Australia Day 2017
Message from the Consul-General
As Australians, 26 January is the day when we celebrate and reflect on what is great about our country. Many people spend the day with friends or family, often with some snags on the BBQ and a game of back yard cricket. For armchair sports fans there is some great viewing with the Australian Open tennis or the one day international cricket series being played. Best watched with a meat pie and lots of tomato sauce!
Here in Phuket we can feel far from home but we’ve got beaches and beautiful weather to enjoy. It’s timely to remind all Australians to exercise common sense when travelling or living overseas.
Wherever you travel, research your destination, read our country-specific advice at smartraveller.gov.au and know that local laws and penalties apply to you even if they are different from those in Australia. Thailand continues to be the Australian government’s busiest consular assistance location overseas. In 2015/16 in Thailand alone, 107 Australians were arrested, 176 were hospitalised, 205 passed away and 25 are currently serving a sentence in prison. But with the right preparation, travel insurance and a good dose of common sense, the majority of travellers can look after themselves, without needing to seek the government’s consular services.
The Australian Consulate-General Phuket opened in 2016 and provides full passport services to Australian citizens, document notarial services and consular assistance in line with the Consular Charter. It’s no longer required to travel to Bangkok for these services.
Happy Australia Day!