As a company born Down Under, at Flight Centre we're experts when it comes to flights to Australia. Whether you want to find the best deal possible, or enjoy a stopover along the way, our experts can find you the best deals at the best prices. Australia flights may seem long but your jet lag will be long forgotten when you’re basking on one of the country’s many beaches. You have in fact around 31,000 miles of coastline to enjoy in Australia so there’s bound to be a sandy spot ideal for you. Not to mention that mild weather means swimming, especially in the country’s north east, is possible all year round.
How long does it take to fly to Australia?
Flights from the UK to Australia generally disembark at Sydney International Airport, the country’s main international airport. As a long haul flight taking approximately 21 hours and 35 minutes from London to Sydney, flights to Australia usually include a stopover in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Los Angeles, Singapore, Bangkok or Hong Kong depending on the airline. From Sydney, transfers are available to reach a wide range of Australian cities, including Brisbane and Melbourne which are only a couple of hours in flying time away.
Major international airlines that fly to Australia from the UK include:
For more information refer to our airline guide.
Main airports in Australia
As an incredibly spread out country, Australia boasts a large number of domestic airports. The country’s main international airports include:
- Sydney Airport (SYD)
- Melbourne Airport (MEL)
- Brisbane Airport (BNE)
- Adelaide Airport (ADL)
- Perth Airport (PER)
- Gold Coast Airport (OOL)
UK departure airports that fly to Australia
- London (two main airports - Heathrow and Gatwick, but six altogether)
British passport holders will need a visa in order to enter Australia. There are two kinds of visas available: an eVisitor visa, for which there is no charge, and an Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) from your travel agent or airline, for which there’s a service fee of A$20. eVisitor visas are available from the Australian Department of Immigration and Border Protection or from the Australian High Commission in London. For visa information for other passports, please ask your consultant.
If you wish to work, study or stay in the country for longer than three months, you will need to apply for a different type of visa depending on the purpose of your visit. In addition to the usual check-in and carry-on baggage restrictions, Australia has it’s own restrictions as to what can and cannot be brought into the country. Before your flight, be sure to check these restrictions via the official Australian Government website and if you’re not sure about an item, it is recommended to declare it to the authorities upon arrival to avoid a fine.
Things to do in Australia
While the beaches are what you’ll find on most Australian postcards, they’re not the only draw card. In terms of other assets, Australia is naturally blessed with landmarks like Uluru, the Twelve Apostles, Kakadu and the wondrous Great Barrier Reef, which commonly make up the best things to do in Australia.
From a city perspective, Sydney is the largest in the country and the most popular in terms of international tourism. Here you can climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge, catch an iconic Sydney ferry to meet the local wildlife at the Sydney Zoo, and take an afternoon dip in the famed waters of Bondi Beach. For more ideas, check out our page on things to do in Sydney.
While Sydney may have all the icons, Melbourne has been attributed as the country’s cultural capital. Located on the south east coast, Melbourne is less about swimming and more about coffee, shopping and sport. Cricket, tennis and Australian Football (known locally as AFL) are less a spectator sport and more a religion, while Melbourne’s will passionately argue that they produce the city’s best cuisine and coffee. And they may just be right.
If you’re really travelling to Australia though for the sun, sea and laidback lifestyle, then you’re best launching spot is the North Queensland city of Cairns. A tourist favourite, Cairns is perfectly located between the Great Barrier Reef and the Daintree Rainforest. The beauty of Cairns is you can do as little or as much as you want, from snorkelling to sky diving and simply sun bathing on the beach. For tips on when to visit the Great Barrier Reef and other attractions, see our advice on when to go to Australia.