moving to a new country, it’s really wise to do some preparation in advance. Migrants entering Australia are often surprised at the lifestyle here and the
different approach to how things are done.
the medical system and even driving may not be what you’re used to. Here at Visa Solutions Australia, we’ve come
up with some top guidance to help you settle and to learn a little more about
the way we do things here.
1. 1) Cost of
The cost of
living in Australia is generally higher than in Europe, but a lot depends on
the exchange rate. Food and groceries are a little more expensive along with
electricity, although in recent times people have invested in solar panels
which helps to bring the costs down. Prices
of houses vary from city to city; public transport is very reliable and cheap
and petrol is slightly cheaper than other worldwide destinations. Wages are higher to compensate for the cost of living. To find out
more go to numbeo.com which gives a detailed breakdown of costs.
2. 2) Education
most other countries, Australia has both a public (state) and private system of
schooling. West Australia probably has
more private schools than most other states. To attend a public school, you’ll
need to live within the catchment area.
start school at kindy level which is age five and most complete year 12 by age
18. Academic students will take an ATAR
and go onto university with others going to a technical college to learn a
If you are
here on a visa you will have to pay state school fees which can be up to $4,000
a year. If you become a permanent resident, although state schools are
technically free, you will still be expected to make contributions up to $1,200
a year per student.
school fees cost anywhere between $8,000 and $23,000 a year and can be 50%
higher for non-residents. Most of the private schools are affiliated to a religious
denomination. Of all the private (independent schools in Australia), 94% have a
religious affiliation according to recent figures from the Independent Schools
Council of Australia.
3. 3) Driving
If you want
to drive in Australia, you’ll need a state driving licence. In WA, permanent residents must get their licence
within the first three months of arrival. Australians can drive on the left-hand
side of the road. Check the speed limits
as police are very strict on those who flout the law. Most built up areas are
50km an hour and highways either 100km or 110km.
plenty of cars for sale and if you own a car you need to ensure you pay for its
Rego every year. This is the Australian
state government tax, each state charges a different amount but somewhere in the
region of $700 to $1,000 annually.
covers you for third party insurance but non-personal injury costs are not
covered, so you are strongly advised to take out further cover.
4) Rental or
move into rented accommodation on arrival. Rent is often quoted by the week and
for a four bedroomed, two-bathroom property can be anything from $500 upwards.
Leases are usually
from six to twelve months and expect to pay a bond of four weeks of rent plus
the first two weeks rental money. Most rentals are unfurnished.
of buying a house in Australia is a lot quicker than other countries. If you’re
a permanent resident, there are no restrictions to buying a property, but if you
are on a visa you have to apply to the Foreign Investment Review Board for permission.
5. 5) Employment
migrants find it slightly harder to secure employment, however qualified they
may be. In WA people secure jobs through
networking. There is one main jobs board
called SEEK and it covers the whole of Australia, you can filter down your
search to find the right position for you. Just like most other countries, there are also
recruitment agencies which can also help to find you work.
Once you start
work you will need a TFN which is a Tax File Number and you can easily apply for one of these through the
Australian Taxation Office website.
Every year, you will need to complete a tax return, whether you are self
employed or employed. More often than
not, you’ll get something back and most people use a tax agent to complete the
form, with the savings usually justifying the cost.
employers contribute to a super fund or a pension pot. The minimum amount is
9.5% of your annual salary. Some jobs
advertise this as part of the salary package so be sure to read the small print
carefully before you sign a contract.
6. 6) Health
become a permanent resident, you will be entitled to Medicare services which
will cover most or all of your doctors’ fees.
If you find a surgery which is bulk billed, you won’t have to pay. Many Australians buy private health insurance
policies otherwise they can face a long wait for surgery etc.
It is recommended
to get ambulance cover as a trip in an ambulance is costly if you’re not insured
and gives you peace of mind.
arrive on a temporary work visa or a study visa, you won’t be eligible to be treated
under the public health system Medicare.
However, some countries like Ireland and England have reciprocal health
agreements which means you’ll be covered for any emergency care.GP’s will
write out prescriptions but the medicine will come from a chemist.
will hep you to navigate your way around your new life in Australia. If you are
contemplating a move to Austraia, speak
to one of the team at Visa Solutions Australia who can assist with all your