The Census includes all people who are in Australia on Census Night, except diplomats from overseas countries. The ABS counts people wherever they happen to be on Census Night.
The Count includes Australia's internal and external Territories on Census Night.
Australian citizens and residents who are out of the country on Census Night are out of the scope of the Census.
Specifically, the Census includes:
- Peoples of the Torres Strait Islands (Counts are coordinated by the Queensland ABS Office).
- Peoples of the Territories of Cocos (Keeling) Islands and Christmas Island - following the enactment of the Territories Reform Act 1992, the results for these Territories were included in the counts for Australia for the first time in 1996 (Counts are coordinated from the Western Australian ABS office).
- People who are "overwintering" in the Australian Antarctic Territory (The count is coordinated from the Tasmanian ABS office.)
- Overseas visitors to Australia, regardless of how long they've been in the country or how long they plan to stay. This includes students from overseas studying in Australia. (Special Collectors are appointed in hotels, motels, guest houses, hostels, resorts etc. Customs officers assist with the distribution of information about the Census on Census day).
Homeless people (Each state and territory ABS office seeks the assistance of organisations servicing the homeless population in order to ensure homeless people are counted).
People outside but normally resident in Australia who are not subject to outbound migration formalities, such as those on oil and gas rigs off the Australian coast. (ABS offices coordinate counts with the companies concerned. Forms can be sent over on company helicopters for example).
All children, including newborn babies born on Census Night before midnight (hospitals are briefed about the requirements).
People working or living on boats in Australian waters; (ABS works with companies and ports to ensure counts are undertaken).
People in detention centres; (Census counts are taken from administrative information).
People in jail; (Census counts are taken from administrative information).
Transport drivers on the road; (ABS works with transport companies to ensure drivers are aware of requirements and also has forms available in roadhouses in more remote areas).
Naval personnel on board ships away from Australia; (ABS works with the Defence Forces to ensure all personnel are included in the Census).
People in hospitals and institutions; (ABS appoints special Collectors to undertake Census work).