Moving to Sydney

by Bob Sheth on December 13, 2009

in Australia Immigration

Immigrating? Leave Nothing To Chance With This List

Sydney is the capital of the state of New South Wales and is the largest city in Australia. This metropolis is populated by over four million people and has a land area of 12,000 square kilometers. It has become one of the most multicultural cities in the world as it is the major destination for many immigrants and tourists Down Under.

Originally established as the first British colony in the country and was built around the Sydney Harbour. It is home to the Sydney Opera House, the Harbour Bridge and many of the most popular beaches in the country. All in all the city has many prominent parks and together with the Sydney Cove, the city has one of the most stunning views and landscapes in the world.

Compared to the other cities in the world, Sydney is an alpha+ world city. It is also the most expensive city in Australia but is also considered as one of the most livable cities in the world.  It is also a significant international financial center, as it is the most commercially active in Australia and has been in the forefront of the world’s economy.

Sydney’s Central Business District is around the metropolitan area’s Central Station. The commercial activity though is not centered in the area but has continuously been the driving force for the city’s growth and development.

Moving to Sydney

When you have finally decided on moving to Sydney, there are many things you need to change from your previous life to your new life Down Under. Here is a short list of things you need to change before you move to Sydney.

a)      For airline details. You need to be well aware of the baggage restrictions for things you carry unto the plane. It is best to arrange your flight with this in mind. To make things easier for you, you can search the internet to compare and canvass the best deal for you and your family’s needs.

b)      Pack and prepare. You need to determine which of your personal belongings are important and can be used in your new home. Dispose of those items that are unimportant, like for example snow shoes when you live in Australia’s Gold Coast. Then, again search for movers for your bigger items and have them shipped over to your new home.

c)      Notice to Employer. If your move is not company initiated, then you need to inform your current employer of your pending move to Australia. This is important to obtain the necessary documentation as well as work references for your future employment in the country.

d)      References. In order to be able to create a new financial identity in Australia, you need to obtain credit references from the bank and other financial institutions. This is important as you re-start your life and your credit profile is clean. Thus, you need to prove your creditworthiness and having credible references is best for your purposes in Australia.

e)      Medical Records. As you start your life in Australia, you and your family would be covered by Medicare and PBS. In order to be properly medicated, you need to bring your complete medical records from your place of origin. These may include immunization records, doctor and dental records most especially for existing medical conditions under treatment.

f)        Moving your pet. This may be one of the more costlier aspects of your move as you need professional assistance and thus professional fees when it comes to this kind of service.

g)      Update personal records. You need to get used to the new address and home numbers for your new home as you finish moving to Australia. You need to reference your Permanent Residence details in your new resume. You also need to attach your references as the time difference may prove to be difficult when your prospective employer seeks to check on your employment history.

h)      Set up your communication lines. Once you reach your new home destination, you need to become accessible. The easiest way is to order a phone card for your new mobile SIM.

i)        Change of Address. You need to inform all of your contacts of your change of address. These include banks, credit card companies, tax officials, insurance brokers and other important people. You also need to inform your local post office for any mail that may be in transit when you are right in the middle of moving to Australia.

j)        Electronic documentation. Since you would be traveling across vast oceans to your new destination, you need to back up important documents. The technique is to have electronic documentation backed up twice and bring one with you while the other one would be shipped. As for actual documentation, have them properly certified as copies of the original and ship these paper work as you have the originals with you on your travel.

k)      Closing accounts. You need to close accounts, pay outstanding debts and have your finances in order before moving to Australia. If you fail to do this, the simple account may haunt you as you start your new life in the country.

l)        Transport within Australia. As you arrive in Australia, you need coordinate your physical move and the transport of your shipped items. This is important to avoid much of the confusion that often accompanies moving to Australia.

Once you have settled down and completed your move to Australia, you need to re-start your life in the country. Here is a short list of items you need to work on to re-establish yourself in the country.

a)      You need to establish yourself financially. The first thing you need sorted out is to have an Australian bank account and your credit references can help you open an account as soon as possible. Also, get your tax file number to be fully allowed to be active in Australia.

b)      Find a home. Depending on your budget, finding a home in Sydney is important to get a roof over your head. You need to reach out to real estate agents so you can make a lot easier on your end. You also need to find furnishings and utility registration for your new home in Sydney.

c)      Find a school. This is most especially important if you have kids in tow. Do remember that the school season is different from where you came from and getting your kids in school straightaway is important.

d)      Get Insurance coverage. Since you are in a new place, having coverage can help in removing a lot of the stress and headaches if something bad happens that you have not planned for. These include Medicare and PBS.

e)      Get a car. If you cannot afford one, you can opt for rentals as you need to be moving around in such a big expanse as Sydney. Accordingly, you need to have your license updated to be allowed on the roads of Sydney and Australia in general.

f)        Set up your references. You need this to establish your personality in the country. If you have relative in city, then things would be so much easier. This is important if you want to become commercially active in Sydney.

g)      Learn the public transport system. Sydney has a big network of public transportation that you need to learn in order to move around the city to your place of work and residence. Learn routes and schedules at the soonest possible time.

h)      You need to understand the differentiated costs in Sydney. These include Goods and Service Taxes in your purchases among others.

Living in Sydney

Known as a truly metropolitan city, moving to Sydney presents many problems. You can search the internet for shops to go to purchase your basic necessities. There are many shops you can find and have bargains for your purposes, such as electronics goods, furniture, supermarkets, malls and do it yourself stores.

Many expats have recommended certain suburbs as the best areas to live in while residing in one of the most liveable cities in the planet. The best places have been identified as the Inner West suburbs, particularly Parramatta and Harris Park.

The other areas in Sydney are as follows:

a)      City Centre – This is the busy centre of government and finance, but also home to many of Sydney’s famous tourist and cultural attractions.

b)      The Rocks – This is the area located to the west of Circular Quay, The Rocks includes the first colonial village of Sydney and the iconic Harbour Bridge.

c)      Darling Harbour – This part of Sydney is an extensive leisure and entertainment area immediately to the west of the Central Business District (CBD). Restaurants, boardwalks, aquarium wildlife and the maritime museum.

d)      City South –  This area has the Haymarket, Chinatown and Central Station area is home to markets, cafes, chinese culture and cuisine, and some cheaper accommodation.

e)      City East – Kings Cross, Darlinghurst, Surry Hills, Woolloomooloo and Moore Park. Busy nightlife, and coffee shops, fashion and entertainment by day.

f)        City West – An early morning trip to the fish markets, exploring the Powerhouse Museum, finding a maritime pub or hitting the Star City Casino.

The other attractions in Sydney include the following areas:

a)      Bondi Beach – Sydney’s world famous beach, for swimming, surfing, eating, walking, or to see and be seen.

b)      Manly – The Manly ferry leaves from Circular Quay out to the heads every 30 minutes.

c)      Sydney Olympic Park – The home of the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games, parks, cycling, and events.

d)      Parramatta – Sydney’s “second” CBD, with history, shopping, eating, all just 30 minutes from the city centre.

The Cost of Living in Sydney

The prices in Sydney’s restaurants vary depending on where and what you eat. A sit down meal in an average restaurant costs between $25 to $35 and an upper crust place can set you back $35 to $45. For the more budget-conscious, go for the “multicultural” restaurants, especially the Asian ones. Many restaurants also offer “lunch specials”. There are also many options along Darling Harbour, the East Circular Quay and the International Passenger Terminal for cheap meals on the go.

Your dress and fashion needs can easily be addressed by having the latest couture from the world over. It is also home to the unique fashion that is truly Australian. These shops can be found at the Queen Victoria Building at the City Center. There are over 400 stores located in the building within an iconic architectural façade. There is also Castlereagh Street, a whole street lined up with the latest and most expensive boutiques for fashion. There is also the Pitt Street Mall has many flagship chain stores and the largest is Oxford Street that has the widest array of shops and stores for your convenience. For discounts there is DFO near the Sydney Olympic Park. For a full family mall experience, there is the Warringah Mall as it has dolphin-featured waterfalls and sunny courtyards for your children’s play pleasure as you shop for your needs. As for other necessities, there are many supermarket chains such as Coles, Woolworths, Frankins and Aldi. Convenience stores are quite expensive and it is best to go to the large chain stores for all your needs.

The city is best known for its wide areas for parks and other recreational activities. It may be costly too but it surely is well worth the cost. Sydney has air conditioning in all public buildings, and on some public transport. It is common to catch a bus or train without air conditioning on hot days. Carry water during summer. Remember sun protection year round, as the UV exposure risk can be extreme at any time of year.

Depending on your tastes and needs, the cost of living in Sydney can be managed properly. You need to either have a nest egg to use or an immediate way to earn income since it is one of the most expensive cities to live in. This can all be properly addressed with proper planning and foresight as you prepare yourself in the undertaking of moving to Sydney.

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