The international borders of Australia have been closed since 2020 due to the Covid-19 Pandemic. There were strict travel restrictions in Australia to protect the Australian community. Now, after almost 2 years, the international borders are opened again for people all over the world. The Australian Government has confirmed that Australia reopening for international students.
Australia has recently relaxed some restrictions for Student Visa 500 holders. The announcement of relaxation came after news of easing the border restrictions for overseas students in Australia.
Australia Reopening for International Students – Major Points
International students are returning to Australia after 2 years. The Australian Government is welcoming back students from all over the world. It has made certain concessions in order to make Australia a more attractive destination for international students.
As the news of Australia reopening for international students is currently a hot topic. Here’re the significant points about the relaxation for overseas students in Australia.
- If you’re an international student who arrives in Australia between 19th Jan 2022 and 19 March 2022, you’ll get a refund of your visa fee.
- International students who’re returning can work in Australia before their course starts.
- Studying online counts towards a Graduate Visa 485
Impact on International Students due to Covid-19 Restrictions
According to a registered migration agent, Nasir Nawaz, International students have been adversely affected by Covid-19. Overseas students have suffered psychologically and financially, resulting in poor academic performance. As a result of strict border restrictions, international students and other temporary visa holders couldn’t return to Australia after they left. Due to this, thousands of visas got expired.
The Australian Migration Agent, Nasir Nawaz, stated:
Whoever was staying in their home country, they were stuck there. Many visas got expired and they knew nothing about their future after that.
Visa Fee Waiver after Australia Reopening for International Students
The Australian Government reopened its international borders for fully-vaccinated overseas students in December 2021. It has announced a visa fee waiver as well. International students returning from 19th of Jan, 2022 to 19th of March, 2022 can receive a refund of their visa fee. The deadline to apply for a refund is the 31st of December 2022.
Temporary Relaxation of Student Visa Work Hours
According to Condition 8105 on Student Visa, international students can’t work in Australia before their course starts. However, as Australia reopening for international students, the Australian Government has relaxed the work hour limit for 500 visa holders.
Student Visa 500 allows international students to work for only 40 hours per fortnight in Australia. Under the recent changes, they can work for more than 40 hours per fortnight. They don’t even have to wait for their course to start. As overseas students are allowed to work before their course commences.
It should be noted that relaxation of work hours is for a short period. The Australian Government will review this arrangement by April 2022.
Review by an International Student on Reopening of Australia
An international Student, Imran Khan, appreciates the relaxation of work hours for newly arriving students in Australia.
Imran Khan stated:
This is a great step by the government which allows students to work before their course starts.
Studying Online Counts towards a Graduate Visa
According to Nasir Nawaz, on-campus education was required to obtain a Temporary Graduate Visa before Covid-19. However, you can apply for a visa 485 if you’ve undertaken online studies outside Australia.
Now online studies and on campus studies can be considered for graduate visa and to satisfy the conditions for the graduate visa. So, this is the new normal.
Fee Reduction by Australian Universities – Final Thoughts!
Nasir Nawaz suggested that the Australian Government has relaxed Student Visa conditions. Likewise, universities in Australia should also reduce their fee to encourage the return of international students. In his opinion, online studies must have a lower fee as compared to on-campus studies.
Muzammil Rizwan Khan from Step Up Profession has also expressed his opinion about the fee reduction. He said that reduced fees will encourage overseas students to study in Australia.
This step will inspire international students to choose Australia over other countries for their studies. Further, all travelers must meet the requirements of a state/territory where they’re planning to move. If you need help to apply for a visa to move to any Australian state/territory, you can contact us anytime.
- Extension of Work Hours for International Students to Ease COVID Worker Shortage
- New Visa Supports for International Students in Australia – 2022
- NSW Pilot Plan 2022 – Return of International Students in Australia
I’m Nasir Nawaz. I’m a registered migration consultant in Australia. I am based in Sydney. I’ve studied Master of Laws at the University of New South Wales. I’m providing immigration services for several years.
Consult with me for legal advice on Australian visas to permanently live, study, and work in Australia.