The famous “land down under”, Australia, is known for its natural wonders, wide open spaces (filled with new, sometimes scary species of insects), its beaches and deserts, and its size. Australia is the 6th largest country in the world and its characteristics unseen anywhere else in the world is what makes it such an appealing destination for tourists. Namely, Australia is extremely popular among tourists: in 2015, over 7.5 million people visited the country.
Of course, everyone knows, it’s not all about the natural wonders, species, spaces, deserts and beaches in Australia. No, it is actually one of the world’s most highly urbanized countries, and popular for its contemporary establishments and attractions in its main cities: Perth, Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne. Given that it is so developed and so stable, it’s no wonder that it is completely safe for tourists to travel to.
Warnings & Dangers in Australia
OVERALL RISK : LOW
Australia is, generally, very safe to travel to. Apart from some natural threats to watch out for, you should have no worries about your safety. Crime rates are low and few precaution rules should go a long way.
TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK : MEDIUM
Transportation in Australia is generally very safe and reliable, but driving can be complicated because of wild animals jumping in the middle of open roads and drunk drivers.
PICKPOCKETS RISK : LOW
There is almost no pickpocketing in Australia, but you should still remain vigilant in big cities such as Sydney or Melbourne.
NATURAL DISASTERS RISK : HIGH
Natural threats are probably the only risks for you in Australia. There is a variety of threats, from dangerous animal species, to dangerous waters and currents, UV exposure and riptides. Follow the signs at beaches, roads or any other natural spaces and the advice of authorities.
MUGGING RISK : LOW
Mugging and kidnapping is also a very rare occurrence in Australia, so it shouldn't be on your list of worries. Still, avoid poorly lit and deserted streets and areas and if you find yourself in such a situation, hand over your belongings immediately and do not resist.
TERRORISM RISK : LOW
Although there haven't been any terrorist attacks in Australia's recent history, they shouldn't be ruled out so remain aware of your surroundings at all times.
SCAMS RISK : LOW
Even though Australia is not known for scams, in tourist destinations you should always be cautious when receiving change, negotiating rides or any kinds of services, and also never pay for anything upfront.
WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK : LOW
Australia is very safe for women traveling solo, and women usually travel here with no problems whatsoever. Just apply few basic precaution rules and use your common sense and your trip should go smoothly.
So... How Safe Is Australia Really?
Australia is very safe to visit! Major threats that Australia is known for come from dangerous flora and fauna species, riptides, reptiles and natural disasters, and they be fatal so it is important that you follow the advice of authorities and every sign on the streets or in front of natural reserves or other spaces.
First of all, you should be careful in Australia’s waters. They’re home to several nasty jellyfish species such as the box jellyfish and bluebottles. If you are told or you see a sign telling you to get out of the water because they have been spotted, do so immediately. In the Northern Territory you can encounter another danger: crocodiles. One of the most dangerous is the saltwater or estuarine crocodile. Do not underestimate riptides and strong currents at many of the East Coast beaches. Tamarama Beach near Sydney is especially dangerous.
Another issue in Australia are the, now infamous, scary land creatures. Australia is home to some of the world’s most dangerous snakes. Get familiar with how these poisonous snakes look like before you encounter one and do not touch them or get in their way. Another dangerous Aussie species are the, very well known, spiders that vary in size as well as in how poisonous they are, and in this country there are actually several species of spiders that are considered to be world’s most fatal. Funnel spiders are particularly dangerous and come out after periods of rains. They tend to hide in things such as shoes. You can get killed from a single sting if you don’t receive the antidote quickly enough. If you think you’ve been bitten by a spider or a snake, take a picture, and immediately go to the closest medical center.
- Visas - All countries except New Zealand require a visa before entering Australia. In order to check which visa you need (electronic or not) and how much it costs, visit the official site of Australian government. If you are not sure about your visa status, visit www.doyouneedvisa.com which will let you know whether or not you need visa based on your nationality and the country you want to visit.
- Currency - Australian dollar is the official currency in Australia. ATMs are widely available in larger cities and towns, and credit cards are accepted in most establishments such as hotels, restaurants and shopping centers.
- Weather - Since it's such a large country, Australia has several different climate zones and the weather varies depending on the specific area. The northern section of Australia has a more tropical climate, characterized by hot and humid summers, and warm and dry winters, while the southern parts are cooler with mild summers and cool and rainy winters.
- Airports - Sydney Airport is the busiest airport in Australia. It is located 8 km (5 mi) south of Sydney city centre. Other busy airports in Australia are located in Brisbane, Perth and Melbourne.
- Travel Insurance - Just like anywhere else, we recommend getting travel insurance when traveling to Australia, since it covers not only the costs of medical problems, but also theft and loss of valuables.