Common Questions, FAQ’s & Australia Travel Tips
Visiting Australia is a dream vacation destination that you need to experience at least once; you will fall in love with Australia guaranteed. Before you go, there is a lot of information to know in order to be prepared. Read this handy guide that should answer many questions you may have, along with some facts you may not already know.
Check out our most popular vacations that include both Australia & New Zealand!
How Long does it take to travel to Australia?
To fly non-stop from the USA (most flights depart from Los Angeles) it takes about 14 hours.
How much does it cost to travel to Australia?
Pricing for Australia vacations depend on the time of year and where you are going. A 2-week vacation to Australia including flights will start around $3,500 per person. This includes accommodations, transfers, tours, Visa (ETA) for entry and some meals.
What Documents do You Need to enter Australia?
You will need a valid passport (a good rule of thumb is to make sure it is valid for at least 6 months after the date you plan on departing Australia). You will also need a visitor visa or ETA (Electronic Travel Authorization) to enter. Your travel team agent will take care of this for you when you book your Australian vacation with us.
Do you need vaccinations to enter Australia?
You normally do not need any type of special vaccinations to travel to Australia unless coming from an infected area All travelers need to check with their primary care physician for the latest recommendations
While in Australia, in case of an Emergency you will dial ‘000’. Dialing in Australia ‘000’ is the equivalent of dialing ‘911’ in the USA.
Is the Date format different in Australia than the US?
Australia uses the format of day, month and year. For example, February 15, 2019 is 2/15/17 in the US but will be 15/2/17 in Australia.
What does the term ‘twinshare’ mean?
‘Twin share’ refers to 2 people traveling together, sharing the same room, also known as ‘Double Occupancy’. Solo travelers will have different rates, as most vacation packages are priced based on ‘twin share’ or ‘double occupancy’
Can I do a self-drive vacation in Australia?
Driving thru Australia is one way to explore on your own while experiencing the magnificent natural scenery. Keep in mind because of the size of the country, you want to choose destinations that are reasonable to drive to and from. You can choose a self-drive package or have a travel team agent custom tailor make a self-drive package to match your needs and wants.
General driving tips while driving a vehicle in Australia:
-In Australia you drive on the left-hand side of the road; Most of the vehicles have the steering wheel on the right side of the car.
-The speed is in Kilometers
-Red traffic light means STOP! You must stop at a red light until it turns GREEN.
-In Australia there is No Free Left Turn Law like the free right hand turn laws in North America and you must yield to traffic that is approaching from the right. ?
-Amber/yellow lights mean to stop (unless you cannot stop safely before crossing thru the intersection).
-Be aware of random police stops for breath testing; the legal limit is a BAC under 0.05%
Where can you find maps of Australia?
You can find online street maps of Australia by visiting Google Maps.
Flights, Airlines & Using Frequent Flyer Miles
What Airlines fly to Australia
Qantas Airlines, United, American, Air New Zealand, Virgin Australia and Fiji Airways all fly directly to Australia. Ask a travel team agent for details and prices for your trip by calling 1-800-788-0829.
Can I use Frequent Flyer Miles to Fly to Australia?
If you choose to use your frequent flyer mile points to fly to Australia, you will have to purchase your air directly thru the airline that you have that program with. You can find out if your trip will earn you points will depending on the rules & conditions of your airline frequent flyer program. Depending on the amount of travel you are planning within Australia and New Zealand using mileage may not be your best option.
Can a Travel Team Agent Find a lower Airfare Price?
Whether or not it is cheaper to use airline miles or have a travel team agent book your airfare will depend on factors such as time of year, how many internal flights are needed and other variables; a travel team agent can always provide you with a quote for a land only package, as well as a package that includes flights.
What Dates Have the Best Prices for Airfares to Australia
Certain months & seasons are less expensive than others when buying airfare to Australia. A rule of thumb is that Basic or cheap season runs from May – June & July – September. Shoulder season (the time between peak and off-peak seasons) runs February – April, June – July & September – November. Peak (Expensive) Season runs December – January. Always check with a travel team agent by calling 1-800-788-0829 for the lowest rates and to help you plan your vacation! We often have sale rates even during High and shoulder season.
Baggage restrictions will differ depending on what airline you are flying. Check directly with your airlines for the exact restrictions on baggage before you fly.
Credit Cards, ATM’s & Money Exchange Rates
The exchange rate is constantly changing so rates can change from day to day. The best thing is to find out the current exchange rate by visiting www.xe.com. You should be able to use your bank card to withdraw money from ATM’s as well, just contact your bank before you travel to make sure.
Most everywhere in Australia accepts Visa, Mastercard and in some places American Express. Discover cards are not as common so you may not be able to use that as a credit card. You will also want to contact your credit card companies and bank to let them know you are traveling abroad so you don’t have your cards frozen for suspicious activity.
Seasons, Weather & The Climate
When are the seasons in Australia?
The seasons are reversed to the seasons in the Northern hemisphere and begin on the first of the month. Summer is December – February, Autumn is March – May, Winter is June – August and September – November is Spring.
Because Australia is so big there is a wide amount of variations in the climate. The southeast and west side of Australia have a comfortable climate that doesn’t reach extreme temperatures, either high or low. Southern Australia has mild winters and warm summers. The Northern part of Australia is tropical and have a wet (from November to April) and dry season (April to November).
Average Temperature & Rainfall in Cities
Adelaide is one of the driest cities in Australia with mild winters & dry summers.
Brisbane is subtropical; summer has a lot of rainfall, autumn has less rain, winter is mild, & spring is sunny & cool.
Summer is hot and humid; winter is dry and mild; Spring is the start of the wet season & autumn is very warm.
There are 2 seasons in Darwin; wet and dry. November – April is the wet season and May – October is the dry season.
Melbourne has an interesting climate in that you might just see four seasons in one day!
Summer is hot with very little rain; winters are mild with rain; spring is warm & autumn is cool at night & warm in the day.
Sydney has a year-round sunny climate and mild winters.
Uluru (Ayers Rock) is located in the middle of a semi-arid desert climate. Daytime temperatures during winter are pleasant; the night can get chilly & the summers get very warm.
Power Converters & Power Adapters
Will I need to bring a power adapter to Australia?
Because the standard voltage in Australia (230 V) is different than in the Unites States (120 V), you will need a voltage converter to use your electrical appliances. Power outlets in Australia are different as well, so you will want to buy a power plug adapter and voltage converter in order to plug in your devices. You can buy these on Amazon.com for instance before you travel.
Using Mobile Phones & Making Phone Calls
Contact your cell phone carrier to see if they offer plans to use your phone abroad. You may want to purchase an international calling plan for you trip. Don’t forget to cancel this plan once you return to the United States. You can also turn off your data roaming feature to avoid being charged roaming fees while you travel.
Can I buy a Phone Card to Use to Call the US from Australia?
You can purchase a prepaid phone card to make international calls at most gas stations or convenience stores. This might be a good option if you don’t have an International calling plan and usually come in amounts from $10 to $50 per card.
Phone Numbers & Dialing International
The Country code for Australia is ‘61’. To dial an Australian phone number from the USA you must dial ‘011’ (to dial another country) + ‘61’ the country code for Australia + local phone number.
To call the USA from Australia, dial the Australian exit code (0011) + Country code (1) + US area code & phone number; so 0011+1+310-555-5555 (as an example).
Public Holidays & Important Dates
Australia has several public holidays when banks, some stores, offices might be closed. You will want to consider these as well as school vacations while planning your trip, as these are popular time for tourists and locals to travel.
Summer vacation for schools is from mid-December to late January. The major public holidays are New Year’s Day, Australia Day is January 26, Good Friday is April 19, Easter, Christmas is December 25 and Boxing Day is December 26. Holidays also can vary depending on the region so it’s best to check ahead of time, you can visit https://www.australia.gov.au/about-australia/special-dates-and-events/school-term-dates
Ready to plan your dream vacation?