You're Moving to Australia, Yay! Are You Excited? Overwhelmed?
Or maybe a bit of both with a dash of AM-I-REALLY-GOING-TO-DO-THIS sprinkled on top?
What You Need to Know, Before You Pack Up and Go.
There’s only one way to stop feeling overwhelmed and silence any thoughts of self-doubt. It’s time to get organized!
My moving checklist is 37 pages, packed full of resources PLUS you'll get access to my Private Facebook Group with over 2,000 members. AND IT'S FREE. No strings attached.
Hi, I'm Lauren, and I've Helped Thousands of People From All Over the World Move to Australia.
I started blogging about my move to Sydney back in 2009.
After only a few months of blogging, my inbox was overflowing with emails from readers packed full of questions about their move to Australia.
The more I posted on my blog, the more emails I got until I wasn't able to keep up.
That's when I created Sydney Moving Guide to answer all those questions and build a community for expats to exchange information and resources.
You can read more about me here, but Sydney Moving Guide isn't really about me.
IT'S ABOUT YOU. So, I have one question for you.
How Can I Help You With Your Move to Australia?
There are a lot of unknowns when moving to Australia.
Even if you've been to Australia before, on vacation or for your gap year, and feel you know the country well.
There will be surprises. I can guarantee it.
Some surprises will be small and you'll shrug them off easily. Others will be big, hairy, and sometimes expensive, surprises that will stop you in your tracks, thinking "Where the heck did that come from?"
The only way to turn those big, hairy surprises into smaller ones, or navigate around them entirely, is to clear up as many of those unknowns as possible.
That's the whole reason why I started Sydney Moving Guide.
To give you all the resources and information you need to DIY your move to Australia with no big, hairy surprises along the way.
So Let's Get Started.
If you haven't downloaded my Moving to Sydney Checklist yet, then do that first.
It's completely free, no strings attached.
And you'll get access to my private Facebook group. (*details on page 2 of the checklist.)
The SMG Facebook group has a good mix of members who are also getting started with their move to Australia and expats currently living in Sydney for several years now. It's a great place to get recommendations and answers to all your questions from where to live, school enrollment, the cost of daycare in Sydney, and pet relocation.
Not Sure You Should Move to Sydney?
It’s a big decision and can be a lengthy process. Will all the time and money it’s going to cost be worth it?
Yes, this is going to take some time and a lot of patience. As for the cost of moving, you won’t have to pay for everything at once so you can start budgeting your move now.
Is it going to be worth it? I can tell you that most expats living in Sydney never want to leave. And if they do, it’s with a very heavy heart.
Sorting Out Your Finance Before Moving
When we moved in 2008, we made several very costly mistakes with our finances from choosing a bank to transferring money.
Please, take the time to estimate how much in savings you will need when you arrive and the best way to transfer those funds to Australia before you move.
Luckily, this can all be done online, months before you leave home. It just might be the easiest part of your move and well worth it.
Shipping Your Household to Australia
Shipping your household to Australia is going to cost more than you think, not just to pack up and ship, but also the fees when your shipment arrives in Sydney.
Always, always, always, get an in-house shipping quote. Don’t try to estimate the size of your shipment. It’s best to have someone who has a good understanding of what can fit in a 20 ft or 40 ft container walk with you through your house.
The other benefit of getting an in-house quote is it gives you a chance to ask about Australian quarantine dos and don’ts, timeframe, and customs.
Finding a Job in Sydney
After reading my cost of living posts, most people hit the panic button.
The next thing they do is one of the biggest mistakes I see expats make.
They start to apply for every job advertised in their field.
Then they get more panicked when they don’t hear anything back. Complete radio silence.
Why don’t they hear anything back? Well for one, they are applying from overseas and employers are usually only interested in applicants who are currently present in Australia. Another reason is, Australian resumes aren’t the same as U.S. resumes.
Renting Your First Place in Sydney
The rental market in Sydney is very competitive.
To give yourself an advantage, you’ll need to figure out where in Sydney you want to live and what you can afford.
This isn’t as easy as it sounds.
There are over 600 suburbs in Sydney. (Yeah, Sydney’s huge.)
Besides price and location, there are other factors you need to consider like commute times and local schools.
Moving to Australia with Kids
Mom, Dad, I know you’re worried and have heaps of questions. Most of the emails I get are about schools and daycare in Sydney.
The good news is the answers to your questions can be found either here or by asking in the SMG Facebook group. Majority of the group is expat parents that have successfully enrolled their kids in school and can help with the process.
The bad news is you will have to wait until you are in Sydney to enroll your kids in a public school. But don’t worry, you’ll have all your research done and know exactly what to expect.
Moving to Australia with Pets
International pet relocation is expensive. Think first-class.
Unfortunately, you won’t be able to enjoy first-class with your pets because of Australia’s strict quarantine policy.
In Australia, your pets will be quarantined for at least 10 days after they arrive. No, that’s not quarantined at a hotel or your house, it’s not even near Sydney. And yes, that’s the minimum if all the paperwork is correct and they’re vaccines are up-to-date.
The whole process takes over six months BEFORE they arrive in Australia.
Quick Guides for Australia Visas
There is one thing that you absolutely must have before you leave home.
A valid visa for Australia.
It doesn’t matter if you’re moving or going to Australia for vacation, you need to have a visa to enter the country.
There are so many different visas for Australia that it’s hard to cover all of them.
Instead, I focus mainly on work visas for skilled migrants.