CNS*2020 Melbourne: Local Info

Visa Information

Whether you are here just for the conference or you decide to stay for a holiday, you must have a valid Australian visa.

The Australian Border Force website is provided to assist with visa applications located at the Department of Home Affairs.

Visa applications can be found in the section "Individuals and Travellers" on the Home Affairs website.

It is strongly encouraged and recommend that you visit the Australian Border Force website for the latest and most comprehensive information.

Remember to make sure that you allow enough time and apply for your Visa well in advance of your travel.  You will find more information here.

Travel from the Airport to the Melbourne Central Business District (CBD).

The SkyBus operates 24/7 providing an express bus service from Melbourne airport to Southern Cross Station, in the city centre. This service takes approximately 20 - 30 minutes but can vary depending on traffic. Buses depart every 10 minutes and tickets can be purchased at the airport terminal bus stop or purchased online at www.skybus.com.au.  Fares are $19.75 Adult - one way or $36.50 - return.

A free mini-bus service is available to transport you to and from select hotels in central Melbourne and the SkyBus terminal at Southern Cross Station (conditions apply).  This service is available:0600-2230 Monday to Friday and 0730-1730 Saturday and Sunday.

Taxis are another option with ranks at Melbourne Airport. The trip from the airport to the Melbourne CBD can take between 30-45 minutes and may cost about $50 - $70 depending upon the time of day.

All delegates must make their own transport arrangements from the airport.

Local information

Safety: Melbourne and Australia as a whole, is generally a safe place to spend your holiday.

Official Language: The official language of the meeting is English. Interpreting is not provided.

Insurance:  Organizers do not accept responsibility for individual medical, travel or personal insurance. All participants are advised to take out their own personal insurance before traveling to the conference.

Currency & Banking: Exchange of foreign currency is available at airports and at most hotels and banks throughout the city. International credit cards are accepted for payments in hotels, restaurants and shops. 

Decimal currency is used in Australia - units are dollars and cents.  Visit www.xe.com for current exchange rates.

Taxes:  In Australia a Goods and Services Tax (GST) of 10% applies to all consumer goods and is included in retail prices. All fees are quoted in Australian Dollars and are subject to GST. In some cases the GST is able to be claimed back on exiting the country. Full details can be found here.

Electricity:

Mains voltage in Australia is 230V 50Hz. Delegates from most nations in Asia, Africa and Europe should have appliances that work on the same mains voltage as Australia - therefore you will not need a voltage converter.  Exceptions to this are Japan, USA and Canada which uses 100/120V 50/60Hz.

If your country does use the same mains voltage as Australia all you need is a power adapter.  The plugs in Australia have two flat metal pins shaped live a "V" and some may contain a third flat pin in the centre.

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Australian outlet and power cord

Time Zone: Australian Eastern Standard Time in July (GMT +9).  During the meeting, sunrise will be around 7:30am and sunset will be around 5:30pm.

Tipping: Tipping is not expected in Australia you unless you want to. If you feel that you have been looked after well and appreciated as a client or guest a tip of 5 to 10% of check amount is appropriate. It is not necessary to leave a tip if you only have coffee or a snack.

Weather: The climate in Melbourne is temperate but can vary. It is winter in July and you can expect the weather to be cool with the possibility of rain.   The average high is around 14°C (57°F) and low around 7°C (45°F).

Getting Around - Public Transportation

Melbourne and its metropolitan areas offer a wide range of public transport and sightseeing options.

Myki Card: The Myki card is Melbourne's ticket to travel on the trains, trams and buses. The Myki card is a smartcard with stored value which can be topped up and re-used again. You can purchase your Myki card online at www.ptv.vic.gov.au, at premium train stations, retail outlets displaying the Myki sign (including 7-Eleven stores), or by calling 1800 800 007 (free from a land line) in Australia.

Trains: Trains run from Flinders Street Station in the city to the outer suburbs. The city loop is Melbourne's underground system, with five stations in the central business district: Southern Cross Station, Flagstaff, Melbourne Central, Parliament and Flinders Street. Southern Cross Station is Melbourne's hub for regional and interstate trains. A Myki card is required for travel on trains. Full details: www.ptv.vic.gov.au

Trams: Passengers can board trams at signposted stops. Route numbers are on the front of the tram. Travel within the central area of Melbourne by tram is free, though you will need a Myki card if you plan to start or finish your journey outside of this central area. See Free Tram Zone information below

Free Tram Zone: There is a Free Tram Zone in Melbourne's CBD.  The boundaries of the Free Tram Zone are Spring Street, Flinders Street and La Trobe Street. Additionally, the tram routes along Victoria Street, William Street and Elizabeth Street that surround Victoria Market are also included as well as the Docklands area. All stops within the free tram zone are clearly marked and tram drivers will make announce approaching zone boundaries.  Zone boundaries are signed and free tram zone maps are across the network. If your tram journey is exclusively within the zone, travel is free.  You do not need to touch on with a Myki card.  If your journey begins or ends outside of the zone you must touch on with a valid Myki card when boarding the tram.

Up-to-date travel and ticket information can be found  here

PTV-Free-Tram-Zone-Map

On Foot: Discover Melbourne and its many attractions on foot where you will see the vivid laneways with interesting street art, Unique and interesting shops and historical landmarks and buildings.  Walking guides are available from Melbourne Visitors centres located at the Melbourne Town hall, Bourke St, Fitzroy Gardens and the Queen Victoria Market.

Restaurants

Melbourne offers an expansive range of eating options.  

There are a number of cafes within the MCEC that offer casual eating options while you are attending the conference. 

Close by at South wharf there are various restaurants and casual eating options that offer 10% off when you show your event lanyard or ticket for an event at Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre.   Terms and conditions: Valid for one transaction per person. Not valid with any other offer.  Participating restaurants can be found :  https://mcec.com.au/experience-melbourne/south-wharf

A more casual option can be located at DFO South Wharf which offers a range of cuisines. This is a good option for a quick bite, coffee and cake or a meal open 10.00am - 6.00pm Saturday to Thursday and 10am – 9pm on Fridays:  https://www.dfo.com.au/south-wharf/info/services/

Sights

Melbourne is a cosmopolitan city renowned for its culture, art, and food.  The city and state offers world-class entertainment, beautiful parks, wildlife and historic attractions.  In the city centre, with short walk you will find art galleries, museums, theatre shows (plan ahead if there are shows you are interested in) great cafes and restaurants and many shopping options. Click for more information and special offers.

Outside of Melbourne, you can explore some of the spectacular coastline, Ski in the Victorian alps, walk in many of the national parks and gardens, see some our unique flora and fauna or enjoy a leisurely lunch with local produce at one of the many wineries not far from the city. Click for more information and special offers.