Australian Border Visa (Subclass 773)

Flying from Auckland International Aiport to Manila via connecting flight to Sydney International Airport has brought forth one unexpected journey.  The Qantas plane we boarded is delayed for under 2 hours due to some issue. As the issue can’t be resolved in a timely manner, we were offloaded and transferred to another flight. 
As it turned out, everyone missed the connecting flight through Sydney. The boarding gate has been closed the moment we landed.  Twenty passengers has been dismayed by this.
But out of this delay, comes great perks! Qantas rebooked the flight the next day. All expense paid accommodation at Rydges Hotel and $50 dining voucher.
Some of us does not have any visa to enter Australia.  As such the immigration officer has to process a visa for each individual.
Border (Temporary) (Class TA) (Subclass 773) Visa
That’s the specific name of visa given on the same day as we need to exit the airport and check-in the Rydges Hotel few steps away from the airport.  I haven’t planned of getting any visa yet to Australia as there are no plans to really visit the country.   The visit visa processing is worth NZD180 which is valid for 1 year.
Blessing indeed that we got something positive out of a flight delay. The visa is valid for 3 days.  No stamps necessary.  The visa is stored electronically.
The Unplanned Excursion
What can you do in Sydney for one day? The train network is fascinating, quite similar with Singapore.  After we checked-in at the hotel, we headed back to the airport to catch a train going to Circular Quay.  It is in the heart of the city where the famous Sydney Opera House is.
The AirportLink Sydney’s Airport Train originates from the International Airport. An AUD36.50 return ticket from Airport to Circular Quay valid up to 4am the following day. It’s a double-decker train with reversible seating position. Quite amusing.  The travel time is just under 20 minutes. I’m not sure if the price is a rip-off though;)

Sydney Opera House and the Harbour Bridge

 From the Circular Quay station, one will be able to see the Opera House. People frequent this place situated at the edge of the harbor. During the visit, there is a light show by Vivid Sydney. In the show, video projections are aimed at the tiled roofing of the colossal structure Opera House.  The show starts at 6PM.  To get the best vantage point, the MCA (Museum of Contemporary Arts) rooftop is the best place.  As it’s winter, prepare for the chilly breeze outside.
Opposite the Opera House across the water is the Harbour Bridge.