Australia

Language: English

Currency: Australian dollar ($). ATMs and banks are widely available everywhere. Credit cards are widely accepted although not always at smaller venues.

Time zones: Australia has three time zones: Western Standard Time (WST) for Western Australia, Central Standard Time (CST) for the Northern Territory and South Australia and Eastern Standard Time (EST) for the eastern states.

Visa: a visa is required to enter Australia. New Zealand citizens can apply for a visa upon arrival.

Vaccinations: there are no specific vaccinations required unless you have been in a yellow fever infected country within six days of your arrival.

Plugs & adapters: 220-240 volts. Plugs are flat three-pin types, with the top two pins angled.

Getting around: because of the vast size of the country, domestic flights are the most common means of transportation for longer distances. In the southeast of the country, there is also a rail network available. The most popular transportation though is by car or camper (RV). Note that a relatively short trip on the map from i.e. Sydney to Melbourne takes around 10 hours (and then you’re not taking the nice coastal route), so plan ahead.

Safety: Australia is a relatively safe country with low crime rates. Although media coverage sometimes suggests otherwise, wild life dangers are limited. Attacks by sharks and crocodiles are rare and largely preventable. Be careful entering tropical waters in the summer months, as jellyfish pose a serious threat. Always check with local agencies before entering the water. There are a number of venomous snakes and spiders in Australia, but antivenins are available in most cases.

Medical care: Australia has an excellent health-care system with very high standards. When travelling in more remote areas, keep in mind that travel time to the nearest hospital can be significantly longer. It might be interesting to know that that some countries have an agreement with the Australian government about free essential healthcare through the so-called Medicare program. These countries include the United Kingdom and several other European countries.