Western Australia is free from many pests, weeds and diseases present elsewhere in Australia. To protect this unique status, WA has strict quarantine measures in place. Failure to satisfy legislated requirements may result in items being confiscated for destruction or re-exported out of WA. Fines or other legal proceedings may also be applied in some instances.
Legislation also includes the need to declare or present all risk items for inspection. Private travellers must present all risk items immediately on entry to WA, and commercial importers or freight carriers must complete and lodge a Notice of Intent to Import to Quarantine WA at least 24 hours prior to arrival or risk a substantial fine. The Notice of Intent to Import form, available on this page for download, includes instruction on where and how to lodge it.
Common threats to WA
Risk items and potential carriers that may pose a threat to WA can include fresh fruit, vegetables, some nuts, seed and other plant material as well as honey and other hive products. Used machinery, garden tools and equipment and cargo containers must be free of soil and plant material when entering WA. Some types of machinery may require certification or prior approval to be imported into the state. Restrictions may also apply to many animals, birds, fish and insects and it is advisable that you check for any requirements before bringing them into WA. Check our page on organisms and potential carriers for a description of items that are considered to be of quarantine concern and must be declared to quarantine inspectors.
Travellers and visitors to WA need to be aware that some plants, plant products and animals that pose a high risk of carrying diseases or becoming a pest or weed may not be allowed into the State.
The items listed above represent the most common threats to WA. But this list is not exhaustive. Go to the WA Organism List (WAOL) for more information on prohibited items and check what restrictions may apply on the Quarantine WA Import Requirements Search.
You must also take care when bringing items such as shoes and boots that might have soil and dirt on them. Generally, all items that would normally be used outdoors should be examined to make sure they are free from soil and other contaminants. It is best to make sure they are thoroughly cleaned before entering WA.
Restrictions on importing plants and plant products into WA apply equally to items purchased online via the internet. The availability of an item on an internet-trading site does not imply that it is legal to import it into WA or that importation is unrestricted. The buyer must comply with WA's import requirements when importing online purchases.
What to do on arrival
If in doubt about any item(s), declare them to a quarantine inspector, or deposit them in one of the bins available at the airport. Your baggage and hand luggage may be checked by inspectors with sniffer dogs for quarantine risk items as you collect it from the baggage carousel.
Quarantine inspectors located at various interstate borders will conduct checks for items considered a threat to WA. Road checkpoints on the WA/South Australia border (Eucla, Eyre Hwy) and WA/Northern Territory border (Kununurra, Victoria Hwy) operate 24 hours. Commercial freight carriers are reminded to submit a Notice of Intent to Import form 24 hours prior to arrival at the checkpoints.
Desert roads are subject to random mobile inspections. Quarantine bins are located 20 kilometres east of Laverton and on the Tanami Road and Duncan Highway near Halls Creek.
By rail and by sea
All interstate freight arriving by rail and sea is assessed and checked by quarantine inspection staff. Importers and freight carriers should submit Notice of Intent Forms to declare freight items to Quarantine WA 24 hours prior to arrival in WA. Regular surveillance is carried out on the Indian Pacific train to ensure passengers are not carrying restricted items and vehicles are clean of soil and plant material.
Moving to WA and bringing personal effects
When moving personal effects into WA, you should always complete a Declaration for Movement of Personal Goods Form into Western Australia in conjunction with your removals company. These forms are all available in the Documents links on this page or your removalist company may provide one for you. Ask your removals company to supply the freight container details and to lodge the form on your behalf.
Importers and travellers can expect some delays as a result of these quarantine procedures and should also be aware that inspection fees and charges may be applied.