It’s been more than 2 years since I got Australian PR, I was eligible to apply for the Australian Citizenship. I started to prepare for it from the beginning of January, and called the helpline to book for the appointment for the interview. And the interview took place today.
When I called the helpline, the appointment was booked at 2pm. However, when I arrived at the Immigration Department office, the nice gentleman at the reception gave me a ticket and asked me to wait til my number is called.
I didn’t wait for long, maybe 10 minutes, and my number came up at the panel. I walked to the indicated counter, and saw my interviewer. He looked friendly, Asian, and bit old. At first, he asked me for my passports and application forms, then he also asked for my driver licence and medicare card. Then he checked my details in the system. Okay, the immigration department has all my previous addresses and the date when I first arrived in Australia, which as in 1993. Gosh, their database must be huge!
The officers would ask almost every applicant the resposibilities and privileges for being an Australian, so I read and tried to remember all of them this morning. There are not too many, only 4 responsibilities and 6 privileges. My officer only asked me about the responsibilities.
The whole process only took about 15 minutes, and most of the time he was busy typing his keyboard. Oh, they use IBM computers there. Then he said, “Okay, everything is done, I’m granting you the citizenship now.” I was like, what the?! I asked, so that means I’m an Aunstralian citizen now? He said yes. I was still in shock and said “Wow! That’s quick!”. He replied “Yeah, I usually approve them in the same day, unless there are some problems with the applications”.
So, what now? He told me that I will receive an official letter to say I’m now an Australian citizen in few days. Then I’ll receive another letter in 3 to 4 weeks time inviting me to attend the ceremony.
So, I am also an Australian citizen now. So quick! Only took me 15 minutes.
Here is one advice for people who want to become Australian citizens. Make friends with your GP or a dentist, you’ll find they will help you a lot when you apply for the citizenship.