Bella Ispirazione

Australia: general info

I have different lists of places I want to go ordered by:

  1. Priority
  2. Weekends only
  3. I can go old or/and with babies
  4. Too dangerous to go for the moment

Let´s say that Australia was in the third list, because it is safe and its tourist facilities are very good and organized. But, once again my work takes to a remote place, Papua New Guinea, and then a few weeks in Australia, specifically in Brisbane. I only had the chance to go around the country on weekends, but I can say now that I´ll be very happy to live in this country for a couple of years, specially in Melbourne.

Here are some details about Australia before you go:

Language:

English

Visas:

Except for New Zealanders, visitors from the rest of the world need visa to go to Australia. You can apply online to get a Visa on arrival or an eVisitor visa. I applied for the eVisitor visa here with my european passport, 3 days before going to Australia. It only took me 10 minutes to apply and I had it in my email after 1 hour. It allowed me to stay for 3 months in Australia (multiple entries).

Currency:

Australian Dollar ($ AUD)

Money:

ATMs are widely available in cities and larger towns. Major credit cards are accepted, sometimes paying an extra fee.

Mobile Phone:

I read that Europeans mobile work perfectly in Australia, but neither my personal nor my business mobile did. Anyway, I always try to buy a local SIM card cause it end up being cheaper and you have access to internet, since Google is my best friend when travelling. Australian country code is +61.

Plugs and Adaptors:

Stadaptorsandard voltage is 220-240 V (50Hz). Plugs are flat three-pin types, with the top 2 pins angled.

Local Time:

Australia has 3 time zones: Eastern Standard time (UTC+10), which includes Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, Tasmania and the Australia Capital Territory. Central Standard Time (UTC+91/2) and Western Standard Time (UTC+8).

Tipping:

If the service is good, tip at restaurants is around the 10%.

When to go:

  • From December to February is summertime, beaches are busy, there are summer festivals and prices are higher, especially for accommodation
  • From March-May and September-November you´ll have warm but not hot weather, less busy places and better prices
  • From June to August is winter, get your jacket!! The South gets cool rainy days, while the weather improves up North. Low tourist numbers and It´s good time to go to the Great Barrier Reef since there are not jellyfish around. Also good time to see whales. I went in July-August and had a wonderful time

General recommendations:

  • You can use Uber to go around, it´s like 30% cheaper than a taxi
  • Both Uber and Taxi drivers are always very friendly and they´ll try to chat with you the whole way
  • It was very easy to buy a SIM card for my phone. I bought a Vodafone prepaid SIM card for 20 AUD$ and included 2Gb for a month and some free text message. There were also some other cheaper options if you are staying for less than a month
  • Make sure you take your power adaptor, there is no way Europeans/Americans work there
  • Almost every museum/store closes around 17:00 or 18:00. Lunch time is at 12:00 and dinner between 17:00-19:00. It was weird to me to see everything close after working hours, except on Fridays that they close around 20:00
  • If by any chance you need to buy something in the supermarket, for what I saw, they have different stores for everything…I mean, they don´t sell alcohol in the supermarket, you have to go to an alcohol shop, they don´t have as many options in the supermarkets as in drugstores for hygiene products, etc.

Where did I go?

Clic in each city to get more info about my trip to these incredible places, and email me if you need any help organizing your trip, and more than happy to help you.

 What did I miss?

I would have loved to go to:

  • Uluru and Kata Kjuta (this was a must to me, but it was impossible to go only for weekend from Brisbane). It is better to go from Sydney
  • Tasmania
  • Whitsundays (Whitehaven beach)
  • Perth
  • Adelaide

But I went for work to Australia and I was only able to take a few weekends off of my almost 3 months between Australia and Papua New Guinea. Anyway, as usual, I did a lot research of all the places I wanted to go, so feel free to ask me if you need help planning your trip.

Cheers

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