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  • Zone tax offset

    Remote areas

    Remote areas are divided into two zones called Zone A and Zone B. There are also special areas within these zones. You will need to work out which zone (A or B) or special area you are in, because different zone allowances apply to each of these areas.

    From 1 July 2015, to be eligible for the zone tax offset your normal residence must be in a zone.

    Selected localities are listed within the zones or special areas. There are also other locations that may be in a zone or special area.

    Locations that are within 250 radial kilometres of the asterisked (*) locations are also in the relevant zone.

    Zone A

    Western Australia

    Northern Territory


    • Bidyadanga (Lagrange)
    • Broome*
    • Carnarvon
    • Dampier
    • Derby
    • Goldsworthy
    • Karratha
    • Marble Bar
    • Newman*
    • Pannawonica
    • Paraburdoo
    • Port Hedland*
    • Roebourne
    • Shay Gap
    • Tom Price*
    • Wittenoom


    • Alice Springs*
    • Batchelor
    • Darwin
    • Hermannsburg
    • Katherine*
    • Pine Creek
    • Santa Teresa
    • Tindal


    • Camooweal
    • Cloncurry
    • Mount Isa*


    Zone B

    Western Australia

    New South Wales


    South Australia


    • Boulder
    • Coolgardie
    • Esperance
    • Kalgoorlie*
    • Kambalda
    • Leonora
    • Mullewa
    • Norseman
    • Northampton
    • Ravensthorpe
    • Southern Cross


    • Bourke
    • Brewarrina
    • Broken Hill
    • Cobar
    • Collarenebri
    • Lightning Ridge
    • Menindee
    • Wilcannia


    • Airlie Beach
    • Atherton
    • Augathella
    • Ayr
    • Barcaldine
    • Blackall
    • Bowen
    • Cairns
    • Cardwell
    • Charleville
    • Charters Towers
    • Clifton Beach
    • Collinsville
    • Coppabella
    • Cunnamulla
    • Greenvale
    • Home Hill
    • Ingham
    • Innisfail
    • Longreach
    • Mackay
    • Mareeba
    • Mossman
    • Port Douglas
    • Proserpine
    • Quilpie
    • Sarina
    • Tambo
    • Townsville
    • Tully
    • Winton


    • Woomera


    • Queenstown
    • Rosebery


    Special areas

    Western Australia

    Northern Territory


    • Balladonia
    • Deakin
    • Denham
    • Eucla
    • Exmouth
    • Fitzroy Crossing
    • Halls Creek
    • Kununurra
    • Laverton
    • Leinster
    • Madura
    • Meekatharra
    • Mount Magnet
    • Onslow
    • Rawlinna
    • Turkey Creek (Bow River)
    • Wiluna
    • Wyndham


    • Alyangula
    • Angurugu
    • Borroloola
    • Elliott
    • Galiwinku
    • Jabiru
    • Lajamanu/ Hooker Creek
    • Maningrida
    • Milikapiti
    • Milingimbi
    • Nguiu
    • Ngukurr
    • Nhulunbuy (Gove)
    • Numbulwar
    • Oenpelli
    • Papunyah
    • Ramingining
    • Tennant Creek
    • Yirrkala
    • Yuendumu
    • Yulara


    • Boulia
    • Burketown
    • Cooktown
    • Doomadgee
    • Geogretown
    • Helen Vale
    • Hughenden
    • Julia Creek
    • Karumba
    • Kowanyama
    • Normanton
    • Stamford
    • Thargomindah
    • Weipa
    • Windorah


    Special areas (continued)

    South Australia

    Islands and territories


    • Amata Aboriginal Community
    • Coober Pedy
    • Cook
    • Innamincka
    • Leigh Creek
    • Marree
    • Nullarbor
    • Oodnadatta
    • Penong
    • Roxby Downs
    • Tarcoola


    • Australian Antarctic Territory
    • Cocos (keeling Islands)
    • Heard Island
    • Lord Howe Island
    • Macquarie Island
    • McDonald Islands
    • Norfolk Island
    • Palm Isles Group


    • Furneaux Group Islands
    • King Island


    Conditions you need to meet

    If your usual place of residence is in a remote area, you also need to meet the following conditions to qualify for a zone tax offset.

    You must live in a remote area (not necessarily continuously) for either:

    • 183 days or more during 2019–20, or
    • 183 days or more during the period 1 July 2018 – 30 June 2020 (including at least one day in this financial year) and you did not claim a zone tax offset in your 2018–19 tax return.

    If you live in a zone for less than 183 days in 2019–20, you may still be able to claim a tax offset if you meet each of the following three conditions:

    • you lived in a zone for a continuous period of less than five years after 1 July 2014
    • the total of the days you were there in the first year and in 2019–20 is 183 or more
    • you could not claim a zone tax offset in that first year because you were there less than 183 days.


    Gary lived in a remote area from 1 March 2015 to 30 September 2019, a continuous period of less than five years. He could not claim a zone tax offset for the first year because he had lived there for only 122 days. However, he could carry forward these unused days to 2019–20.

    He now adds the number of days from 1 March 2015 to 30 June 2015 (122) and the number of days from 1 July 2019 to 30 September 2019 (92). Because the total (214) is more than 183 days (over the two financial years), Gary can claim the tax offset in his 2019–20 tax return.

    End of example

    If you do not meet the above time conditions, you cannot claim the zone tax offset.

    A search facility of towns falling in Zones A and B, as well as the special areas in the zones, is available from Australian zone list.

    Conditions you need to meet

    You may be eligible for an overseas forces tax offset if you serve in a specified overseas locality as a member of the Australian Defence Force or a United Nations armed force in 2019–20, and income relating to that service is not specifically exempt from tax. Periods of service for which your income is exempt foreign employment income are excluded in working out your eligibility for the tax offset. Your employer can advise you whether you serve in a locality that qualifies for the overseas forces tax offset.

    Find out about:

    To claim the full tax offset, you must serve in the overseas locality for 183 days or more in 2019–20. Unlike the zone tax offset, you cannot carry forward any unused days from previous years to make up 183. However, if your overseas service is less than 183 days, you may be able to claim part of the tax offset.

    You may still be entitled to claim the full overseas forces tax offset if you serve in an overseas locality for less than 183 days and the total number of days served, when added to the number of days spent in one or more zones, is 183 days or more. If you served as a member of the Australian Defence Force, days spent in a zone must be defence force service.

    If you qualify for both an overseas forces tax offset and a zone tax offset, you can only claim one of them. Claim the higher value offset.

    Last modified: 03 Jul 2019QC 37720