Australia is known around the globe as the ‘lucky country’ and whilst we’re technically ‘down under’, it isn’t rocket science to see that we’re really ‘on top!’ People come from every corner of the world to study and live in Australia. Here’s a few of the reasons why:
1. Australia has some world-class universities
Seriously, we must be an academic bunch, us Aussies! Taking into account our current population of approximately 23.5 million, we’ve put ourselves on the map – yet again – with our world-class institutions.
According to the recently published Times Higher Education 2014 World University Rankings, Australia has 5 major universities listed among the world’s top 100. These are:#33 University of Melbourne #45 Australian National University #60 University of Sydney #65 University of Queensland #83 Monash University
These universities offer a broad array of degrees ranging from engineering to medicine to marketing, at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels. If you were planning to attend one of these tertiary institutions, imagine what a top global university could do to enhance your CV and graduate job prospects!
Many universities worldwide have student exchange partnerships with these and other Australian universities, making admission into courses at these establishments much easier. So, hanging out with the brightest minds in Australia is not as far-from-reach as you may have imagined!
2. Our cities aren’t as close together as you might think
You may have checked the map recently and seen that Australia is made up of a vast amount of land, but have you yet grasped how spread out the major cities in this country really are? In fact, Perth is the most isolated city in the world with a population of +1 million people. That’s some achievement!
- Flying time between Perth and Sydney is at around 4 hours each way.
- Between Melbourne and Brisbane you are looking at about 2.5 hours in a plane.
- Sydney is 8-12 hours driving distance from Melbourne, depending on your rest breaks and average traffic.
This makes it crucial to do your research before settling on a city to call home whilst you study. Do you prefer cityscape or rural? Do you want to spend all your free time at the beach, or do you want to explore the outback?
The physical distance makes regular, budget travel between cities not so feasible, so think about the city’s relevance to your degree as well. Depending on what you want to study, Australia offers unique opportunities in each of its major regions. For example, Environmentalists may wish to study in Queensland for the access it provides to the heritage-listed Barrier Reef. Budding business graduates may choose to schmooze with the suits in the cosmopolitan city of Sydney in New South Wales. Sport and fitness enthusiasts would do well to call Victoria’s Capital City, Melbourne home with its world-class facilities and annual events such as the Grand Prix and Australian Tennis Open.
3. They might be spread out, but we have some of the world’s most liveable cities
Melbourne, Adelaide, Sydney and Perth all made it into the top 10 of the 2014 global poll on the livability of cities across the globe. If you think about the number of cities in the world, to hit 4 in the top 10 must prove that Australia truly rocks!
The Economist Intelligent Unit’s 2014 Global Liveability Rankings was published in August this year.
- Melbourne, Australia 97.5
- Vienna, Austria 97.4
- Vancouver, Canada 97.3
- Toronto, Canada 97.2
- Adelaide, Australia 96.6
- Calgary, Canada 96.6
- Sydney, Australia 96.1
- Helsinki, Finland 96.0
- Perth, Australia 95.9
- Auckland, New Zealand 95.7
This also means we have great:
- access to transport
- excellent educational opportunities
- a lively cultural scene
- a welcoming atmosphere
and much more that will make you want to stay with us long-term!
4. You may be able to work whilst you study here
You’ll probably have to fork out heaps of hard-earned cash to obtain the necessary student visa for your study trip ‘Down Under’. However, the good news is we want you to get that money back! Specifically, we give you opportunities to earn it back, since the typical study visa allows you to work a certain number of houses per week whilst you complete your study.
The good news is, us Aussies pride ourselves on rather high minimum wages, so it’s likely that taking on a part-time job will not only grow the dollars in your bank account, but also elevate your CV for professional experience abroad.
5. Our road rules are unique
If you settle on Melbourne as your new city, you will learn about (and may have to perform) the Hook Turn. It’s a unique way of turning right on roads in the busy city centre. The Hook Turn exists to ensure the trams (light rail) have right of way on our busy inner-city roads. It also ensures newcomers are more afraid of turning right than seasoned locals.
If you live in Sydney, get used to driving on a series of one way streets….enough said!
6. Students get heaps of discounts
Affectionately known as ‘Tight-arse Tuesdays”, there are discounts available to students at bars, pubs, restaurants, ski resorts and cinemas on Tuesdays. The day of the week can vary city to city, but generally there are great savings to be had.
Some clothing retailers offer year-round student discounts of up to 15% off merchandise as well.
All you need to be able to take advantage of these discounts is a valid Photo ID, otherwise known as your student card!
7. We know how to book cheap domestic flights!
In Oz, will travel!
Lucky you, as we Aussies love domestic travel too! Cheap airfares have made travel more accessible over the past few years, so you can have a weekend getaway a few hundred kilometres away for just a little cash!
Major Aussie airlines are Qantas, Virgin Australia, Jetstar and Tiger Airways so make sure you research your options with an online comparison website.
8. Travel within major cities can be expensive
Watch out for taxis in major cities! They might be cheap in your home country, but in Australia, they are a one-way-ticket to an expensive ride home!
Of course, be safe and share a cab home, particularly after-dark. However during daylight hours we recommend you do your research into public transport options. Bulk buy, multi-journey tickets such as weekly, monthly and yearly passes are going to ensure you get best value for money.
9. Our house rental market is student-friendly
We support student lifestyle in Australia, so there are plenty of student rental options from agents across the country. Most major cities have student-dense suburbs surrounding universities which makes for a great social scene after classes and an awesome way to make new friends that live and study locally, just like you.
Make sure you have proof of enrolment in your course, photo ID and a bank account set up, prior to attending any open for inspections, as this documentation is crucial to your application being considered.
10. Our property market might hold the golden key to continuing your adventure down-under
There are recently-introduced incentives to purchase property in Australia. If you are here long-term, it might be a good option, as the ongoing expense of rental payments is sometimes better invested in a property that can grow you a healthy return on your purchase price over a few years.
Australia’s property market is the healthiest it has been in a while, meaning this option is particularly lucrative right now!