Information and Referral Service

Moving to a new country can be exciting and rewarding but challenging at the same time. When you move there are a lot of questions to answer, and sometimes you won’t know who to ask.

To help you make your temporary or permanent home in Tasmania, the Tasmanian Government funds an Information and Referral service for new arrivals, which can assist you with many of the initial issues you may have such as:

  • Finding a place to live
  • Getting connected – utilities, phone and internet
  • Learning English
  • Enrolling your child in day-care or a school
  • Finding a family doctor
  • Exchanging money and shopping
  • Obtaining your driver’s licence
  • Using public transport
  • Getting to know your local community – social, sporting and recreational opportunities
  • Studying options
  • Applying for a tax file number
  • Finding a job or having job issues
  • Applying for citizenship
  • And many more questions and issues you may have

Opportunities to connect

Migrants are invited to subscribe to the Migrant Network email list for Tasmanian tips, stories and opportunities.

Migrants in Tasmania seeking professional networks are invited to join Migrant Network on Linked In. Set your profile location to Tasmania before requesting to join.

Visit the event calendar to register for any upcoming Migrant Network events.

The information below contains Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) related to the COVID-19 pandemic

Emergency relief from the Tasmanian government is not income support, however these temporary visa holders in financial hardship due to the pandemic can access an individual pandemic isolation assistance grant of $250, up to $1000 for a family. You don’t have to be in quarantine. Apply by calling the Tasmanian Public Health Hotline: 1800 671 738.

Rent relief up to $2000 from the Tasmanian Government for those in financial hardship due to COVID-19 can apply by contacting Housing Connect: 1800  800 588. This includes temporary visa holders.

There’s a 25% discount on public school fees for all temporary residents with children in public schools in Term 2 and Term 3.

If you have no income, savings and no access to other support you may be eligible for a once-off emergency relief payment from the Australian government. Apply online through the Red Cross.

Centrelink Special Benefit is a payment for financial hardship. Check eligibility and the residency rules here.

Some temporary visa holders can access up to $20 000 of their superannuation savings. Check eligibility here.

National Debt Helpline has free financial counselling. Phone 1800 007 007.

Beyond Blue has a dedicated Coronavirus Mental Wellbeing Support Service. Trained mental health professionals are available for support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, via phone, web chat and email.

If you have no income support and need to stretch your finances, consider registering for a series of food box deliveries by phoning MRC Tas.

If you’d like practical help to manage self-isolation consider asking for help from:

If you have the capacity to support local organisations as a volunteer, this can keep you and the community healthy during this period of disruption.  Applying for a formal volunteer position through Volunteering Tasmania is like applying for a job. It can take time but the experience is valuable for your job seeking, developing different skills, and broadening your community connections.

If you’re looking for a new job you’ll need to know:

  • how to adapt your resume for each position you apply for,
  • how to use professional development to expand the number of positions you apply for,
  • how to maximise your personal and professional networks in Tasmania.

Check your visa eligibility for accessing the advice and funding from the Rapid Response Skills Initiative if you’ve lost work due to the pandemic.

For free legal information regarding your employment situation call JobWatch who provide services to Tasmania.

Subscribe to migrant network updates so that you can join the next online session with other skilled job seekers.

Professional development can include skills demonstrated through formal volunteering and also online courses.

Examples of formal volunteering platforms include Volunteering Tasmania, Seek Volunteering and the MRC Tas volunteering program.

Examples of free professional development platforms include OpenLearning, Future Learn, Ed Ex and Coursera.

Invest in building your personal and professional networks now so that you know others, and they know you. In challenging times employers are more sensitive to ‘risk of the unknown’, so word-of-mouth can help you find opportunities, and help an employer have confidence hiring you. Start by getting involved in your community or networking with people in your industry in Hobart on LinkedIn.

If you hold a temporary skill shortage visa and lost your job due to COVID-19 there are two options: find another employer to sponsor you in 60 days, or make arrangements to depart Australia.

To register your interest in support to return to your country of origin, call the Public Health Hotline on 1800 671 738 by 23 May 2020.

International students experiencing financial hardship due to COVID-19 can apply to the Fast Track Safety Net Grant Scheme from UTAS for a once-off grant of $350.

Home Affairs has adjusted migration processes for international students and graduates impacted by the pandemic. This FAQ published 21 July 2020.

The Safety Net Grant Scheme is a once-off grant from UTAS of $2000.  These are emergency supports, not income support.

If you have held a student visa for 12 months or more you can access up to $10,000 of your Australian superannuation tax-free.

Be sure to have the latest information for business owners by subscribing to the national business.gov.au newsletter and  Business Tasmania newsletter.

Business Tasmania invites you to register how COVID-19 is impacting your business. Make sure they know how the response to temporary visa holders impacts your business and your employees.

Business Tasmania also wants to hear from employers who want to retain their employees because of their specialist skills to keep talent in Tasmania for the recovery period.

If you need advice or support book your free business advisor consultation with Enterprise Centres Tasmania.

If you need help to get your business online use Digital Ready resources and your 2 hours of free coaching.

Visit Business Tasmania to view other business supports, loans or grants as they become available.

Information about visa concessions.

The following visas have concessions to help sustain a visa pathway despite the disadvantage of COVID-19 border closures, business restrictions or the economic downturn:

If you have questions about your visa contact Home Affairs.

For individual advice contact a Registered Migration Agent.

Information about going overseas.

The travel exemption process is managed by the Australian Border Force.

Travel restrictions and requirements are updated regularly according to official health advice so keep checking the travel restrictions page for updates.

Information about returning to Tasmania

Information if you’re planning to travel to Tasmania.

If you want to feedback about the impact of border measures

Feedback may not change your individual circumstances. However, feedback on what’s working and what isn’t helps inform the government measures at each step.

New to Northern Tasmania
Phone: 03 6332 2211
Email: admin@mrcltn.org.au
Address: 95-99 Cameron Street
Launceston 7250
Web: www.mrcltn.org.au


New to Southern Tasmania
Phone: 03 6221 0999
Email: settlement@mrctas.org.au
Address: Level 2, 1a Anfield Street
Glenorchy 7010
Web: www.mrctas.org.au

Do you have a visa to arrive in Tasmania?
We can provide information and referral via Skype Image result for skype logo
Please email to request this.