Australia is a very multicultural country with people who migrate here for a broad range of reasons. Whatever your reasons for moving to Australia, some things you should know.
Making sure you are aware of what is important and doing what you can before moving to Australia will make your transition into your new life much smoother.
That’s why we have provided some suggestions below of what you can get done before you arrive, as well as what you should do once you touch down in Australia.
If you are looking to move to Australia and want to be best prepared for your new life, read on below.
Look at employment options
Before you jump on a plane it is important to know how you are going to support yourself.
Everybody’s situation is unique. Depending on whether you are going to study, are coming over on a skilled visa class or reuniting with family, there will be different visas and work requirements.
Doing some research into what your visa class allows in terms of work and hours, will help you narrow your search into industries that are relevant to your circumstances, skillset and experience.
It is important to be prepared for challenges in employment you may have to adjust your expectations of your career path in Australia or be willing to move industries.
You can find more in-depth information in our working in Australia article.
Decide where you want to live
Australia is a big place and the tropical north is quite different to the highlands of Tasmania or the outback.
You may want to be close to support networks of friends and family or you may want to go someplace smaller that is more affordable.
It is worth noting that in some industries you are limited in where you can work.
Many professional occupations and technical trades don’t have demand in more regional areas.
That being said, there is a strong demand for certain skills in rural, remote and regional areas and you may be entitled to faster processing of your visa, waiving of fees or visa extensions.
So, there is a definite benefit to moving to regional Australia, not just for the fresh air!
Apply for a visa
The migration process can be long and frustrating but getting the right advice can make that process both smoother and less expensive in the long run.
Employing the use of a migration agent or lawyer can take a lot of the guesswork out of the application process.
If you wish to apply for yourself you can do so online or on paper and can find more information on the government’s application process and the ImmiAccount and on the department of home affairs website
There are many types of visas and which one you apply for will depend on your personal circumstances.
You may be eligible to apply for several so it makes sense to get some assistance.
By using a migration agent there are no guarantees your application will be successful, and it also doesn’t speed up the process.
It does, however, take away some of the stress of moving to Australia.
It is important to note that only certain people can help with your visa application.
If you have found someone that you would like to use make sure to check their credentials in the government’s Omara self-service portal to ensure the agent is registered.
Prepare to arrive
Once your visa is approved and you know where you will be living and when you are moving to Australia, it might be a good idea to find your local support group.
There are many services these groups can provide as well as link you to relevant programs or cultural services.
Should you need help with your English skills these resource centres may be able to provide lessons or link you to a provider of the Adult Migrant English Program.
These programs aim to get you the English language skills to participate fully in Australian life and the job market. They are also government-funded.
Jumping online and finding ex-pat or culturally aligned social media groups is also a great way to find out about local meet-ups, which schools might offer the right fit or even where to find that true taste of home.
This is also the point where you should start looking into your living arrangements. If you are lucky enough to be able to live with family when you arrive that’s a big bonus.
If you are by yourself, finding temporary living arrangements might be best until you are a bit more familiar with your new home.
What to do once you arrive
Once you land and have acclimatised yourself with your new town it is time to get around to all the life administration tasks to ensure your transition in your new home goes smoothly.
Sorting out a bank account, getting a phone, working out your local transport options.
All of these things your local migrant resource centre can help you get started with or point you in the right direction.
If you need to enrol in the AMEP or assistance with finding work it is best to do this straight away and your consultant can help you with this.