time when it is hard to see the road properly and it seems to be the time when most kangaroos are hit by cars on the road.
If you do accidentally hit a kangaroo it can do a lot of damage to your car. They are big, heavy animals. There is not much chance of not hitting a 'roo once it has wandered in to your headlights - they get blinded by the lights. If you can avoid driving on dusk or at night on bush roads you will not meet with many accidents with the Kangaroo.Related to:
- Family Travel
- Road Trip
Expensive travel in Uluru, australia
Bus companies will try to 'trap' you into spending huge amounts of money to travel from the resort to Ayres rock/Uluru by booking one of their various tours for anything from $60 australian dollars. If however you hang around the resorts central area a shuttle bus will take you for $8 australian dollars every 10mins one way. They like to catch you on their 'free' service from the airport to your hotel and back, and make you book tours there and then.
Unique Suggestions: If you do go on one of their tours, book one that takes you to Kata tjuta/the olgas as the shuttle bus doesn't go here, and it is well worth seeing at sunset (even more so than ayres rock!).
Fun Alternatives: The shuttle bus will take you from the resort to any of four points around the base of ayres rock, then pick you up later on. Make sure you don't miss that last one or it's a long walk back to the resort!Related to:
- Road Trip
If you are in Tennant Creek, don't bother going to the Old Mining Museum. It is a boring tour and not worth the money - though you do get to go underground which is about the highlight of the tour! You are better off going to e-mail at the local school or transit centre.
Unique Suggestions: Spend as long underground as possible!
Fun Alternatives: You are better off going to e-mail at the local school or transit centre.
The Big Pineapple in Woombye Queensland
If I had not gone on that Contiki Tour I probably would have never made to the Big Pineapple located in a small town one hour north of Brisbane. I think that is why I decided to cut out on the tour. I cannot stand this sort of tourist trap. I understand that this is considered to be one of the major attractions in Queensland but I could not understand all the fuss. After all it's just pineapples folks.
Unique Suggestions: If you are really into pineapple worship then go. There a guides that teach you everything that you would want to know about pineapples. They show them from their early days in a nursery and how they grow to be big plants sometimes 120cm high. There is also a "sugarcane train" ride that goes around the 370 acre plantation.
On the grounds there is a decent restaurant and souvenir shops.Related to:
- Theme Park Trips
- Arts and Culture
22 Central Avenue, Manly, 2095, Australia
Good for: Couples
A luxurious setting, conveniently close to the city centre without the hubbub. You can have it both,...more
Panoramic city views are breathtaking from this ideal location on the famous South bank Promenade....more
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