Welcome to the MC Moving Guide Australia
In this moving guide we cover the important parts to consider before and after you move to Australia. We understand how stressful the moving process can be, even for Working Holiday Makers moving for a year (or two). All sorts of doubts, questions and confusion will prop up from What do I do first? Who should I use? Who can help? How much money do I need? The list goes on......
Lets face it, the fact you're reading this guide means your either on your way or at least facing the right direction. Our aim is to make the process from start to finish as simple as possible, we do this by connecting you with the right people. All the companies listed in this moving guide are recommended and trusted. So lets get started with some Need to know Facts & Opinions for Australia.
The Need to Know.....
The Capital of Australia is Canberra
There are 8 States - New South Wales, Western Australia, South Australia, Tasmania, Victoria, Australian Capital Territory, Northern Territory, Queensland
Currency is Australian Dollars
Australia is multicultural with Indigenous peoples and migrants from some 200 countries.
Major cities are – Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth, Adelaide, Hobart
The Population is around 24 million now, increases by roughly 500,000 each year.
Our Team Opinions & Favourite Facts...
Favourite City voted is Sydney.
Best beach goes to the Noosa Main Beach - Sunshine Coast
Carlton Draught (beer) is a better drop than VB.
Something Different - The male platypus has venom strong enough to can kill a small dog.
The Australian Alps receive more snowfall than Switzerland.
The longest fence in the world is in Australia It is 5,614 km long, and was originally built to keep dingoes away.
Things to think before you leave...
There are a number of visa types and options, so finding the right one for you is where these guys come in. We recommend the finding a Registered Agent that offers a Free assessment, so before you pay any funds, you answer the most important question – Do you qualify to get a visa? We only work with recommended Agents, that we know and trust. View them on our Comparison page.
You may already have a job, or you could be going through the process of searching and sending your CV to 100's of employers! We recommend doing your research on the area first. This is important if you're looking for sponsorship, as you are tied to that employer for a period of time. Makes sure the job descriptions specify they are happy to sponsor. There are any number of websites that can help you search for jobs, including ours.
Start thinking about building a banking relationship. Opening a bank account also gives you somewhere to place money when you transfer funds across for your arrival. Setting up an account before you go, is one of the easiest parts of the process. Mainly down to the migrant banking teams based here in the UK. You generally find they will set everything up for you and have your cards ready for you upon arrival.
Shipping & Moving
Depending on the type of service you require i.e excess baggage, container...
will determine the when it's best to connect with a shipping company. Movers normally recommend contacting them a few months before you depart. If you are packing the whole house up, then the sooner you get in touch the better. They will send someone out to provide a quote.
It's best to connect with a company that provides a Free, no obligation quote.
Start tracking the exchange rate. It’s a good idea to speak with a currency broker about your options for transferring money, they should beat the banks on the rate. It is important to have an idea of how for your £'s will go in Aussie Dollars, we recommend doing a best & worst case scenario when working out how much you need. The rates can change at any point, so you need to make sure you take everything into consideration.
Often the sooner you book the better deal you get. Are you going straight there or are you stopping off for a holiday along the way? Also good idea to check baggage allowances before you book. From our experience we find that booking the flights is the moment it all becomes real! Some prefer to leave this until they have everything sorted, we personally prefer the idea of booking sooner so you have a date to work to.
Are you taking your furry friend(s) with you? Options vary for transporting your pet and different countries have different quarantine rules so best to explore options. We recommend speaking with the experts and going to view their facilities to get an a good idea of the process and how they look after the pets. Generally speaking the standards are really high these days and you will find that your pets are well looked after. Always do your research on the company, look at reviews or recommendations.
For some visas, health insurance is compulsory. For others it is not. Either way, health insurance in your destination country is a good idea for peace of mind and can be set up now ready for when you arrive. The Australian Health Care system is different to the UK, it is a mixture of Private and Public. There are talks that there are going to be some major changes throughout 2016 so this is a good question to ask an advisor. If you connect with a provider before you leave, they can provide you with all the info and services you require.
It’s good to engage a Migrant Financial planner who can assist with such things as your Pension Transfer and tax matters, especially if you have investments remaining in the UK. It is also important to get the correct understanding of the Tax implications you would face if you went down option A. You would expect a planner to provide you with a few options. This area is often overlooked and should in-fact be a priority if it can save you money and reduce the risk of tax implications.
Things to think about when you arrive...
Meet & Explore
It's common to get caught up in the stresses involved in moving & some of the initial incentives as to why you have moved can get forgotten! Things like moving for a better way of life, or new challenges, fresh starts....
Make sure you take the time to meet new people, explore different areas and local attractions. Basically we recommend you give yourself the best opportunity to enjoy it and make sure your time in Australia is a positive one and one to be remembered. Head to our Explore Australia page to see some of the highlight events and things to do across Australia.
Some countries will have government health facilities that you can access. To do so you will be required to register for this on arrival. Research into this and find out whether you are eligible and what is needed. Sign up to medicare, if you’re eligible or the alternative is to setup private healthcare to do this you will require passport, valid visa. Locate the local heath facilities that suit you best with regards to travel, standards and convenience. Make sure you read customer reviews on the practice so you can make an informed decision.
If you're moving to Australia with children then the chances are you will be looking for Schools in your area. We recommend doing some re-search before you depart to get a rough idea, but it's always good to go and visit potential schools in person. Finding the right school will have a huge impact on your lifestyle and location. We have provided a link below that gives you the tools to search Government and Private schools across Australia. If you are looking to locate some of the top Universities in Australia, you can also get a good idea via the website below.
Buying A Home
Give yourself some time to learn your local area and if you are happy with where you are, you may wish to purchase a home. Your best bet is to find a mortgage broker who can assist you, there are some brokers that specialise in working with new migrants. In general the comparison between buying a property in the UK and Australia is huge. The process in Australia is quicker and more straight forward. It is the norm for houses to complete within 6 weeks, this is almost unheard of in the UK. Viewing properties are normally an open house format and the competition is fierce in popular areas. Below are some websites to help you search your dream property in a few simple steps.
You will need to swap your driver’s license to your new home country. In Australia you can use your UK license for the first 3 months, after that you will need to swap to an Aussie one. It's an easy process to complete and you should only need -
Proof of Address
One other form of ID
Some of the laws and requirements may vary in different states, click on your state below to find more information.
In certain cases you may be required to complete a skill assessment for you Visa. If this is the requirement then the Skill Assessments will apply to you before you depart. One of the most common tests that is required for certain visas is International English Language Testing System (IELTS). This test can be completed in over 1000+ locations worldwide.
There are a number of different courses, skills and certificates you can complete to help secure that all important Job!
To get a better understanding of which assessment you could take there are companies out there to help you do just that.
Although buying a mobile in Australia should be a simple process, the only part that can be testing is providing address verification as well as a proof of income. This is when applying for a monthly contract. So the chances are you will need to use a pre-paid sim initially until you can provide a few months worth of the above. If you plan to keep contact with the UK and other international calls, then we strongly recommend taking advantage of free apps like Facetime, WhatsApp and others similar. Below are some of the main providers in Australia.
You can’t hire a car for ever so you’ll need to start looking at buying a car. Before you even consider purchasing make sure you take the time to check out the local transport. A lot of cities have great transport links and often public transport can be the way to go, especially of you're commuting in and out of the city.
When the time comes and you do go down the route of buying a vehicle, similar to renting a property or a mobile on contract, you will need to provide proof of your income, address and identity. This will be a must if you're applying on finance. We have provided some links below that might come in handy for rentals, and identifying what car would suit you. If you are super organised you can have the car waiting for you at the airport!
If you haven't had the chance to start the process of applying for a tax file number, it is important you get the wheels in motion pretty quick. Unfortunately as a foreign resident for a short period you will be taxed around 32.5%. You also have 30 days to provide your employer with your TFN otherwise you may incur emergency tax! which on top of your foreign tax you could be looking at paying a total of 45% in tax. Don't panic though, you may be entitled to claiming some of this back.
We have included a couple of options below, the first to apply via for a TFN via the Government Tax Office. If you would prefer to use a specialist and let them do the paperwork, you can head to our WHM section and select package 2. Lastly we have included a link to a Tax Back company to help you claim back your hard earned cash if you're eligible.