With visa processing times now longer than ever, it can take several years to receive a decision on your pending visa application. Things can happen in your home country – friends get married, a family member might get sick, someone might be celebrating a special event, or perhaps it is time to take the holiday of your dreams!
So… can I visit another country and re-enter Australia while you wait for your visa application to be processed?
The answer will depend on your situation – are you currently the holder of a Bridging Visa A in respect of the pending application you have lodged? If so, then you should be eligible to apply for a Bridging Visa B – Subclass 020. This is an essential step. You must be granted the Bridging Visa B before you leave on your trip. The Bridging Visa B allows you to travel back into Australia.
How do I know if I hold a Bridging Visa A?
If you are in Australia and you lodged a valid visa application here whilst you were the holder of another substantive visa, it is likely that you were granted a Bridging Visa A in relation to the new visa application. You will need to check the email you received when you lodged the visa application – it will be the email which also includes the Acknowledgment of Application Received letter.
How do I apply for a Bridging Visa B?
There are two ways to apply for a Bridging Visa B – either through your ImmiAccount (recommended) or by using the Form 1006. It is recommended to lodge the application at least 2 weeks before you plan to depart, to ensure that it is processed in time.