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australia:start

helpful travel links and information - Australia

Australian travel:

accommodation:

travel agencies:

travel information & bookings:

Overseas travel for Australians:

International flights:

railway passes:

  • consider rail passes such as Eurail pass as these discounted passes can only be purchased outside of the region - book at least several weeks in advance. High speed trains usually need to be booked in advance and a booking fee applies in addition to the rail pass cost.

best seats on planes:

accommodation

international phone calls:

  • mobile phones:
    • ensure you have international roaming enabled with your service provider and that your phone will work in destination.
    • consider de-activating voice message service to avoid international call charges for missed calls.
    • deactivate international roaming for data as this could bankrupt you!
    • strongly consider buying a pre-paid SIM card in the destination country, preferably one which includes some data (but this will mean you wont be using your normal phone number but it should save you lots of money)
    • don't forget your phone charger

checklist for Australians travelling overseas:

  • Smart Traveller - Aust. govt advice
    • valid passport
    • ensure you have proof that any medications you take are for your personal use - prescription and doctor's letter may be wise.
    • outgoing passenger card (available when pick up boarding pass at airport)
    • boarding pass
      • $A900 limit per adult (but families can pool their limit) and max. 2.25L alcohol and no limit on personal clothing
      • BUT if you exceed the limit, the duty tax will be applied to the whole value not just the amount exceeding the limit!
      • if you fail to declare such items then you may have an additional penalty imposed.
      • hence you must declare expensive non-duty-free personal belongings such as cameras, laptops that you take & will bring back - see - form here to ensure they don't get included
  • International visas:
    • not usually needed for tourist trips to many places, but check with destination country embassy!
  • money:
    • credit cards:
      • are the most common method of paying for goods & services overseas and in most places for getting cash from ATMs BUT many retailers, especially in Europe will require ID such as passport before they accept credit cards.
      • don't put them in your back pocket, even if it is zipped, and not in a hand bag, otherwise you risk theft.
      • make sure you have enough money in your accounts and remember your ATM/EFTPOS PIN to access them.
      • you may not be able to withdraw from Savings account (called Debit overseas) from your Visa or Mastercard as you may need to use a HandyCard or FlexiCard for this.
      • consider getting a Visa debit card that uses a PIN for transactions for improved security and risk management:
          • assistance: Australia 1800 889 040; France 0800 905 190; Italy 800 784 451
          • BPay: Biller Code 50179 Ref# = your 16 digit card number
      • contact card services to let them know you are going overseas.
      • check with your bank as to which ATM's, and what the contact phone number is if the card is stolen:
        • Card Alert: lost credit card anywhere in world, toll free 24×7: 1800 338 897
          • for $A27/yr, Card Alert can perform the following for you:
            • notify your credit card issuer of loss
            • provide you with 10 day interest free $A500 emergency cash to pick up at a bank you select
            • notify your mobile phone service provider to place a temporary bar if mobile phone is lost
            • notify the nearest Australian Diplomatic or Consular Post if your passport is stolen
            • book emergency air flight tickets debited to your credit card if your tickets are stolen
          • lost credit card - from overseas reverse charge: call operator to dial 61 2 9374 7082; From Australia: 1300 651 089
          • Zurich travel insurance details if purchase tickets using eligible credit card: see pdf here
            • must take a copy of your credit card statement as proof of ticket purchase AND copies of your return overseas travel ticket AND proof that the credit card paid for the tickets AND the above pdf document.
            • items purchased in a business name or for business purposes are not covered.
            • theft or loss of items left unattended may not be covered.
            • you will need original receipts for items and a police statement if they were stolen.
            • if you wish to get extra cover for pre-existing conditions call 1800 812 994
            • Australian Zurich Assist: +61 2 9995 2021 reverse charge or call 1800 812 994
        • National lost Visa card - see below under Visa or if in Australia, call 1800 033 103
        • credit card travel assist:
            • eg. France 0800 904 349; Italy 800 781 769; Singapore 800 4481 250
            • if Australian cardholder, can collect call to +61 2 9251 3704 or +1 410 581 9994
            • will provide emergency cash advance up to $US5000 and replacement card.
            • locate Visa ATMs with Visa's ATM locator here
          • Mastercard:
          • American Express / ANT via International SOS:
    • traveller's cheques:
      • are declining in popularity but provide some insurance against theft or loss - allow 1 - 2 weeks for processing prior to trip!
      • keep your traveller’s cheques receipts separate from your traveller’s cheques, just in case your cheques are lost or stolen. You will need the receipt when making a claim to get your cheques refunded or replaced.
    • you must declare if you take > $A10,000 out of Australia (see Customs above)
  • immunisations:
    • check that immunisations are not required for your destination as some need to be given a number of weeks prior
  • travel insurance:
    • investigate this early as you may need to get your doctor to complete a form and then submit it for approval if you need to cover pre-existing conditions or non-travelling relatives.
  • luggage:
    • make sure you are the only person with access to contents of your luggage and secure it adequately to prevent drugs, etc being placed in the luggage for courier to destination.
    • most airlines allow max. 7kg cabin luggage and 20kg stowed luggage - check with airline.
    • new requirements for cabin luggage fluids/liquids/gels (100ml max. in a transparent 1L 20x20cm resealable zip log plastic bag):
  • some items to remember to take:
    • documentation:
      • photograph or photocopy all important documents such as passport, credit cards, travel tickets and itinerary/contacts, and leave a copy at home as well as take a copy on your person to assist if loss occurs - consider emailing it to your email service for storage, although there may be security issues with this, so consider password-protecting a zip file to store it.
      • passport
      • travel tickets
      • travel insurance documentation
      • driver's licence if planning to drive a vehicle
      • addresses of hotels booked
      • times of trains and names, locations of stations to catch them
      • webmail details so you can log into your email anywhere (ie. web address, username, password)
      • medicines:
        • some countries require you to apply for a permit if medicines contain “controlled substances” which include many pain killers (eg. codeine), sedatives (eg. valium), sleeping tablets, epilepsy medications, cough medicines
        • eg. see Singapore's regulations - you will need a doctor's letter, and more to get a permit
        • you may not be allowed to take more than 3 months of any medicine without approval
        • for other countries, it is advisable you have at least a doctor's letter stating medications & conditions they are used for, and preferably prescriptions
    • take a list of emergency phone numbers & carry separate to credit cards, such as:
      • credit card travel assist
      • travel insurance
      • mobile phone provider's assist.
      • home contact numbers
      • hotel and airline contact numbers
    • manage your electrical needs:
      • international power adapter for region (see wikipedia)
        • North America, Japan, parts of Sth America, Saudi Arabia, Madagascar use 100-127V AC (mainly 60Hz) with type A/B plugs
        • the rest of the world mainly uses 220-240V AC (mainly 50Hz) with a variety of plugs:
          • Australia, NZ, Papua New Guinea, (Argentina with reversed wiring) use type I
          • most of Europe and parts of Africa use non-earthed type C “ CEE 7/16 2 pin Europlug” (also type E, F are used)
          • Italy also uses 3 pin type L but 10Amp sockets accept the 2 pin Europlug
          • UK uses type G
          • India uses type D
          • Israel uses type H
      • consider a compact, light, 4 plug power board to charge your phones, etc simultaneously
      • consider a universal power charger for laptop/phones for use on plane if travelling business class:
      • mobile phone and charger
      • shaver & charger
      • spare batteries, battery charger for digital cameras
    • photography:
      • travel photography, lenses, filters, USB cable, memory cards
      • consider having a spare 8-32Gb memory card with memory card reader to load your most important images on as a backup in case laptop and cameras are stolen - obviously need to keep this card separate so it is not stolen as well.
      • ideally you should have at least 2 copies of all your important images on separate medium.
    • consider a laptop + power adapter or PDA +/- GPS device with software loaded for destination
  • other things to do before you leave:
    • minimise your incoming email to avoid clogging your system:
      • if you subscribe to forums, etc such as Yahoo Groups, then change your configuration so you don't get emails while you are away.
    • avoid problems in your house:
      • ensure adequate security and all doors, windows are dead locked
      • try to ensure your house still looks lived in
      • turn off taps such as to dishwashers, washing machines to minimise risk of flooding if they burst
      • turn off all unnecessary power or gas devices
      • ensure all bills that need to be paid while you are away get paid
    • ask your neighbours to watch your house:
      • newspapers, mail, etc.
      • mow lawns
    • get your work place sorted out:
      • don't forget to set your out-of-office message for your work email
      • make sure you are still getting paid - put your leave forms and time sheets in at pay office
    • reduce your stress and worry while on leave:
      • consider reducing your stock market exposure by selling higher risk shares - don't spoil your holiday by having to check on the stock market - your family will not be happy!

australia/start.txt · Last modified: 2017/07/21 09:47 by gary1