News, Culture & Society

Daylight savings Australia: Do clocks go forward or backwards on Sunday? 

Summer is approaching! Daylight savings begins on Sunday

  • Daylight saving begins at 2am on Sunday, October 3, 2021; this weekend 
  • Clocks will move forward one hour, gaining an hour of sunlight in the evening 
  • Only observed in NSW, Victoria, South Australia, Tasmania and the ACT
  • Experts say daylight savings can disrupt sleep cycles for a week or longer
  • Calling to end time change due to health concerns linked with daylight savings


Daylight savings is about to begin for Australians in NSW, Victoria, South Australia, Tasmania and the ACT as clocks go forward this weekend.

Residents will gain an hour of evening sunlight as daylight savings starts in the early hours on Sunday, October 3 when clocks move forward one hour. 

They will also lose an hour of morning sunshine when it begins from 2am AEDT.

Western Australia, Queensland and the Northern Territory do not observe daylight savings. 

Daylight savings starts from 2am on Sunday, October 3 2021 for NSW, TAS, ACT, SA and VIC

During this six month daylight saving period, the country is split into five time zones. 

Daylight savings is observed from the first Sunday in October when clocks turn forward and hour and end on the first Sunday in April when clocks go backwards an hour.

Most smartphones and computers automatically update the time but other devices such as analog clocks, alarm clocks, cars and microwaves will need to be updated manually. 

Some experts warn that the one hour time change can impact sleep and circadian rhythm longer than just the hour lost overnight.    

‘Experimental data suggests a cumulative effect of sleep loss lasting for at least the following week and sometimes longer,’ University of Sydney’s School of Physics Dr Sveta Postnova said to 7 News. 

A recent survey from ResMed Sleep Health says one in four Australians already do not get enough sleep and nearly half of the adult population have difficulty with sleep three or more nights a week.   

Clocks will move forward an hour from 2pm, with most smartphones and devices automatically changing the time difference. Other analog clocks and appliances may need to be changed manually

Clocks will move forward an hour from 2pm, with most smartphones and devices automatically changing the time difference. Other analog clocks and appliances may need to be changed manually 

‘The spring forward can actually present significant sleep health issues for some of us,’ ResMed’s Dr Carmel Harrington said.

‘We may gain another hour of daylight, but our body clock is not so quick in its adjustment and we will find it harder to go to sleep that hour earlier and find it difficult to wake up that hour earlier.’

She recommends waking up and going to bed earlier on Saturday to help adjust your body to the time difference and to make the bedroom bright to help wake up. 

Being called the world’s foremost authority on Daylight Saving Time (DST), Dr David Prerau believes it can promote better physical health as well as help to reduce street crime.      

Residents in the areas that observe daylight savings will gain an hour of evening sunlight but will lose an hour of sunlight in the morning

Residents in the areas that observe daylight savings will gain an hour of evening sunlight but will lose an hour of sunlight in the morning

‘(It will) reduce energy usage, increase economic activity and provide most people a better quality of life,’ Dr Prerau told AAP last year.

Despite these benefits, some medical experts have been calling for daylight savings to be scrapped with concerns turning the clocks forward could have a negative impact on health. 

Paul Zimmet, a Melbourne professor at the Monash University Department of Diabetes, raised concerns that health risks linked with losing an hour of sleep when the clocks go forward could be made worse by the Covid-19 pandemic.     

‘In terms of the scientific evidence, which we will want to stick with at the moment, there are more heart attacks just after daylight saving, more road accidents, and then you’ve got workplace accidents, car accidents and their implications,’ he told 3AW last year. 

Daylight savings was first introduced into some parts of the world during World War I under the idea it would save fuel through using less electricity.

Research has shown that any impact daylight saving has on energy consumption is insignificant.   

Experts say daylight savings can disrupt sleep cycles for a week or longer, with some calling to end the change to daylight savings due to health concerns linked with the clocks moving forward

Experts say daylight savings can disrupt sleep cycles for a week or longer, with some calling to end the change to daylight savings due to health concerns linked with the clocks moving forward

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk