6 Ways to Emigrate to Australia

by BobinOz on March 19, 2009

in Moving To Australia

Gone are the days when you just jumped on a boat and turned up.

It's Different Now

It’s Different Now

Now things are a little more tricky. In this very straight forward and quick guide, I’ll run through 6 ways to emigrate to Australia. Please be aware this post was written March 2009 and although I do try to keep it up-to-date, it is always wise to doublecheck over at border.gov.au/.

Employer Sponsored Workers

If you can find an employer who is prepared to offer you a job, this can be the quickest way to get your first foot into Australia. It can easily lead to a permanent residency. Work for the same employer for two years, keep your nose clean and apply for residency.

This works for approved skills only and provided the employer can satisfy the government that no Australian worker is available for the job. For highly skilled jobs it is possible to come straight in on a permanent visa, dependant upon available schemes.

Professionals and other Skilled Migrants

Or the General Skilled Migration programme, as it is also known. This for those over 18 and under 45 years old (Update: Now 50 I believe) who speak good English. The jobs lists are a bit of a minefield but there seems to be the Skilled Occupation List (SOL), Critical Skills List (CSL), Employer Nominated Skilled Occupation List (ENSOL) and the Migration Occupations in Demand List (MODL).

Confused? Yep. Me too. The easy answer is at the end of this article, so don’t panic.

Business People

Again, I believe this option is only available to those over 18 and under 45 years of age (Update: Now 50 I believe). Known as a Business Skills Visa, you will need to establish or invest in an Australian business.

Provided your business successfully complies with the requirements, for example, by employing the necessary number of Australians, this too can lead to permanent residency. I believe buying a franchise can work.

Doctors and Nurses

There is a shortage of both doctors and nurses and as such there are many opportunities for those with qualifications to move to Australia on a permanent basis. I have more information which doctors, nurses, dentists and other medical professionals might find useful. Please visit my page about nursing in Australia.

Investor Retirement

Finally, if you are over 55 and without dependants, excluding your spouse, and can prove you are self funded, it is possible to retire in Australia. You will not get a permanent residency but you do get a four year visa. You can re-apply each time it is up for renewal and as long as you still satisfy the requirements, it is likely to be renewed.

Update: I think the conditions that apply these visas has now changed, check out border/retirement visas for more up-to-date information.

Working Holiday Visa (WHV)

The Working Holiday Visa is clearly not permanent. But for those aged between 18 and 30 it’s a fantastic way of visiting the country to see if you like it. You are allowed to work for the entire period if you wish, although you can only work for a maximum of six months with any one employer.

However, if you have a skill which is in demand here, then coming over for 12 months and demonstrating your skills to a number of employers may well lead to a Employer Sponsored job offer. This could be one of the fastest ways to get here in small steps. Holiday Visa – Sponsored Visa – Permanent Visa.

The WHV and the similar Work and Holiday visas are only available to passport holders from qualifying countries, at the time of writing (see the Australian Government website for updates) they are…

WHV: Belgium, Canada, Cyprus, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Republic of Korea, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Taiwan and the United Kingdom.

Work and holiday: Argentina, Bangladesh, Chile, Indonesia, Iran, Malaysia, Thailand, Turkey and the USA.


This is not intended as an exhaustive list or even an authoritative guide. A couple of pages to give you an overview is never going to tell the whole story. And that’s all this is. An overview. The rules change all the time and they are extremely complex.

For example, the government announced a reduction in the nation’s skilled migration intake at one point. The building and manufacturing trades were the ones hit. The idea was that companies would have to find bricklayers, plumbers, welders and carpenters domestically to combat the downturn in the building trade. But even so, employers who can’t find workers locally can still go abroad for them.

If you want to see how complex it all gets, head over to immi and take a look around. You can see all the latest job lists and see how the points system works. There is a pretty good search box top right that usually goes to what you have asked for.

Getting Professional Assistance

And I mentioned an easy answer to all the complications earlier. Get a Migration Agent. Make sure they are MARA (Migration Agents Registration Authority) registered. They know all this stuff inside and out.

I now have such an agent working with me on this website, I’ve known him since late 2011. He is very good at what he does and can give you a professional assessment based on the exhaustive information he will ask you to provide.

Check out my Visa Assessment Service.

I’ll talk about migration agents next week. If you want to read about them now, go to Moving to Australia Part 3

For a full chronological list and brief description of all the posts in this series about how I moved to Australia, please visit my page How to Move to Australia.

Don’t want the expense of a MARA Agent yet? Then please read my page about Getting a Visa for more help.

Please note: I am not able to answer individual questions about getting a visa.

Finding a Sponsorship:

Many of you in the comments below and in personal emails to myself have provided me with details of your occupations, and have asked how you can find work and sponsorship in Australia. Please read my page Getting a Job Sponsorships in Australia and Finding Work.

Your Resume or CV:

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Offering some of the most competitively priced packages for resumes I’ve seen online, backed up by their 100% satisfaction guarantee, I highly recommend The Resume Centre, click on the banner below for more information…

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Important: Please read before commenting…

And for those looking for professional assistance…

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{ 1439 comments… read them below or add one }

julija December 2, 2015 at 3:55 am

Hi there. Im just wondering…im basicly lithuanian and living now in united kingdom with my partner and son . How can i come to live to Australia?, what exactly i need are its hard to find a job there?how about house/flat rent?


Sayaka.hasumi November 21, 2015 at 1:36 pm

Hi. Im here at philippines for my study. But I have japanese passport. Can I apply working holiday from here in the philippines?


BobinOz November 27, 2015 at 8:55 pm

Last time I looked passport holders from Japan were on the list, I see no reason why you being in the Philippines at the moment would be a problem. But you would need to check that with the Australian government, see Visas or a MARA registered migration agent to make sure.

You can find more information on my pages about Working Holiday Visas and Backpacking in Australia.

Good luck, Bob


Jatinder November 19, 2015 at 6:32 pm

I’m jatinder singh from india. I’m going to sydney in january for my masters completion. and my question is
My gf is living in uk and she has british passport.
so can she get the Australian passport ?
and till which time i have to do marriage with her
after PR or before PR


Mayank November 18, 2015 at 11:37 pm

Hi, Thanks for the great guidance, But i can find my self fitting in any of the Visa process.
Can pls help me if there are any other ways to migrate Australia, apart from this one. I have a brother who has taken a PR to Australia. And is living there from past five years. can he sponsor me?? Please answer my question. I want to go Australia , Come what may.


Gareth November 19, 2015 at 9:16 am

You could always try the 132 Visa Scheme if you have the resources.


sneha chatterjee November 17, 2015 at 5:21 pm

Hey- this is the only site which gives straight answers.
Im an SAP consultant working for an MNC (Developer) and i fell in love with Melbourne the moment i visited the city last week for a holiday and would love to settle there atleast for 2-3 years and wish to move Asap, i did go through the process but my question is which are the name companies to apply ? (who provides such visa’s )


rajan November 17, 2015 at 10:07 am

hey i just wanna know i m a canadian citizen but i would like to apply for australian PR .how i can apply for that .


Indian November 13, 2015 at 4:53 pm

Hi, what’s the probability of an investment banker to get a PR . Please advise


True Highlands November 13, 2015 at 6:09 am

It’s easier to go to South Africa than Australia and you have an easier economy.


Frank Ezenduka November 4, 2015 at 2:21 am

Am frank by name an African from Nigeria I have dreams to live and work in Australia I have been looking forward to immigrate into your country please help me how can I go about it I really love to live forever in Australia ,Also obtaining a permanent resident visa ??


Jatinder singh November 2, 2015 at 6:53 pm

Hlo dear
I’m jatinder singh from india. I’m going to sydney in january for my masters completion. and my question is
My gf is living in uk and she has british passport.
so can she get the Australian passport ?
and till which time i have to do marriage with her
after PR or before PR


Joseph October 30, 2015 at 8:41 am

Wow .. Australia — seems its really tough to get a visa to go there but am just waiting for that opportunity to come by ..


Dhal Dhal October 24, 2015 at 2:58 am

Hi how are you over there? I am young man by age of 19 years old. I Wish to go to Australia i have my aunt there in Melbourne, am very poor in life i’m seekinp scholarship to study there. or to work at any factory and use to go to school. thanks i need your help.


BobinOz October 26, 2015 at 11:09 pm

I can’t help you I’m afraid, the Australian Government process the visa applications, I personally can’t help you get one. Good luck though, Bob


Comment Removed October 6, 2015 at 5:43 pm

Original message promoting a MARA registered migration agent has been removed by admin. There is only one MARA registered migration agent that I am comfortable to recommend on this site and it is the agent that I work with personally.

He lives locally to me so that I can meet with him regularly, he is good it his job, he is conscientious and above all he is honest and trustworthy. You can read about him on my Visa Assessment Service page.


vincent October 1, 2015 at 8:11 am

i have sister living in Neitherland , but now she want to move to Australia to live and I am Australia citizen can i petition for her to come to Australia to live could you tell me please thanh you for your time


BobinOz October 1, 2015 at 4:41 pm

You would need to speak to a MARA registered migration agent about that Vincent, please check out my important notices above. Good luck, Bob


Caroline September 29, 2015 at 8:58 pm

Having spent a month on holiday in Oz, my husband and I are now seriously looking at moving their with our family but have a couple of questions.

He is a PE teacher with 20 years experience and I am a Learning Support Assistant specialising in Maths. PE jobs are few and far between over there so would we be able to get a visa to work then get jobs once we are there, with him supply teaching and me trying to get a job as an LSA?

Any advice would be appreciated.
Caroline :-)


BobinOz September 29, 2015 at 11:37 pm

With the right kind of visa, yes, that would be possible. I can’t help any more than that, you would need to consult with a MARA registered migration agent for more specific details. Good luck, Bob


Kimberly September 24, 2015 at 10:15 am

I’m an American currently on my 2nd 3-month Holiday Visa in Australia and I’m trying to search for an acceptable visa that will allow me to remain here with my partner. We recently visited a MARA agent and felt very defeated when we left their offices. We are a same-sex couple and have been in a committed relationship for 2 years, however, due to our VERY long distance relationship (USA & AU), we can only satisfy a very small percentage of the 12 month requirement for a DeFacto Visa. Further, we are engaged and our wedding is scheduled for May 2016 in the Untied States (where it is now legal).
I’ve looked under employment visas, Skilled, Nominated, Points, Sponsor, Invitations and I’m just utterly confused and frustrated. I’m a military veteran, speak a few languages and I’ve been a Casino Table Games Dealer in Las Vegas (on the Vegas Strip) for 8 years…is that not a SKILL?

Is there something can you recommend?


Gareth September 24, 2015 at 11:17 am

Hi Kimberly,

Please email me.



Mahmudul Ahsan October 5, 2015 at 1:25 am

hello kimberly, can you marry me ? i will travel for you to australia for sure. If you think your right reply me immediately and feel right.


BobinOz October 5, 2015 at 9:06 pm

Aw, Mahmudul Ahsan, you sure know how to woo a girl :-)


mahmudul ahsan October 6, 2015 at 11:01 am

haa nothing that big in that just thinking about moving to australia being married thats all :)


prasanta mondal September 18, 2015 at 9:53 pm

I am prasanta mondal I want to go Australia need jobs Pl tell me how can i go Australia .I do anything to go Australia


kaleem September 26, 2015 at 4:48 pm

Hai bob,
As an Electrical Engineer ,just met the criteria by getting 60 points.what is you suggestion ,should i apply for PR or they will preferred experienced one.


BobinOz September 27, 2015 at 9:32 pm

I don’t fully understand your question, although I suspect you are a recently qualified electrical engineer without experience? If that’s the case, I should get some working experience under your belt first, is not overly easy to get a job here at the moment. Experience is important.


Shen September 10, 2015 at 11:34 pm

hi there. I am a Malaysian recently graduated from the UK. I did my undergraduate in quantity surveying. I do not have any work experience at all. What are the chances of me finding someone to sponsor me to work in Australia.


BobinOz September 7, 2015 at 10:28 am

Please, you all need to read the information towards the end of the article, I, personally, cannot help you with these questions.


Mohammed Munnaf September 6, 2015 at 5:57 pm

dear sir,
I want to work / any small business in Australia & stay with my family . so , how can be possible ? if any helpful person want to guide / help , please contact me without any ……………



Brad September 6, 2015 at 5:30 pm

Hi Bob.

I am currently working in Australia on a WHV. The company I work for is a roadhouse in outback NSW. I have been offered the chance to stay on as either a cook or restaurant manager via a sponsorship scheme. I have worked in hospitality( commis chef, chef and kitchen manager for a number of years before I came to Oz. However I don’t possess any qualifications apart from General hygiene and food handling certificates. Can I still be sponsored to stay.

Thanks brad


Paul September 5, 2015 at 8:50 pm

Hi Bob please could you tell me if I would qualify in Australia for a visa I have an HNC in print production technology and management which I believe is the equivalent of a year at university my wife is a self employed successful childminder who holds an NVQ 3 I also have the same she is 46 I am 42 – thank you


mut iva September 3, 2015 at 9:03 pm

Hello Bod name is ivan from uganda i have had special interest for leavong in Australia ever since i was a child, how can i be able to travel am mainly looking for work in Australia to make my life better, i obtained a bachelors degree in information technology and systems,i want to come to Australia and do anything. what can you advise me i really want to come to Australia..i dont want to come illegally except i want to come with atleast a short stay visa as i look around for work.


BobinOz September 4, 2015 at 4:42 pm

All information about that is under my Migration Advice section, please have look around.


Joseph Clifton September 3, 2015 at 4:27 pm

My first cousin is a permanent resident of Australia and has been for over 2 years, i wish to live and work in Australia can he sponsor me to live and work in Australia??


BobinOz September 3, 2015 at 7:15 pm

You need to speak to a MARA agent about that.


BobinOz September 1, 2015 at 3:09 pm

Mohamed and Bawar, you both need to speak to a MARA registered migration agent.


bawar August 31, 2015 at 12:07 pm

hi mr, i am bawar and iam form Iraq-kurdistan and i live in sulemanya i’m just 20 yers old and i fenished class 12 and i want to get in australia but i don’t know how .. please help me i can give 5000 dolars or more so how i stare ,, plases i want to escape from this hell :(

i am wating for you please answer me to this emal


mohamed August 31, 2015 at 9:38 am


i would like to clarify certain things you might be able to answer me.
i have been recently granted the visa subclass(476) which i can study and work in Australia fore 18 months, now the question is.. i have heard many who landed in Australia looking for jobs but unfortunately there was no luck.. since most of the employees are looking for people with permanent residency.. if you good tell me what’s the best way to earn the PR once your in Australia itself?

Thanks alot.


Rubens de Lara August 31, 2015 at 5:19 am

Hello, I´d like to know which is the best way to get a visa to Australia, my three sons are living there with their mom and step-father for about Two years – is there any way for me and my wife to get it ?


hardik August 30, 2015 at 1:07 am

18+ children can go with his parents on skilled independent 189


BobinOz August 30, 2015 at 6:16 pm

Ah, thing is 18+ children=adults. Not children any more. Depends if they are dependent or independent, it’s complicated, you should speak with a MARA migration agent for clarification.


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