How to apply for an Australian Tourist Visa Online: A guide for Filipinos

Back in September, my sister in Australia told me over Viber that she’s considering asking our mother to spend New Year’s with them again in Melbourne, and asked me if I am willing to accompany our mother to Australia. Of course, I am!

I’ve heard from friends and read in the comments section of my previous visa application guides that Philippine passport holders can now apply for an Australian tourist visa online. Since I do not like the stress that Manila traffic brings, and I do like doing business online, this was very appealing to me.

Create an ImmiAccount

The first step in applying for an Australian tourist visa online is to create an ImmiAccount. To create an account, you will need a valid email address. Make sure that you type in your email address correctly, and that you use an email address you regularly check. The embassy will be communicating with you using this address, so make sure that you check this email address often.

Application Form

Once you have created an account, you can start an application. This is basically the online, fillable version of Form 1419, so there is no need for you to download the form, fill it out, and upload it.

You can start filling out the application form, even if you have not completed compiling your documents yet. Make sure that the information you put in the application form are the same as the information in the supporting documents that you are submitting.

If you have filled out the form, but are not ready to submit yet, click on the Save button. This saves your answers in their database, and once you log back in, you can see your application, check the entries, and make edits.

Once you are ready to submit your application and upload your supporting documents, click on Submit.




Application Fee

When you submit your application form, you will be prompted to pay the Australian tourist visa application fee. For online applications, the only way to pay is through credit cards. If you do not have a credit card, or access to a credit card, I read that you can use prepaid debit cards.

Your card will be charged AU$135 + credit card surcharge fee. Based on BPI’s foreign exchange rate at the time, I paid Php 4,547.26. If you are applying via courier or VFS, the fixed visa fee is Php 4,900, and you would still have to pay for the VFS fee, courier fee, and the fee for the manager’s check.

Supporting Documents

I made sure that all of my supporting documents are complete before I submitted my application and paid the fee. I created my ImmiAccount and filled out the form on September 20, but I didn’t submit until October 5.

As soon as my payment has cleared, I uploaded my scanned documents. The Australian Embassy sets a limit of 30 files for Visitor Visa online applications, and none of the files must be more than 5MB in size. To keep file sizes small, they recommend that you scan your documents at 96 dpi, and to not attach photos in Office document files, as this will increase the file size greatly.

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SupportingDocuments

Since I know my documents will have more than 30 pages, I merged and grouped them together. Also, instead of submitting separate photo files, I created a collage on Photoshop and added captions. I saved them as Portable Document Files (optimized), and used a service like PDFMerge.com to merge the PDFs into one file.

Here are the documents that I submitted:

Passport Photo

They did not give any specifications for the photo file, so I just scanned my passport picture at 180 dpi and saved it as JPG.

Cover Letter

I wrote a letter addressed to the consul explaining the purpose of my trip, who will be sponsoring my trip, why I need a multiple entry visa, and the reason why I need to come back to the Philippines. I included the ways in which they can reach me, should they need to get in touch for an interview. I also mentioned that I will be traveling, and the dates when I will be out of the country.

The supporting documents I submitted corroborates the content of my cover letter, which means that I provided proof of the purpose of the trip, proof that my sponsor can afford to shoulder my trip, proof of my relationship with my sponsor, and proof of my activities and relationships in the Philippines.

Certified Identification Documents

This is a requirement of the embassy: a certified or notarized copy of my passport and birth certificate.

Letter of Invitation

In my previous applications, my sister would send me letters via mail, which I include with my documents. Since I am applying online, I told her to just email me, instead of writing a letter, which would have taken weeks.
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In her email, she stated that she wants me to accompany our mother to Melbourne, and that she will provide our tickets, and that we have the option to stay at her house, or my other sister’s house. She also stated she wants us to have a short holiday in New Zealand.

Along with the email, I also included a scan of my mother’s passport and her visa grant letter (she has a 3-year multiple entry Australian tourist visa).

You can save the email as PDF by clicking on Print, and then selecting Save as PDF/Export as PDF in your browser or email client.

Sponsor Documents

Since my sister is my sponsor, I had her send me a copy of her passport bio page, as well as her last four payslips, as evidence that she has the capacity to shoulder the cost of our trip to Melbourne.

Business Registration

Since I am self-employed and have my own business, I included my business registration papers in lieu of a Certificate of Employment.

Income Tax Return

As evidence of my income, I attached my latest Income Tax Return, which was submitted to the BIR last April 2015.

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Most Recent Credit Card Statement

I also stated in my application that I will be using my credit card as a way to pay for goods and services while in the country.

Bank Statements

I submitted the Statement of Account for the previous 3-6 months. I did not request for a Bank Certificate anymore.

Family Photos

This was comprised of photos of me and my two sisters when we holidayed together in Tasmania during my previous visit, photos of me with my sisters’ families in Melbourne, photos of me with my family in the Philippines, and photos of me with my friend Khursten when I visited her in Sydney in 2013, and when we traveled to Japan together in 2014.




Travel Plans in 2016

To show that I have strong reasons to come back to the Philippines after my trip to Australia, I included the plane tickets that I have already booked. Since one of my travel plans include accompanying my mother and aunt to their hometown in Sorsogon in 2016, I included a photo collage from our trip last summer with extended family members.

One of my close friends is also getting married next year, so I included a scan of their wedding invitation, photos of me and my close friend during our trip to Japan together last year, and a photo of me together with my friend and her fiancΓ©.

Current Passport Visas and Stamps

Since the application checklist includes evidence of previous travels, I scanned all the entry and exit stamps from my previous travels in my current passport.

Previous Passport Visas and Stamps

My last Australian tourist visa is under my old passport, so I included it as well. My old passport also has my other visas, which includes a used visa for Canada, China, and Schengen, as well as valid multiple entry visas for Japan and the United States. I also included the pages with entry and exit stamps from my trips between 2011 and 2013.

Acknowledgement

I submitted my application in the early morning of October 5. I received an acknowledgement immediately after. On October 6, the Immigration and Visa Office of the Australian Embassy Philippines sent me an email requiring me to fill out a short online questionnaire. The questionnaire is basically the Application Checklist. Luckily, I was still at home when the email came, so I was able to quickly respond to their request.

This is why it’s very important that you type your email address correctly, and why you should always check your email after submitting your application online.

Grant Notification

Almost immediately after I submitted my filled out questionnaire, I left the house to go to the airport. By the following day, I received an email again from the Immigration Office, this time saying that my visa has already been granted.

To summarize my timeline:
September 20 – Created ImmiAccount, started filling out application form
October 1 – Requested statement of account from banks, notarized documents
October 2 – Scanned documents and created PDF
October 5 – Submitted application, paid visa fee, attached supporting documents
October 6 – Submitted Immigration Manila’s online questionnaire
October 7 – Received Visa Grant Notice

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I remember back in 2006, when I first applied for an Australian visitor visa, I also submitted around this time of the year, and was granted in just a matter of days — I received notification of my visa grant while on a trip as well! Maybe there’s something about October?

Do you need a sponsor or to have a family in Australia to visit? Absolutely not! Many applicants are just there to tour the country. If you are a tourist, or visiting for a specific purpose (e.g. watching the Australian Open), make sure to include documents pertaining to them (tickets, bookings, etc.) with your application.

This is based on my personal experience in applying for an Australian tourist visa online. I’ve already written down everything I know. Please feel free to share your experiences in the comments. I’ll do my best to answer your questions, but I can’t really answer if your situation is different from mine (e.g. no work, no bank statement, no previous travel, etc.) however, there’s bound to be someone who is in the same boat, who may be able to answer your question. The visa discussions in the comments of this blog can get quite lively.

[EDIT October 22, 2015] Many in the comments both in this post and previous visa posts said that their application, even when lodged online took a month or more to get processed. I got really lucky with my application, and up until now, I don’t know why my application was granted so quickly. Is it because I said I was accompanying my 80-year old mother, because my sister is sponsoring me, because this is my third application, because I provided proof of my plans in 2016, or because I said I was going to watch the Australian Open?

Bear in mind that the Australian Embassy website that average processing time for a tourist visa is one month. To be safe, consider this as a minimum, rather than a maximum, and apply for a tourist visa as soon as you can, instead of waiting for the last minute and fretting over the long processing time as your flight date looms closer.

Article by Nina Fuentes

Nina doesn't aim to travel to every country in the world -- she just wants to travel to the places that means the most to her. She started traveling in 2006, and hopes to travel for as long as she can. Her travel blog, Just Wandering won the Best Travel Blog in the 2010 Philippine Blog Awards and in the 2011 Nuffnang Asia Pacific Blog Awards.

This Article Has 1,204 Comments
  1. Stef says:

    Hi sis mg ttourist lng kmi ng anak ko, pero sa passport nya last name ng tatay, kc sa ibang bansa ko sya pinanganak and hawak ko lng ngppa tunay na anak ko sya is birth certificate, sis hindi naba need ng consent ng tatay kc last nya yun anak ko? nkpunta kna sis australia sis na gamit mo yan documents? Need your sis…thank you

    • trixie says:

      Hindi n need ng consent sis as long as hindi kau married sa birth certificate ng anak mo everything will be okay na. Yup sis naka punta ng australia sis.

  2. Stef says:

    Hi sis kc sa ibang bansa ko sya pinanganak, tapos ang hawak ko lng na ngpapatunay is birth certificate nya, passport nya last name tatay nya, kc wla clang middle name kya hindi nya dala middle ko sis, pano yun sis hindi naba ako kukuha ng consent sa father? or kht ako ako kukuha? Nk alis nba kau sis na ayan lng dala mo sis? Pls help sis ano p documents na need ko. Thanks

  3. Stef says:

    Sis sa ibang bansa ko sya pinanganak e, tpos d2 hindi kmi married., yun lng ba hinanap sis sa immigration or pg enter mo sa australia?

  4. Stef says:

    Sa birth certificate nya sis, hindi kami kasal,

  5. Stef says:

    Hindi kc sis citizen d2, kya isip ko bk need consent ng tatay? Although costody sa akin, hindi kya ako sis mgkpblma if pgpsok namin? Thanks

    • trixie says:

      Tourist kanaman sis kaya wala yang mgiging problem. As long as me visa kau ng anak mo. At ikaw naman ung mother kaya wala kang magiging problem sis.

  6. Stef says:

    Sis ask ko lng anong visa inaply mo? thanks

  7. lehvee says:

    Hi guys, i need help nanamn. hehe. do u think there’s a big possibility na ma off-loaded ako if ever ang sponsor ko is mum ng boyfriend ko and it’s also my first time to travel pa and worst all expense in paid by her. ung money ko is only 14,ooo which is obviously konting amount lang. please help. i need advice. it’s really stressing me off kasi scary siya if m offloaded. ???

    • trixie says:

      There’s no reason naman para ma offload ka kung me valid visa ka and u provide all the documents na hanapin sau sa immigration. Nung first apply ko ng tourist 10,000 lng pera ko sa bank account ko so nothing to worry naman kung konti lang savings mo .

      • lehvee says:

        kasi sis, hindi close relative ug sponsor ko eh. based ba sa nababasa ko talagang hinihigpitan nila ung ganun. kasi dapat daw until 4th degree relatives. tsaka 20 years old pa ako at first time traveler. huhu. advice me sis please πŸ™‚

  8. Stef says:

    Hi sis trixie, oo sis sis my tourist visa kmi inaply ko sya ETA kc exempted pssport nya,ako ng apply sa immi acct, pero sis grant na ako sis:) ang pinpoblma ko sis mhigpit kc sa oz db, bk hanapan ako ng consent ng father , dhil nga hndi citizen anak ko d2, for sure b pgwa na rin ako consent then pa notary ko? At ako yun binanngit ppgwa ko din ba sis?. Thank you

  9. Stef says:

    Hi sis dun sa partner visa, pga blik ko kc sna aaply ako nun, pano sis pg apply ilan years ibbgay? Kung hindi ba yan kasal sa partner mo mo na sa citizen sa oz? Thanks

  10. Stef says:

    Sorry sis trixie dami ko tanong hehe first time kc namin mg sa australia, sa immigration na d2 sa atin sis hinanapan na yun documents, or pg dating na dun sa Oz? Hinanapan ka nila?

  11. Stef says:

    Hi po refusal tourist visa ng sister, mahina na proof na bbalik sya pinas, any suggestion po pwde ko po ba cla eemail at sbhin na ano pang proof pra ipasa ko kht refusal na visa ng sis ko? Kc tlga naman uuwi sya s pinas. Plsss help bk sakaling pwde clang paki usapan?

  12. Stef says:

    Hi sis any help if refused anong kayang magandang gawain, email cla to explain? Plss help

    • Anne says:

      Hi sis once my result npo lalo na tourist visa wala npo mggawa.Submit new application nlng po tpos make it sure na kompleto po lhat ng documents na submit u po at ung proof of evidence n bblik po ung kptid u sa pinas.

  13. grace says:

    hi sis anne, ay ganun po ba cguro mgttry na lng kmi ulit, kc ako grant na sya hindi sayang naman if uulit na naman ako,bk ma denied ulit, anyone na ngsubok uli na mgksunod ng dates? or any po na documents na pwdeng mabisang proof na babalik sya tlga, wla kasing work c ate ko at 47 na sya…ako kc my ng provide ng documents nya,,please help pano kya ggawin ko? thanks

    • Anne says:

      Hi sis uu pwede k nmn mgreapply anytime sa decision record basahin u po kung ano reason bkt po xa na refused kung my business xa lagay xa ng business permit o kya nmn if my anak c ate u pwede din po un attached photo with her child.

  14. grace says:

    hi sis anne, attached ko picture ng kids na ng aaral pa, kso wla e hindi p rin buss kc wla sya, kya ako lng ng support lahat, kso hindi umobra sayang, paalis na sna kmi s may 26.

  15. stef says:

    hi sis trixie,need ko ba pgwa ng affidavit of illegitimacy and affidavit support? kahit ako ksma mgttravel ng anak ko? nung apply ako tourist visa support ng fiance ko at bank ko din, need paba yun ppkita ba yun sa australia immigration na? ora dalin ko na lng bank certifcate /atm ko? kc balak ko sna pgwa consent ng father na pinapagyan sya lumabas ng bansa kc last name nya yun anak ko…please pano ggawin ko? thanks

  16. Stef says:

    Hi sis trixie hinahanap pa sa immigration yun affidavit ng support na dpat nka sign ako? Need ba yun tlga yun sis hahanapin ba tlga yun sa immigration sa pinas or australia na? Thanks

  17. Joan says:

    Hi sis pa help, pano if ngpksal kmi sa OZ, then bumalik ako ng pinas, at d2 ako mg aapply ng visa, anong visa ang iaapply ko? Partner visa, spouse visa? Ano po kaya mabilis? Thankyou

  18. issa says:

    hi sis , pano mg apply ng partner visa with child? and how much? and ilan months bago lumabas visa? may nabasa kc ako apply muna visa subclass 309 temporary then while aiting sa subclass 100? may idea po kayo ilan buwan ma grant ng visa mas madali kya sa immi account? thanks

  19. Maria says:

    Hello Miss A, congrats sa yong extension visa approval, speaking of extension visa app, what are the requirements needed? how much ang extension visa now? and I understand that you’ve got 9 Months multiple, did you ask for a multiple, I mean you just tick or check the multiple entry? I’mm planning to get an extension also next month, I would really appreciate all the advice and suggest here, Thank you and good day!

  20. Anne says:

    Hi mga sis ilang araw or weeks bgo lumabas result sa online application?

  21. lehvee says:

    Hello mga sis, please any advice how to avoid off loading? that’s my dilemma since im a first time traveler. Thank you πŸ™‚

    • Annee says:

      Hey sis lehvee! if you have all the docs naman with you, there’s nothing to worry. If they have questions just answer in all honesty lng. But i doubt ma offload ka if meron ka nmn docs na ippakita sa kanila like your visa, plane tix πŸ™‚ good luck!

      • lehvee says:

        first time traveler kasi ako sis kya na worry ako. tsaka hindi ko pa close family relative ung sponsor. Malaking chance ba yun na ma offload?

      • Annee says:

        Who is your sponsor ba? Bf mo? Have you met before? Kasi if na grant ka na ng tv and you’re set to travel na soon, then you don’t have to worry. Pag nasa airport ka na and the immig will ask for your docs like passport, plane tix, and your visa just show everything to them. If ever nmn na nag met na kayo ng sponsor mo (bf) and you have pics together, you may want to bring them with you as well just in case they ask for it. πŸ™‚

      • lehvee says:

        hello sis anne, mum ng boyfriend ko ang sponsor eh. but i met her before na din

  22. joice says:

    hi mga sis, any help po if partner visa aaply ko if my dala na ako marriage contract. at ano pa po ba mga requirements..may idea po kayo mga sis ilan months approval ng partner visa? thank you

  23. Aimee says:

    Hello how much is the tv fee now?

  24. Bhea says:

    Hi mga sis sino po my flight ng May 24 here by cebu pacific po?hanap lng po ng kksbay manila to sydney po.

  25. tia says:

    hi question lang po,kapag tourist ba the my sponsor need po mgdala ng show money, or kahit mgkno, ask po ba yun sa immigration natin or australia? sponsor ko kc bf ko, need paba show money or hind na plss help po.

  26. tia says:

    thank you sis trixie

  27. tia says:

    hi sis how about documents like invitation letter nya at payslip na ginamit ko pg apply ng TV? plss help paalis n kc ako sis. thank you

  28. leh says:

    Hi mga sis, i would like to ask if magkakaproblema po ba sa immigration if ever ang sponsor ng tourist visa ko kay nanay ng boyfriend ko?, Thanks. im really feeling anxious about this trip eh.

    • Marian says:

      Hi guys, so I forgot my immi password then I am trying to reset it by clicking forgot password button. I typed in my username and the verification code and it says that I will receive an email to reset my password. Wala pa rin pong email to reset my passport. Does this normally happen? hope someone can help.

  29. Marian says:

    Hi guys, so I forgot my immi password then I am trying to reset it by clicking forgot password button. I typed in my username and the verification code and it says that I will receive an email to reset my password. Wala pa rin pong email to reset my passport. Does this normally happen? hope someone can help.

  30. apple says:

    hello po, pag fill up po ng immiaccount yun na po b ang 1419?doon na din mag settle ng payment tru credit c?e download ko lng b lahat doon ang mga attach documents ko po?wala na pd yunh padala tru to go?kac nasa mindanao ako.please help.

  31. Marian says:

    Hi guys, I have been uploading my requirements na sa immi account ko. I planned sana to upload my intent letter sa “Others” na folder kaso po nawala yun folder na yun. May nakaexperience naba nito? Salamat po!

    • Jen says:

      Hi marian, you can select others on travel document selection πŸ™‚

      • Marian says:

        Hi, thanks sa response. I still can’t see the ‘others” folder. Also, ilang ulit po ba talaga yun security check?I am deleting a document i mistakenly attached sobrang tagal po ba talaga bago ma delete? Thanks.

    • Rosh says:

      From what I remember, the “others” folder will show up once you have paid and when you’re done submitting all the required documents.

  32. Therie says:

    Thank you for putting this together! So helpful!

  33. leh says:

    Hi giys, im leaving next sunday. and im really praying i will notget offloaded since im relly scared coz im a first time traveller, alone and still young. my papers are complete ( as much as my memory is concern sa lahat ng kailangan). i hope you could pray for me as well na it will be a success. im really getting anxious reading stuff about offloading coz i really think i belong to. Thank you so much ??

    • Grace says:

      Hello mga sis, ask ko lang po kung cnong nakatira sa kwinana? Sa bertram ako.

    • Grace says:

      Kaya yan sis, bsta dala mo lahat ng supporting documents mo. Kdrating ko lang d2 sa oz last June 1. My mga few questions ung immigration officer dito sa oz about sa relationship namin ni bf. Like how long we are together, whats his address, how often u see each other.. wag ka mxado mgbasa sa mga naooffload kasi tlgang mkapapaicp ka. Goodluck, kaya yan. Ive travel alone but its not my first time to travel outside Ph, but its my first time here in OZ

      • leh says:

        Hello sis grace, how aboutsa ph immigration? ano ung mga questions nila? in my case kasi first time talaga lahat and alone pa. manghihingi ba sila ng show money? or bank statement even if sponsored ang trip? tsaka kasi ung sakin ang sponsor is ung mum ng boyfriend ko and not my boyfriend.but the reason naman sa vacation is to visit my boyfriend and his family. Thanks

    • Klang says:

      How young are you? Hehe As long as not younger than 18 years old heheh

  34. Grace says:

    Sa Ph immigration wala nman. Since ur first time, mgready k nlang ng hard copy ng mga docs na sinubmit mo sa immi tsaka ung proof na bbalik k ng pinas. No need ng show money, tinanong lang s akin if visit then tapos na.

  35. Marian says:

    Hi, im about to submit my online application. Can I pay using my regular debit card or it has to be credit card? I have no idea. Thanks!

  36. Catherine Quitoriano Ponce says:

    Guys, kailangan ko ng idea. Nakapunta nako ng Australia before pero student pako nun. So simple lang mga requirements for TV. Now, im working and may sponsor ako. Kelangan ko ba i aattach COE ko? And what if unemployed? Thanksguys.

  37. Chanda Romero says:

    Hi. Inquire lang ako kasi need ba talaga ng evidence of assets para sa online application? Tapos yung photocopy ng birth cert ipapanotatize lang po ba hindi necessary na NSO birth cert yung iattach? Thanks in advance!

  38. Marian says:

    Hi, does anyone of you ever experienced trying to submit your online application but there’s a pop up that with the title “providing supporting documents” saying not all required documents has been provided. But in my case, I have attached all the required docs. Help please. Thanks!

  39. Marian says:

    Hi everyone, my tourist visa got refused today. I attached COE from my online job and also business ng mother ko where I assist her. The decision notice says I dont have enough ties daw in the Philippines para bumalik. Ano pa p9 kaya amg pwede ko isubmit? Hopinh someone can advice ano pa kayang supplementary docs ang pwede ko iattach . ALSO, once refused gano katagal before I can reapply? Hoping someone can help me. Thanks!

    • Ting says:

      Hi Marian..in my case, nagsubmit ako ng mga family pictures ko with captions to prove na babalik ako sa pilipinas. I have no work nor assets kaya yun lang pinass ko…naapprove naman. ?

      • Marian says:

        Hi Ting, what kinds of captions did you put? Can I contact you through fb messenger or viber? I want to reapply asap eh. Pwede ba yon? I need to be in australia by July.Thanks a lot po!!!

      • Ting says:

        Very simple lang na mga caption sis marian…like kung ano yung event sa picture..sino ang nandun at saan. Ganon lang. Sure sis…search lang thea.huervana. I’m not really sure kung how soon pwede mag reapply sis..may nabasa ako dati na nag reapply siya yata after 3 weeks..not sure though..

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