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There are numerous third-party sites like this that offer Australian ETA applications as a service, which are often even cheaper than the official site. However, as of February 2023 the official site now says:

Important information about the ETA

All ETA-eligible passport holders must apply for an ETA using the Australian ETA app.

However, the third-party sites still seem to be operating. Is it still possible to use them, or do you really have to use the app?

For context, the third-party sites used to work by integrating directly into airline GDS systems, while the app now requires taking a selfie and scanning your passport's NFC chip.

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    I would guess the third-party sites are going to enter your information into the same app by pretending they are you (which is not necessarily illegal if they have your authorization to apply for an ETA on your behalf)
    – user253751
    Feb 22, 2023 at 1:16
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    @user253751 The app requires taking a live selfie and scanning your passport's NFC chip, so no, they can't use it on your behalf. Feb 22, 2023 at 1:42
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    hm, does that mean people without NFC-capable phones are simply banned from travelling to Australia?
    – user253751
    Feb 22, 2023 at 2:00
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    @user253751 The official website helpfully suggests that they can apply for a regular tourist visa instead, which costs 8x more and can take over a month to process. Feb 22, 2023 at 3:50
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    Not everyone has a smartphone nor is everyone able to handle new tech.
    – Willeke
    Feb 22, 2023 at 5:45

1 Answer 1

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+500

The third-party "ETA Australia Online" site you link, if read carefully, notes that only citizens of certain European countries may use its service; other nationalities which are eligible for ETA are not allowed to use the site.

This is a bit of speculation, but I suspect that this is because they do not apply for an ETA on their customers' behalf but rather for an eVisitor Class 651 visa, which is available only to citizens of the same European countries as listed on the third-party "ETA Australia Online".

However, the eVisitor stream is available to citizens of eligible countries for free from the official IMMI website, so the "discounted" price from the third party is not such a good deal.

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  • You might want to clarify that "the site" here is the third-party service I mentioned, not the official government one. May 16, 2023 at 8:19
  • @lambshaanxy Thanks for the suggestion, done.
    – mlc
    May 16, 2023 at 23:51

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