Airsoft guns are ideal for wannabe soldiers as well as those who are already in the military, since they’re a great way to practice your gun handling skills without any real danger. But for those of you that live down under, are airsoft guns legal in Australia? What about the sport of airsoft?
Are airsoft guns legal in Australia? No, airsoft guns are not currently legal in Australia. That is because the markers on an airsoft gun too closely resemble a real firearm and may be mistaken as such.
If you’re ready to take on an airsoft excursion in Australia, you might have to think twice. Australia has some pretty fairly strict laws against airsoft and airsoft guns, at least currently.
The best thing to do is educate yourself on whether or not airsoft guns are legal in Australia. And that’s what the goal of this blog is. Below, you will find useful information about everything regarding airsoft guns being legal (or illegal) in Australia.
Airsoft Down Under: Are Airsoft Guns Legal in Australia?
No, airsoft guns are not legal in Australia. This can be somewhat confusing since Australia allows paintballing and paintball guns. And if you have ever played paintball and airsoft, you would know that a paintball shot is far more harmful.
However, it is important to note that even though paintball guns are legal, Australians must still do the following:
- Be over the age of 18
- Pass a fit and proper person assessment
- Take mandatory paintball marker safety training
So how come the same is not true for airsoft guns? Well, that’s where it gets a little hazy. While some avid airsoft players might think they could use the same rules and regulations on airsoft guns, Australia sees things a bit differently.
Why Are Airsoft Guns Illegal in Australia?
The main reason why airsoft guns are banned in Australia is that airsoft guns have distinct markers that represent those found on real firearms. And, since Australian lawmakers classified anything that replicates a gun as a real firearm, airsoft guns are included.
Some of the more in-depth reasons for making airsoft guns illegal in Australia include:
- Fear – Some people may be fearful of guns, even toy guns that replicate real firearms.
- Acceptance of real guns – Certain Australian lawmakers and gun control advocates believe that allowing airsoft guns is showing approval for other types of (real) guns to be allowed as well.
- Influencing crime – It is also believed that allowing airsoft guns could increase crime, as airsoft guns may be used to commit crimes. This is a rarity but is a major reason why airsoft guns are banned in Australia.
While these are just some of the reasons behind the airsoft ban, many avid airsoft players are looking to get this law changed in Australia. They believe that airsoft guns are no different from paintball guns and should be treated as such.
Is Airsoft Legal in Australia?
No. Just as airsoft guns are not legal in Australia, neither is the sport of airsoft.
So, why is airsoft illegal in Australia?
This ban has nothing to do with actual gameplay. Instead, the focus is (again) on the guns. Since airsoft guns resemble real firearms, it’s easiest for Australian lawmakers to ban the sport altogether.
Are Paintball Guns Legal in Australia?
Surprisingly, paintball guns are legal in Australia. Again, this brings about a lot of confusion as to why another toy firearm for play and sport is banned while these remain legal in Australia.
However, the reasons remain the same.
Paintball guns do not have the same markers as real firearms, so they are not a threat in the eyes of Australian lawmakers. Of course, this doesn’t mean they are safer by any means. Paintball guns shoot ten times faster and cause more damage than airsoft guns.
Is It Legal to Own an Airsoft Gun in Australia?
Again, the law gets hazy when it comes to owning instead of actually operating an airsoft gun. It is actually legal to own an airsoft gun in Australia. To do so, you will need to do a few things, including:
- Apply for a firearm license
- Fill out an Australian Customs’ B709 Importation of Firearms certificate
Even with the required documents, you likely will not be approved to own the airsoft gun anyway. In fact, many models are banned outright for certain things such as folding stocks, detachable stocks, guns equipped for fully automatic fire, or those resembling machine guns.
So, basically, owning an airsoft gun in Australia is near impossible, and why would you want to own one anyway? Airsoft is currently illegal in Australia until further notice.