Advice levelsWhat does this mean?
- Violent crime is low in Macau. Pickpocketing and bag snatching occurs. Thieves target people in crowded places, such as shopping centres, markets, the airport and casinos. Watch your belongings, especially in crowds.
- Drink spiking happens. Don't accept food, drink, cigarettes or gum from strangers. Don’t leave your food or drinks unattended.
- Be careful when using ATMs, as theft happens. Use ATMs in shops or banks rather than on the street. If someone approaches you, cancel your transaction before talking to them.
- Protests can turn violent. It's illegal to protest without government approval. Avoid large public gatherings.
- Macau experiences typhoons and severe weather. These can disrupt transport and essential services. Typhoon season is between May and October. Follow the advice of local officials.
Full travel advice: Safety
- Macau has introduced measures to limit the spread of COVID-19. Contact Macau’s Centre for Disease Control and Prevention’s 24-hour hotline on +853 2870 0800 for the latest information. Some businesses and public facilities may be closed. If you have symptoms of respiratory illness, contact a doctor immediately. See Travel.
- Macau can have severe air pollution. If you have a heart or breathing condition, avoid exercising or going outside on days of high pollution.
- Macau sometimes has outbreaks of dengue. Japanese encephalitis is also a risk. Ensure your accommodation is insect-proof. Get vaccinated against Japanese encephalitis before you travel.
- Hand, foot and mouth disease is common. It mostly affects children younger than 10, but adult cases occur, particularly in young adults. Wash your hands thoroughly and often.
- Waterborne, foodborne and other infectious diseases include tuberculosis and hepatitis. Avoid raw or undercooked food.
- Macau's medical facilities are adequate. You may need to pay up-front. If you're seriously ill or injured, you may need medical evacuation to Hong Kong. Ensure your travel insurance covers this.
Full travel advice: Health
- Don't use or carry illegal drugs. Penalties include heavy fines and jail terms.
- Macau has strict laws around importing and possessing weapons and items that resemble weapons. Get a permit if you want to import, carry or buy these items, including in local markets.
- Be careful when taking photos. It's illegal to photograph military sites.
- Always stay in licensed accommodation. If you don't, authorities may fine you.
- If you're a dual national of Chinese descent, you can register your Australian citizenship with the Macau Identification Bureau. If you're travelling to mainland China, use your Australian passport.
Full travel advice: Local laws
- Non-Macau residents may enter Macau provided they hold a valid visa and have not travelled outside mainland China in the 21 days prior to their intended arrival in Macau. If you intend to travel to Macau, read the Smartraveller advice for China. All arrivals into Macau will need to provide a valid negative COVID-19 test (nucleic acid test).
- You may need to undergo medical screening or medical observation at a designated venue unless you have travelled from mainland China. Additional entry restrictions and medical screenings apply if you're travelling from designated high-risk areas. Some countries have put in place restrictions on travel to and from Macau.
- Authorities have announced restrictions on cross-border transport from mainland China. Some ferry services between Hong Kong and Macau remain suspended. Commercial flights out of Macau have been significantly reduced. Contact your transport provider for the latest update and follow the advice of local authorities.
- The local currency is the Macanese Pataca (MOP). Some shops also accept Hong Kong dollars and Chinese yuan. Most places accept credit cards.
- Only use licensed taxis or reputable limousine services. Insist on using the meter. Ridesharing services are illegal. Public buses are cheap and frequent, but they can be hard to find outside tourist areas.
Full travel advice: Travel
- The Consular Services Charter details what we can and can't do to help you overseas.
- Australia doesn't have an embassy in Macau. For consular help, contact the Australian Consulate-General in Hong Kong. The Consulate-General visits Macau every month to provide passport and consular services.
Full travel advice: Local contacts
Violent crime is low in Macau.
Pickpocketing and bag snatching happens.
Petty thieves are most active in:
- crowded shopping areas
- the airport
- casino areas
To avoid petty crime:
- watch your belongings, especially in crowds
- look out for suspicious behaviour
Drink spiking happens.
To avoid drink spiking:
- be careful of people who approach you in bars, clubs and casinos
- refuse drinks, food, gum and cigarettes from strangers
- don't leave your food or drinks unattended
Take care withdrawing money from an ATM:
- avoid using ATMs on the street — use those inside banks, shops, shopping centres or casinos
- if someone approaches you at an ATM, cancel your transaction before speaking to them
Civil unrest and political tension
Demonstrations and protests
Public protests and events that draw large groups of people can turn violent.
To avoid the risk of violent unrest:
- avoid crowds and demonstrations
- monitor the news for unrest or strikes
- follow the advice of local authorities
Terrorism is a threat worldwide.
Climate and natural disasters
Severe weather may cause:
- transport delays
- a temporary shutdown of infrastructure
If there's a natural disaster:
- secure your passport in a safe, waterproof location
- follow the advice of local authorities
- monitor the media and local sources
- get updates from the Global Disaster Alert and Coordination System
- stay in touch with your friends and family
Typhoon season is between May and October.
The path and strength of a typhoon can change quickly.
If authorities issue a signal for a typhoon level 8 (T8) or above in Hong Kong:
- businesses and transport companies must close
- the Australian Consulate-General in Hong Kong will close
During a typhoon:
- planes and ferries into and out of Macau may be delayed or suspended
- follow the advice of local authorities and emergency services
- check our severe weather advice for what to do
Contact your travel operator or airline for the latest information.
For weather updates, monitor:
Get comprehensive travel insurance before you leave.
Your policy needs to cover all overseas medical costs, including medical evacuation. The Australian Government won't pay for these costs.
If you can't afford travel insurance, you can't afford to travel. This applies to everyone, no matter how healthy and fit you are.
If you're not insured, you may have to pay many 1000s of dollars up-front for medical care.
- what activities and care your policy covers
- that your insurance covers you for the whole time you'll be away
Physical and mental health
Consider your physical and mental health before you travel, especially if you have an existing medical condition. Consider whether you may be in a vulnerable category for COVID-19.
See your doctor or travel clinic to:
- have a basic health check-up
- ask if your travel plans may affect your health
- plan any vaccinations you need
Do this at least 8 weeks before you leave.
Not all medication available over the counter or by prescription in Australia is available in other countries. Some may even be considered illegal or a controlled substance, even if prescribed by an Australian doctor.
If you plan to bring medication, check if it's legal in Macau. Take enough legal medicine for your trip.
Carry a copy of your prescription or a letter from your doctor stating:
- what the medicine is
- how much you'll take
- that it's for personal use
Contact Macau’s Centre for Disease Control and Prevention’s 24 hour hotline on +853 2870 0800 or the Macau Special webpage against Epidemics for the latest information.
If you're required to undergo medical observation at a designated venue you'll have to cover the costs of this.
If you have symptoms of respiratory illness, you may hospitalised for testing. If authorities suspect you're infected, you may need to stay in hospital or be quarantined.
For information on Macau’s COVID-19 vaccination program, refer to the SSM (Health Services Macau). You should consult your local health professional for advice on vaccine options, including assistance that may be available locally. The Australian Government cannot provide advice on the safety, quality and efficacy of vaccines that have been approved for use outside of Australia’s regulatory process.
- Macau Government Centre for Disease Control and Prevention - Special webpage against Epidemics
- The Macau Government Facebook page
- Coronavirus (Department of Health)
- Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak (World Health Organization)
The air pollution in Macau may worsen breathing, sinus or asthma conditions.
If you have a heart or breathing illness, and pollution levels are high:
- reduce your physical activities
- avoid going outdoors
For up-to-date air quality reports, visit the Macau Bureau of Meteorology.
Outbreaks of dengue occur sometimes.
You're also at risk of Japanese encephalitis.
To protect yourself from illness:
- get vaccinated against Japanese encephalitis before you travel
- make sure your accommodation is insect-proof
- use insect repellent
- wearing long, loose, light-coloured clothing
Get medical advice if you have a fever, muscle pain, rash or severe headache.
Hand, foot and mouth disease
Hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD) is common in Macau. Serious outbreaks sometimes occur.
- start in March or April
- peak in May
- continue until October
HFMD mostly affects children aged younger than 10 years. It can also occur in adults, particularly young adults.
You can get HFMD by direct contact with discharges of infected people.
Practise good hygiene. Wash your hands carefully and frequently.
Other health risks
Waterborne, foodborne and other infectious diseases may occur, including:
Avoid eating raw or undercooked food, such as salads.
Get medical help if you have a fever or diarrhoea.
The standard of medical facilities in Macau is adequate.
Private hospitals will ask to see proof of your travel insurance before treating you. They may ask you to guarantee payment or pay a deposit up-front.
If you become seriously ill or injured, you may need to be evacuated to Hong Kong. Medical evacuation can be very expensive.
You're subject to all local laws and penalties, including those that may appear harsh by Australian standards. Research local laws before travelling.
If you're arrested or jailed, the Australian Government will do what it can to help you under our Consular Services Charter. But we can't get you out of trouble or out of jail.
You face severe penalties for carrying or using illegal drugs, including marijuana. Penalties include heavy fines and jail sentences.
Macau has strict laws around importing and possessing weapons. This includes items that look like weapons, such as:
- fashion accessories
You must have a permit to import, possess or buy these items. This includes items sold in local markets. Apply in advance for a permit from local authorities.
Macau has strict laws for owning stun guns and tasers.
In Macau, it's illegal to:
- join a public protest without government approval
- take photos of military installations
Always stay in licensed accommodation. If you don't, authorities may fine you.
Some Australian criminal laws still apply when you're overseas. If you break these laws, you may face prosecution in Australia.
If you're a dual national of Chinese descent, you can register your Australian citizenship with the Macau Identification Bureau.
Macau Identification Bureau
Largo do Senado No. 18
Edificio Comercial China 2.0-5.0 Andares, Macau
Phone: (+853) 2837 0777
If you plan to enter mainland China from Macau, use your Australian passport.
China doesn't recognise dual nationality.
If you're a former Chinese citizen, Chinese authorities may:
continue to treat you as a Chinese citizen
not allow you access to Australian consular services, even if you enter China on a foreign passport
If you're visiting for tourism for less than 30 days, you generally won't need a visa. In other situations, you will.
Macau is a Special Administrative Region (SAR) of the People's Republic of China. It has separate visa and entry administration to Hong Kong and mainland China.
If you need a visa, apply for it through your nearest PRC embassy or consulate.
Entry and exit conditions can change at short notice. For details about visas, currency, customs and quarantine rules, contact or visit:
Macau has suspended some ferry services to Hong Kong and significantly reduced commercial flights. Further travel restrictions for Macau could come into effect at short notice.
Additional entry restrictions are in place due to COVID-19. Non-Macau residents may enter Macau provided they hold a valid visa and have not travelled outside mainland China in the 21 days prior to their intended arrival in Macau. If you intend to travel to Macau, read the Smartraveller advice for China. All arrivals into Macau will need to provide a valid negative COVID-19 test (nucleic acid test).
You may need to undergo medical screening or medical observation at a designated facility at your own expense. Additional entry restrictions and medical screenings apply if you're travelling from designated high-risk areas.
To depart Macau by ferry or plane, you'll need to provide a valid negative COVID-19 test (nucleic acid test).
If you're in Macau take care to protect yourself from exposure to COVID-19. Be aware that our ability to provide consular assistance may be limited due to local measures in place to limit the spread of COVID-19. Follow the advice of local authorities, and stay in touch with family and friends so they know you’re safe.
New measures may be introduced at short notice. Monitor local media and follow the advice of local authorities. See Macau Special webpage against Epidemics for the latest update.
Some countries have put in place restrictions on travel to and from Macau.
Travel between Macau and mainland China
Restrictions are in place for cross-border transport from mainland China due to COVID-19. Bus and ferry services between Hong Kong and Macau have also stopped. Check with your tour operator or transport provider for latest information on entry restrictions.
*The following information may not apply while COVID-19 travel restrictions are in place.
You must have a visa to travel between Macau and mainland China.
To return to mainland China after visiting Macau, get a multiple-entry visa for China. Apply before leaving Australia. If not, you need to apply for a new visa for China.
If you have previously visited China and plan to apply for a Chinese visa at the border of Zhuhai and Macau, carry your previous Chinese visa with you even if it's in a recently replaced passport.
Border authorities may refuse to issue you with a new Chinese visa if you have a previous one but can't show it to them.
Some countries won't let you enter unless your passport is valid for 6 months after you plan to leave that country. This can apply even if you're just transiting or stopping over.
Some foreign governments and airlines apply the rule inconsistently. Travellers can receive conflicting advice from different sources.
You can end up stranded if your passport is not valid for more than 6 months.
The Australian Government does not set these rules. Check your passport's expiry date before you travel. If you're not sure it'll be valid for long enough, consider getting a new passport.
Lost or stolen passport
Your passport is a valuable document. It's attractive to people who may try to use your identity to commit crimes.
Some people may try to trick you into giving them your passport. Always keep it in a safe place.
If your passport is lost or stolen, tell the Australian Government as soon as possible:
The currency in Macau is the Macanese Pataca (MOP).
Some shops also accept Hong Kong dollars and Chinese yuan.
You must declare in writing if you arrive or depart with MOP120,000, or equivalent. This includes all forms of currency, not just cash.
Credit cards are widely accepted in Macau.
Take care using ATMs as thefts happen. See Safety
Industrial relations disputes can disrupt transport and essential services.
Monitor local media and plan accordingly.
To drive in Macau, you need both:
a valid international driving permit (IDP)
your current Australian driver's licence
Get your IDP in Australia before you leave.
You may not be covered by your travel and vehicle insurances if you drive without an IDP.
The road network is mostly well-developed but congested during the day.
check your insurance cover
get to know local road rules
Check if your travel insurance policy covers you when riding a motorbike.
To remain covered by your insurance, you may have to follow local laws.
Always wear a helmet.
Taxis and ridesharing services
Only use licensed taxis or reputable limousine services. Try to book through your hotel. Insist on using the meter.
Rideshare services are illegal in Macau. Police have issued fines to drivers and passengers of unlicensed taxi services.
Public buses are inexpensive and frequent. However, you may have difficulty finding them outside major tourist areas. Drivers generally have limited English.
Ferries are a common mode of transport between:
the Chinese mainland
Ferries sometimes have accidents, including where people have died.
Some cruise lines visit Macau.
DFAT doesn't provide information on the safety of individual commercial airlines or flight paths.
Check Macau's air safety profile with the Aviation Safety Network.
Depending on what you need, contact your:
- family and friends
- travel agent
- insurance provider
Fire and rescue, medical, and police
Call any number for all emergency services:
Always get a police report when reporting a crime.
Your insurer should have a 24-hour emergency number.
Contact your provider with any complaints about tourist services or products.
Read the Consular Services Charter for what the Australian Government can and can't do to help you overseas.
Australia doesn't have an embassy in Macau.
For consular assistance, contact the Australian Consulate-General in Hong Kong.
The Australian Consulate-General in Hong Kong visits Macau each month to provide passport and consular services.
Australian Consulate-General, Hong Kong
23/F Harbour Centre, 25 Harbour Road
Wanchai, Hong Kong
Phone: (+852) 2827 8881
Fax: (+852) 2585 4457
Facebook: Australia in Hong Kong and Macau
Check the Consulate-General website for details about opening hours and any temporary closures.
24-hour Consular Emergency Centre
In a consular emergency, if you can't contact an embassy, call the 24-hour Consular Emergency Centre on:
- +61 2 6261 3305 from overseas
- 1300 555 135 in Australia