Life in Australia as an International Student


Sristy Sharma
Updated on Apr 21, 2022 06:14 PM IST

Want to pursue higher studies in Australia? Know all about the life to expect there as an international student. From student visas to various expenses, this guide will introduce you to each aspect of international student life in Australia.

Life in Australia as an International Student

The thought ofthe international student life in Australia must bug equally to all the students. For those who have applied to Australian universities for admission, or those who aspire to pursue their higher studies in Australia, the real experience of living in Australiapossibly excites and scares simultaneously.

We understand that the idea of independent life while pursuing education, in a whole new country is somewhat formidable. However, we also know that it is mostly the unknown and the hearsay aspects that are the root causes of this problem.

Hence, we are here with this guide to living in Australia as an international student. This guide will introduce multi-faceted aspects of the life of an international student in Australia, frompreparation before flying toAustralia to living expenses for international students.

How is Life in Australia as an International Student?

As an international student in Australia, various aspects of life have to be faced. The situation becomes grave with the fact that most students have not lived alone or independently abroad. Moreover, even with experience leading an independent life in a whole new country is very different than in the home country. Hence, it is important to have a certain pre-notion aboutliving in Australiawhile studying. It is also extremely important that this notion is not based on hearsayinformation, but on solid experience and facts.

Class Timings in Australia

Class Timings while in Australia may differ on basis of the program and the intake one has applied for to study in Australia. There are no rules in selecting course combinations in the country, which makes the schedule of classes a burden on the students rather than on the university. Students are required to work a schedule that allows them to attend all their chosen classes and complete the required hours. To manage class timings in Australia, the following are important aspects for international students:

  • Subject status, which is major and which are the minor subjects.

  • Required hours of a subject to get considered as a full-time course.

  • Class timings, such as morning, afternoon, and evening.

Climate in Australia

As far as the climate in Australia is concerned, it will vary from one Australian state to another, the same as India. While Canberra, which is the capital city of Australia, is known to be hot and dry in summers and frosty during winters, New South Wales is only slightly humid during summers and moderately cold during winters. However, on thewhole, with Australia being a part of the southern hemisphere, the climate remains pleasant throughout the year. This often turns out to be one of the biggest advantages of studying in Australia.

The aspects, other than theprogram of study or the climate, which affect the international student lifein Australia can be listed as:

  • Necessities and Australia living expenses for international students orliving costs in Australia for students

  • Culture and Community

  • Security and Safety (Physical & Financial)

  • Common Lifestyle of the local Australiancommunity

  • Rules and regulations for international students

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Going to Australia as an International Student

To even kickstart life as an international student in Australia, arriving in the country is necessary. However, international students cannot possibly just fly themselves to Australia! Certain checkboxes need to be checked to go to Australia, confidently and safely.

Australian Student Visa

International students require a non-immigrant Student Visa to study inAustralia. To obtain one, they have to file a visa application with the respective authorities of Australia in their home country. The international students who wish to apply for an Australian student visa must take into account the following as these may become the reasons behind the rejection of the Australian Student Visa application:

  • Offer Letter or its Probability:An Australian student visa can only be issued to applicants who want to enter and reside in Australia for educational purposes. These purposes get defeated if the applicant does not get accepted into any Australian university. Hence, the applicant must have an offer letter from an Australian university, or their scores and transcripts make their admission highly likely.

  • On-Shore Education: The candidate applying for astudent visa to study in Australiamust have a requirement of the rights and privileges attached to the visa. Hence, the course program must require the presence of students in Australia for educational purposes, for more than three months.

  • Intent to Return: Student Visa inAustralia comes under the non-immigrant visa type. The holder of the visa shouldenter the country for a specific purpose and shall leave once the purpose is fulfilled, which, in this case, is completing a program of study. They must not have any intention to settle in Australia.

  • Financial Proof: In case the financial sources of the applicant are not enough to manage all the expenses while studying in Australia,they might become aliability while in Australia. The student needs to prove the presence of financial sources which shall avoid such occurrences.

  • Satisfying Collateral Conditions: Collateral Conditions are the terms attached to the Australian Student Visa, and they need to be satisfied to obtain a valid visa. These may differ for different countries. For instance, health insurance is compulsory for international students coming from countries other than low health risk nations.

Australia International Students Travel Plan

International students need to take more precautions than just recommended as they have to survive in a different nation, away from a familiar environment. Some of the general aspects that the students need to ponder on before going ahead with living in Australia are:

  • Insurances: It is possible that an Australian student visa does not require a subscription to an insurance plan. However, certain insurances shall help in easing the worries related to uncertain events while in a foreign country and surroundings. These include Medical Insurance, Life Insurance, and Contingency Insurance (event differs for everyone).

  • Financial Base: Certain countries specifically require international students to have a security account with the balance to cover thefinancial requirements of a years stay. This amount is locked in, and can only be withdrawn in monthly instalments by the student after they have arrived in the country. The best example is Canadas Study Permit, which requires students to have a GIC account. While not a compulsion in Australia, this practice may help students a lot.

  • Calculating Contingencies: The students must take into account possible contingencies, such as medical, travel, lifestyle, and other emergencies and possibilities. Australia is far enough to travel at a whim, and the cost of this travel is also immense. Hence, proper lists and plans must be adopted to ensure proper preparation.

  • Planning: It can prove to be the saving grace in times of uncertainty or indecisiveness. While planning is important and helps in organising the future course of action, it must also not be depended upon blindly and only be considered aguide rather than a rulebook.

Flying to Australia as an International Student

There are some things that although confirmed must still be rechecked, and the immediate flying and arrival preparations must also be given equal importance. Some important pointers to keep in mind are:

  • Rechecking Arrangements: The students must recheck their arrangements related to accommodation and travel on their arrival in Australia. Ensure that the dates and timings are right and other details are cleared. The agents and students must be on the same page.

  • Boarding Requirements: To board the flight successfully, there are certain requirements. The baggage and luggage weight, forbidden items, additional documents (vaccination status), etc. These must be reviewed and rechecked with the preparation.

  • Punctuality: Formalities related to international flights are lengthier than domestic flights. It is better to reach the airport with at least 15 minutes to spare before boarding after clearing all formalities.

  • Arriving in Australia: Once cleared with arrival formalities, connecting with people who will help in handling further processes is the first step. These often include travel agents or known people in Australia.

Australia Living Expenses for International Students

International students in Australia have their lives dominated by two aspects, one education, and other, the living cost in Australia for students. The fact that the latter plays an important part in education as well, it becomes inevitable to beconsidered carefully. The students need to assess not only all the possible Australia living expenses but, the management of their present and future funds as well. This management and assessment help in living a stress-free life and also upgrading and maintaining a lifestyle over time.

Australia living expenses for international students which shall be consistent for the international students living in Australia include both common and occasional expenses. There are certain expenses such as necessities, accommodation, and travel expenses, which are common and required. On the other hand, entertainment and lifestyle quality are considered occasional and leisurely. The types of Australia living expenses for international students that they can expect:

Accommodation Expenses

Accommodation/livingcostisone of the most important aspects of Australia living expenses for international students that one should have an idea of. Australian Universities offer bothon-campus and off-campus accommodation options. In addition, there are cases where universities affiliate themselves with private residential halls as well. International students can expect a higher rent for off-campus student accommodation in Australia.

Food & Basic Expenses

Food and other necessities, such as water, electricity, etc., are common Australia living expenses for international students.

Travelling Expenses

Travel expenses are often ignored by international students while calculating their budget forliving cost in Australia. However, in reality, these seeminglyexpenses often becomea burden to international students' pockets. One can, nevertheless, opt for economical travelling options such as public transport, cabs & taxis, owned vehicles, or rental cars.

Lifestyle Expenses

They tend to be counted as leisurely expenses as they can be adjusted by the student as per their budget. Moreover, these expenses are entirely based on the lifestyle of the student.

Entertainment Expenses

It is often observed that in the safety and security of their homelands, international students tend to claim No to Entertainment Expenses. However noble and understandable, it is not practical at all. While pursuing education, only studies are not evident throughout, instead, entertainment breaks and other relaxation activities are an important part of ones lifestyle.

Accidental Expenses

Certain expenses are neither common nor precedented. They occur suddenly and create somewhat pressure on the budget. These include medical expenses, accidents, sudden events, etc.

Managing Finances

Expenses mentioned above might not seem foreign while planning to live as international students in Australia, as they occur at home as well. However, these expenses become tenfold expensive and burdensome in a foreign country. Therefore, proper financial management is necessary, especially as tuitionrequires a majority of fund appropriation. Some of the ways to ensure proper financial management while living as an international student in Australia are:

  • Exchange Rates & Banking: International students are accustomed to home currency rates and transactional units. AUD exchange rates and transaction units shall be new as well requiring some time to get adjusted. In this case, owing to a bank account in an international bank will allow minimisation of loss in currency exchange.

  • Investments & Savings: It is important to keep track of ones finances and save them. Students can also indulge in safe investments once they have accumulated enough finances as savings. Due to the uncertain nature of life in a foreign country, risky investments and dealings are better avoided.

Practical Training Opportunities for International Students in Australia

Practical training forms an important part of education in Australia and is one of the key reasons why international students choose to study in Australia. It is evident from the fact that there are only a handful of programs in the country that might not include internships and practical training as a requirement under the program. It is also one of the reasons why the courses are so popular, especially among international students whose home country's education system is not so particular about practical training. The training applicability may differ on a course-to-course basis. However, commonly the experience is available as follows:

  • Field Visits

  • Compulsory Internship

  • Extra Credits for self-propelled practical experience

  • Case Studies

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Adjusting to Environment While Living inAustralia as an International Student

International students are bound to have a different cultural and social background from Aussies. As they live in the country, they shall have to adjust to the countrys environment. The following

Cultural Background

To successfully and smoothly live as an international student in Australia, the students shall have to ensure that they accept the culture of Australia. This does not mean that they abandon their original culture, but they need to gain acceptance for the new culture. The Australian culture is known to be overly relaxed, with some extremely orthodox elements to it. The complicated combination makes it all the more important to learn and get accustomed to it as soon as possible.

Social Background

Australians enjoy a good quality of lifestyle from birth. This may not be true for different students from different countries. There are many developing countries with lower GDP and lifestyle quality than Australia. However, they must not rush themselves or their finances to mimic the same. It would only cost them their chance of getting agood education and life experience.

Part time Jobs in Australia for International Students

International students can work for their additional expenses, if not educational and common ones. They are allowed to do part time jobs, although at a cap of 20 hours per week. There are various part time jobs for international students in Australia. The minimum wage rate in Australia is AUD 18.23 per hour. Notably, part time jobs are equally popular among domestic students in Australia primarily because of the flexible work culture and Australia part time jobs salary.

Legal Knowledge

While living in Australia, international students are bound to enter into legally binding relationships regularly. It is, therefore, important to be aware of general laws, especially in the case of rent and property, travel, common rights, and responsibilities. The general knowledge shall help the students to ensure safety from fraud and also avoid getting into legal trouble in a foreign land.

Taxes for International Students in Australia

The students who do opt for part time jobs as international students in Australia and earn an income out of it have to pay taxes. The taxes are applicable as per the general slab rate, and only exceeding the exempt income are taxable. However, the returns are to be filed consistently. International students in Australia are advised to be up to date and clear with receipts, payments, income, and expenses, to avoid tax-related compliance.

Like any other study abroad destination, living in Australia also demands International students to act independently with enough information at hand.

Our study abroad experts are always ready to support you. They can guide you not only through theadmission process but also help you simplify your study abroad journey as a whole. You can also write to us at in case of further queries about living in Australia as an international student.

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