Studying and Living in Australia

Australia is known for not only for the high caliber schools, but likewise for the unique cultural experience. Australia is a flourishing country, with culturally rich cities and awe-inspiring natural wonders.

Campus Life in Australia

 As an international student, one can look forward to a lively and rewarding campus life in Australia. Academics are just a part of a higher education. Equally important is a rich campus life that enriches and enhances the student experience while in Australia.

 The Highlights of Campus Life for International Students

 Most of Australia's educational institutions offer a comprehensive orientation process for international students. While much of the orientation involves academic recommendations and procedures, also included is information about campus life in general. These orientation programs are indispensable to learning about the campus and its surroundings. Most campuses are home to a variety of student associations, clubs, sports programs and interest groups that welcome international students and help them to fully participate in campus and local spirit. Typically, there is a general student association for all students. Many schools have federations or associations that are entirely comprised of international students. Participation in one of more of these associations encourages students to become deeply involved in campus life. All in all, Australia provides an enriching experience.

Accommodation

There are wide range of accommodation options, including on-campus residential accommodation, home stay and off-campus accommodation. Choosing your accommodation is an important step in your transition so, start searching for the same as early as possible, especially if you want to apply for on-campus accommodation.

On-campus accommodation: Living on campus means living in a specially designed and managed residence on the campus.

Home stay: Home stay is a cultural exchange between a local individual or family (called a Host) and a visiting international student. The student lives as a guest in the host family’s home.

Off-campus accommodation: Off campus accommodation means living independent of the University, in or near your city's campus. This ranges from houses, flats and apartments or share houses. Living off campus is more suitable for you if you have a family or if unisex accommodation is unsuitable. You can privately rent a house or apartment, share with other students or board with a local family. Costs for off campus accommodation will vary with size, location and age of the building and the facilities provided.

Living Cost in Australia

Accommodation

  • Hostels and Guesthouses - $80 to $135 per week
  • Shared Rental - $70 to $250 per week
  • On campus - $80 to $250 per week
  • Home stay - $110 to $270 per week
  • Rental - $100 to $400 per week
  • Boarding schools - $10,000 to $20,000 a year

Other living expenses

  • Groceries and eating out - $80 to $200 per week
  • Gas, electricity - $60 to $100 per week
  • Phone and Internet - $20 to $50 per week
  • Public transport - $10 to $50 per week
  • Car (after purchase) - $150 to $250 per week
  • Entertainment - $50 to $100 per week

Working while you study

Working while you study in Australia can help complement your study and living experience. There is a mountain of information available over the Internet that will help you identify how many jobs are available to somebody with your skills and experience at any given time in any given region of Australia.

Most student visas allow you to work for up to 40 hours every two weeks while your course is in session, and unrestricted hours during any scheduled course break, but before you undertake any paid work you need to make sure your visa allows you to work.

Your visa information is held electronically by the Australian Department of Immigration and can be accesses anytime by using the Visa Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO) System. Subclass 574 visa holders can work unlimited hours once their degree by research has commenced.

Paid work

Australia has a wide range of industries and many have part time employment opportunities, including:
  • Retail - supermarkets, department and clothing stores.
  • Hospitality - cafes, bars and restaurants.
  • Tourism - hotels and motels.
  • Agricultural - farming and fruit-picking.
  • Sales and telemarketing- Tele-calling, door-to-door.
  • Administration or Clerical roles.
  • Tutoring.

Internships

Paid or unpaid internships can be a great way to get exposure to the professional, financial and creative industries. Getting involved in something is a great way of networking. Many people are able to discover their interests and values through getting involved in various activities different from a regular routine. Internships provide students with a great opportunity to acquire real-world experience.

Volunteering

There are many charities and non-government organizations (NGOs) in Australia and they always need volunteers to help out. It can be a great way to meet friends, get some hands on work experience and give back to the community.

Transportation

Australia is a gigantic country having stupendous public and private transportation. Australia has a vast network of well maintained roads. The transport options available in Australia include buses, trains, trams and ferries.  The access to these transport services will vary depending on where you live. One can also access private and public car services from taxis to hired limousines, available to take you from door to door.

Some larger education providers will likewise have their own in-house transport system, especially useful if you have to leave your campus late at night or live in a hard-to-reach area.

Public transport costs vary depending on where in Australia you live and the type of transport you are using. An international student may drive in Australia on a valid overseas driver’s license.

Health and Safety

Australia is generally a very safe place to live and study. The 2011 OECD Better Life Index rated Australia 9.3 out of 10 for safety, one of the highest ratings awarded to any country.

Emergency

The assistance and emergency networks in Australia are widespread and well equipped for any potential emergencies. Fire, ambulance, and police services will be able to provide you with any health and safety assistance you may need.
Wheresoever you are in Australia, if there's a life-threatening emergency, call 000. It's a free call, even from your mobile. An operator will answer and will ask which of the following services you need:
  • Police
  • Fire
  • Ambulance

Personal

Australia is a safe place to live and study. Public transport is reliable and widely used in Australia, particularly in metro and urban regions. A number of security measures have been implemented to maximize the safety of public transport users, including security officers and guards, help points, good lighting and security cameras.
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