Someone on Reddit recently shared, “I'm planning on going to Australia next year and have NO idea what I'm doing! I've never been out of the country before, so I don't know the best way to go about things like money, travel insurance, visas, declaration, and who knows what else.”
Tips for Traveling to Australia
The Redditor proceeded, “Please give me your best advice/tips for traveling overseas to Australia! The internet responded to deliver this list.
1. Respect the Wildlife
“Emus will pick your pocket, and a Goanna will happily take your hand and the sandwich you're holding if you're not careful. So please pay attention to all signage regarding dangerous animals and follow any recommendations. Do that, and you'll be fine except for the flies. Those buggers will drive you mad,” someone claimed.
“There can be dangerous animals in tall grass and forests overseas. Make sure you are with a local or have researched the area before taking walks/hikes etc.,” warned another.
2. Check out Your Mobile Service Provider Options
One person shared, “When traveling, I use a service called Airalo for mobile data. It only works if your phone can handle eSIMs. They have an app that makes it simple enough. Alternatively, you can get a SIM at the airports.”
“Telstra and Optus are the two big ones, followed by Vodafone. Or you can pay for roaming on your mobile plan. If you don't want to pay, remember to turn off your mobile data on your phone.”
3. Be Aware of What You Can and Cannot Bring
Don't bring fresh food on the plane like fruits and things, and don't bring knives, lighters, etc. The Australian customs website should have more info on this. You'll fill out a short form where you declare anything you bring in (like even a bag of lollies, you'd say yes, I have food). It doesn't mean they'll take it off you; they want to check,” informed another.
4. Invest in Some Travel Insurance
“Travel insurance – Google it and get some online quotes. Pick the one that looks best to you. Please look at what it covers (including covid coverage), so you understand how they can help. I use Southern Cross. It should be cheap for a trip to Australia,” one answered.
Another agreed, “Get travel insurance. While you won't need it, and there are arguments against it when traveling between NZ and AU, it's better to have it. I've used Southern Cross and had no issues. I now use World Nomads because they allow you to buy it, change it, and extend it while overseas.”
5. Protect Your Valuables
“Take a moment and think about what you'd do if you lost/got stolen your phone, your passport, etc. and mitigate this by photocopying your passport, or taking a photo and chucking it on Google drive, etc. Insurance will help with a phone.”
“Your passport is more challenging. Just make life easier for yourself when you're far from home,” someone suggested.
6. Watch Out for the Ibises
“Those birds are big and threatening. And they are flat-out mean, too,” one warned. “I had an ibis steal half my pie at the Sydney Botanic Gardens. They're absolute jerks. I don't understand how a bird can be so mean. They are indeed jerks. The Aussies call them Bin Chickens.”
Another argued, “We had a gaggle of them in the backyard of our rented holiday home. They were friendly enough, but they poop a lot.”
7. Grab Some Cash in Local Currency
“You go to an ATM and withdraw some cash when you arrive. Much easier than local banks/money exchange places and not much in the way of fees that I can recall, but typically if going to a country where cash is common, I take about 200 out in local,” reported one.
“This depends on the place you're visiting. Some airports need a functioning ATM and finding a shop that'll cash out for you would be a hassle. When I needed to withdraw cash overseas, I had to look for ones inside banks because it's easy to get your card skimmed,” another argued.
“Sometimes those are hassles that you wouldn't want to waste your precious short time on a visit. When I went to Sydney, I didn't bother with cash. They're pretty like NZ regarding card/tap adoption.”
8. Be Mindful of Your Medications
“Read up on customs rules on both sides. If in doubt, declare it (referring to food, medication). You may need doctor's notes for medications. Keep meds in the original boxes with the labels showing it's been prescribed to you,” encouraged one.
“They don't seem to care about basic stuff at Customs, I've traveled in small groups declaring diabetes medication (including insulin), and they just waved us on. That said, it was always in original packaging with a prescription list printed by the GP or nurse just in case,” a second person suggested.
9. Get Your Passport Early
One person shared, “Get your passport sorted sooner rather than later. Especially this time of year. There's no point in messing up your trip/ timeline for something so simple and fixable as taking care of your passport.”
“Yep, best to bite the bullet on the $199 fee and get it done while processing times are good. Both my partner and I had our processed and sent out in about three working days this week, which is great,” a second agreed.
10. Be Prepared, the Food is Not the Same
“Burger King is called Hungry Jack's over there. It only gets more horrific. Keep your dietary expectations in check. Pies are gross. A “real meat” pie in Aus is equivalent to a square Coupland's pie and will cost you $7.50,” someone replied.
“One of the bros learned it the hard way, and he had never been so disappointed before. I've found most Aussie food disappointing compared to NZ food. Found theirs to be so bland,” a second person suggested.
Finally, a third argued, “Nah, Indian food here (in Australia) is better than back home in Auckland. Much more authentic. Burgers are better and wilder here too. But, of course, if I were in regional Australia, the story would probably be different.”
We hope you enjoyed this Reddit picks list of resourceful tips for traveling to Australia.
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