Other Australian Flags


Flag Day Message from John Eales


We have been receiving queries about appropriate flag protocol for Anzac Day commemorations - particularly when flying the Australian flag with other flags including the NZ flag. There has also been uncertainty about how and when to fly the flags at half-mast.

Flags are flown at half-mast as a sign of mourning. The half-mast position will depend on the size of the flag and the length of the flagpole. The flag must be lowered to a position recognisably half-mast to avoid the appearance of a flag which has accidentally fallen away from the top of the flagpole. An acceptable position would be when the top of the flag is a third of the distance down from the top of the flagpole. 

In relation to Anzac Day the Australian National Flag (ANF is to be flown at half mast from sunrise until 1200 hours on Anzac Day. However, during individual Anzac Day ceremonies, the ANF is to be half masted and then raised to the peak during the playing of ‘Reveille’ at the conclusion of the service. 

The flag should never be flown at half-mast at night even if it is illuminated. When flying the Australian National Flag with other flags, all flags in the set should be flown at half-mast. The Australian National Flag should be raised first and lowered last.

Flag order of precedence

The Australian National Flag takes precedence in Australia over all other flags when it is flown in company with other flags.

The flag order of precedence is as follows:

  1. ANF,
  2. other nations national flags in alphabetical order, e.g. New Zealand, United Kingdom, and United States,
  3. State flags (NSW, VIC, QLD, SA, WA and TAS),
  4. Territory flags (ACT and NT),
  5. Other flags prescribed by the Flags Act 1953, e.g. Australian Aboriginal Flag and Torres Strait Islander Flag,
  6. Australian Defence Force Ensign (ADFE),
  7. Australian White Ensign (AWE),
  8. Royal Australian Air Force Ensign (RAAF Ensign), and
  9. Merchant Marine. 


 In the absence of a flag or flags higher in the order, a flag shall follow the flag being flown that is higher in the order.

The order of precedence does not require that a flag listed in the order must be flown in company with other flags in the order. 

Acknowledgement: Department of Prime Minister & Cabinet, Department of Defence.


For information about flag protocol and etiquette,
 look under the "How To Fly the Flag" tab on this site.
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The Australian National Flag
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Flag History Timeline

Click a specific section on the timeline below to view further flag details for that era.

 1901-1919  1920-1939 1940-1959


A convincing majority of Kiwis (56.6% to 43.2%) have affirmed their support for the current flag.

The noisy minority in our country who want to tear down Australia’s flag should take heed of the NZ experience.  It is much easier to denigrate what we have now than it is to come up with an acceptable alternative.

Given that opinion polls show our flag to be more popular than ever, seeking to change it would start an unnecessary debate in Australia that would be very divisive.

Many flags have elements or features in common.  How many Australians would recognise the flag of our most populous and significant neighbour – Indonesia?  Well its flag is identical to that of Monaco, and similar to that of Singapore (apart from the addition of a crescent and stars).

 Fly our Flag with Pride!

 Few Australians know the unique and proud story of our flag –the only national flag to fly over an entire continent, but also the first to be chosen in an open public competition. Following federation in 1901, the new Commonwealth government arranged a competition to choose a flag for the new nation, and entries were submitted from nearly 1% of the population at that time. Five people tied for the honour of designing the Australian flag - Annie Dorrington, Ivor Evans, Leslie Hawkins, Egbert Nuttall, and William Stevens.  The winning design was unveiled on 3 September, which has been officially proclaimed as Australian National Flag Day. 


We’re all proud of our country and we can fly our flag to show it!


Historical Australian Flags