The long Journey of an ETA

The long Journey of an ETA

Let's say a France passport holder wants to travel to Australia on an Electronic Travel Authority e601. This traveller thinks he will find precise information on the Home Affairs website but when he tries to lodge an online application, he will soon determine that his passport is not one of the eight qualified to apply online. The ETA e601 is available for 33 nationalities, however, an online application is only possible for eight of them. Then, what is the path to do a valid application for the other 25 nationalities?

Thing 1208A (1) submits that an application should be made in a way set out in regulation 2.07AB. Then, states if an individual makes an request for an ETA to a consular or diplomatic office, or an office of an agent approved by the Minister, in writing, by telephone, by electronic transmission, the person is taken to have made the application at that office.

This direction affirms that an application made in Australia must be made at a diplomatic, consular office, or an office of an agent approved in writing by the Minister.

If both instruments accept that an application can be made to a Diplomatic or consular office, why the Department of Home Affairs does not mention that alternative? Instead, a very vague suggestion is included on their website: Contact IME Advisors to find out whether they provide this service. So, what happens if our agent or service provider does not provide that service? What remedy is proposed by the Department? None.

This tallies as agents permitted by the Minister, all air carriers capable to access ETAS, all travel agencies registered by Australia Visa Services at the Australian Commerce, IATA, and Industry Office, Taipei subscribers to computer reservation systems in Schedule A, and the agents listed in Schedule B who has admittance to ETAS. The representatives referred to in Schedule B are five.

On a personal attempt and following the department's guidance, I called three of the biggest, most renowned, and commercial travel agencies in Australia to find out if they delivered this ETA application service. None of them provide it. Also, I contacted the five agents listed in Schedule B of IMMI 13/009. Only one of them replied saying they had no idea what ETA I was talking about. Finally, I decided to communicate with the biggest Australian airline to request this ETA application.

They referred me to a really big private visa processing center with many locations around the world and responsible for processing applications of several countries. I thought why I had to find out about this processing center through an inquiry to an airline? Why the Department was not transparent to comprise it in their website or policy? Instead, a brief statement to contact IME Advisors to find out whether they provide that service, was far away to be the answer. Furthermore, IMMI 13/009 does not comprise this processing center as one of the permitted agents.

With this information, our France passport holder applicant contacted this private processing center to have his ETA lodged. After few days of waiting time, the judgement from the Department finally came: He had to do the application in an Australian diplomatic mission. In other words, the same Department that suggests contacting IME Advisors to do this application, decides in the outcome of the application, that it has to be done in a Diplomatic mission.
PAM clearly states that the Policy intends that holder of eVisitor eligible passports smear for the TV-651 eVisitor visa. But why if an ETA eligible passport holder can apply for an ETA should apply for a 651 as a substitute? PAM does not include any motive to explain it.

In a conclusion, if your application is a passport holder of one of the twenty-five nationalities not permitted to lodge online, do not rush to do a 651 and neither Contact us to find out whether they provide this service, instead save time for your client and find the relevant Australian diplomatic mission to process an ETA e601 application. For more Details Contact the best immigration consultants IME Advisors.

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