Like anything in life, while travelling things can change. So, what happens if you plan a trip and you have all the required visas but during your stay something happens and you are required to stay longer?
Recently, a client of Visa Solutions Australia had a situation where she had to extend her visit in Australia. The client was travelling on an ETA (Electronic Travel Authority) and was visiting Australia to help look after her extremely ill family member.
With her ETA close to expiring she wanted to extend her stay to continue helping her family. Visa Solutions came to the rescue by transitioning her to a Long Stay Tourist Visa (Subclass 600) which is valid for a further six months. This visa is a good option if you are required to extend your stay in extenuating circumstances such as looking after sick relatives.
What is a Long Stay Tourist Visa (Subclass 600)?
The Long Stay Tourist Visa is available to people who wish to visit Australia for longer than three months. It may be used to visit family and friends and for purposes other than business or medical treatment. This visa is a good option if you are visiting on another visa that is about to expire.
The Long Stay Tourist Visa allows you to:
- Stay in Australia for up to 12 months, or a shorter period, depending on the purpose of the visit and personal circumstances
- Have single or multiple entry to Australia for the duration of the visa
While the ETA is only valid for three months, the Subclass 600 visa offers three, six and 12 months stay options.
In order to be eligible for this visa, applicants must meet the following criteria:
- Meet health requirements
- Meet character requirements
- Ensure they have no money owing to the Australian Government
- Have enough money to support themselves while in Australia
- Be a genuine visitor (visit only to see family or friends or for a holiday)
- Have health insurance
As is the case with all other visas, applicants must abide by the visa conditions and obey Australian laws.
If this visa is granted with multiple entries, visa holders may travel outside Australia and return as many times as they like for the validity of the visa.
Holders of an ETA who want to stay longer in Australia by applying for a Long Stay Tourist visa need to check when their visa expires and ensure they do not have a condition on their visa that prevents them from staying longer. Ideally, the Subclass 600 visa should be applied for prior to the current visa expiring. A migration agent such as Visa Solutions can assist with the application process.
If you would like to learn more about Long Stay Tourist Visas or any other aspects of Migration, contact the Visa Solutions team. It is a complex subject so it is important to speak with someone in the know.