Moving to Australia from Hong Kong

If you meet the right criteria you can move to Australia from Hong Kong and get Permanent Residency and Citizenship. Current Australia Visas available to Hong Kong residents include skilled migration, partner visas, employment based visas and investment visas.

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Moving to Australia from Hong Kong

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On this page you will fing all the options for moving to Australia from Hong Kong

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Emigrate to Australia from Hong Kong

To emigrate to Australia from Hong Kong and obtain your visa depends on factors such as your age, occupation and country of origin. All visa applications form Hong Kong are considered and processed using the same method and are assessed on exactly the same criteria so there is no bias.

 

Australia is currently still open for Immigration from Hong Kong and the fact they have strict Immigration requirements is one of the reasons individuals, families and business from Hong Kong are keen to make the move Down Under.

 

Many migrants each year move to Australia from Hong Kong for its fantastic weather, powerful growing economy, standard of living and excellent work-life balance.

 

The most common visa categories for Australia are:

 

  • Australian Skilled Visas
  • Working  Holiday Visas
  • Business Visas
  • Family and Spouse Visas
  • Employer Sponsored Visas
  • Australian Partner Visas
  • Australian Student Visas
  • Australian Investor Visas

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How to Move to Australia from Hong Kong

  • Be aged under 45
  • Score 65 Australian Immigration Points
  • Have a Positive Skills Assessment
  • Lodge an Expression of Interest
  • Receive an Invitation to Apply
  • Pay the Visa Fees
  • Pass Health and Character Checks

Requirements to Move to Australia from Hong Kong with Permanent Residence

To be granted Australian Permanent Residency you will require either a 189, 190 or 491 Visa.

 

The 189, 190 and 491 Visas are classed as Skilled Migration.

 

To be able to move to Australia from Hong Kong as a Permanent Resident you will require an occupation on either the Medium Long Term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL) or the Short Term Skilled Occupations List (STSOL). These are lists occupations in demand in Australia.

 

Skills Assessment for Permanent Residence

In addition to having an occupation in demand you will require a Positive Skill Assessment to emigrate to Australia from Hong Kong.

 

Every Occupation on the MLTSSL and STSOL has a designated Skills Assessment body. It is the job of the Skills Assessment body to validate your identity, qualifications and work experience.

 

Skill Assessment Authorities are private businesses licensed by Australian Immigration to conduct Skills Assessments for Hong Kong Citizens moving to Australia.

Making an Expression of Interest on SkillSelect

Once you have a positive Skills Assessment then you can make an Expression of Interest, provided you have an overall Points Score of 65 or more.

 

The Expression of Interest (EOI) in Australia is a preliminary application where candidates interested in moving to Australia demonstrate their qualifications, work experience and skills.

 

An EOI is submitted through SkillSelect, an online system managed by the Australian government.

 

By filling out an EOI, applicants from Hong Kong make themselves available to be considered for a skilled visa.

 

The EOI is not a visa application but is necessary for receiving an invitation to formally apply for a visa.

 

Applicants are ranked according to their age, English language proficiency, professional experience and education. Invitations are issued to those who meet or exceed the threshold points score, reflecting Australia’s current labor market needs.

Why are People Moving to Australia from Hong Kong?

Countries like Hong Kong have unrestricted open door policies to newcomers that have caused significant economic and cultural shifts. The results of a 2024 survey by Migration Consultant LLC confirmed this as being the number one reason people are looking at moving to Australia from Hong Kong.

Family and Partner Visas

The most popular visas under this category are:

 

Partner Visa: This is a temporary to permanent visa that partners may apply for.

 

Dependent Child Visa: This visa allows the Hong Kong child to move to or reside in Australia until their parent’s Partner Visa application is approved

 

Parent Visa: This visa category is designed to allow eligible parents from Hong Kong to stay in Australia indefinitely, work, study and apply for Australian citizenship if eligible

 

Prospective Marriage Visa: This visa allows individuals from Hong Kong to come to Australia to join their Australian based fiancé (prospective spouse).

Moving to Australia from Hong Kong on a Business Visa

Business Innovation and Investment Visa

 

The purpose of this visa is to allow eligible business people from Hong Kong to come to Australia to continue their investment activities on a permanent basis

 

Business Talent Visa

 

Individuals willing to invest at least AUD 1.5 million into a new or existing business can apply for this visa to permanently stay in Australia.

 

Global Talent Visa

 

This visa is for eligible individuals who have an internationally recognised record of achievement in the area of a profession, sport, the arts, academia or research

 

Employer Nomination Scheme

 

The visa allows eligible individuals who are nominated by an employer to come to Australia for permanent residency and work purposes. The subcategories include the Direct Entry stream, the Labour agreement stream, and the temporary residence transition stream.

 

Permanent Residence (Skilled Regional) Visa

 

This visa has been designed for individuals who have lived, worked, or studied in a designated region in Australia on an appropriate visa in the past.

 

 

Graduate Visa

 

This visa allows graduates under the age of 31 years old to stay in Australia for up to 18 months if they have completed an engineering degree at an eligible educational institution in the two years prior to application

 

Temporary Activity Visa

 

This temporary visa allows individuals to come to Australia for the purpose of short term, temporary work and to participate in events endorsed by the Australian government.

How to become a permanent Australian resident

You can become a permanent resident of Australia if you are a Citizen of Hong Kong and meet the eligibility criteria.

 

The easiest way for a Hong Kong Citizen to obtain permanent residency in Australia is the skilled work visa and family visa.

 

Applicants will be eligible to apply for Australian citizenship after they hold permanent residence for three years.

Benefits of Moving to Australia from Hong Kong

  • You get the right to live and work in any area of Australia.

 

  • Your family members are eligible to move with you.

 

  • Children are entitled to free education.

 

  • Apply for permanent residence on behalf of your family members.

 

  • You can convert Permanent Residence to full Australia Citizenship and Dual Nationality.

 

  • You are eligible to apply for citizenship after three years.

 

  • You can travel freely to and from Australia.

 

  • You get access to the full range of Financial Services in Australia.

 

  • You can start and own a business 100%.

 

  • You can buy and own property.

 

Disadvantages of Moving to Australia from Hong Kong

 

  • You might miss Hong Kong and want to return.

 

  • Your family might not settle in to the Australian way of life.

 

  • You are not eligible for any Government support for two years.

 

  • It may take tie to adapt from Hong Kong culture to Australian culture.

 

 

Below is a table outlining the numbers of visas allocated to each migration program in 2024-2025:

Skilled Visa Number of places available
Employer-Sponsored
36,825
Skilled Independent
30,375
Skilled Regional Employer Sponsored
32,755
Business Innovation and Investment Program
1,900
State/Territory Regional
30,400
Global Talent
5,000
Distinguished Talent
200
Skilled visas (total)
108,682
Family visas and others
51,318

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Guide to Australian work visas

These are the Australian work visas available for Hong Kong Citizens emigrating to Australia:

 

  • Skilled workers from Hong Kong

 

  • Individuals who undertake specific activities

 

  • Highly specialized workers

 

  • Trainees on short-term visas

 

  • Experienced businesspeople

 

  • Individuals who are investors

Employer Nomination Scheme Visa (Direct Entry Stream) requirements

  • Individuals from Hong Kong must have the necessary skills to undertake the job.

 

  • Hong Kong applicants should be on the list of eligible skilled occupations

 

  • Applicants will be nominated by an Australian employer

 

  • Candidates have to meet health and character requirements

 

  • Visa applicants from Hong Kong must have a competent standard of English

 

  • Applicants will be under the age of 45

Temporary Work (Short Stay Specialist Visa) requirements

  • Must have highly specialized skills, knowledge, or experience to undertake work in an Australian business

 

  • Hold adequate funds to maintain yourself

 

  • Other health and character requirements

What do I need to visit Australia from Hong Kong?

As a Hong Kong citizen, you need to use a valid passport with 6 months validity to enter Australia.

 

As a Citizen of Hong Kong visiting Australia you will require the Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) (subclass 601).

 

The ETA is an Australian travel authorization that allows visitors from Hong Kong to enter Australia for short-term stays for tourism or business visitor purposes.

 

It is electronically linked to your passport and allows you to visit Australia as many times as you wish within a 12-month period, for stays of up to three months at a time.

 

The ETA application process is completed online and is a convenient way for eligible travelers from Hong Kong to secure permission to travel to Australia without a traditional visa stamp.

 

It is recommended that your Hong Kong passport is in date for at least six months when you travel, owing to restrictions by some airlines and countries.

 

You will also need a credit or debit card (or valid online Paypal account) as well as a valid email address.

How long does it take to process the Australian ETA?

The standard processing time for a Hong Kong Citizen going to Australia on a visit visa is 24 hours and costs $20.

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Who can apply to move to Australia from Hong Kong on an Australian family visa?

Hong Kong partners of Australian Citizens and Permanent Residents may be eligible to apply for the following Australian family visas:

  • Partner Visa
  • Prospective Marriage Visa
  • Tourist Stream
  • New Zealand Citizen Family Relationship Visa
  • Sponsored Family Stream
  • Frequent Traveller Stream
  • Aged Dependent Relative Visa
  • Carer Visa
  • Parent Visa
  • Aged Parent Visa
  • Dependent Child Visa
  • Child Visa
  • Adoption Visa

Visa holders inviting family members

In order to apply to bring a family member to Australia from Hong Kong, it is important to first identify if the visa will be issued on a temporary or permanent basis.

 

It is also advisable to check whether the individual wants to enter the country once or multiple times, and this will influence the type of visa that can be applied for.

Returning Australian with overseas-born family

If Australia citizens living abroad wish to bring their Hong Kong national family, it is necessary to apply for citizenship by descent.

 

You can then apply for a passport on their behalf if the citizenship application is approved.

Leaving Hong Kong

Every dream begins with a single step. If you’ve dreamed of starting a new life in Australia from Hong Kong now is the time. With an Australia Migration Consultant in Hong Kong, you can make this life changing journey hassle free with a complete ‘done-for-you service’, leaving you free to get involved in the exciting stuff and planning the move.

Migrate to Australia from Hong Kong

Moving from Hong Kong to Australia is an exciting yet complex task. However, don’t be put off. Many of our clients from Hong Kong have successfully completed the move and now live all across Australia. Take a Free Visa Assessment for the full facts on Immigrating to Australia from Hong Kong and to check your eligibility.

Is it possible to emigrate to Australia from Hong Kong with a criminal record?

Having a criminal record can make moving from Hong Kong to Australia more complex, but it may still be feasible depending on the nature of your offense.

 

The Australian Department for Home Affairs will assess your criminal history by obtaining a police clearance certificate from the Hong Kong.

 

Based on the seriousness of your prior convictions and various other considerations, they will determine whether you meet the requirements of this assessment.

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Helping Skilled Tradespeople in Hong Kong Move to Australia

 

Migration consultant LLC are proud to assist the highly skilled tradespeople from Hong Kong to Immigrate to Australia. Press Here if you are are Migrating to Australia from Hong Kong with a Trade Occupation

Assisting Professionals from Hong Kong to Move to Australia.

 

Press Here if you have a Professional Occupation in Hong Kong including all Key Worker and Medical Occupations. We have dedicated Occupation Specialists so we speak your professional language.

Frequently Asked Questions

What types of visas are available for moving to Australia from the Hong Kong?

Skilled Migration Visas

 

Skilled Independent Visa (Subclass 189)

 

For skilled workers from Hong Kong who are not sponsored by an employer or  family member or state or territory.

 

Skilled Nominated Visa (Subclass 190)

 

Requires nomination by an Australian state or territory government agency.

 

Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) Visa (Subclass 491)

 

For skilled workers from Hong Kong nominated by a state or sponsored by an eligible family member to live and work in regional Australia.

 

Family Visas

 

Partner Visa

 

For Hong Kong spouses or partners of Australian citizens or Australian permanent residents.

 

Parent Visa

 

Allows Hong Kong based parents of an Australian citizen or permanent resident to move to Australia.

 

Child Visa

 

For dependent children of an Australian citizen or permanent resident.

 

Student Visas (Subclass 500)

 

Allows individuals to come to Australia from Hong Kong to study full-time.

 

Work Visas

 

Temporary Skill Shortage Visa (Subclass 482)

 

Allows Australian employers to sponsor a skilled worker from Hong Kong when they are unable to find an Australian citizen to do the work.

 

Employer Nomination Scheme (Subclass 186)

 

For skilled workers from Hong Kong nominated by their employer to live and work in Australia permanently.

 

Working Holiday Visa (Subclass 417 and Subclass 462)

 

For younger people from Hong Kong to have an extended holiday and work in Australia to fund their travels.

 

Visitor Visas

 

Tourist Visa (Subclass 600, eVisitor Subclass 651, Electronic Travel Authority Subclass 601)

 

For people visiting Australia from Hong Kong for tourism, business visitor activities or to visit their family.

 

Business and Investment Visas

 

Designed for individuals from Hong Kong who want to invest in Australia by starting or buying a business or investing a significant sum.

Can my family join me when I emigrate to Australia from Hong Kong?

Yes, your family can join you when you emigrate to Australia from Hong Kong, provided you meet the specific requirements set by the Australian Department of Home Affairs.

 

When you immigrate to Australia from Hong Kong with the Skilled Migration program all your immediate family are eligible to be included on your application. The Australian rights granted to you also apply to them.

 

Other Australian Visas for your family to join you are:

 

Partner Visas: Your spouse or de facto partner from Hong Kong, including same-sex partners can join you in Australia. You need to prove your relationship is genuine and meet health and character requirements.

 

Child Visas: Your dependent children are eligible to join you. You must show and evidence their dependency on you, whether they are under 18 or over 18 and still dependent on you for financial support due to being a full time student or having a disability.

 

Parent Visas: You can sponsor your parents from Hong Kong to live in Australia if you are a settled Australian citizen or permanent resident. Your parents must meet the balance-of-family test, which requires at least half of their children to be permanently residing in Australia.

How does the points-based immigration system work?

The points-based immigration system in Australia objectively assesses prospective migrants  from Hong Kong based on factors directly correlated with their ability to contribute to the Australian economy and integrate into society.

 

Applicants from Hong Kong must score a minimum 65 points to be eligible for skilled migration visas.

 

Points are awarded for:

 

  • age
  • English language proficiency
  • skilled employment experience
  • educational qualifications
  • partner skills
  • Australian study

 

To successfully apply to move to Australia from Hong Kong under the Skilled Migration Points based system, candidates must first submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) through SkillSelect.

 

Applicants from Hong Kong need a minimum of 65 points to be considered, but higher scores increase the likelihood of receiving an invitation to apply for a visa.

 

The points-based system is designed to be transparent so  that those with the skills most needed in Australia are prioritized for migration.

What healthcare services are available to Hong Kong expatriates in Australia?

Upon obtaining a valid visa, expats from Hong Kong become eligible for Australia's public healthcare system, Medicare.

 

Most Australian's also have Private Medical cover and it is recommended that if you are moving to Australia from Hong Kong you should secure Private Health Insurance cover.

 

Newcomers from Hong Kong also have the right to access emergency medical services in Australia. Hospitals and emergency departments provide immediate treatment in life-threatening and serious situations.

How long does the emigration process take from Hong Kong?

For skilled migration visas for Hong Kong Citizens, such as the Skilled Independent Visa (Subclass 189) or the Skilled Nominated Visa (Subclass 190), the processing time is 7 to 12 months.

 

Partner and Parent visas have longer processing times due to high demand. These take from 12 to 24 months to process.

Will I receive free healthcare as a resident of Australia if I come from Hong Kong?

The Australian public healthcare system is called Medicare. This system covers free or subsidised treatments by healthcare professionals.

 

Medicare is available to Australian Permanent Residence holders from Hong Kong.

 

You will need to register and complete some paperwork when you arrive in Australia to confirm your eligibility for the scheme. You should do this 7 to 10 days after you arrive in Australia.

What is the education system like in Australia for my children?

If you are relocating to Australia from Hong Kong, you will want to make sure the whole family settles in nicely.

 

Part of that is knowing the education options available for your children, how it works and whether you need to be paying.

 

After all, one of the great advantages of an international move to Australia from Hong Kong is the quality of life it offers, which should also stretch to education.

 

Australian Schools vs Hong Kong Schools

 

The standard of education in Australia is world-class, which is great news for your family.

 

The Human Development Index (HDI) ranked Australia third in the world out of a total of 174 countries based on high GDP, life expectancy, literacy and education.

 

As in Hong Kong, you will have a choice between public (state) schools, faith schools and private education, with most children –around 65%– attending public schools.

 

Education is compulsory from ages six to 16, with the government recommending a year at preschool before primary school.

 

How Much Do Public Schools Cost in Australia?

 

In Australia, public schools are free of charge to Australians and permanent residents from Hong Kong, but you will be expected to pay for certain things such as school uniforms, books and other supplies.

 

You apply to each school directly and in order to qualify for free public school education you will need to show documentation as proof of residence.

 

Private Schools

 

There are lots of private schools to choose from across Australia, although fees can be high.

 

Much like Hong Kong, there are independent schools and then there are those that are associated with a faith or an educational ideology.

 

As with Hong Kong, these private schools are considered to offer a better education with more varied extracurricular activities and teachers are paid more.

Can I bring my pets with me from Hong Kong to Australia?

Yes, you can bring your pets with you when you move to Australia. Your pets must have all their paperwork from Hong Kong and all their vaccinations must be up to date including for Rabies. 

Can I open a Bank Account in Australia from Hong Kong?

Yes, you can open an Australian Bank account as soon as your visa is granted. This means you can open an account in Australia from Hong Kong even before you make the move. This is because the Banks can rely on the Australian Government to have done extensive KYC checks as part of the Visa application process.

How do I ensure my Hong Kong professional qualifications are recognized in Australia?

As the lead applicant on a Skilled Migration application you will have received a positive Skills Assessment as part of your application. This ensures your Hong Kong qualifications and experience are recognized in Australia. If you are not the lead applicant you can get also Skills Assessment done if required.

Can I return to the UK easily after moving to Australia?

Yes, with Skilled Migration and other non-temporary visas you can enter and leave Australia anytime you choose. This means there is no restrictions on how many times you want to go back and visit Hong Kong or any other Country in the World.

How hard is it to move to Australia from Hong Kong?

Immigrating to Australia from Hong Kong is a complex legal task. It requires a thorough understanding of constantly evolving laws, regulations, and procedures.

 

Navigating this intricate landscape demands not only familiarity with the legal framework but also an acute awareness of the practical implications of these laws on individuals and families looking to migrate.

 

The process involves multiple stages, including choosing the correct visa type, fulfilling eligibility criteria, preparing and submitting detailed applications and responding to any requests for additional information or clarifications from the Australian Department of Home Affairs.

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Living in Australia - what you need to know

These are the basic facts you need to know about Australia if you’re considering moving there from Hong Kong:

 

  • Currency – Australian Dollar (AUD)
  • Main language – English
  • Population – approx. 26.2 million
  • Number of British expats – approx. 1.2 million
  • Most popular cities for Hong Kong expats – Sydney, Perth, Brisbane, Melbourne and Adelaide.

 

There is a large Hong Kong expat community in Australia, so you’ll have plenty of support when you arrive.

Cost of living - how much money do you need to move to Australia?

Before relocating to Australia, you need to make sure you can afford to live there.

 

In general, the cost of living in Australia is a bit more compared to Hong Kong, except in a few key areas. For example, groceries are up to 42% more expensive, and you could also pay more for public transport and rent. However, utilities tend to be cheaper than Hong Kong.

 

Purchasing a property can be more expensive in Australia than Hong Kong. For example, the price per square metre to buy a city centre apartment is around 16% higher than Hong Kong.

 

Remember that when it comes to the cost of living in any country, it depends where you live and what you typically buy.

Healthcare system

The Australian healthcare system is known to be efficient and excellent, but do newcomers from Hong Kong and non-citizens have access to it?

 

The public universal healthcare system, Medicare, provides free or reduced doctor’s appointments, medicines and essential hospital treatment. 

 

When you move down under, you’ll need to start paying income tax (which is how Medicare is funded, through a special tax levy) to access the system as a permanent resident. However, many Australians also have private health insurance too, using it in combination with the public healthcare service.

 

Taking out a policy could be a good idea as a newcomer from Hong Kong, as many services (such as dentistry) and medicines aren’t free. It’s good to know you and your family are fully covered from the moment you arrive, so there aren’t any unexpected medical bills to worry about.

Opening an Australian bank account

An Australian bank account will make life easier as a new arrival from Hong Kong, especially when it comes to paying rent and covering everyday expenses. And if you get a job or expect to receive income from elsewhere, a bank account will be essential for paying in your earnings.

 

The good news for Hong Kong expats is that it is straightforward to open an Australian bank account as a non-citizen.

 

Major banks, such as NAB, CommBank, ANZ Bank and Westpac let you open your account online or over the phone while you’re still based in Hong Kong.

 

To open an everyday transactions (current) account in Australia from Hong Kong you will need to show enough qualifying ID documents to meet the 100 point check system that most Australian banks use. Each type of ID is worth a certain number of points. If you wait until you arrive, you will only need to show your passport.

Finding a job in Australia

If you have the right to work in Australia, you’ll need to start job hunting. You can potentially do this before you leave Hong Kong, or wait until you arrive if you have enough money to support yourself.

 

Here are some good places to start your search:

 

 

If you are entering Australia on a work-stream permanent residence visa, you may already have a job with a sponsoring employer lined up.

Finding somewhere to live in Australia

Australia’s major cities such as Sydney, Melbourne and Perth are the most attractive destinations for new expats from Hong Kong.

 

But there are plenty of other options. For example, many expats from Hong Kong love Adelaide. Alternatively, you may prefer beautiful year round sunshine in Brisbane, known for its relaxed country atmosphere.

 

It is a good idea to make a few trips out to Australia to get a feel for your chosen city or region, and to check out places to rent or buy.

 

But to start your search before you emigrate to Australia while you are still in Hong Kong here are some handy links to try:

 

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