The DIAC has recently announced that longer tourist visas will be introduced for parents of Australian Citizens and Permanent Residents – this is likely to commence on 24 November 2012.
Under this arrangement, the DIAC will consider granting (on a case-by-case basis):
- Tourist visas of up to five years’ validity which provide a stay of up to 12 months on each entry, to those parents who are outside Australia and are in the Parent (Subclass 103) Visa queue.
- Tourists visas of up to three years’ validity with 12 months’ stay on each entry will be considered for parents who are outside Australia and are not in the Parent Visa queue.
These changes will allow parents who meet the criteria for a Tourist visa to have regular extended visits with their family in Australia, without needing to apply for a new visa on each visit.
Under these more flexible arrangements, in addition to meeting all other Tourist visa requirements, parents will be expected to hold health insurance to cover any healthcare costs during their stay and will have a visa condition limiting applications for further visas while they are in Australia.
Like all tourists, parents granted Tourist visas are expected to maintain extended periods of absence between visits to Australia.
The DIAC is making changes to implement these arrangements by the end of 2012, and it is expected that the commencement date will be 24 November 2012.