Types of travel

You can only get ABSTUDY Fares Allowance for certain types of travel.

ABSTUDY Fares Allowance helps with the cost of approved travel.

We work out if you can get it based on your type of travel.

There are restrictions that mean you can’t get ABSTUDY Fares Allowance for certain travel.

When you should tell us about your travel

You can tell us about your travel and claim before or after your trip.

If you claim before your trip, you need to call either:

  • your boarding school, if that’s where you go
  • your hostel, if that’s where you stay.

We’ll then book the travel for you.

If you claim after your trip, you’ll need to book and pay for the travel and then apply for reimbursement. You can claim a reimbursement by calling the ABSTUDY students line.

Reimbursement means you pay upfront and we then pay you back.

What type of student it covers

The type of travel ABSTUDY Fares Allowance covers depends on the type of student you are. In the table:

  • a tick means you get the allowance
  • a cross means you can't.
Type of travel Secondary students Tertiary students and secondary students not at a secondary school
Orientation travel Yes Yes
Special purpose travel Yes Yes
Start and end of studies travel Yes Yes
School holiday travel Yes No
Study of more than 1 semester travel No Yes
Exam travel Yes Yes
Graduation travel No Yes
Compassionate travel Yes Yes
Travel if you're expelled Yes No

What types of travel it covers

You can only get ABSTUDY Fares Allowance for specific types of travel.

Orientation travel

You can get help to travel for an orientation. There is no limit on how many times you can access ABSTUDY Fares Allowance to travel to an orientation.

Orientation travel Yes or No
Between your home and place of study Yes
To somewhere other than your place of study or your home, if it’s on your usual travel route Yes
Someone other than you can travel Yes

Special purpose travel

You can get help with up to 3 return trips to your place of study for a special purpose. These can be to attend school activities like award ceremonies, sporting events or a graduation. You can also get help for travel if both of the following apply:

  • you're homesick, or at risk of suspension or expulsion
  • a visit from your family will help you stay in school.
Special purpose approved travel Yes or No
Between your home and place of study Yes
To somewhere other than your place of study or your home, if it’s on your usual travel route Yes
Someone other than you can travel Yes

Start and end of studies travel

You can get help for travel to 1 of the following places:

  • your place of study at the start of your school term, semester or trimester
  • your home at the end of your studies
  • a location other than your school or home, if it’s on your usual route.
Start and end of studies approved travel Yes or No
Between your home and place of study Yes
To somewhere other than your place of study or your home, if it’s on your usual travel route Yes
Someone other than you can travel Yes

School holiday travel

You can get help for up to 3 return trips each year. The trips need to be to 1 of the following places:

  • your place of study
  • your home at the end of your studies
  • a place other than your school or home, if it’s on your normal route.

You can't get help for travel at any of the following times:

  • over Easter, unless Easter is in the school holidays
  • over long weekends
  • when boarding schools or hostels close.
School holiday approved travel Yes or No
Between your home and place of study Yes
To somewhere other than your place of study or your home, if it’s on your usual travel route Yes
Someone other than you can travel Yes

Travel for study of more than 1 semester

If your course is longer than 1 semester, you can get help to travel to 1 of the following places:

  • your home
  • your place of study
  • a place other than your school or home, if it’s on your normal route.

You can travel any time in the academic year.

Study for more than 1 semester approved travel Yes or No
Between your home and place of study Yes
To somewhere other than your place of study or your home, if it’s on your usual travel route Yes
A travelling companion can travel with you Yes

Exam travel

You can get help for travel to and from an exam centre to do a supplementary or deferred exam.

Exam approved travel Yes or No
Between your home and exam centre Yes
To somewhere other than your home or exam centre, if it’s on your usual travel route Yes
Supervisors and travelling companions can travel with you Yes

Graduation travel

You can get help for travel to and from your graduation ceremony. There are conditions you need to have met during your course. You need to have both got ABSTUDY and got help for your travel.

You must have got ABSTUDY for either of the following:

  • a tertiary course that was the equivalent of at least 2 years full time, for example, 4 years part time
  • an honours degree.

You must also have got 1 or both of the following:

  • ABSTUDY Fares Allowance
  • help to travel under the Indigenous Education Training Program.

You can also get help with meals or accommodation if you have to stay overnight because of your travel schedule.

Graduation approved travel Yes or No
Between your home and graduation venue Yes
To somewhere other than your graduation venue and home, if it’s on your usual travel route Yes
A travelling companion can travel with you Yes

You can’t get help for graduation travel if you only got ABSTUDY Fares Allowance for any of the following:

  • a placement
  • a field trip
  • a testing and assessment program.

Compassionate travel

You can get help for 2 return trips to your place of study every year for any of the following:

  • an immediate family member is critically sick or hurt
  • you need to go home because you’re sick or hurt
  • a family member has died
  • you’re going to a family member’s funeral.

You can also get help for compassionate travel if it’s for community reasons. This includes needing to go to an event in your community because of 1 or both of the following:

  • Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander lore
  • kinship obligations.
Compassionate approved travel Yes or No
Between your home and place of study Yes
To somewhere other than your home or place of study, if it’s on your usual travel route Yes
Someone other than you can travel Yes

Travel if you're expelled

You may get help to travel home if you’re expelled from secondary school.

We can only pay for this in specific circumstances and when there’s no other solution.

You need to talk to your school. They must confirm in writing that you meet these specific circumstances.

Expelled student approved travel Yes or No
To your home only Yes
To somewhere other than your home, if it’s on your usual travel route Yes
A supervisor can travel with you Yes

Page last updated: 16 July 2019