Travel outside Australia

There are rules about whether you can get your Child Care Subsidy when you travel outside Australia. The rules also apply to your Additional Child Care Subsidy.

What the rules are

If you leave Australia to live in another country, your subsidy will stop on departure.

If you leave Australia on a temporary basis, you’ll normally still get your subsidy. But both of the following must apply. You’re:

  • overseas for 6 weeks or less
  • still paying for child care in Australia.

Otherwise, your subsidy will stop on departure.

Visa requirements

If you’re a temporary visa holder, we’ll only pay your subsidy for up to 6 weeks in certain circumstances. You need to meet the following visa requirements and travel reasons.

You need to have 1 of the following visas:

  • Partner Provisional visa subclass 309 or visa subclass 820
  • Safe Haven Enterprise visa subclass 790
  • Temporary Protection visa subclass 785 issued on or after 16 December 2014.

Travel reasons

You also need to meet 1 of these travel reasons:

  • to attend an acute family crisis – for example, to visit a very ill family member
  • humanitarian reasons – for example, to adopt a child or attend custody proceedings
  • to get eligible medical treatment not available in Australia.

You may get your subsidy for up to 3 years if you’re either:

  • deployed overseas with the Australian Defence Force
  • engaged in peacekeeping or capacity building activities overseas with the Australian Federal Police.

You can have 42 paid absences each financial year from child care, except for occasional care. You can take an absence for any reason. You don’t need to give evidence. Read more about what happens if your child is absent from child care.

Subsidy stops

Your subsidy will stop if you leave Australia for any of the following:

  • for more than 6 weeks
  • for more than 6 weeks, return to Australia, then go again within 6 weeks
  • to live in another country.

For most temporary protection type visa holders, your subsidy will stop when you leave Australia.

If your subsidy stops while you’re outside Australia, you may have to submit a new claim when you return.

When to tell us about your travel

You should tell us if any of the following apply:

  • you’re going to live in another country
  • you’ll be away for more than 6 weeks
  • you haven’t been back in Australia for 6 weeks since your last return
  • you hold a partner provisional visa or temporary protection type visa.

Otherwise you don’t need to tell us that you’re leaving Australia. Australia’s immigration department will advise us when you leave and return.

The easiest way to tell us about your travel plans is to use your Centrelink online account through myGov. You can get information on how your travel could affect your payments and concession cards. You may need to call us to discuss your circumstances further.

Read more about payments when outside Australia.

Page last updated: 17 January 2020