It might seem to be a cute gimmick, however photos of native animals hidden all through Australia’s new passports are literally a hi-tech passport safety characteristic.
The Australian Passport Office has begun rolling out its progressive new “R Series” passports, that are “packed with advanced security features designed to keep Australians’ identities safe” – together with the “secret” Australian animals which solely emerge when considered beneath ultraviolet mild, Escape stories.
If you’re making use of for a brand new passport in 2023, it’s possible you’ll obtain the R Series passport reasonably than the earlier “P Series”, which has been in use since 2014.
The new passports are safer and extra sturdy, with the photograph web page now manufactured from powerful, layered plastic, referred to as polycarbonate – making them much less vulnerable to break.
The passport workplace says the new-look passports will not be solely jam-packed with hi-tech improvements, but additionally are visually beautiful, with every e-book containing 17 prints of iconic Australian landscapes which remodel into nightscapes beneath ultraviolet mild.
The workplace has launched a video (above) demonstrating the brand new passport’s elaborate design, which makes the paperwork more durable to forge.
But the upgraded safety measures do come at a worth. Australian travellers are being slugged document charges for passports in 2023.
At a steep $325, up from $308 in 2022, Australian passports are among the many world’s costliest.
In comparability, New Zealanders pay about $NZ199 (about $A180), the British pay £85 (about $140), and a Portuguese passport prices simply €65 (about $100).
The worth hike for Aussie travellers comes after unprecedented demand for passports in 2022 led to very large blowouts in processing occasions.
For these receiving a brand new passport in 2023, there’s one inclusion which will shock you – a point out of the Queen, reasonably than King Charles, will initially stay.
The Department of Foreign Affairs instructed 9 News that pages for a couple of million R Series had already been printed earlier than the demise of Her Majesty the Queen.
Australian passports rank among the many strongest in 2023 – with entry to 185 visa-free locations in keeping with the Henley Passport Index.
Japan was named the world’s strongest passport.
This article initially appeared on Escape and was reproduced with permission