Moving to Australia for a New Life Down Under

Could this be your New Year’s resolution for 2019?

Move to Australia

In January 2006 my wife and I decided that we wanted to move to Australia, so that was our New Year’s resolution back then. By 14 November 2007 we had landed in Brisbane with our daughter, who was just three and a half years old at the time, on a one-way ticket.

We are now Australian citizens.

10 years ago to this very day I launched this website with a blog post called Our First Full Year Living In Australia. It contained a 3 1/2 minute video of the highlights from the previous full year, 2008.

Since then I have added over 1400 pages to this website, many of them on the Blog, about life in Australia. I’ve also uploaded a fresh new video showing the highlights of every full year we have lived here since. You can see all of these videos on my page Our First 10 Years Living in Australia: The Videos.

If you want to know what it’s like to live in Australia, you might want to check them out.

And if moving to Australia is your New Year’s resolution this year, I have plenty of other pages that can help you on your journey.

Firstly, my series How to Move to Australia will show you how the process worked for me and my family. My Australian Cities and Australian States pages will help you decide where you want to live. Be sure to check out the comments on these pages, they often contain some great information by locals about what some of these places are really like.

My pages about Visas will help you look into the possibility of you moving to and working in Australia and all of my Migration Advice pages will help you further look into all sorts of stuff related to moving to Australia.

These pages and their sub pages can also be accessed from the main navigation menu to this website.

Finally, three years ago I wrote a similar post to this one which also included a cheap home-made image like the one at the top of this page. I called that post Moving to Australia: A New Year’s Resolution and its worth a read as I try and answer three questions:

1) Is it achievable for you?
2) Will you get a job here in Australia?
3) Will you survive without your friends and family?

If moving to Australia is something you are keen to do, I hope you will find these pages helpful.

Maybe we will see you in Australia sometime soon.

Happy New Year to you.

Visa Assessment Service


{ 26 comments… add one }
  • Samantha Jonson July 2, 2019, 9:13 pm | Link

    Hello, all. Wanted to share my experience. I moved to Sydney half a year ago. I’ve been thinking about it for two years because my boyfriend lives there. I had a lot of doubts because I’ve been living in the US my whole life, and it was terrifying to leave everything behind and start your life from the beginning. Of course, I wasn’t alone, and I had a place where to live, but I had no job, no friends, no family. I’m a marketer, and it’s not a big problem to find a job, but I achieve so much in San Diego, and I had to start from the bottom again. I’m not a fan of writing resumes and visiting thousands of interviews, so I started looking for a job with the help of online job sites. There are a lot of them, but everything is complicated in navigation and so on. A sister of my boyfriend suggested me to look for a job in this site . She is a freelancer, and that site helps her a lot So, I hope that maybe someone is also going to work in Australia soon and that job searching website will help because I’ve already found a few exciting workplaces. Also, I want to wish everyone luck, because moving somewhere is hard and the first few months will be a nightmare, but never give up, and soon everything will improve.

  • Roy M May 19, 2019, 4:18 am | Link

    Hello Bob,
    My family and I are due to come to Adelaide soon to live. I am seconded there with my legal services company so am fortunate enough to have that support mechanism. I had a general query that I’m sure you are well informed enough to comment on and relates to the views that local Aussies have of Brit Expats. I am completely expecting a predominantly warm, welcoming and friendly response though it has been mentioned to me that ‘some’ Aussies simply ‘hate brits’. I do not for one second give this much credence and of course in every country there are people with such extreme views.

    However, I thought it worth getting your take on the actual level of local animosity, if any, you’ve found towards yourself and other Brit expats. Is is barely noticeable and certainly no more than a rare and subtle undercurrent, or something more tangible?

    Thanks. Your useful, informative and well written website is a welcome and appreciated source for our pre-deployment thinking!


    • BobinOz May 20, 2019, 7:22 pm | Link

      There is a certain element of playful rivalry between Aussies and Brits, especially when it comes to some sports. But Australians who hate the British are extremely rare, in my 11 years here I’m not sure I’ve ever really come across one in my real life.

      I’ve had some pretty nasty comments on here though, but hey, that’s how it works online. Ideal environment for keyboard warriors and trolls.

      I wouldn’t be concerned about what you’ve heard, most Australians are extraordinarily friendly. Enjoy Adelaide.

  • Lisa May 17, 2019, 4:13 pm | Link

    To keep it short my love for Australia started with a tv show about families trying to see if it was possible for them to move and I have been obsessed ever since! I am still not in the right place to move yet but you really keep me going 😀 To the point where I have downloaded your book and shared it with my family. We are going for a holiday in the near future and I can’t wait! It helps so much to show my family and say “See this!” Or “This is a person just like us.” which has helped the dream come together slowly, keep doing what you are doing! I look forward to more blogs :))

    • BobinOz May 20, 2019, 6:56 pm | Link

      Well, coming here for a holiday is a start, that way you get to find out what Australia is like for yourself, that’s much better than anything you can see on TV or that I can put into a book.

      Interestingly though, the first time I came here on holiday I didn’t fall in love with it, but I did the second time.

      I hope you have a great holiday when you get here and a chance to have a good look around. It might be just the thing to push you to get the ball rolling, we shall see. Glad to hear that my book is helped in some way as well.

      Good luck, Bob

  • BS May 10, 2019, 4:58 am | Link

    Hi Bob,

    Thrilled to inform that we have received our Visas and would be travelling to Sydney in 19 days.

    I just wanted some help from experts to know the best area to stay with a budget of 400 to 450 per week with a close proximity to station.


    • BobinOz May 13, 2019, 5:47 pm | Link

      Congratulations! Hope you get to love Australia as much as I do.

      You might struggle to find somewhere to rent at that price point, so I don’t think you will be looking for the ‘best’ area, but more like any area in that budget.

      I think you will need to do some thorough research using the helpful links on my page Cost of Buying or Renting a House in Australia.

      If you also Google ‘Sydney train map’, that will tell you which suburbs have train stations. Maybe a local to Sydney can give you more information, but hopefully this helps a bit.

  • Vida-joda Kigundu March 3, 2019, 11:17 am | Link

    Hi Bob I just want to say how much it means to me to have this blog to read. To keep it short my love for Australia started with a tv show about families trying to see if it was possible for them to move and I have been obsessed ever since! I am still not in the right place to move yet but you really keep me going 😀 To the point where I have downloaded your book and shared it with my family. We are going for a holiday in the near future and I can’t wait! It helps so much to show my family and say “See this!” Or “This is a person just like us.” which has helped the dream come together slowly, keep doing what you are doing! I look forward to more blogs :))

    • BobinOz March 4, 2019, 6:50 pm | Link

      Hi Vida

      Thanks for your comment and for those very kind words, they are appreciated. I’m very pleased to hear that I have helped you in some way with this, and I do hope your journey does end with a move to Australia.

      First things first though, I hope you enjoy your upcoming holiday here, I’m sure you will, it’s hard not to like the place.

      All the best, Bob

  • Lizzie February 4, 2019, 5:30 am | Link

    Hi Bob 😊
    We finally got our visas back in October and now awaiting to hear back from a successful Job interview. Work would be in Brisbane. Looking at suburbs around it. But the more we look and the closest we get, the more we hear “negative” things….it’s like, suddenly, as we are about to go, people are telling us all the bad stuff they have experienced about that part of Australia…’s actually very off putting because we have no clue what to expect. And even if we are not naive and we expect to love and dislike some aspects of our new lives just like anywhere in the world….I am a bit scared. The thing that comes back the most is the traffic. People are telling us they are stuck in traffic for hours when they go down south. Which makes travelling a nightmare. We have heard so much other “crap” I don’t understand why it’s so negative. 😥😥😥😥

    • BobinOz February 4, 2019, 6:57 pm | Link

      Well, I’ve lived in Brisbane now for 11 years having moved here from the UK, Essex to be precise. I still have absolutely no regrets, neither do any of my family, we all love it here. Never once have we considered going back.

      Hours stuck in traffic going south? I’m not even sure I know what that means. Maybe if I want to drive from Brisbane to the Gold Coast on a Friday afternoon, then a journey that would take an hour and 1/4 without traffic may take an hour and three quarters, perhaps two hours on a bad day.

      I’ve watched the sunset on the M25 without moving much more than a couple of miles. Sure, we do have a few traffic hotspots around Brisbane, but this city is nowhere near as busy as either Sydney or Melbourne and I think you’ll find any traffic snarl ups to be a breeze compared with what you’ve probably been used to in the UK.

      I think it’s quite normal to get a bit nervous at this stage of the game, it’s a big move, and you’re probably picking up more on the negatives now than you did before. Push through it all, you need to find out what Brisbane is like for yourself, I’m sure you won’t be disappointed.

      Good luck, Bob

      • Lizzie March 12, 2019, 12:22 am | Link

        Thank you so much !!! 10 days to go, we have decided to stop listening to the negative and focus on what’s ahead : new adventure. I’m a bit reassured by your comment tho so thank you.
        We have picked the suburb of Springfield Lakes 😊 we can’t wait !!!!!!!

        • BobinOz March 13, 2019, 5:25 pm | Link

          Good for you, focusing on what’s ahead, that way YOU get to decide what Australia is like, not the others.

          You have exciting, and challenging times ahead. Stay positive throughout all of it, embrace and enjoy the new lifestyle, and hopefully you’ll get to love this place is much as I, and many others who have moved here, love it.

          Good luck 🙂 Bob

  • Kervish February 1, 2019, 2:23 pm | Link

    Hi Bob,
    Hope you are fine.
    Well, I always read your blog and while I have already found a migration agent and submitted my details for an initial assessment what I find really helpful is the practical advice that you provide,so thank you very much. I have also read, with a lot of passion, the 99 pages of the very precious “20 reasons why you should move to Australia.”
    I have 2 questions on which I seek your kind help:
    First, my question concerns humidity in Australia, in fact I have a health issue which is a persistent cough that is really annoying and according to the allergic tests performed, it’s due to the humidity level where we live.
    One of the main reasons for which I therefore wish to migrate is for my health but I have never been to Australia, my preferred destination would be Melbourne as I have friends over there.
    I wish to know if Melbourne is a humid place to be and any other valuable piece of advice you may give on Melbourne.

    On another note, my brother wish to follow later and he is an electrician with no formal qualification – I read that with some sort of skill you have more chances but could you please provide any guidance on a course that he might need to follow to be recognized there. However, he has a lengthy experience in this field.
    Many thanks for your help and advice.
    Kind regards,

    • BobinOz February 4, 2019, 4:35 pm | Link

      Glad to hear you have enjoyed my website and book. Melbourne can get humid, in fact I think it got pretty humid at times during January last month, but then it is the height of summer here at the moment in Australia.

      It is not known as a humid city though, humidity in Australia gets worse the further north you go, and as you can see if you look at a map, Melbourne is about as far south as you can get on the mainland.

      That said, if you were to Google “is Melbourne the world’s capital for allergies”, you will see a lot of articles and reports suggesting it is. So you might want to look into that.

      As I’ve said, Melbourne is as far as you can get south on the mainland, but it’s not the the most southern part of Australia, that’s Tasmania.

      Now Tasmania, I’m told, has some of the cleanest air in the world and it’s certainly not humid there. You might like to think about that.

      Can’t help with your brother, he would need to speak to a MARA registered migration agent about his options, I’m simply not qualified to answer these kinds of questions.

      • Kervish February 4, 2019, 6:57 pm | Link

        Thank you for this valuable information Bob.
        I think I will stick to the choice of Melbourne as it’s in the South and as you advised it gets more humid in the North.
        And I shall do as guided for my brother.

        May I please request you to help on a few additional points:

        Well, what would be the current expected costs for two persons to live in Australia taking into consideration the rent (two bedroom apartment in a nice area), food, utility bills, transport and any other related expenses in Melbourne.

        Way forward, do you have an idea how much a house would cost and what are the facilities for purchase of same as a resident?

        I read about traffic getting worse day on day, how is it in Melbourne?

        Many thanks and warm regards.

        • BobinOz February 5, 2019, 7:39 pm | Link

          I have written pages to answer your questions, check out The Cost of Living in Australia of Everything and Cost of Buying or Renting a House in Australia.

          I don’t live in Melbourne, but I have spoken to people who do or have, and yes, I think the traffic is getting worse every day.

          • Kervish February 7, 2019, 7:05 pm | Link

            Dear Bob,
            Thanks for the information.
            Well, one last question because I really have a phobia about snakes and with the recent floods I saw it in the news that crocodiles and snakes were all over in the waters. It’s not that I hate it but just very scared, too scared.

            Hence the below questions:
            – Is it likely to find snakes in your house, in Melbourne particularly?
            – How to prevent encountering them and what do we do if found ii at our place or outside?
            – Are natural catastrophes like floods etc common in Australia?

            With thanks and kind regards.

            • BobinOz February 8, 2019, 8:13 pm | Link

              Kervish, I think you need to acquaint yourself with the search function on the right-hand side towards the top of every page. Search for ‘snakes’, ‘floods’, ‘bushfires’, ‘cyclones’, and even search ‘preparing’ which should take you to some articles about preparing for natural disasters.

              I’ve got nearly 1500 pages on this website, not much I haven’t written about, have a good look around and all your questions will be answered.

  • vb January 2, 2019, 3:23 am | Link

    I’ll tell you one country: Italy.

  • Florian January 1, 2019, 4:54 pm | Link

    Hi Bob,
    My name is Florian F., and I moved from Europe to Australia 3 years ago, through marrying my wife, she is an Australian citizen, born in Australia. I have lived for my first year and a half in Brisbane, in that incredible humidity, being almost sure that I will not survive my second summer there… 🙂 Thank God, after a while, in August of 2017 we moved to Orange NSW, where we currently live, and here the humidity is much lower, the climate being much more bearable for me… as I am not used at all with the killing humidity from Australia and all South Eastern Asia… After these almost 3 years of living here I can say that Australia is very far from all the western civilized countries of Western Europe and especially of North of Europe, such as Norway, Denmark or Sweden… Australia is many years or perhaps decades, I would say, behind those countries. We are now expecting a baby in 5 or 6 weeks’ time, and I just found out few weeks ago that we will only receive 4 months!!! of payment and she can stay at home with the baby only for 4 and a half months!!! after the baby is born… Tell me one single country in Europe, even the poorer Eastern Europe, where they would not pay the new mother 80% of her last salary plus she would stay at home at least one year to raise her baby. The majority of European countries will surely offer two years of stay home plus 75% of your last salary… This is Australia, a country where the Politicians get richer and richer, filthy rich, and common people will end up working till 75 years of age to get a pension of misery… I would like to chat more with you, if that wouldn’t mind you, and exchange thoughts and ideas about life in Australia….I am very aware that THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A PERFECT COUNTRY… But, even so, over all, I am very disappointed with Australia and life in Australia, as you advertise it. I have been reading your posts for the last 2 and a half years, but now I just felt to get in touch with you… I hope you don’t mind me doing it… Perhaps I missed some essential points, in my assessment, therefore I am very open to exchange of ideas and thoughts with you, so I may enhance my view of life in Australia… 🙂

    Have a Happy New Year 2019!

    Kind regards, Florian F.

    • Leanne January 2, 2019, 5:18 am | Link

      Hi Florian F,
      Would just like to point out the maternity pay structure in the UK is as below. (taken from official government website)

      Statutory Maternity Pay (SMP) is paid for up to 39 weeks. You get:

      90% of your average weekly earnings (before tax) for the first 6 weeks
      £145.18 or 90% of your average weekly earnings (whichever is lower) for the next 33 weeks’

      As you can see although you can take up to 52 weeks off for maternity, you only get paid for 39 of those weeks. After the initial 6 weeks the pay is terrible so maybe it is not that bad in Australia considering that the rate of pay is $718 per week for 18 weeks.

    • BobinOz January 7, 2019, 5:27 pm | Link

      Well this is a question I can’t possibly answer, I’d be some kind of walking encyclopaedia if I knew all of the maternity benefits of every country in Europe, but it does appear that Leanne thinks that the maternity leave currently on offer in the UK is not as good as what’s available in Australia. Above your comment, vb suggests Italy’s maternity schemes are also worse than Australia’s.

      I also know that the United States is not in Europe, but it is a major Western country, and the maternity leave arrangements there are just awful. 12 weeks apparently on partial pay and not everyone qualifies for that. More information available on the following website…

      Every country has its pros and cons, sounds like for you, Australia has more cons. For me, it has more pros. Everybody is different, all I give here on this website is my opinion of life in Australia. I live in Brisbane, and I don’t mind the humidity at all, I’ll take it all day ahead of grey, cold or rainy which describes the weather a lot of the time in the UK. As I say, everyone is different.

      Congratulations, by the way, becoming a father is life changing 🙂

      • Florian February 21, 2019, 8:13 pm | Link

        Thank you very much for taking time to answer my comments. I appreciate it very much. Kind regards, Florian.

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