Important information: changed permit processes - COVID-19

Permit Application and Assessment Fees (PAAF)

Waiver of Fees: The waiving of permit-related fees has been extended until the 30 June 2022. The Authority acknowledges that travel bans and work restrictions associated with the outbreak of COVID-19 have placed severe financial hardship on businesses who use and access the Great Barrier Reef.

Reasonable use for special tourism permissions

On 10 June 2020 the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Board approved the suspension of the reasonable use latency provision (clause 16) of the Managing Tourism Permissions to Operate in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Policy for 18 months (1 March 2020–30 September 2021). Visitation data from this period will not be included in future reasonable use assessments, unless it is of benefit to the permit holder. For more information visit the Special Tourism Permissions page.

Useful COVID-19 links include: Changes to the Environmental Management Charge across all charge categories from 1 April 2020 to 30 June 2022.

Guide for Current Permit Holders

A new guide for current permit holders is now available. The guide was developed with the Queensland Department of Environment and Science to help current permit holders navigate the sometimes confusing waters of permits, understand how to be a responsible permit holder and know the general requirements when operating in the Marine Parks.

Permissions in General

Some commercial activities and operations occurring in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park and the Great Barrier Reef (Coast) Marine Park require a permit. Permits are granted by the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority and the Queensland Department of Environment and Science through a joint permission system.

The permission system regulates activities that require permission or accreditation under Australian and Queensland government acts, regulations and the Zoning Plan.

The Permission System Policy outlines the approach to managing the permission system within the Marine Parks. A Service Charter for the permission system is available and information about current applications, recent decisions, and current permits. Guidelines assist applicants seeking permission to undertake activities in the Marine Parks and guide staff assessing the applications:

New online application portal

Permits Online is a new online application portal that has been launched to allow applicants to submit Marine Parks permit applications and to manage their existing permits and contact details.

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Permits online

We have more detailed information on how to apply.

For clarification on any matters relating to the permission system, contact:


Phone our permits hotline on (07) 4750 0860 (between 9am and 2pm, Monday, Wednesday and Friday).