What to bring

The table below provides a list of essential items that you should bring with you for your time in Australia. It is recommended that you start planning what to pack well in advance of your departure. Keep in mind that most airlines have a limit on how much baggage you are allowed to bring – check your airline website for their baggage restrictions.

Important documents

Travel tip: Photocopy all important documents before you leave home. Leave a copy with someone at home and keep another copy with you, separate from the originals.
This includes but is not limited to:
- valid passport
- current student visa
- Confirmation of Enrolment (COE)
- receipts of payments (e.g. tuition fees, OSHC, bank statements).
- original or certified copies of academic transcripts and qualifications (if applicable)
- Other personal identification documents (such as. driver’s license, ID card, birth certificate).

Prescriptions for any medications

Bring prescriptions for any medications that you need to take regularly. If you need to purchase additional medication while in Australia, take any previous prescriptions with you when seeing a doctor.

When travelling to Australia, you must declare any drugs and medicines (including prescription medications).

Travel tip: It is advisable that you obtain a letter or prescription from your doctor describing your medication and medical condition, and carry this letter with you. Visit the Therapeutic Goods Administration for more information.

Australian currency

Exchange money before you leave home. It is recommended that you have access to at least $150 Australian dollars when you first arrive.

Please note: there are no currency exchange facilities at the Townsville airport.

Electrical adaptor/converter

All electrical equipment and appliances that you bring to Australia will need to be used with an adaptor/converter (unless the item has a multi-voltage option).

Care should especially be taken with expensive items to ensure that the correct adaptor/converter is used. Power outlets in Australia will only accept certain two or three-pinned plugs. Further information is available at Electrical Outlet.

Appropriate items for the tropics

Sunscreen, sunglasses, sandals, good walking shoes, hat, umbrella, swimwear, camera and insect repellent. You should bring some loose, comfortable clothes for the warmer months, and light winter clothing for the cooler months. All of these items are widely available in Australia to purchase.

What not to bring

A strong biosecurity system helps to protect Australia’s unique environment, agricultural sector and reputation as a safe and reliable trading nation. Before leaving home please check Australian biosecurity import conditions and identify any items you cannot bring or which you will need to declare at the airport on arrival (for example, certain types of food). Visit the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry (DAFF) website for advice on what can be brought or sent to Australia.

Things to consider

Bringing laptops

You can bring items such as a laptop computer and similar electronic equipment duty free into Australia provided that Customs is satisfied these items are intended to be taken with you on departure. For more information visit Australian Customs and Border Protection Service.

Medical records for pre-existing conditions

You should obtain a letter from your doctor regarding any pre-existing conditions you may have as this will assist your doctor in Australia to provide any treatment you may need. There may be claim restrictions on your Overseas Student Health Cover if you have any pre-existing conditions. For further information contact Allianz Global Assistance.

You should also bring a record of immunizations you have had, particularly if you are studying programs at JCU that require you to have certain vaccinations (e.g. Medicine, Nursing and Veterinary Science).

Personal references for work and renting

If you are planning to work or rent a property whilst in Australia, you may be required to provide personal and rental references, so you may wish to obtain some references before you leave home.