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Australia travel tips and recommendations for tourists

by Monique Atzler | January 10, 2023
Australia travel tips for tourists

Australia travel means exploring a faraway, exotic land full of mystery and surprises. And it also means immersing yourself in a different culture focused on nature and diversity. But mostly, landing in Australia is the opportunity to experience out-of-this-world landscapes, captivating natural wonders, ultramodern bustling cities, and dive into the country’s rich cultural heritage.  

Ready to embark on this once-in-a-lifetime journey? To help you prepare, we’ve put together this guide with the best Australia travel tips.

Australia travel tips about the weather

Australia is the planet’s sixth-largest country, and, as such, it features a wide range of climates. The Australia weather can go from temperate and semi-arid to arid and tropical. 

Because it is such a vast territory, it’s always sunny and warm somewhere, meaning Australia is the ultimate year-round destination, and the best time to visit Australia depends on the type of holiday you’re planning. 

For a beachy or outdoorsy type of holiday, we’d recommend visiting the southern regions of the country, including New South Wales, ACT, Victoria, South Australia, and Tasmania in spring or summer. The central and northern areas, including the north of Western Australia, Northern Territory, and Queensland in winter.

Planning ahead and booking accommodation 

Australia attracts millions of visitors every year, meaning it’s extremely easy to find and book accommodation regardless of where you want to travel. From luxury eco-farms and glamping in the wilderness to hostels and affordable hotel chains, the country offers many accommodation options to travellers. 

Some of the most popular websites to book accommodation in Australia include the following:

  • Airbnb
  • StayZ
  • HotelsCombined

Sydney Opera House in Australia at night, Australia travel tips

Australia travel tips: Obtaining a visa 

To enter the country, you'll need an Australia visa. The type of visa you’ll have to apply for will depend on the reason for your trip and the length of your stay. For instance, many young travellers apply for a Working Holiday visa to visit the country which allows them to stay for up to two years while working.

On the other hand, if you simply want to visit the country for a holiday, then you’ll need to apply for a tourist visa. There are two tourist visas you can get online: the eTA vs visitor visa Australia. You’ll find more information on Australia visa requirements in our article about how to get a visa for Australia.

What is the currency of Australia?

The official Australia currency is the Australian dollar (AUD), which is equivalent to 0,59 euros (EUR) or 0,64 US dollars (USD).

Vaccination travel tips for Australia

Australia has no endemic communicable diseases requiring vaccination. Like virtually every country in the world, it will require proof of immunisation against yellow fever if you have come from a nation at risk for this disease.

Safety in Australia travel tips

Is Australia safe? Yes! Australia's crime rates are very low compared to other first world countries. You must take the typical travelling precautions and be aware of pickpockets or other petty crimes. The Australian police are accessible and honest, so if you suffer any setback, you should feel free to contact them.

Protecting yourself from the sun 

In summer, the Earth’s orbit brings Australia closer to the sun than the rest of the world. This combined with the fact that the ozone layer above the country is thinner than anywhere else and it’s easy to understand why Australia experiences some of the highest levels of UV radiation on Earth. In fact, UV radiation is so strong that you could get sunburned in 11 minutes on a bright sunny summer day. 

So, protecting yourself from the sun is one of the critical Australia travel tips you simply must follow. To avoid UV damage, wear SPF50 at all times and reapply every four hours. If you go in the water, reapply sunscreen immediately after. 

Also, it’s recommended to stay out of the sun between 12 pm and 3 pm, and wear covering clothing and a hat as much as possible.

Being aware of local wildlife in Australia 

This country is home to incredible fauna, the Australia national parks boast some of Earth’s most beautiful and adorable creatures. From quokkas and koalas to kangaroos and platypus, a trip to Australia is an opportunity to spot some of the most iconic animals on Earth.

But unfortunately, the country is also home to some of the most dangerous and deadliest animals on the planet

These include the following:

  • Taipan snake 
  • Saltwater crocodile
  • Redback spider
  • Stonefish
  • Blue-ringed octopus
  • Stonefish
  • Brown snake
  • Tiger snake
  • Great white shark
  • Sydney funnel-web spider

Therefore, be extremely cautious when travelling outside of big towns. For instance, in Northern Territory, Western Australia, and Queensland, never go close to the water as crocodiles could be lurking. Also, before jumping into the ocean in these regions, enquire about the jellyfish season

You should always visit the local information center and inquire about wildlife before exploring areas. 

Purchasing travel insurance 

Buying travel insurance in Australia is the best way to prevent you from having to fork out thousands of dollars in medical-related fees if you’re injured or experience serious illness while in the country. 

Besides, travel insurance doesn’t only cover you for medical-related expenses. Depending on the level of cover you choose, your belongings will also be insured in case they get lost or stolen, and you could be covered if a natural disaster strikes. 

Illes Whitsunday in Queensland in Australia, Australia travel tips

Learning basic phrases in their slang

The national and local language in Australia is English. But Australians are famous for their slang. Here are some great sentences that will make you sound like a true Aussie:

  • G’day mate, meaning hello.
  • No worries, mate, it'll be right, meaning everything will be fine.
  • Fair go, mate, meaning you’d like to be treated fairly.
  • Dog’s breakfast, meaning a chaotic life.
  • A few stubbies short of a six-pack, meaning someone is a bit slow to understand.
  • What’s John Dory? This question means that you want to know all about the latest gossip. 
  • Have a Captain Cook, meaning have a look.

Trying local cuisine 

Australia is a diverse country home to more than 270 ethnic groups. Therefore, Australian cuisine is heavily influenced by all of these different cultures. Here are some iconic and authentic Australian meals you should try during your trip:

  • Meat pies
  • Chicken Parma (also called Chicken Parmigiana)
  • Pavlova
  • BBQs
  • Anzac biscuits
  • Kangaroo steak
  • Lamingtons
  • Smashed Avocado

Respecting local culture tips for traveling to Australia

Here is some key information about Australian etiquette and traditions:

  • Australians aren’t formal people, so greetings are typically casual, often on a first-name basis. And this applies even when meeting important people or attending meetings.
  • Australians usually hug to say hello, but you should always wait and see what they do first before proceeding to hug someone you don’t know well.
  • If you are invited for drinks at a pub or bar, it’s pretty common for Aussies to take turns buying rounds.

Australia travel tips for the Outback, Australia travel tips

Travel tips for Australia about transportation

Australia is a vast country, and as such, flying is the most popular and sometimes affordable way to travel around. The main airlines are Qantas, Jetstar, and Virgin Australia. 

If you have time and are planning to explore a specific region, renting a car or a camper van could be a great solution. There are many options available, including Apollo, Europcar, or Thrifty. 

Another great way to travel along the East Coast is to purchase a hop-on/hop-off pass with the Greyhound Australia bus line. This will allow you to explore all of the natural wonders of the East Coast at your own pace. 

Other travel tips for Australia

Australia is a dream destination blessed with stunning landscapes, unique wildlife, a rich history, and some of the best restaurants in the world. But the high number of things to do in Australia can also make it difficult to plan the perfect holiday. Here are four travel tips to have a smooth vacation:

  • If you only have a few weeks to travel, stick to one or two regions. This way, you’ll be able to take your time and really immerse yourself in the local culture. 
  • The rainy season in the north of the country can see heavy rainfall all day long for weeks. Additionally, river water levels go up during that time, making it more dangerous for travellers visiting national parks and remote areas due to crocodiles. If you plan to visit the Kakadu or Litchfield National Park during the rainy season, we’d recommend hiring a guide.
  • If you want to explore stunning coral reefs, head to Ningaloo Reef on the west coast. This world-heritage site is filled with fish and amazing creatures such as humpback whales. You can even swim with them between July and October. 
  • The plugs in Australia are type 240V AC, 50HZ. Therefore, make sure to buy a universal adapter with surge protection. This will save you a lot of trouble.
  • Australians drive on the left side of the road. If you want a car in the country, you must apply in your country of origin for an international driving license.
  • Australians are law-abiding citizens and expect travelers to comply with rules as well. Reporting misconduct is common.
  • There isn’t any reception in the Outback, so purchase a satellite phone and a first aid kit if you plan a trip there. Some of the most dangerous species found in the country live in the Outback, so be extremely careful. Always seek advice regarding road conditions, and never drive on closed roads.