Travel outside Australia

There are rules about when you can get your Special Benefit when you travel outside Australia.

What the rules are

If you leave Australia to live in another country, your payment will stop on departure.

If you leave Australia on a temporary basis, you need to be travelling for an approved reason. Otherwise, your payment will stop on departure.

We can’t pay Special Benefit to most temporary protection type visa holders when outside Australia.

What the approved reasons for payment overseas are

We may pay Special Benefit outside Australia for up to 6 weeks for any of these approved reasons:

  • to attend an acute family crisis – such as visiting a family member who is critically ill
  • humanitarian reasons – such as adopting a child or attending custody proceedings
  • to get eligible medical treatment that isn’t available in Australia.

When to tell us about your travel

You should always tell us if you’re leaving Australia.

The easiest way to tell us about your travel plans is to use your Centrelink online account through myGov. You can get information on how your travel could affect your payments and concession cards. You may need to call us to discuss your circumstances further.

Read more about payments while outside Australia.

Page last updated: 31 August 2020