Where Do Aussies Go Abroad?

Where Do Aussies Go Abroad?

Australians love to travel overseas and many would argue that is’s in our bones, after all, with one of the worlds most multi-cultured societies our relatives all traveled from somewhere. In the last 10 years Aussies have traveled abroad in record numbers. We are spreading our wings and discovering the globe. It is true that no matter where you travel to these days you will find an Aussie there.

Where Do Aussies Go Abroad?

At Ozzies Abroad we look at the facts on Australians traveling habits.

More Aussies Going Abroad

Since 2005, the uptick of Australians going overseas is actually 2 fold. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) 2016 International Movements Report a record-breaking 10 million Aussies went abroad. This is a big growth from the 2005 which saw just over 5 million Australians going overseas, considering the Australian population is around 24 million then this represents a large percentage of our population.

Why Are More Aussies Going Abroad?

Well, it might be because we’re a highly educated bunch that likes to learn about other cultures but it’s more likely because of a higher Australian dollar, lower airfares and the fact that we get four weeks of annual leave.

Most of the Aussies traveling are going for holiday making up almost 60% of international departures. Other reasons include 25% visiting friends and relatives and a small percentage for business.

Interestingly, there was a time not so long ago (About 40 or 50 years) that Australians felt that in order to get a proper education they needed to go overseas. We were so closely tied to Britain that many Australians considered their pilgrimage to the “homeland” as going “home”. The pilgrimage is still replicated today with many Aussies going to London for a gap year and career experience.

I think going overseas has been ingrained in us for so long that it is a part of our culture. We have a long way to travel to go abroad so we might as well stay a while and make the most of it. We also feel that our own backyard can be explored later in life.

Where Do Aussies Go abroad?

How Long do Aussies Go Abroad For?

Australians are departing their shores for either a short term departure which is considered to be less a year or for a long term stay which is considered to be more than 12 months. The number of Australians going for short term stay is 9.9 million in 2016 and long term is 448,700. Long term or permanent departure is mostly for employment reasons and represents the Aussie expat community.

Where are the Aussies Going Abroad?

According to the Australian Bureau of statistics the top 5 travel destinations that Australian travel to are:

New Zealand

Well, I guess it’s close and NZ truly is a beautiful country. In fact, the average number of times Australian visitors return to New Zealand is 4. There are also 10 different airlines flying between the two countries. The New Zealand dollar is weaker than the Aussie and we don’t require any visa. Oh and most importantly, they have the same type of electrical plugs as us.


Also, known as Bali, not really but you know what I mean. Over 1 million Australians went to Indonesia in 2017 and these numbers see most land in Bali. Bali is a great party destination for school-leavers and also can offer great holiday packages for families.


Australian’s love the USA and it has steadily remained in the top 3 for many years. The most popular spots for Australians are Hawaii, California and Las Vegas. With the stronger Australian dollar in recent years and the frequency of flights to the west coast of USA the trend seems set to continue.


The UK will always be a common destination for Australians. We can get a 6-month visa and many Australians have family in the UK. The culture for work and play is easy for us to get used to and the UK is so close to Europe.


Thailand hasn’t overtaken Bali as our favorite short term holiday destination….yet. There is something for everyone and every budget in Thailand.

Where Do Aussies Go Abroad?

Read Facts About Australians Overseas Here

There You Have It

So it looks like our love of travel will continue and become a stronger part of our identity for years to come. With over 1 million Australians outside of Australian at any given time it means you are never far from another Aussie. For better or worse we are literally everywhere.

If you enjoyed our article than get vocal in the comments section below. We love to hear from all the Aussies abroad out there in the big bad world.

See Ya!


6 Replies to “Where Do Aussies Go Abroad?”

  1. Awesome article! I was attracted to the title of the post, as Australia is such a beautiful country which makes me wonder, do Aussies really need to go abroad? However, your article changed my mind as it seems that there are still so many more places in the world for everyone to explore. Besides Bali, there are a few nice islands in Thailand like Koh Lipe or Ko Samui and never forgetting Bangkok, the vibrant city of Thailand. Thanks for sharing different places to go to for holidays, looking forward to more of your posts!

  2. Being Icelandic, it´s incredible how many Aussies friends I have. And honestly, this is one of my favorite countries because there’s something in the country which makes the person special.
    And that is why I have realized how many of them travel. And it’s a lot.
    So it was with big interest that I read your list of countries which the Aussies visit. I saw that Japan is not on the list and it was no surprise for me because I don´t hear my friends go there, is there a special reason? Because it is shorter travel time for Aussies. 

  3. Hey Dave
    We’re heading to the UK this year for a four-week holiday. In my case I am returning home, having left England as a pre-schooler. My daughter, however, wants to eventually do the rite-of-passage for Aussie teenagers – spend some time working over there so this is a bit of a see what is there and get to know the rellies. Do you know where some of the expat areas are for my daughter to get a feel of on our trip?

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