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We are early  retired grandparents and would like to discover all our options for a move / extended visits to Australia. We would be grateful for any input as to the pros and cons and explanation of the different visas suitable for us. We are 61&62 . Missing our family in oz but still have family in uk . 

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There are parent visas but they are either very, very expensive or the waiting list is horrendously long (something like 20 years!).  Your best bet will be to take extended holidays, frankly.


Scot by birth, emigrated 1985 | Aussie husband applied UK spouse visa Jan 2015, granted March 2015, moved to UK May 2015 | Returned to Oz June 2016

"The stranger who comes home does not make himself at home but makes home itself strange." -- Rainer Maria Rilke

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The 600 visa might be a good option. It allows long stays over a period of five years. 

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As far as I'm aware, you don't need any special visa if you come and visit your children for up to 3 months every year - all you need to do is apply for a tourist visa each time.

If you want to stay longer than 3 months a year, then you'll need to look at the 600 visa - but be careful, because the way I read it, that will only get you a maximum of 12 months' stay in a 5 year period.   The advantage is that you could take the whole 12 months in one hit, or do 6 months one year and nothing the next and so on, but I'm not sure that's what you're looking for.  I'm sure someone else will pop in who understands the 600 visa better than I do!

Edited by Marisawright

Scot by birth, emigrated 1985 | Aussie husband applied UK spouse visa Jan 2015, granted March 2015, moved to UK May 2015 | Returned to Oz June 2016

"The stranger who comes home does not make himself at home but makes home itself strange." -- Rainer Maria Rilke

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Thank you for your information we will look into the 600 visa . Would be happy to have more info on other options, can we stay in Australia while waiting for visa to be processed... 20 years ? What health problems would go against us eg fibromyalgia. 

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3 hours ago, Lorney Days said:

Thank you for your information we will look into the 600 visa . Would be happy to have more info on other options, can we stay in Australia while waiting for visa to be processed... 20 years ? What health problems would go against us eg fibromyalgia. 

If you applied for a permanent visa on shore you would be granted a bridging visa allowing you to stay. However, there are massive issues with such a route. The processing time for a none contributory visa is now about 30 years. During the time on a bridging visa you would be entitled to reciprocal health care, but this is NOT anything near full Medicare healthcare. You would not be entitled to any Australian pension or other benefits. Your UK pension would be frozen at its current level -so no increases ever again. So, would you be happy living without full access to healthcare and an income which dwindles each year

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Food for thought. Perhaps visiting for up to 90 days at a time and if possible a couple of times a year may be our initial option. Appreciate your input.

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Sorry MarissaWright but you’re wrong about only staying 12 months in 5 years. There are a variety of 600 visas. The longer ones for 3 or 5 years allow stays of up to 12 months in any 18. There’s also a 12 month one allowing stays of up to 12 months on any entry up till the expiration.  Also there are shorter ones for up to 6 or 9 months.  

Edited by Emmys Gran

CPV lodged & 1st VAC 22 June 2015. Acknowledged 30 June 2015.

Invitation to supply documents 1 May 2018. Medicals & police checks 9 May 2018. Form 80  25 May 2018.  AOS lodged 1 June 2018 

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On 2/13/2018 at 06:22, Emmys Gran said:

Sorry MarissaWright but you’re wrong about only staying 12 months in 5 years. There are a variety of 600 visas. The longer ones for 3 or 5 years allow stays of up to 12 months in any 18. There’s also a 12 month one allowing stays of up to 12 months on any entry up till the expiration.  Also there are shorter ones for up to 6 or 9 months.  

Thanks for that, I was hoping someone would have a better understanding.  I was just reading what it says on the Immi site and it's dreadfully ambiguous.   

@Lorney Days,  I had friends who moved out to Australia on a parents' visa and are bitterly regretting it.  It cost them a huge amount of money, and with house prices in Australia, they've had to settle for a small apartment in a suburb they don't like, and their activities are limited by their reduced budget.  My friend is loving being close to her grandchildren, but even she is beginning to wonder whether it was worth the cost to their lifestyle and comfort.  

The only other way to stay permanently, without the big upfront cost, is the one you mentioned - waiting on a bridging visa for 30 years. As VeryStormy says, it has its own huge disadvantages.  It's not a time of life to have limited access to medical treatment or government support!

Bearing all that in mind, although it means paying a fee, I do think your best bet would be to consult a MARA registered agent like @wrussell, so you take full advantage of any temporary visas at your disposal.

Edited by Marisawright

Scot by birth, emigrated 1985 | Aussie husband applied UK spouse visa Jan 2015, granted March 2015, moved to UK May 2015 | Returned to Oz June 2016

"The stranger who comes home does not make himself at home but makes home itself strange." -- Rainer Maria Rilke

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The main restriction on the long visitor visa/s is as mentioned "not more than 12 months in Australia in any 18 month period" - this to be clear is a rolling 18 months not fixed dates.

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