In a previous post about the cost of living in Australia, one of my readers, Shawn, suggested that the true cost of living could only be calculated after comparing average wages between the two countries.
This was a very valid point and one I am going to address today. Once again, apologies to any of my readers who are not from the UK, but I hope you can at least use the information about Australian average salaries to compare them to those currently available where you live.
Please note that I have added 6% to all UK incomes as the figures available to me were from November 2007. I think that is more than generous.
The Australian incomes were taken from an employment website and based on data from advertised jobs and claims, therefore, to be current.
Here is what I found:
I tried to be random in selecting occupations to compare, my “system” revolved purely around trying to find occupations that sounded exactly the same by their description. But there was one occupation I removed from the list which I will declare here:
Estate Agents were listed as having an average salary of $125,427 in Australia & just £29,544 in the UK. The Australian one was described as “Property and Real Estate, Residential Sales”, whereas the UK one was listed as “Estate agents and auctioneers”. To me they looked like the same occupation but the salary difference was huge. So I removed it. My guess was the Australian one was based on achieving some kind of massive sales target to get the extra commission.
Despite that, with the pound tumbling faster than a drunkard falling down a downward moving escalator, the differences between the two countries for average salaries is currently huge.
First I took the £315,649 and multiplied it by the current exchange rate of 1.866 AUD/GBP. So, if you did all 10 of these jobs in the UK you would have earned £589,190.42. That’s a staggering $142,760.58 LESS than you would have earned here in Australia.
On those figures, Australian salaries are 24% higher than those of the UK.
It is probably a more accurate figure to look at the average salaries across all occupations which are listed as a $62,270 in Australia according to The Australian Bureau of Statistics and £25,331 according to Government Statistic UK.
So £25,331 times 1.866 for the exchange rate becomes $47,267. So that’s $15,003 less than the Australian average and that suggests that the average Australian wage is in fact 31.7% higher than in England.
I never claim that my “cost of living in Australia” comparisons are the yardstick by which you should base all of your migratory decisions, they are more of a “no smoke without fire” guide.
But I think we can safely conclude from the above exercise that salaries and wages here in Australia are greater than those in the UK.
I have not been surprised by these findings, I think I have mentioned elsewhere that I believed wages were high here, I know, I tried to get a gardener. I ended up going to Bunnings, buying the gear and doing it myself!
But with these findings I think we can now all agree that if something appears to cost the same or cheaper here in Australia, it really is.
This post has needed updating for a while, I’m pleased to say I have now done it. Check out the new version at: