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‘Don’t Get Caught Out’: Ashes Tour travel advice

Foreign Office travel advice for fans visiting Australia for the 2013 - 2014 Ashes Tour.

The England Cricket Team are touring Australia from 31 October 2013 to 2 February 2014, playing five Tests, five One-Day Internationals (ODIs), three Twenty20 International (T20) matches and five other tour matches.

As well as this advice we have created, please check out our travel advice for Australia

Passports, visas and travel insurance

Please check your passport and visa details:

  • British nationals need a visa to travel to Australia
  • you can apply for one (free) on the Department of Immigration & Border Protection website
  • on arrival you may be asked to provide evidence of funds to support your stay, and a return or onward ticket
  • your passport should be valid for the proposed duration of your stay
  • no additional period of validity beyond this is required
  • if you are transiting another country en route to or from Australia, make sure you check the entry requirements for that country
  • take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance before you travel
  • if you lose your passport, or it is stolen, you will need to obtain an Emergency Travel Document from the nearest British consulate

At the matches

Match venues will be enforcing their standard conditions of entry.

Prohibited items generally include:

  • alcohol
  • drugs
  • glass bottles or breakable containers
  • metal containers
  • cans
  • offensive weapons
  • including potential missiles
  • flags over 1m x 1m in size
  • musical instruments
  • professional camera/video/audio equipment

All match venues reserve the right to refuse entry to anyone who is intoxicated and/or disorderly. Licensing laws are strictly enforced, even being mildly intoxicated can lead to being refused entry.

Please see the match venues’ websites for full conditions of entry:

Tips

The numbers of travelling fans will peak for the Melbourne and Sydney Tests which take place around Christmas and New Year. Some shops and service providers may be closed during this time, so please ensure you have adequate stocks of prescription medicines or any other items you may need.

The level of crime is no higher than in the UK. Be careful with personal possessions and travel documents in cities and other popular tourist destinations. Avoid carrying everything in one bag; only carry what you need; and leave spare cash and valuables in hotel safety deposit boxes. Don’t leave bags unattended in vehicles, internet cafes, pubs or clubs. Theft from safety deposit boxes is common in cheaper hotels and hostels.

You can reduce the risk of losing your passport by getting a proof of age card. This is an accepted form of ID for many services like opening bank accounts or entering licensed premises. By getting a card soon after you arrive you will limit the need to carry your passport with you. As a visitor, you can drive in Australia using a valid UK driving licence. You must carry your driving licence and passport when driving. Make sure you have sufficient insurance, including if you borrow a car from a friend or relative. If you’re hiring a car immediately on arrival be extra careful - you will be jetlagged and tired from your flight.

Driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs is illegal. The penalties can be severe. You must wear a seat belt at all times. Take particular care when driving on unmetalled roads, 4WD tracks and desert/beach roads. Always ensure you have enough water and fuel.

Be sun smart! The Australian sun is very strong, and the incidence of skin cancer is one of the highest in the world, two to three times the UK rate. The Cancer Council Australia website has tips on how to protect your skin and help prevent skin cancer.

Under the reciprocal healthcare arrangements that exist between Australia and the UK, British Citizens resident in the UK and travelling on a British passport are entitled to limited subsidised health services from Medicare for medically necessary treatment while visiting Australia. This does not cover pre-existing conditions, or treatment that does not require prompt attention. If you don’t have comprehensive medical insurance and aren’t covered under the reciprocal arrangements, costs for treatment can be high. For more information, visit the Medicare website, call them on 13 20 11, or visit their nearest office. If you are visiting them, take your passport and (if you have it) your NHS card.

Australia is prone to seasonal natural disasters including tropical cyclones, flash flooding, dust storms and bushfires (forest fires). Local authorities anticipate the 2013/14 bushfire season could be more dangerous than usual as the preconditions for bushfires have worsened in the past year. Bushfires can start and change direction with little or no notice. If you’re travelling in a high risk bushfire area, follow local authorities’ advice.

Rip currents are the main surf hazard for all beach users. They can occur at any beach, and can sweep even the strongest swimmer out to sea. Rip currents are responsible for 20 coastal drowning deaths and over 15,000 rescues in Australia each year. Take the following simple precautions:

  • don’t swim on unpatrolled beaches or after hours
  • always swim between the red and yellow flags
  • don’t swim after consuming alcohol or drugs
  • always swim with a friend; never alone

British consular offices

Our consulates around Australia support British nationals in need of assistance.

Emergency services numbers

In a life threatening or time critical emergency, call 000 or 112 (national 24 hour numbers) and state whether you need Police, Fire or Ambulance.

To contact the Police in a non–emergency situation (e.g. if your passport has been lost/stolen), call:

  • Melbourne – (03) 9247 6666
  • All other Tour locations – 13 14 44

Further information

Like UK in Australia on Facebook, and follow @ukinaustralia on Twitter

Doing business in Australia

British businesspeople visiting for the Ashes Tour might want to consider doing some business while in Australia. Australia was the world’s 12th largest economy in 2012 and has had 22 years of uninterrupted economic growth. The UK exported nearly £11 billion of goods and services to Australia in 2012 and exports to Australia have grown 79% since 2007. To find out more about the business opportunities in Australia, and how we can help, contact UK Trade & Investment.

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