Finally, it’s here! Your months and perhaps years of planning have finally got you the admission that you were seeking! But who knew that this happy news would come in the midst of a totally unprecedented time! of the COVID pandemic! So the next question that you have is whether you should apply for a Visa even though the Borders are closed?
Australia continues to remain high quality and welcoming destination for international students. By contributing $40 billion annually and supporting 250,000 jobs, the Government certainly cannot sideline the contribution international students bring to the Australian economy. Hence the Government has announced a range of visa measures which though will be temporary, will continue for as long as it is necessary.
Approving offshore student visas, provided all eligibility criteria are met, will definitely mean certainty for international students. It is an assurance that one can look forward to immigrate to Australia when health advice allows and travel restrictions are relaxed. In the interim applications can be submitted through normal online channels.
However, with a very unpredicted environment around the world, even if you did have your Visa approved, maybe you plan to travel only in 2022. In such situations, you will need to submit an updated COE and apply for a further student Visa. CoEs should accurately reflect the course start and end dates (including any periods of online study offshore).
If you had your Visa approved before Feb 1st, 2020, but was unable to travel, you may be eligible for a nil-VAC student visa if you could not complete your course within your visa validity.
Support for international students and graduates
The following five visa changes will ensure international students are not worse off due to the coronavirus pandemic and that Australia remains competitive with other countries.
The changes include:
- Reinstating Visa processing activities in all locations outside Australia. This will result in students being ready with the Visa and when the borders reopen, they just need to book tickets for travel.
- Student Visas cannot get extended, hence an inability to complete the study program within the stipulated original Visa timeline can be taken care of by submission of a further student visa application free of charge.
- Student visa holders studying online outside Australia due to COVID-19 will be able to use that study period to be accounted towards the Australian study requirement for a post-study work visa.
- If a Graduate student holding a valid student visa, is based out of Australia and is unable to return due to COVID-19 then he/she can still apply for a post-study work visa.
- Where COVID-19 has disrupted access to services, extended timelines will be offered to candidates to provide English Language score results.
Acting Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, Migrant Services and Multicultural Affairs Alan Tudge said the changes provide assurance to international students already in Australia and those who haven’t been able to travel due to COVID-19 border closures.
Given the support and helping hand by the Australian government, you need not put your Australian study plans on the back burner but start the process so that when borders reopen, you will already have the visa and just need to make arrangements to travel.
Contact us at 080-49016425 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will be happy to be part of your journey!