Banks in Australia are open from 0930 to 1600 Monday to Thursday and 0930 to 1700 on Fridays. Most banks are closed on weekends; however, some banks in major cities open for limited hours on Saturday. Currency exchange facilities are available at the airport and most major hotels and city banks and bureaux de change. Automatic teller machines (ATMs) are available at a wide variety of outlets, including the Congress site, and in most city streets.
The average temperature for Melbourne in November ranges from 12°C (minimum) to 22°C (maximum).
Decimal currency is used in Australia - units are dollars and cents. All major credit cards are widely accepted in Australia. Visit www.xe.com for current exchange rates.
220-240V is standard in Australia.
There will be wi-fi access for all delegates at the Congress venue. Internet access is also widely available to visitors in many hotels and cafés around the city.
English is spoken throughout Australia and is the official language for the Congress. Simultaneous translation is available at participant's own expense.
Public Transport: Free Tram Zone
The Free Tram Zone in Melbourne's CBD makes it easier for commuters and tourists to move around the city. The principal boundaries of the Free Tram Zone are Spring Street, Flinders Street and La Trobe Street. Additionally, the tram routes along Victoria Street, William Street and Elizabeth Street that surround Victoria Market are also included as well as the Docklands area.
All stops within the zone are clearly marked and tram drivers will make regular announcements when approaching the zone boundaries. Zone boundaries are signed and free tram zone maps are across the network. If your tram journey is exclusively within the zone, travel is free, meaning you do not need to touch on with a myki. If your journey begins or ends outside of the zone you must touch on with a valid myki when boarding the tram.
Up-to-date travel and ticket information can be found here.
Shops vary in their opening hours but, generally, city shops and major suburban shopping centres are open 0900 - 1800 Monday to Wednesday, 0900 - 2100 Thursday and Friday, 0900 - 1700 Saturday, 1000 - 1700 Sunday.
Please provide details of any special diet, special needs or disability assistance required when you register.
A Goods and Services Tax (GST) of 10% applies to all consumer goods and is included in retail prices. All fees are quoted in Australian Dollars and are subject to GST. In some cases, the GST is able to be claimed back on exiting the country. Full details can be found here.
Service charges are not added to accounts by hotels and restaurants. You may tip taxi drivers, hotel porters and restaurant wait-staff (up to 10% of the bill) if you wish to acknowledge exceptional service. At all times, tipping is your choice.
Transport from the Airport
SkyBus is an express bus service from Melbourne airport to Southern Cross Station in the city centre. This service operates 24/7, including all public holidays and takes approximately 20 - 30 minutes. Buses run from every 10 minutes throughout the day. AUD$19 Adult - one way - return AUD$38. Tickets can be purchased on arrival at the airport terminal bus stop or purchased online at www.skybus.com.au.
On arrival at Southern Cross Station in the city, SkyBus provides a complimentary hotel transfer service, subject to availability, during the following hours: 0600-2230 Monday to Friday; 0730-1730 Saturday and Sunday.
There is an abundance of taxis that can be engaged at ranks at Melbourne Airport. The taxi ride from the airport to the Melbourne CBD can take between 30-45 minutes and may cost about AUD$50 - AUD$70 depending upon the time of day.
The Congress does not provide any transfers from the airport to Congress Hotels. All delegates must make their own transport arrangements from the airport.
Travel & Health Insurance
The Congress does not provide insurance to delegates. We strongly recommend that you take out insurance policies to cover medical and travel expenses. If necessary, consult your travel agent.
Useful local telephone numbers
Emergency Fire Police Ambulance
Southgate Medical Centre Telephone: 9690 1433
Southgate Melbourne, 3 Southgate Ave, Southbank
Pharmacy NEO Freshwater Place Telephone: 9690 9229
25 Freshwater Pl, Southbank
Public transport and timetables
Telephone: 131 638
13CABS Telephone: 13 2227
Silver Top Taxis Telephone: 13 10 08