Australian visa-free travel hoax exposed

Peter Terlato 10 November 2016

immigration stamp Australia

No changes to immigration laws planned.

A hoax news site claiming Australia will soon be implementing visa-free arrangements for citizens of countries such as Fiji and the Philippines has been discredited by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP).

The hoax stories allege Australia entered into visa waiver agreements with Fiji, Oman, Pakistan and the Philippines, with visa-free travel set to commence from January 2017.

In a statement shared on the DIBP website, international visitors were reminded Australia maintains a universal non-discriminatory visa regime and all non-citizens seeking entry must obtain a valid visa.

Visas for travellers to Australia include visitor visas, electronic travel authority visas, eVisitor visas, transit and bridging visas, working holiday visas, investor retirement visas and study, training or research visas.

There has been no change to Australia's visa arrangements and travellers are advised to continue to check the department's website for the latest information on immigration.

While visa-free travel to Australia is impossible, anyone seeking information about immigrating to Canada may have just as tough a time after the country's immigration website crashed when media outlets began reporting Donald Trump's election night voter surge, which eventually furnished him the Presidency.

A spokesperson for Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) said the department's website had failed as a result of a significant increase in the volume of traffic, though no further information about the source of the traffic was provided. The site has since been restored but is still experiencing technical difficulties.

Many American actors and celebrities vowed to move to Canada, another country and even other planets if New York real estate mogul and reality-star Donald Trump became 45th President of the United States.

Breaking Bad actor Bryan Cranston, film star Samuel L. Jackson, comedian Amy Schumer and singer/songwriter Cher all threatened to leave prior to Trump's victory. Will they follow through?

What happens to the Australian economy now that Trump has risen to power? We've got some answers.

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