I am an Austrian (EU) citizen, and my fiancée is an Australian/British dual-citizen. We cohabit in the UK. We intend to get married and honeymoon in Australia next month and then return to the UK.

Which visa do I need to fly to Australia next month? I had been pretty sure that an eVisitor (subclass 651) was all that was required, but some online searching has put this into doubt, since "getting married" seems to be a non-tourist purpose of visit. However, the Partner visa appears to only be necessary if we intend to migrate to Australia, which we do not. If the 651 is the correct visa, am I running an uncomfortable risk of being refused entry if I am asked by the border agent about my purpose of visit and I state "getting married and honeymooning"?

(We have filed our NIM, which we arranged last year via a UK notary public.)

  • What about the possibility of having a small, legal wedding in the UK followed by a "show" ceremony or religious wedding in Australia? You could enter Australia as a married, tourist couple and then have your grand Aussie ceremony (albeit with no additional legal effect). Feb 5, 2018 at 15:15
  • 2
    @RobertColumbia As a very last resort, that might need to happen... but I find it hard to believe that various gov.au sites explicitly state that the partner visa is only required if immigrating, while simultaneously disallowing all other options if not immigrating.
    – anon
    Feb 5, 2018 at 16:13
  • 1
    Are you sure that “ ‘getting married’ seems to be a non-tourist purpose of visit”? Is there a document or guideline that says this? Absent a more detailed definition or something else that contradicts this, it might be the case that traveling for a wedding and honeymoon away from your home, with the intention of returning home again, is a form of tourism. It would, of course, be a clearer if neither party had ties to Australia, i.e. a true “destination wedding.” (Obviously you might need evidence that you intend to return to the UK.)
    – Guan Yang
    Feb 7, 2018 at 23:34

1 Answer 1


The Australian Marriage Law does not require residency so, yes, you may get married on a tourist visa (subclass 651). A Notice of Intended Marriage form must have been submitted, along with the other required documents, which you’ve done.

As your fiancée also has Australian citizenship and must enter (and leave) on that passport, you may want to bring along proof that you and she live in the UK and intend to return there afterwards (e.g., property, employment, etc.).

Australia destination weddings are a quite popular, and that is very much the purpose of your visit: celebrating your union with family and friends, and an idylic honeymoon in fabulous Oz.

In Australia, the Attorney-General's Department is responsible for the laws setting out the requirements for getting married in Australia.

Getting married in Australia

To be legally married in Australia, a person must:

  • not be married to someone else
  • not be marrying a parent, grandparent, child, grandchild, brother or sister
  • be at least 18 years old, unless a court has approved a marriage where one party is aged between 16 and 18 years old
  • understand what marriage means and freely consent to marrying
  • use specific words during the ceremony
  • give written notice of their intention to marry to their authorised celebrant, within the required time frame.

The celebrant you choose will help you understand these requirements.

You don't have to be an Australian citizen or a permanent resident of Australia to legally marry here. You can find marriage visa information on the Department of Immigration and Border Protection website, if you hope to live in Australia after your marriage.

  • 3
    The fact that marriage law doesn't require residency does not imply that immigration law permits marriage on a tourist visa. For example, nonresidents may marry in the UK, but they normally require a marriage visitor visa.
    – phoog
    Feb 6, 2018 at 1:18
  • ..and "not being married to someone else" may depend upon where that marriage took place and relevant treaties. Also check lead times for arrival.
    – mckenzm
    Oct 23, 2019 at 23:43

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