There are little things that can make moving to a new country that much easier. If you plan to study in Australia, here are the top nine things you can familiarise yourself to adjust more quickly to this unique and beautiful country.
1. Cost of Living, Banking, and Money
The cost of living in Australia is lower than in the USA and the UK, yet Australia boasts one of the best living standards in the world. Banking is easy and accessible, with automated teller machines (“ATMs”) widely available and a large number of bank branches for the major banks. To qualify for a student visa, international students are required to have AUD$18,000 available per year in Australia, a figure set by Australia’s immigration department. With a basic access account, most banking transactions can be completed online, and when you make purchases, you can use debit card to access the funds in your account.
International students can work up to 20 hours a week and unlimited hours when your course is not in session. If you want to work, you need to apply for a Tax File Number from the Australian Taxation Office and pay tax as appropriate. The Australian economy is very strong and there are plenty of opportunities for casual and part time work in Australia in hospitality, food, and even professional services. You can find jobs on some of the popular employment sites, or on job postings around campus and in newspapers. Gaining some work experience while you study is a great way of meeting more people, experiencing the culture, and enhancing your employment prospects anywhere after graduation. Remember to polish up your CV before sending it out!
Australian culture is casual, relaxed, and very friendly. Strangers will sometimes say hi on the street for no particular reason, so don’t be shy and feel free to say hi back. In the classroom and on campus, students are encouraged to speak up and express their opinions, and you’ll find a diverse group of classmates, a good proportion of which come from all over the world. Welcoming of international students and migrants, Australia is a very multicultural country.
4. Leisure and Entertainment
There is plenty of leisure and entertainment in any Australian city. If you’re into the outdoors, there are plenty of beaches and parks for swimming, jogging, and group sports. Movie theatres are very common and Australians love meeting up with friends for a chat in a pub or a café. 海外留學 Theatre is popular as are plays, museums, and art galleries. Clubs at Australian universities organise many social functions. Join a few clubs on campus and you’ll never run out of things to do.
5. Shopping and Basic Necessities
The cheapest places to buy basic necessities are at major supermarkets, wholesale bulk retailers, farmer’s markets, and suburban fruit and vegetable grocery stores. For clothes shopping, try the numerous shopping malls in and around the major cities.
Eating out can be very cheap and rewarding in Australia. If you shop around, you can get a complete meal for under $15 in many café-restaurants in the capital cities. World class fine dining is also available if you’re not on a budget.
The transport infrastructure can vary throughout Australia, but generally, it is reliable and efficient. Trains, buses, monorail, light rail, ferries (Sydney, Perth and Brisbane), and trams (in Melbourne only) are used everyday by commuters. You can consider biking to school or campus, but remember that helmets are usually compulsory.
The Australian health system is excellent by world standards. Health insurance is compulsory for international students but Medicare is not available, so a cost to a GP will cost around $40 – $80, depending on the doctor and clinic.
Make use of your time to check out your state or territory and to see the rest of Australia. Australia is a very diverse country. Interstate airfares can be very cheap and interstate tourism is very common. If you drive, you can rent a