A Bridging visa B (BVB) is a temporary visa. It lets you leave and return to Australia while your application for a substantive visa is being processed. If you return to Australia within the specified travel period, you can then remain lawfully in Australia while your substantive visa application is being processed.
A substantive visa is any visa which is not a bridging visa or a criminal justice visa or an enforcement visa. You can hold a substantive visa and a BVB at the same time.
If you still hold a substantive visa that allows you to travel and you believe you can return to Australia before your substantive visa ends, it is your decision whether or not you want to apply for and be granted a BVB before you travel
You should apply for your BVB no more than three months, and not less than two weeks, before the date on which you want to travel.
Some visas can only be granted while you are in Australia. If you apply for a BVB too far in advance of your travel, it could be difficult for us to assess whether your substantive visa will be ready for decision.
If you leave it until the last minute to apply for a BVB, you risk not being granted a BVB before you are due to leave Australia. If this happens, you might not hold a visa that allows you to return to Australia. You would then have to apply for and be granted a substantive visa before you could return to Australia. There is no guarantee that you would be granted a visa.
A BVB allows you to leave and return to Australia during a specified period of time while your substantive visa application is being processed. When deciding the specified travel period, we consider your reasons for travel and when your substantive visa application is likely to be decided. Once you have been granted a BVB, the specified travel period cannot be changed or extended