emigrating to australia

(89 Posts)
liz1969 Fri 06-Jan-12 18:44:04

i am seriously thinking about emigrating to australia. i am a nurse educated to diploma level and working as a senior charge nurse here in scotland. i am a single parent with 2 teenage children. really want to go but am aware am running out of time due to my age (42).

guess im looking for advice on the best way to go about it, and on the best area to look into. we have a fairly decent life here,but am aware of the high cost of australian life

TidyDancer Fri 06-Jan-12 18:46:18

No personal experience, but a close friend emigrated to be with her partner and has found it extremely difficult. She is very isolated and far away from everything though, so I suppose my only advice is to carefully consider location before making any concrete plans.

Based on my friend's overall experience, it's not something I would do if I'm honest.

michglas Fri 06-Jan-12 18:46:57

A colleague at work who is on about £25K cannot afford to move back to Australia even though he's from there, as the cheapest accommodation to buy starts at around £300K.

Feminine Fri 06-Jan-12 18:48:22

Go here britishexpats.com

There is so much valuable info there.

Go to the Australia section , and get some ideas.

Good luck smile

CrispLeCrisp Fri 06-Jan-12 18:49:52

It is a LOOONG way (sorry to point out the obvious) from the UK, friends and family. Your DC may wish to stay in the UK or if they come with you, go travelling in a few years time. If they settle and establish their lives there, it will be extremely difficult for you to ever leave again.

What do your DC want to do?

MilitaryWag Fri 06-Jan-12 18:50:44

Give this alooooooooooooooooooooooooooot of thought. Huge move, very long distance. Do you have family there? I had a close friend who did this. Absolute disaster mainly because she had this idea that it was some sort of nirvana.

singarainbow Fri 06-Jan-12 18:51:56

You could start by contacting hospitals direct in the places where you want to live, they are desperate for nurses. Or you could go to a "down under live" expo which are held around the country a few times a year and they actually have jobs advertised and hospital reps recruiting on the day.
It is a huge move, we are doing it in April, and if your kids are on board, I'd say YANBU to look at it properly. There are loads of onlibe forums as well for migrating brits, with a whole wealth of experience and advise, so make use of them!

jandymaccomesback Fri 06-Jan-12 19:00:12

Absolutely love Australia- for holidays. We've been three times to visit family and friends,but when we get back we realise how much we love England.
It is a huge decision. As others have said, do a lot of research.

SillyOldHector Fri 06-Jan-12 19:04:41

I would suggest looking at the different kinds of visas on offer and whether you want to go out on a 457 employee sponsored visa or apply for permanent residency. Applying for PR means you could be entitled to certain state benefits unlike the 457.

I would go to the britishexpats website where you'll find a whole host of info about visas, areas, education, jobs etc. The forum is also useful for asking questions. There's a good section on those that chose to come back to England so you can get views from both sides.

It helps to have a vague idea of which area you'd like to live in first though. It really is a minefield so it's best to do as much homework as possible.

We lived for a year in Perth but chose to come back. Dh loved it but I realised it wasn't for me long term. He was on a GP salary so his income was very good so we could have had a good standard of living. The cost of living is high though, so again, do as much fact finding as you can.

SillyOldHector Fri 06-Jan-12 19:05:30

X post with feminine.

IneedAbetterNicknameIn2012 Fri 06-Jan-12 19:16:46

My brother emigrated 7 years ago. He lives near Canberra. He loves it and would never come back.

He moved over there to be with his then gf. They split up, but he met someone else, and is totally happy.

He thought long and hard about it before he went, but in the end followed his heart not his head.

Rebelwithoutapplause Fri 06-Jan-12 19:34:53

Whilst living abroad for 10 years we saw quite a lot of people arrive and then return back home within 12-18 months - it's a huge move and not for everybody. I strongly suggest taking a long holiday there first and use this as a chance to meet potential employers, scope out the lifestyle etc. before making a final decision

CrispLeCrisp Fri 06-Jan-12 19:45:11

I do agree Rebel about making sure the short term works out, but i know of people who have relocated to give their DC a 'better life'. The DC then either want to leave and travel/go back to the UK so decision has to be whether to come back with them, or they love it and settle and have their own families and then literally the parent has no choice to return.

I think people look at the short term and don't consider the real long term impacts sad. I think this would be fine for moving somewhere in Europe etc but really, it is so far and so expensive to travel to Australia.

Rebelwithoutapplause Fri 06-Jan-12 20:18:07

Yes fair point Crispy, I was thinking of it as more of a fact finding trip, my thinking is better to lose a few thousand pounds on a trip than the much more expensive alternative of a failed emigration.

FWIW I think Australia is one of the easier countries to adapt to, but also bear in mind that as we get older we all find it harder to enjoy the large changes you are contemplating. When we lived abroad we met a fair number of people who were arriving to get away from something such as an unhappy home life or work etc, rather than moving towards something, the ones who settled well tended to be there for positive reasons such as better opportunities, interest in the country etc.

Nerdily I occasionally lie in bed listening to the Australian radio phone in programs (try tunein radio!). You find that many of the conversations talk about the exact same problems we have over here. I suppose what I'm saying is that all countries have their good and bad points and after the exciting honeymoon period, life pretty much settles into a pattern, and its what you make of it from there which decides how likely you are to settle.

otchayaniye Fri 06-Jan-12 20:21:01

worth bearing in mind that it is eye warteringly expensive to live there.

visas can be hard to get

but good luck. i moved abroad (had to return fr family reasons) but we're plotting to go again before the children are too old

Pandemoniaa Fri 06-Jan-12 20:29:53

My mother was Australian (as indeed are most of my relatives) and she never took British citizenship despite being brought back to the UK as a child by my English grandmother.

She often considered going back "home" - our family first arrived in Australia back in the 1850s so we weren't exactly 10 Pound Poms - and made a series of visits. She concluded that, despite being an Australian and having supportive family there who wanted her to resettle, her links to the UK were so strong that she didn't feel she could go back and live permanently in Australia. She said it was so very far from home and that's an undeniable fact. It is also very different, culturally, despite being a fantastic country and some Brits simply never feel at home.

My ds1 is working and travelling in NZ this year. He loves it but again, he has a reluctance to put 12,000 miles between everything and everyone he loves. He may well settle in Canada but that's such a short journey home in comparison.

So my advice would be to take as long a break in Australia as you can. Get some real facts about the cost of living and job opportunities and travel around the country so that you can make an informed decision about where you might want to live. I know it sounds bloomin' obvious, but the difference between, say, Sydney and Perth is more than just thousands of miles.

items Fri 06-Jan-12 20:32:14

I have to disagree with much of what has been said. Having lived in London for the past 11 months there is absolutely no way that Australia is eye watering expensive or anything near London. Yes its not cheap as chips but like London, it all about location, lifestyle and approach. Australia is huge and so here are things to think through:
* Cities are obviously more expensive than outer suburbs. First decision to make is which state? NSW is the "main" Australian state but of course Victoria is a happening state, Queensland more country like as is South Australia and Western Australia. Tasmania is even more isolated.
* City, suburb or country. All very different. All will then have a feel of seclusion/less happening as you move from city toward country.
* Each state has different housing expenses and each City is too. Most expensive NSW/Sydney. Least Tasmania/Hobart.

Yes its far away but from what? Depends on what you are leaving behind. I don't mean that bad, just reference of far away is an interesting one as I am far away from Australia but that is ok and the life experience far outweighs it (for me only, not for all). I don't know about the huge move comments. It sounds bigger than it is. You can move back at anytime so i don;t ever over stress that side of things.

I think the key that someone stated was the job first. I would validate you can get work and what income you can get. Then determine living expenses. House/flat - live or rent. I would suggest rent in case you decide not to stay. Food is quite similar in price as is utilities to London. Public transport is a little cheaper. Cars close to same. Petrol cheaper. Travel - more expensive as Australia is further away from other countries so if you want to travel outside of Australia, will have to pay for it.

Hope it all helps a little.

CadleCap Fri 06-Jan-12 20:33:26

We are about to emigrate there in the next couple of months. It is an expensive business - about £3.5k for the visa, medicals etc.

IMO to all those that say - well I know someone who did it and it didn't work out. So what? At least they did it and won't have the "What if..." What do you loose by doing it and it not working out? A bit of money, you'll still have your limbs!

You need to be under 45 for the points and you may have to do an IELTS, again for the points as they have changed the system in July last year.

We didn't use an agent as the aussie immagation site is quite straight forward.

I say go for it!!

fluffy123 Fri 06-Jan-12 20:34:51

If you get a chance watch or record 'Wanted Down Under' on bbc1 at 9.15 each morning for another three weeks. Each year 20 families get to go to Australia for a week , look at accommodation, employment and lifestyle. The gist of for the last couple of years is because their currency has got so strong compared to ours and the housing market is booming property is now really expensive compared with five years ago. Salarys are usually higher but so are things like groceries. The show is worth watching.

CrispLeCrisp Fri 06-Jan-12 20:48:04

items "You can move back at anytime so i don;t ever over stress that side of things"

I agree that practically you can, but disagree that it is easy once DC are involved. I have a relative now 'stuck' in Australia as her DC won't move back with her and she can't leave them, despite wanting to come 'home'. Australia is now their 'home'

otchayaniye Fri 06-Jan-12 20:52:10

you cannot always move back easily, especially if you are priced out of the housing market.

Morloth Fri 06-Jan-12 20:52:20

Can you try before you buy? I would recommend that before permanently moving to anywhere.

Cost of living wise I would say Sydney is about on par with London, groceries are very expensive. Having said that our lifestyle here is far better than what we had in London, however a large part of that is probably because this is home. Don't under estimate the power of home.

Nurses are indeed in high demand, I don't know any who are out of work, but it isn't a particularly well paid job. You will also need to check whether your qualifications are applicable or whether you would need to get other certifications etc.

I have a vague memory of there being incentives for useful people like nurses to move to places other than the big cities so you might want to look into that.

Good luck, I love being back in Sydney but I also adored London, both countries have their pros and cons.

The cultures are very different, be prepared for a culture shock. On the surface this isn't particularly obvious.

CheshireDing Fri 06-Jan-12 21:06:04

Don't always just presume that the new world will give a better standard of living OP.

Clearly it depends on where you live in the UK and where you want to end up living in Oz for comparison but it has not been affected by the recession in the same way that other countries have. Hence you are likely to find it more expensive and you will probably not get the size of house for your money you may imagine (unless you move far out or Alice Springs!) grin

DH and I used to live in Melbourne as DH is a Nurse, it was hard going for him because nearly all the Aussies worked part time in the hospital and it's pretty much only the foreigners that work full time as they are required to by their visa. You have to make sure there is more to your move than just wanting the sunshine.

If you do decide you want to go I would get on with it sharpish though as they are getting stricter all the time.

jellybeans Fri 06-Jan-12 21:06:44

YANBU Go for it if you are pretty well researched. I know a couple of people in OZ who love it and a couple that came back, same with NZ. I think alot of people (esp those on Wanted Down Under) think it is abit like Home and Away or an easy paradise type place. I often wonder why they think moving half way around the world will solve their problems when they haven't even tried living in another UK town or changing jobs. Some of them have never been there but just going off Neighbours etc. It's a big risk to move somewhere you have never been to.

What would put me off is the distance from family (I know one person who had a horrible couple of deaths of young people in the family and had to drop everything and fly back for weeks till the funerals etc-she was lucky she could-not everyone could), the hot weather (depends where you are), the flatness (although some looks very scenic), the spiders, not as historic etc. If none of those things would bother you then it may be the right choice.

laptopdancer Fri 06-Jan-12 21:07:22

The only thing Id be concerned about is your not having a degree. Check how that will affect you first OP

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