Communication Outage Facebook, Whatsapp and Telephone Rectified

The three apps – which are all owned by Facebook, and run on shared infrastructure – stopped working on Monday 4th October.

Other related products, such as Facebook Messenger and Workplace, also stopped working including Whatsapp. As a company we also encountered technical difficulty with our telephone system at the same time.

We wish to apologise for any inconvenience this may have caused and would like to reassure our customers all systems are now working accordingly.

We can be contacted at our UK, London office on 0208 996 0120 should you wish to discuss your migration options for either UK or Australia. Alternatively, if you are in Australia, we can be reached at our Melbourne office on 1300 799 877.

We look forward to assisting you with your visa and migration options.

Travel and Capacity Exemptions

Travel Exemption:

Australia’s borders are currently closed and entry to Australia remains strictly controlled to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Travel to Australia is only available if you are exempt or you have been granted an individual exemption.

Travel restrictions are subject to change in response to the circumstances surrounding COVID-19.

If you require more information about this process, or have applied and been denied a travel exemption, Thames Migration is able to assist in applying for a travel exemption for compassionate or compelling situations, business or critical skills for travel to Australia.


Capacity Exemption:


The airlines may ask for a “capacity exemption” as the flight would have been at capacity. To board the passenger above capacity, the airline may request the passenger to get an exemption to board above the caps.

The passenger should be looking at flights that are not at capacity to avoid this. We confirm that the Australian High Commission (London) do not provide this capacity exemption.

For more information and guidance for Travel or Capacity Exemptions, please contact us.

Department of Home Affairs Visa Application charges – Increases 1 July 2021

Subclass                                                         Base charge      Add App >18yo               Add App <18yo

858 (Distinguished Talent)                           $4,180               $2,095                               $1,045

186 (Employer Nomination Scheme)           $4,115                 $2,060                             $1,030

801 (Partner)                                                 $7,850                $3,930                              $1,965

100 (Partner)                                                 $7,850                $3,930                              $1,965

300 (Prospective Marriage)                          $7,850                $3,930                              $1,965

143 (Contributory Parent)                            $4,225                 $1,425                               $715

189 (Skilled – Independent)                         $4,115                $2,055                               $1,030

190 (Skilled – Nominated)                           $4,115                $2,060                               $1,030

485 (Temporary Graduate)                          $1,680                $840                                  $425

489 (Skilled – Regional Provisional)           $4,115               $2,060                               $1,030

400 (Temporary Work (Short Stay)            $315                   $315                                  $80

491 (Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) $4,115                $2,060                               $1,030

494 (Skilled Employer Sponsored              $4,115                $2,060                               $1,030

482 (Temporary Skill Shortage)                 $1,290                $1,290                               $325

482 (Temporary Skill Shortage)                  $2,690                $2,690                               $675


Department of Home Affairs Citizenship Application Fees – Increases 1 July 2021

Australian citizenship by conferral—General eligibility (Form 1300t):

Standard fee $490

Concession fee* $70


Please Note: The above listed is not the complete list of visa application fee increases. The Thames Migration team are here to support you and guide you through the application process as efficiently as possible, so if you have any questions about your application and ensuring lodgement by 30 June 2021, please don’t hesitate to get in touch directly with your Migration Agent.

The Federal Budget 2021-22

The federal budget was handed down by treasury on the 11 May 2021 for the 2021-2022 financial year with a focus on resuming migration and welcoming back international students to Australia.

Migration Planning Levels

The Australian Government will maintain the 2021-2022 Migration Program Planning level at 160,000 places.

Family and Skilled stream places will also be maintained at their 2020-2021 planning levels with the Department continuing their focus on onshore visa applicants and continuing to reduce the onshore Partner visa application pipeline.

Skilled Migration Visas will have approximately 50% of the allocated places with a priority focus on highly skilled migrants in the Employer SponsoredBusiness Innovation and Investor Program and Global Talent visa categories.

The Humanitarian Program will be maintained at 13,750 places for the 2021-2022 migration year.

The Australian government has confirmed that the size of the program (the places available) will remain as a ceiling of the amount of places available instead of a ‘target’.

Net Overseas Migration Numbers

The Budget noted that Net Overseas Migration (NOM) is predicted to fall from around 154,000 people in the 2019-2020 year to around -72,000 people by the end of 2020-2021, however it is expected to gradually increaase to around 201,000 people by 2023-2024.

Sponsored Temporary Parent Visas – Extension of validity period

The Department has confirmed that the validity period for Sponsored Parent (Temporary) (subclass 870) visas will be extended by 18 months for people who are unable to enter Australia due to the COVID-19 travel restrictions.

Global Talent Visas

The Australian government has commited $550 million to attract talent and business from overseas to Australia as part of the Global Talent visa program. As part of this commitment the ATO will provide fast-track tax advice to foreign investors and individual tax residency rules will be simplified to increase the attractiveness of Australia for highly skilled indiviudals and innovative businesses looking to come to Australia.

Temporary Visa Holders

Temporary visa holders in Australia looking to apply for the Temporary Work (subclass 408) ‘COVID-19’ visa will no longer need to demonstrate their attempts to depart Australia if they intend to undertake work in the agricultural sector.

The period in which a temporary visa holder can apply for the Temporary Work (subclass 408) ‘COVID-19’ visa has also been extended from 28 days prior to their visa expiry to 90 days prior to their visa expiry.

Student Visa Holders

As previously announced by Thames Migration, student visa holders will temporarily be permitted to work for more than 40 hours per fortnight if they are working in the tourism or hospitality sectors.

More Information

If you would like further information on your migration options in Australia, what these announcements mean for you or any other matter please contact our office on 1300 799 877 or schedule a consultation with us online.


Festive Season Office Closure

From the entire Thames Migration team, we wish you all a merry festive season and a Happy New Year!

Further inbound travel exemptions announced

The Department’s COVID mini site has been updated today to allow additional categories of persons to be automatically exempt from travel restrictions and can enter Australia, without obtaining an individual exemption.

Those exempt from requiring individual exemptions are:

  • an Australian citizen
  • a permanent resident of Australia
  • an immediate family member of an Australian citizen or permanent resident*
  • a New Zealand citizen usually resident in Australia and their immediate family members
  • a diplomat accredited to Australia (holding a subclass 995 visa)
  • a traveller transiting Australia for 72 hours or less
  • airline crew
  • maritime crew including marine pilots
  • recruited under the Government approved Seasonal Worker Program or Pacific Labour Scheme
  • holder of a Business Innovation and Investment (subclass 188) visa

Further information on the requirements for these exemptions are available on the Department’s site

COVID -19 – Subclass 408 stream announced

The purpose of the visa is to provide a pathway for certain former and current holders of temporary visas to lawfully remain in Australia and who would otherwise be required to depart Australia who, but for the COVID-19 pandemic, are unable to leave Australia.


  • Must hold a visa that is 28 days or less from ceasing to be in effect
  • Or, held a visa that is no more than 28 days from ceasing to be in effect
  • And, are unable to apply for the same temporary visa they hold or held or any other subclass of temporary visa other than the Subclass 408 visa

To learn more or apply contact us.

COVID-19 Update

We are writing to assure you that we, and the staff of Thames Migration, are doing our best to support you during these strange and unprecedented times due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

The majority of our services are not affected, and it is our team’s intention to continue our high level of service to you.

We have been testing our systems in preparation for all staff to work remotely, which is occurring this week in our Australian and UK offices.

We are in regular contact with clients and other stakeholders as we implement new ways to deliver our services and we thank them for their understanding.

You may experience some delays in dealing with us, but we will do as much as we can to assist you.

Please do not hesitate to contact us on if you have any concerns or questions.

Regular updates concerning both Australian and UK visa and immigration news will continue to be publish via our social media and website news.

We thank you for your support and we will be in touch as soon as we can provide more information.

From the entire Thames Migration team we wish you and your staff and families all the best during this difficult time.

David A G Knox & Hannibal Khoury

COVID-19 and Visa Update

Dear valued clients and industry partners,

As you will all be aware, the United Kingdom and the world are facing an unprecedented challenge in dealing with the novel coronavirus. Following the British Prime Minister’s advice this week, the staff of Thames Migration (both in the UK and Australia) have moved to remote working. We have also taken the precaution of postponing our seminar programme for March and April.

I know that for many of you the visa process maybe daunting, especially in light of the current situation, and I want to reassure you that the team and I are fully available over email and telephone and can continue to reply to you during this period. We do however bring to your attention, due to the unprecedented amount of enquiries, we appreciate your patience in affording us at least 48 hours before we respond to your enquiry regarding your visa or immigration specific questions for both Australia or the UK. If you matter is urgent, please flag this with us when you make contact via email or phone.

We know you appreciate the work we all do, and there is more to come, once we get past this lock down we aim to resume normal face to face consultations rather than Skype.

We will continue to provide updates and news throughout our website and social media pages, and please do not hesitate to get in touch with us, the team if you have any questions. We will get through this. In the meantime, we trust you and your families and communities are able to join us and follow best practice advice to stay well.

Best wishes,

Hannibal Khoury

Extended Working Holiday Visa for Australia

Backpackers helping with the recovery from the bushfires can now apply for 12-month visas

It has just been announced that working holiday visas for Australia have now been extended to allow visitors to work for 12 months in one place, with immediate effect. The aim is to encourage more people to help with the extensive recovery effort following the bushfires. It will allow people travelling to Australia on a year out to stay for longer at one location so that they can assist with essential work in construction and on farms and help out communities down under impacted by the recent events.

Why extend my working holiday visa?

If you want to do something to help after the bushfires and subsequent floods in Australia, a working holiday visa could be a great way to travel and help restore the many impressive sights. Other visas are available for skilled workers and those looking for a longer term career in Australia, but if you’re unsure whether you’re ready to make the move, a working holiday visa can be a great way to give you a taste of life down under and consider whether it’s right for you. In addition, you’ll be doing vital work to help the country heal, protect the landscape and support the fascinating wildlife.

To learn more Contact Us