What Is Daylight Saving (DST) In Australia: A Complete Guide

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Students want to know what daylight saving in Australia is and what the benefits are.


Daylight Saving Time happens in some Australian states and territories during summer. It involves advancing clocks by an hour to use natural daylight better. 


Whether you are a local or a visitor, this guide covers all you need to know about daylight saving (DST) in Australia - its purpose, benefits and drawbacks, its start and end dates, the rules and regulations concerning DST in Australia, and how it affects businesses and individuals.



1. What is Daylight Saving Time?


Daylight Saving Time, or DST, is observed in specific states and territories in Australia during the warmer months when the days are longer.


The practice involves advancing the clocks by 1 hour during DST so that people can enjoy an extra hour of daylight in the evening.



2. Who Invented Daylight Savings Time?


In 1895, New Zealand astronomer George Hudson invented the idea of resetting clocks forward one hour in spring and back one hour in fall. However, it was first applied by the residents of Port Arthur, Canada, in 1908.



3. How Many Countries Use Daylight Savings Time?


You may be surprised that Australia isn't the only country that observes DST. Seventy countries worldwide participate in daylight saving in some form. Still, the dates on which it is observed can vary widely.


Some countries currently use DST include:


  • In the United States, 

  • Mexico, 

  • Canada,

  • In most countries in Europe (except Russia and Belarus), 

  • Australia, 

  • New Zealand and many countries in the Middle East and South America 


It is important to note that the decision to use DST is formed at the regional or national level. Not all regions in a country may observe DST. Some countries have recently discontinued DST due to its adverse impacts on health and productivity.



4. How DST Came Into Practice In Australia?


Let us look at the history of Daylight-Saving Time in Australia.


Australia first observed DST in 1916 for 62 years, between 1916 and 2023. On October 2, 1916, Tasmania became the first state in Australia to use DST. In 1917, all Australian states and territories followed this practice. 


However, the DST measure was removed in the entire country in 1918. The seasonal change was again introduced during World War II, from 1942 to 1944.


DST was not implemented in any Australian state or territory when the war ended until October 1, 1967. Tasmania reintroduced the measure during a drought; the state has continued the practice.


In 1971, New South Wales, Australian Capital Territory, Victoria, South Australia, and Queensland followed Tasmania. Queensland stopped following DST in 1972, except for the trial between 1989 and 1992. 


Western Australia performed a DST trial between 2006 and 2009. However, it got abandoned due to its unpopularity. The Northern Territory hasn't implemented the DST practice since 1944.



5. What Is The Point Of Daylight Savings?


The main point of Daylight Saving Time is to extend the number of daylight hours in the evening, usually during the summer and spring months.


By setting the clocks ahead by 1 hour in the spring, people can enjoy an additional hour of daylight in the evening. They can use this extra time for several activities, such as socializing, outdoor recreation, and shopping.


DST was introduced to save energy and electricity usage, as it was believed that longer daylight hours would lessen the requirement for artificial lighting. 


It also positively impacts road safety that helps reduce the number of accidents during the evening hours. DST practice also boosts the economy by stimulating tourism and consumer spending during extended daylight hours.


Though the energy-saving benefits of DST have been controversial over the years, the practice has remained popular in several areas of the world for its perceived benefits for recreation, commerce, and lifestyle.



6. In Which States Is Daylight Saving (DLS) Observed In Australia?


Out of 8 Australian states, Daylight saving is observed in Norfolk Island territory and five states, such as:


  • New South Wales

  • South Australia

  • Victoria, Tasmania

  • The Australian Capital Territory

  • Tasmania



Daylight savings in Victoria will be as follows:


On April 2, 2023, Daylight Saving Time will end. When local daylight time is going to reach, the following time adjustment happens.


  • Sunday, April 2, 2023, 03:00:00 clocks are turned backward 1 hour to Sunday, April 2, 2023, 02:00:00 local standard time instead.

  • Sunrise and sunset will be around one hour earlier on April 2, 2023, than the previous day. It implies that there will be more light in the morning.



On October 1, 2023, Daylight Saving Time begins. When local standard time is going to reach, the following time adjustment happens.


  • Sunday, October 1, 2023, 02:00:00 clocks are turned forward 1 hour to Sunday, October 1, 2023, 03:00:00 local daylight time instead.

  • Sunrise and sunset will be around one hour later on October 1, 2023, than the previous day. It implies more light in the evening.



The same DST time adjustment applies to New South WalesSouth AustraliaTasmania, and the Australian Capital Territory.



7. What Three States Do Not Participate In Daylight Savings Time? 


Daylight saving doesn't apply to the remaining three states, Queensland, the Northern Territory, Western Australia, and territories like Christmas Island or the Cocos (Keeling) Islands.



8. Do Clocks Go Forward Or Back Australia?


Yes. In most regions of Australia, DST starts at 2 am on the first Sunday of October when you move the clocks one hour forward.


It ends at 2 am (which is 3 am Daylight Saving Time) on the first Sunday of April the following year when you move the clocks one hour back.



9. Is Daylight Saving Ending In Australia?


Start time and End dates of Daylight Saving in Australia from 2022 to 2025:


Year DST Begins at 2 am.

Standard Time
DST Ends at 3 am.

Daylight Saving Time

2022 - 2023

October 2, 2022

April 2, 2023

2023 - 2024

October 1, 2023

April 7, 2024

2024 - 2025

October 6, 2024

April 6, 2025



10. What Is The Benefit Of Daylight Saving?


Do you know why daylight saving happens in Australia? Here are a few reasons for it:


  • People can use natural daylight better by extending daylight into the evening.

  • DST can help people save energy and lessen their dependency on artificial lighting.

  • Another benefit of DST is increased outdoor activity. Longer daylight hours can motivate people to spend more time in outdoor physical activities, such as exercise, sports, and recreation.

  • Furthermore, longer daylight hours can encourage people to engage in outdoor activities such as shopping, dining, and tourism. It will, in turn, boost the country's economy.

  • Improved safety is another benefit of DST, as increased daylight hours provide more natural light to help drivers navigate the roads.



11. Are There Any Drawbacks Of Daylight Saving?


Yes. Longer daylight hours can lead to some potential drawbacks, such as:


  • Disruption of sleep patterns can result in fatigue and adverse impacts on mood, productivity, and health.

  • Studies suggest that DST can negatively impact health and safety, including higher chances of strokes, car accidents, and heart attacks.  

  • The practice of DST can confuse people, especially those who live close to state borders or often travel between states that observe different time zones.

  • DST can negatively impact agriculture as it can disrupt farmers' schedules. As animals may take longer to adjust to the time change, it can make it more challenging for farmers to manage livestock and crops.


Note: As the above impacts of DST can vary based on the location and the specific circumstances, all of these impacts are not experienced equally by everyone.



12. What Does One Do To Adjust Time According To DST Rules?


Suppose you live in states and territories that recognize DST. In that case, you must forward your clock by an hour on the first Sunday of October and move it backward on the first Sunday of April.  


On the other hand, you don't need to do anything if you live in states and territories where. Those regions don't practice DST.


There is no need to change the time on your mobile as the mobile network provider automatically adjusts it.



13. How Does DLS Impact People?


No scientific findings prove that it leads to a severe threat to a person. However, it is natural for your body to take some time to adjust to the new timing.


In some people, daylight saving can disturb sleeping patterns, appetite, and food habits and make one feel tired temporarily.



14. Do We Lose Or Gain An Hour Sleep Australia?


On the first Sunday of October, the clocks advance by 1 hour at 2:00 am, and the day becomes 1 hour shorter. It implies that you "lose" one hour of sleep when the clock jumps from 2:00 am to 3:00 am. 


On the other hand, on the first Sunday of April the following year, clocks are set back by 1 hour at 3:00 am, and the day becomes one hour longer. It implies that you will "gain" 1 hour of sleep as the clock reset to 2:00 am.


As the states of Western Australia, Queensland, and the Northern Territory don't observe DST, residents won't experience any gain or loss of time. 



15. Will NSW Stop Daylight Savings?


NSW practice Daylight savings each year, and no immediate plans exist to halt the practice.


It usually starts on the first Sunday of October, when clocks move forward by 1 hour, and ends on the first Sunday of April the following year, when clocks go back by 1 hour.


However, you must note that not all areas in NSW follow DST practice. Lord Howe Island, which lies off the east coast of Australia, observes DST, but the start and end date differ from the rest of the state.


Any DST modifications in NSW would require the state government to take legislative action. Currently, there are no plans to amend the existing DST schedule.



16. Which States Have Daylight Savings In Australia?


The following five states in Australia practice daylight savings:


  • New South Wales

  • South Australia

  • Victoria

  • Tasmania

  • The Australian Capital Territory



17. Why Doesn't Queensland Have Daylight Savings?


Queensland is one of the states in Australia that doesn't observe Daylight Saving Time for the following reasons:


  • Climate: As the state has warm and sunny weather, the need for long daylight hours is less during the warmer months. Extending daylight hours can pose problems for people to work and sleep during the hottest hours of the day.


  • Economic Factors: Certain businesses in Queensland argue that the implementation cost of DST would outweigh the likely benefits, such as energy savings and increased tourism.


  • Lifestyle: For people who live in Queensland, their outdoor lifestyle holds a lot of importance. They may prefer longer daylight hours in the morning than the evening to enable them to engage in activities such as fishing, golfing, and surfing.


  • Agricultural Industry: Queensland is known for its significant agricultural sector. Many farmers are concerned about DST's effect on the timing of farming operations, such as harvesting, shearing, and milking.


So, these were some of the reasons why Queensland does not observe DST.



18. What Would Happen If Daylight Savings Time Was Permanent?


If Daylight Saving Time were made permanent, the clocks would not get readjusted to standard time in colder months. The result will be that people will experience longer daylight hours in the evening throughout the year. 


It can lead to favourable and unfavourable effects on several aspects of life, which are as follows.


Potential benefits of making DST permanent:


  • More energy savings

  • Low need for artificial lighting that reduces greenhouse gas emissions.

  • Better road safety during the winter months when visibility is poorer.

  • Better health and well-being due to increased outdoor recreation and physical activity opportunities. 


Potential negative impacts of making DST permanent:


  • Disrupted sleep patterns could result in fatigue and adversely impact mood, health, and productivity.

  • Disturb farmers' schedules and make crop and livestock management difficult.

  • Lack of clarity over time changes among frequent travellers



19. Why Don't Scientists Do Daylight Savings Time?


DST is a policy decision made by governments and lawmakers, and scientists don't have control over the execution or discontinuation of this practice. 


Though some scientists study the impact of DST on human productivity, health, and other factors, the decision to implement or stop the DST practice depends on various cultural, political, and economic factors beyond scientific research's scope.


While some studies show the positive impacts on energy savings, road safety, and other factors, there are a few concerns about the harmful effects of DST on productivity and sleep patterns.


The decision to continue or stop DST is based on various complex factors and has mixed evidence; it is not practical to go by scientific proof or recommendations.



20. Conclusion


While Daylight Saving Time practice can be confusing, learning about its rules in your area can assist individuals and businesses in better adjusting to the time change and ensure a smooth transition.


We hope the above tips and guidelines help you make the most of your DST experience in Australia and relish the advantages of more daylight hours.


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