Travelling to Australia might sound like a complicated process given the strict border controls and requirements that the country is known for. Nevertheless, entering the country has been simplified for Finnish and other European citizens with the introduction of the eVisitor online visa in 2008.
This process allows travellers from Finland to apply online for their Australia visa for either tourism or business purposes and obtain it in a matter of hours.
Presently only citizens of New Zealand can enter Australia without a visa, being granted an electronic Special Category visa (SCV) on arrival. Visitors from all other countries in the world need to possess a valid visa prior to departing for Australia. This requirement applies to any kind of travel, including when entering Australia during a cruise.
There are two main types of online visas for Australia which can be granted based on the country of citizenship: the ETA subclass 601 visa available for citizens of 9 countries and the eVisitor visa subclass 651 available for citizens of some European countries, including Finland.
The alternative for all nationals who cannot apply for an online visa is to request an Australia visitor visa from a consulate or embassy.
Do Finnish passport holders need a visa for Australia?
Yes, Finland passport holders need a valid visa to travel to Australia. They are eligible to apply online for the eVisitor visa subclass 651.
This type of visa allows short stays in Australia for business or tourism. The eVisitor allows multiple entries into the country, via air or sea, over a period of 1 year, for a maximum of 3 months for each stay.
Foreign nationals should be aware that paid work in Australia is not permitted while travelling with the eVisitor. They can, however, engage in other business-related activities such as general business inquiries, negotiating or reviewing a business contract, or attending seminars or conferences as long as they are not paid to do so. They can also perform unpaid volunteer work and conduct studies if these do not constitute the main purpose of their trip.
Applying for the Australian eVisitor for Finnish citizens is a fast and straightforward online process. There is no need to go in person to an embassy or consulate, eliminating inconveniences such as waiting in queues and filling out paper applications.
Documents required for Finnish citizens for an Australian visa
The following are the required documents to apply for the Australian visa from Finland:
- A passport valid for at least 3 months from the date of entry in Australia
- A credit or debit card to complete the online payment
In addition to this documentation, there are a few visa requirements that citizens should ensure they meet even before starting the application process. Here are the most important ones:
- Applicants must be outside Australia when applying for a visa and before receiving it
- Health requirements must be met: visitors should be free from any disease or condition that could lead to significant healthcare and community service costs to the Australian community or likely limit access of Australian citizens and permanent residents to healthcare and community services
- Travellers or their family members should have no debts to the Australian Government
- It is necessary to have enough money for foreign nationals to support themselves while in Australia and to leave the country at the end of their stay
- Character requirements must be fulfilled, meaning not having any substantial criminal record
All the information must be accurately provided in the application form in order to avoid any inconveniences such as delays or even a possible rejection of the visa.
Finnish citizens should ensure they use the same passport to fill out the application form as they do for travel, as any inconsistencies can lead to being denied entry into Australia.
Australia visa application form for citizens of Finland
Finnish citizens can apply for their Australian eVisitor visa at any time by completing the online application form. The process is fast and uncomplicated, with requests being approved within 24 hours when all information is accurately provided.
The following information will be required in the application form:
- Country of citizenship
- Family name
- First/given names
- Date of birth
- Country of birth
- Phone number
- Passport number
- Country of passport
- Date of issue and of expiry
For the online payment the following credit or debit card information will be necessary:
- Type of card for payment
- Cardholder name
- Card number
- Expiration date
- CVV security code
Finally, travellers will be prompted to enter a valid email address. This will be used for communications regarding the status of the eVisitor application. Usually, applicants will receive an email within 24 hours confirming that their visa has been granted. However, the process can take up to 2 days for some.
In some cases, the visa application might require further assessment. In such situations, petitioners can check the status of the application by logging back into the online system and selecting the Check an eVisitor option. In case of mistakes or missing information, they might be required to submit a new application.
Important information about the Australian eVisitor visa for Finnish citizens:
- The eVisitor starts on the date it is granted
- The visa will be digitally linked to the passport so holidaymakers will not get a stamp in their passport
- The visa is valid for 1 year or until the date of expiry of the passport, whichever comes first
- Having health insurance is recommended to cover any unforeseen medical treatment while in Australia