Study and work in Australia: Everything you need to know
Going to Australia to study and workis fashionable. Australia is a country that due to its wild nature, its attractive cities such as Sydney or Melbourne, its beach lifestyle and its high quality of life attracts millions ofstudents from all over the worldevery yearwho come to Down Under to study English, learn a profession or training in one of the main universities in the country.
We ourselves came to Sydney in 2013 tostudy English and work in Australiaand we liked the experience so much that five years later we are still living and working in Australia.
If you are also thinking of going to Australia to study and work, we imagine all the fears, doubts and uncertainties that are arising for you right now:What is it like to study in Australia? How much does it cost to study in Australia? What is the best city to study in Australia? What do I need to study in Australia?.
To answer all your questions and help you make your decision we have prepared this article, written from ourpersonal experienceand that of some of our friends who also studied in Australia who we have asked to tell us about their experience and give us their opinion more candid about what studying and working in Australia meant for them.
The article is very long, because we want to answer one by one all the questions that we are usually asked about studying and working in Australia and give you an overview of what it means to live this experience. That is why we have prepared this index for you so that you can move through the text at your leisure.
Article index (Follow the links to go directly to what interests you)
To start the article with a good taste in your mouth, we want to tell you the reasons why studying in Australia is a great idea:
1.- Traveling and studying in Australia is a perfect combination.
Howtravel blogwe are, what are we going to say. One of the main reasons why we decided to come to live in Australia was to have the opportunity to get to know the country and travel all over this part of the world.
Five years after landing in Australia and having traveled practically all over the country, we are still amazed by the beauty of the country and the wild nature it hides.
Studying in Australia is the perfect excuse to take the trip to Australia that you have always dreamed of.
Speaking English is essential for most jobs and very important for the rest. Therefore, spending a season in an Anglo-Saxon country like Australia will help you improve your resume and open more job doors for you.
It is clear that Australia is not the only country where you can study English, but we are convinced that it is the most complete: beaches, good weather (In some areas, we are not going to be fooled either), friendly people, safe to live and with the possibility of working to cover expenses
3.- Beaches and surf
If, like us, you are a beach person and a nature lover in Australia, you are going to find your paradise, and this cannot be denied by anyone.
We are from the south of United States and we boast of spectacular beaches, but we have to recognize that when it comes to beaches in Australia it is very difficult to beat it: kilometer-long beaches, fine white sand, dunes, crystal clear waters and world-class waves for surf.Ah! And kangaroos as towel companions.
From the shore of the beach next to the house, we watch whales every winter, we see dolphins passing by practically every month and ... yes, come on, I'll tell you, sometime we have had to get out of the water because the alarm has sounded of the shark ... But what is life without a little risk?
4.- Change professional career and be happy.
Perhaps one of the main reasons why you are thinking of coming to study in Australia is because you are not happy with your work, because what you do no longer fulfills you and because you want to change your life.
If so, I have to tell you that Australia is the perfect country to turn your professional career around.
During our years living in Australia we have seen how some of our friends left behind professions that did not make them happy and were trained to practice a completely different profession. We ourselves have changed our careers in Australia.
In Australia it is not so common to go to university and you have many higher education courses lasting from 3 to 18 months (Depending on the industry) that allow you to learn a new profession in a short time while doing an internship to gain experience.
5.- Meet people from all over the world
Australia is full of international students, it is one of the main sources of income in the country.
Once you have decided to study English, a higher education course or go to university, you will share a desk with students of different nationalities: Chinese, Filipinos, Brazilians, French, Italians ...
6.- Quality of life
The quality of life index measures the happiness of the inhabitants of a city or a country and takes into account factors such as political stability, the economic environment, health, education, transport, public services ...
Several cities in Australia have crept into the top positions of this world ranking: Sydney tops the list of Australian cities with 10th place, Melbourne 18th, Perth 21st, Adelaide 32nd and Brisbane 36th.
7.- Australia is a very safe country
To give you an idea, we have a friend who has forgotten her wallet three times in different bars and it has always been returned to her with all her cards and the cash she carried.
Australia is one of the safest countries in the world with a very low crime rate.
In the five years that we have been living in Australia, we have not had any unpleasant situation or have had a feeling of insecurity at any time.
8.- Job opportunities
The unemployment rate in Australia was just 5.6% in 2017 and is set to drop a little further over the next few years.
Australia is a country that offers many job opportunities, but you must bear in mind that it is very important to speak English well to be able to access qualified jobs and that you are still going to have to work a lot and be very clear about your goals in order to make your way.
But if what you want is to spend a season studying in Australia and earn some money to support yourself then you will be surprised by the amount of job opportunities to work in hospitality, cleaning or babysitting that you can find in Australia.
9.- The salary
Salaries in Australia are very good, especially compared to other countries like the United States. For example, working as a cleaner, waiter, in construction or as a nanny, you can earn between $ 18 and $ 35 an hour. Of course it depends on where you work and the day of the week (Here Sunday is charged double).
The 5 best places to study in Australia
Depending on what you are looking for in Australia, you will be more interested in going to study in one city or another in the country. Here are our recommendations:
1.- Study in Sydney
Five years ago Sidney became our home and without a doubt our favorite city to live in.
Sydney is a city with many job opportunities, beaches, good waves, good weather, surrounded by nature and with a spectacular bay.
Even today, after five years, we continue to hallucinate how beautiful the city is and how lucky we are to be able to live here.
You should choose Sydney to study in Australia if you like cities, live near the beach, and want to spend a good time in Australia and therefore consider the possibility of, in the future, looking for another visa through a job skilled.
2.- Study in Melbourne
If you are an urbanite, lover of cities, bars and a bit of culture then Melbourne is your city.
There are also very good English and higher education academies in Melbourne, and although the climate is harsher than Sydney's, the advantage is that Melbourne has more cultural offerings than Sydney.
3.- Study in Gold Coast and Byron Bay
If you only want to study in Australia during the summer months then I didn't hesitate and I was going to the Gold Coast or Byron Bay.
Gold Coast is a city that is located in the state of Queensland and where the temperatures are very good throughout the year. Many Australians spend their summer holidays on the Gold Coast, so in summer there is a lot of opportunity to work in hospitality.
Gold Coast is also famous for being a perfect place for surfing and it is also in a good location to get to know the east coast of Australia.
Byron Bay is the fashionable town in Australia, for its good atmosphere and because it is a much more relaxed place to learn English and spend the year surfing.
Brisbane is the capital of Queensland and the third most populous city in Australia.
It is perfect for you if you don't want to live in a big city but you don't want to go to study in a town. Brisbane is a secluded city, with mild temperatures in winter and autumn and located in a privileged enclave to visit some of the most beautiful places in Australia such as Fraser Island, Whitsundays, Noosa ...
About studying in Perth we have heard very contradictory stories, really.
Some people love the tranquility of Perth, its sunsets and all the nature that surrounds the city.
For others Perth is a boring city, with little to do and very isolated from the rest of the world.
Recommendations and tips for studying in Australia
As always from our personal experience, these are the recommendations that we would give you before going to study in Australia:
1.- Be very clear about your objective
It may sound silly of advice to you, but for us it is the most important. Be very clear why you have decided to come to Australia and focus your stay in the country to achieve that goal.
Time in Australia flies by and if you are not sure what you want to achieve with your experience in Australia then you will not achieve it.
Maybe your goal is to live the experience, so focus on living it to the fullest and stop the nonsense or visa hassles.
If what you want is to study English, try to do a total linguistic immersion and interact with English speakers.
And if your goal is to find a job in Australia and change your visa, then be prepared to sacrifice some time in finding an internship or a job that allows you to advance professionally or where they offer you a visa to be able to stay and live in Australia for one more season. long.
2.- Choose very well what to study in Australia.
And this recommendation is closely linked to the previous one. Depending on what you have come to do in Australia, you may be interested in studying English, a higher education course, a master's degree or a doctorate. Also take into account the academy where you are going to study.
For example, if you come to Australia to study English, don't waste your time with low-quality courses. Choose a good academy with the English courses that interest you, even if it costs you a few dollars more.
We know many people who have decided on cheap academies and later have regretted because they have not learned anything.
3.- Save money before coming to Australia.
It does not matter if they tell you that they will find work here in two weeks, yes or yes because it is not true. There are people who are lucky and the first week they have already found a job that helps them support themselves and there are people who take much longer to find a job.
Australia is an expensive country, to give you an idea in Sydney the rent costs a minimum of about $ 200 per room in a shared flat a week, if a week.
What does this mean? Well, you need some money to live during the first weeks that you are in Australia before you find a job or you are going to be very overwhelmed.
4.- Get advice before coming to Australia
Student agencies exist for a reason, and that is that jumping to Australia without any help and advice is a little scary.
You have to choose an academy to study in, a city to move to, get a student visa ... and the whole process you have to follow to the letter because if the Australian government rejects your student visa, then you no longer have anything what to do.
We advise you to contact a student agency in Australia, there are many. In these agencies they give you free advice and take you by the hand through this whole process: They help you choose a city, course, sign you up for the academy and process your visa and medical insurance.
Although you will find many agencies online, not all of them are good and not all advise their students in good faith, so do not trust those who paint Australia as the promised land and tell you that with $ 1,500 you stay perfectly until you find your first job because it's not true.
We have also met student agents who are charming and care deeply about their students. In particular we would like to introduce you to our friend DianafromLearnsyd .And I say friend because she is literally one of our best friends in Australia and also a great professional.
Diana emigrated to Australia more than five years ago and four years ago she decided to set up her own student agency to help other people study and work in Australia.
What we like the most about Diana's way of working and the reason why we recommend her is because you are going to have a super personal relationship with her.
Diana treats her students as if they were friends and pampers them a lot.Not only does she help them with all the procedures and documents they have to present to come to Australia, but she also maintains a personal relationship with them while they are in Australia and supports them. during your stay in the country.
And we say this because we have lived it, to the point that many of Diana's students are now also part of our circle of friends in Australia.
If you want to contact Diana from Learnsyd tell her that you are a Sun Tours and Fun reader and you will have a $ 50 discount on your course in Australia.
What do I need to study in Australia
To solve some of the most common questions about studying and working in Australia we have interviewed Diana fromLearnsydto clarify all our doubts from a more professional point of view. These have been their responses:
Why study in Australia?
The quality of education here is recognized worldwide, Australia is the third country in the number of international students admitted, it is behind the USA and UK, however if we take into account that the student visa in the USA does not allow to work and that the climate In the UK it is quite depressing ... it is not surprising that the number of international students in Australia increases every year attracted by the amount of indigenous and unique fauna as well as the possibility of super fun activities such as surfing, kitesurfing, diving, climbing, swimming with whales and dolphins ...
What is the best city to study in Australia?
Obviously it depends on the experience that each person is looking for, since all the cities of Australia have a very particular character. We have opinions of all kinds, recently we have helped a student change his course from Sydney to Perth and he is delighted with his new city, practicing kitesurfing every day and sending us incredible photos of the sunset, instead we have people who after their course in Sydney they want to renew their student visa and they don't even want to hear about the possibility of going to another city. In Melbourne, for example, the bars with live music, the most bohemian atmosphere and there is a large community of Spanish speakers are well known. Summer and surf lovers are very clear that they want to study in the Gold Coast. Australia offers all the options as a perfect destination to study and live.
How to go about studying in Australia?
The student visa application process can be a bit confusing if it is the first time it is done, the best option is to contact a student agency specialized in courses in Australia, such as Learnsyd, for example
What do I need to study in Australia?
You will need to sign up for a course from a recognized institution in Australia to study full time in Australia, a student visa and medical insurance that covers you for the entire time you reside in Australia.
In addition, depending on each country of origin and school, the requirements to apply for the student visa vary, however, all students have to write a statement explaining the reasons why they want to study in Australia and how one will improve their professional life. once finished its course.
How much does it cost to study in Australia?
The price is also quite relative depending on the selected course, the school, the city, even the schedule, for example, a 6-month English course in Sydney could cost about $ 4000 (AUD), a business management course of a year it could cost about $ 5000. College Studies range from $ 10,000 to $ 20,000 per year.
Apart from the costs of the studies, it must be taken into account that a mandatory medical insurance must be taken for the entire period of the visa, which usually costs about $ 580 per year and that the price of requesting the student visa is $ 575.
What can I study in Australia?
The list of courses and options is infinite, all possible branches are collected from business, art, cooking, music, dance, sports, psychology, nursery teacher, nursing, computer science…. And all levels from certificates and diplomas to undergraduate, postgraduate and master's degrees.
What is a student agency? What is it for?
A student agency is a body recognized by the department of education in Australia and authorized to sell courses with different educational centers around the country.
Student agencies givefree adviceto people interested in studying in Australia, we recommend the educational centers that best suit them, taking into account the particular circumstances of each person. Once the course and school have been selected, we help them with the entire enrollment process, request for medical insurance, request for a student visa, we help them with the declarations and documentation that they have to present with their application.
In our case, we closely monitor our students, making sure they are well and offering to help them in case they need us during their stay, sometimes they don't need us and we don't see them again until their course ends and we meet to say goodbye, other times, we are in constant contact with them.
We are proud to know that our students count on us, although we also consider that once they have learned the language, they can already function perfectly in the city and we are also happy to know that they no longer need us.
If, for any circumstance, the school stops providing the educational services for which it was hired,the student agency is in charge of defending the student and ensuring that they receive the appropriate course, and even the cancellation and enrollment of the student in another center.
And as I have already mentioned,all these services are free for the student, the agencies do not charge money to the students, but to the schools.
Tell us about Learnsyd What services do you offer? Why Learnsyd?
Learnsyd is almost 4 years old now, we are very proud of the welcome we have had with the students, especially Spanish-speaking students, every day we receive calls from friends of our students asking us for information to come to study and work in Australia.
We offer free advice to study in Australia, we process all the necessary documentation to apply for the student visa, we offer necessary information about the city where you are going to live as well as information to enter the country, if you travel to Sydney, for example we will look for the airport and we give them a Welcome Day around the city, also helping them with various administrative procedures to be able to work in Australia and effectively helping them with the job search until the student finds a job.
Once they are settled, we offer them free excursions so that they can enjoy the activities and sports that can be done here, sometimes we record them on video and publish them on YouTube other times: we forget the camera !! but we always always have a great time with our students, who we already consider our friends.
All agencies more or less do the same in terms of enrollment and visa requests, on the other hand, I have always tried to create a family in Learnsyd, where our students feel protected, get to know each other and help each other, work data is passed, of soccer matches, Latin parties, activity offers and trips, so many times we do not need to organize activities for them since they are the ones who invite us when they make barbecues or Chilean empanadas at their homes ... I have to admit they are my downfall.
With this video you can find out the opinion of one of Learnsyd's students:
Any recommendation to study in Australia?
Yes, that they come prepared to meet people of all nationalities, to enjoy an extraordinary country with many activities that they can do, but also, to avoid possible disappointments, I would recommend coming with enough savings to pay for studies and stay with ease. , so when they find a job they can save their savings and go home with a good little money or even, they can use it to go around Southeast Asia before returning to their countries.
How can our readers contact you if they have more questions about studying in Australia?
Super easy, you can write a message to Learnsyd , I am looking forward to helping as many people as possible to make their dream of studying in Australia come true.
And you already know that all of you who come from Sun Tours and Fun have a $ 50 discount on your course.
Yes, as you can see, if you contact Diana from Learnsyd and tell her that you are a Sun Tours and Fun reader, you have $ 5 off your course.
To be able to go to study in Australia you must have a visa.
With the tourist visa, you can only study in Australia for a course of less than three months and you cannot work during your stay in the country.
With the Work and Holidays visa you can work but you cannot study a course of more than three months.
Therefore, to study and work in Australia it is best to apply for a student visa.The student visa allows you to study full time in Australia and work 40 hours every fortnight.
The requirements to apply for a student visa in Australia are:
Be over 6 years old.
Have been accepted to study at an educational institution in Australia.
Work in australia
Australian job opportunities
Australia is a country with many job opportunities, and it is true that finding work in Australia is relatively easy, but this does not mean that in your first week in Australia you will find the job of your dreams.
Find a job in Australia
If you come to study in Australia without knowing English, finding a job will be a bit more complicated. Although you can find jobs that do not require a high level of English as a cleaner, collecting and washing glasses in a restaurant or as a kitchen assistant. When you improve your English you can go on to work as a waiter or babysitter.
There are also many employers who belong to the Spanish and Latino community and hire Spanish-speaking people even if they don't know much English in construction jobs, in hospitality or in cleaning.
If you already speak a little English then finding a job as a waiter in a bar, a receptionist in a small hotel or as a clerk in a store will not cost you much work. Although it may take a few weeks from when you start submitting resumes until you find a job.
If you know English you can get an even better job as a receptionist, administrative, or public relations.
You must bear in mind that they are your student visa you can only work 20 hours a week, therefore many companies that offer qualified jobs for accountants, engineers, marketers or administration are reluctant to hire students, basically because you cannot work the whole day in the country.
This is not to say that it is impossible. Both we and most of our friends in Australia came to Australia on a student visa and found work in our respective professional fields. I am just saying that you prepare your body to fight for your goals and that in Australia they are not going to give you the job as many people are told.
We in Australia have worked as waiters, kitchen assistants, gardeners, babysitters, teaching Spanish, in construction, as shop assistants ... and some more that I may have forgotten along the way, before finding a job related to our professions .
How to find a job in Australia
1. - Prepare several resumes
How in almost all places on the planet you start by creating a resume in which you talk about your studies, your skills and your professional experience related to the job you want to apply for.
That is to say, if you are looking for a job as a waiter, nobody cares about your studies as an engineer, but the skill and experience you have serving dishes or serving customers.
In Australia it is recommended that you do not add a photo to your CV and that it be one page long, so that it is easier to read.
2.- Websites to find a job
We leave you the link to some of the most popular web pages in Australia to look for work:
There are groups created from all the cities of Australia, just go to facebook and become a member of the ones that interest you the most.
4.- Going to the workplace
The truth is that this last option is only recommended if you want to work in the hospitality industry or in stores, and at certain times of the day.
Print out a few resumes and go to bars, restaurants, coffee shops, and stores to give your resume in person. Make sure to do it outside of hours when the business is full of customers and managers are very busy.
What to study to work in Australia
Many people have also asked us what is better to study to work in Australia.
We always answer that question that the first thing is to study English, the more English you know, the better positioned you will be to find a job in Australia.
It is also interesting to know which are the most demanded professions in the country. Examples of professions in demand right now would be: Child educator, cook, carpenter, electrician, nursing, architecture, programming and development….
To exercise some of them you have to have university studies and also pass an English exam in Australia among other requirements related to your professional experience. But to practice others as a child educator you only need to study a higher course in Australia (Here they are called Certificates III or diplomas).
We recommend that you have a chat with your agent and explain very well what your goals are in Australia so that they can advise you on what to study.
Minimum Wage in Australia
The minimum wage in Australia is $ 719.20 a week $ 18.93 per hour.
The salary in the most common professions among students ranges from $ 18.93 to $ 25 an hour for waiters, kitchen assistants, store clerks and people who work in construction.
If you want to speak with Learnsyd, the agency that we recommend, remember to tell him that you are a Sun Tours and Fun reader and you will have $ 50 off your course.
The downside of studying in Australia
As we have already told you, distrust those who paint Australia as the promised land, because studying in Australia also has its negative side.
1.- Australia is very far.
Australia is a bit isolated and above all very far from any Spanish-speaking country and that is both the good and the bad of Australia.
The good because it makes it a very attractive country to which we all want to travel once in a lifetime to live the adventure and the bad because when you have been here for a while you miss your family and friends.
We have to admit that as much as we love living in Australia, missing the wedding of one of your friends or not being able to be present at the important moments of your family is not funny.
2.- Australia is a very expensive country.
We have already told you that renting a room in a shared house in Sydney costs you about $ 200 a week, the weekly purchase is around $ 80 and the beers between $ 5 and $ 10.
But if you plan to work while you are studying in Australia keep in mind that the salaries are very good, so surely the high prices do not affect you so much (Except for the beer of course, which is a bummer?).
3.- In some areas of Australia it also rains a lot, don't be fooled.
That in cities like Sydney or Brisbane the temperatures are terrific, it's true. That the sun rises every day, well look no.
In Sydney it rains a lot and it is also very windy, and keep it up. Because although we are from Almería and the rain scares us, we have to recognize that the green and beautiful landscape of the east coast of Australia is thanks to the rain, so we do not want it to change.
4.- Going from a student visa to a temporary work visa in the country is increasingly complicated.
Australia's immigration policies are becoming quite tightening and there are increasing requirements for accessing a temporary work visa in Australia.
If your idea is to come with a student visa and then try to change it for a temporary work visa, keep in mind that it is not an easy task, although it is certainly not impossible and we are the example.
We came to Australia to study English and work, we liked the country, we fought for a temporary work visa and we have been living and working here for five years. And like us many of our friends. But all of our stories have something in common: A very clear goal, hard work, and patience.
Opinions and real experiences about coming to study and work in Australia
As we told you at the beginning of this article, we wanted to make a very comprehensive and sincere article about everything that involves studying and working in Australia.
So that you can contrast opinions and other experiences, here we leave you the stories and testimonies of some of our friends who came to study and work in Australia.
Maria is a physiotherapist, she came to Australia a few years ago to study and work. She studied a marketing course while working giving massages and a few years later she got the company where she was giving massages to claim her to work. Maria now resides permanently in Australia and works as a masseuse in Sydney.
¨I studied a diploma in marketing, the truth is it was a very pleasant experience, I met many people from different countries, my level of English improved a lot and the hours were flexible to be able to combine them with my work. However, I have to say that the academic level from my point of view here in Australia is very low, especially for the courses that are done to access student visas, my recommendation would be to inform you and look for a school that offers quality teaching. In the end, if you are going to invest your time and money in studies, at least they will serve you for something… ”.
Jose is the co-founder of this travel blog. Jose came to Australia without any level of English to learn the language, surf and change careers because he was not happy with the business career that he had decided to study in the United States.
¨ For me it was one of the best experiences of my life. I studied English in an academy located in the center of Sydney, met people from all over the world and improved my level to an advanced level, starting from a beginner level. My classes were in the morning, so it allowed me to work in a restaurant as a kitchen helper and later in a clothing store. I was also able to prepare for the IELST to access my next visa. Living in Australia has been a dream come true for me. For many years I planned this change in my life and without a doubt it has been one of the best decisions I have made. Living in Australia is an adventure, there are thousands of places to visit such as cities, natural parks, etc. Also being in Sydney allowed me to surf every day that I could.
I'm still waiting for some more opinions from friends who have studied in Australia, I promise to publish them little by little. If you have also studied in Australia and want to share your opinion with us, I encourage you to leave us a comment.
I hope thisguide to studying in Australiahas helped you to clarify some of the millions of doubts you will have before making the big decision to go to Australia to study and work. It is clear that each one has their economic and family circumstances and decides to study in Australia for some reasons or others, but if you want a final advice, nothing better than our own testimony:
Taking the step of taking a plane and traveling to study and work in Australia was the best decision of our lives. It has allowed us to improve our level of English, it has trained us as professionals, it has charged us with vital experiences and has strengthened us as a couple. It has also allowed us to travel a lot and get to know this part of the world in depth.
If you also want to live the experience of getting out of your comfort zone and studying and working in Australia, don't hesitate and go for it. But we do advise you, whether through Learnsyd or another student agency, to do so wisely and inform yourself and prepare before coming to Australia. We are sure it will be one of the best adventures of your life.
If you contact Learnsyd tell them that you are a Time To Explore reader and you will get $ 50 off your course in Australia.
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