Copy Your Essential Documents

Before You Travel

Charles Melton Winery, Tanunda, Barossa, SA.  Photo credit: Mike Annese/South Australian Tourism Commission


Copy Your Documents Before Travelling

Travelling Australia should be one long adventure, but there’s nothing that can dampen the spirit more than losing your paperwork. Here are the documents you should make a hard and electronic copy of before travelling to Australia, and why.


Extremely helpful when looking for work. Companies need to be sure you have the correct paperwork before they employ you, otherwise they could be fined. Also, having a hard copy helps you quickly prove you’re in the country legally. Just in case.


Makes life easier if the original is lost or stolen. Many hostels will want your passport number before you can check in, so even if you lose the original, at least you’ll be able to get a bed for the night.

Travel insurance

Many insurance companies now place policy details online, or send them to you by email – which is fine provided your device has a signal/battery power. Keep a hard copy so you can easily double check you’re covered for that bungee jump.

Written references

Many employers will expect two references and few are likely to foot the bill for an international call. Written references are crucial and could be the difference between getting a job in Australia – or not.

Email copies to yourself so you can print them out when needed, or keep them on a memory stick with your other documents.

Bank details

Make a note of your bank details and emergency contact numbers in case your card is lost or stolen (see sidebar).

When you arrive in Australia, you’ll want to open an Australian bank account and apply for a Tax File Number (TFN) so you can work (and get paid) in Australia. Make a copy of these details too, so you can give them to employers.

Take Note

Carry a notebook (a paper one) with you containing a list of all your booking reference numbers, flight and accommodation details and emergency contact numbers.

That way you’ve got all your vital information to hand without relying on a device where the battery dies at the precise moment you need it. You can’t delete anything by accident either.

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