If you could live anywhere in Australia where would you live?

(96 Posts)
XBenedict Mon 24-Dec-12 02:46:44

And why? I'm thinking WA - south of Perth but only because I holidayed there once and quite liked it, would be prepared to be persuaded elsewhere!

migrant Mon 24-Dec-12 02:50:08

You've made exactly the right choice! Wonderful weather, great schools, affordable housing and good transport links. Fantastic places to live where lifestyle counts (says she, writing this with the golf course to one side and the ocean to the other!)

XBenedict Mon 24-Dec-12 02:53:53

Where are you migrant? We stayed in Secret Harbour after visiting Sydney and Melbourne before flying to Perth. Thinking of coming over for a couple of years!

migrant Mon 24-Dec-12 03:00:09

Secret Harbour has a lot to offer, but so do other places. The big issue will be Visas. Have you looked into the possibilities yet, otherwise it could, sadly, be just a dream.
You flew to Perth from Secret Harbour??!
Australia is wonderful if it suits you.

XBenedict Mon 24-Dec-12 03:27:08

DH is a doctor, there are quite a few vacancies south of Perth secret harbour being one, Mandurah another.

We flew to Perth from Melbourne and then stayed in secret harbour.

Mosman Mon 24-Dec-12 03:29:58

I nearly spat my tea at affordable housing, not sure anywhere in Australia has that.
I've lived in Melbourne which is like the UK but with a decent summer.
Perth is lovely, the weathers great but it is genuinely like going back 20 years in my opinion, as you know I don't rate the schools, search for my thread about how they let my eight year old just leave the school and walk home alone on her say so that she ought to, she was sat on the door step waiting for my nanny to arrive. Talking of nannies $1200 a week because there are very few nurseries available, we've been on the list 6 months, not so much as a single day offered for my 2.5 year old.
I don't know if it's easier/cheaper anywhere else but I think we'll make the best of it but in terms of cost of living I'm certain Sydney or Melbourne would be cheaper just because theres more people so demand and competition drives prices down.

Mosman Mon 24-Dec-12 03:33:19

Mandurah is lovely but my concern is that with a WA high school leavers certificate I am not convinced they would get into a university in the UK and the course content of some of the WA universities leaves a lot to be desired hence so many 457 visas of which I'm on one do not knocking it but heck my job could be done by a trained chimp why the need to bring me in ?

HRMumness Mon 24-Dec-12 03:42:53

Grew up in Perth and left in my early 20s. Have absolutely no desire to go back despite family still living there. Housing and food costs are so expensive these days compared to when I left. Weeks of regularly over 35C in Summer. Poor public transport so car is a must. Culture type activities are very lacking. Massive urban sprawl.

It is beautiful mind, hardly rains, people are laid back, good if you like outdoor activities and when it isn't stinking hot weather is nice.

If we had to move back, we would probably move to Melbourne - seems much more European. Plus with my family in Perth and DH family in Sydney, choosing one family over enough seems fraught with danger.

HRMumness Mon 24-Dec-12 03:46:51

Mosman - I regularly walked the 10 minutes or so home from school at a young age or cycled on my own (on footpaths if they were there) as that was quite normal. Streets were very safe. I think my older brother used to look out for me when I was really little though.

Mosman Mon 24-Dec-12 04:49:58

It really isn't safe, the cars hoon down the road at double the speed limit and frankly I don't believe there are less preditors just because the newspapers say so, Australia has as many nut jobs as any other countries but just seem completely relaxed about it, you can wonder through the school and in and out of classrooms unchallenged at lunchtime, no fencing or gates or even adult supervision. It's worrying actually.

sleepywombat Mon 24-Dec-12 05:27:59

affordable housing??!!!???

We have friends who live in a lovely area around 40 mins north of Brisbane. Quite fancy that.

We're in Far North Queensland - we love it but would like to move a little further south at some point as the humidity & mould gets unbearable at this time of year.

Although we often think of moving back to the UK, just because you can get so much more house & land for your money!

Mosman, a lot of rapes & muggings round here atm - definitely wouldn't let a child walk alone.

HRMumness Mon 24-Dec-12 06:25:23

Mosman - I should add this was in the 1980s! We were in a new area and it was all quiet streets. They were very strict on people being on the grounds but we didn't have fencing ether (although they do now on both my primary and high schools).

The other thing is that the Australian news is much more sensationalist and tends to give the impression that it is very unsafe as they focus a lot more on those kinds of issues iyswim.

Mosman Mon 24-Dec-12 06:42:32

So far I'd say it's quite the opposite in Perth headline news is sheep dies of old age. Seriously though it's hardly the Bronx where we live but it's far too relaxed at times too. My Italian neighbors and I are the ones offering to fund the fencing with the PCT cash instead of $5000 for the staff Christmas party and looked upon like we are crackers wasting funds hmm

migrant Mon 24-Dec-12 08:47:56

So, I guess I have to ask.... If it's so terrible, why are you here and not returning to England? Surely we all want to live in the best place we can, somewhere we are happy?

VivaLeBeaver Mon 24-Dec-12 08:53:44

Brisbane. I've never been but some friends emigrated there and it looks so beautiful. They love it.

Mosman Mon 24-Dec-12 12:20:15

Wellmaubly because we spent every penny we gave moving here and couldn't afford to go if we wanted to. However it is what you make of it and we will get the children into good schools and get on with it.
Lots I wish I'd known and listened to before we got here though, DH loves it, I will be in Sydney in 10 years at the very latest.

thepigflu Mon 24-Dec-12 12:24:08


digerd Mon 24-Dec-12 12:44:22

While in Perth for a week in 1989 in July - so ozzy winter- neighbour said "You are lucky this year as normally it rains for 6 months in the winter." Saw a house being built with views of the river and it cost a fortune compared to South East houses then.
Older cheaper houses made of timber and in Brisbane area, it was 13 degrees and no central heating.

Perth's heat is dry, as opposed to the high humidity of Sydney and Brisbane, which for us makes a massive difference (as long as we have air con as well!) Also it seems easier to be within, say, 20mins drive of the beach here (we're 5 mins drive although we're quite a bit north of the CBD, and tbh we have a pool so have focused on that recently rather than schlep to the beach and carry stuff, gosh, the hardship!), whereas in other places it's a good hour.

PandaNot Mon 24-Dec-12 12:48:47

I like Perth for holidays, I've had extended stays a few times now, but I wouldn't live there if you paid me to. Far too isolated and the heat is too much in summer. I'd go to Melbourne or Adelaide.

digerd Mon 24-Dec-12 12:50:34

The australian family we stayed with in brisbane area, were appalled that in our summers it did not get dark until 10.30pm. I asked why? Answer, we can't wait for the sun to go down to get outside in comfortable temperatures. Too hot during the day.

Mosman Mon 24-Dec-12 13:33:17

Is Alice Speings under rated I wonder grin
Nowhere is perfect.

giggly Fri 28-Dec-12 14:39:36

Byron Bay, magical place, without all the tourists of course.

Bubbaluv Thu 17-Jan-13 02:39:41

The Byron Bay hinterland for me. So lush and beautiful. Maybe your husband could look at Lismore hospital?

Tortoiseonthehalfshell Thu 17-Jan-13 03:29:00

The thing about Perth is that it's in the middle of bloody nowhere. I mean, it's already a huge culture shock to move to Australia and find out just how far everywhere is from everywhere else. It'll be exacerbated if you move to the west coast.

We live in Adelaide, which is lovely (when it's not a bazillion degrees) but I do miss being able to just hop an hour's flight and be somewhere else completely. It's just something to keep in mind; are you hoping to see the whole country, to visit other places? Then Perth will be restrictive.

MrRected Thu 17-Jan-13 03:36:34

We moved to Brisbane 5 years ago. We love it but its not without its faults - expensive & too hot/humid. Given my time again - I'd choose Northern beaches, Sydney. Good mix of climate, schools, proximity to the Cbd - very expensive though.
Visiting katoomba in the Blue Mountains near Sydney this week and LOVE it too!!

emmyloo2 Thu 17-Jan-13 03:37:10

Mosman, sorry but you are talking absolute rubbish. Schools do not simply let children wander off without permission. What utter crap. The schools here are excellent as are the universities. I went to university here and have also been to an Ivy League University in the US and our university was absolutely as good. I have also worked in the UK and we are just as well educated, I assure you.

And the reason why there are 457 Visas has nothing to do with the quality of our universities but simply because there is a shortage of skilled labour due to the mining and oil projects.

Jesus Christ - talking about spreading bullshit.

To the OP - Perth is lovely. Yes it is isolated and it gets hot in the summer (although today is only 25 degrees) it has a great sunny climate, spectacular beaches and is great for young children. I have lived in 5 different countries but when we had a child we moved back to Perth. I love it but then I am from here, so I am probably biased!

Sydney is ok but more expensive than Perth in terms of housing. Perth is more expensive in terms of day-to-day living though. I lived in Sydney for a while but it wasn't for me.

emmyloo2 Thu 17-Jan-13 03:39:42

and sorry to correct one more myth, you can get a place in a childcare centre. Some are waitlisted but if you have a young baby there are plenty of places with spots available.

tilbatilba Thu 17-Jan-13 04:21:39

Ditto Broome !

saffronwblue Thu 17-Jan-13 06:03:55

If you don't want to be in a big city look at Newcastle or Wollongong or Hobart.

ben5 Thu 17-Jan-13 06:14:13

I live in Port Kennedy just south of Rockingham and 45-50kms from Perth CBD. Public transport is great and cheap. Schools are good, the beaches are fantastic, loads to do with little kids. So much more than Plymouth UK ever offered us and certainly 110% more than what we had while living in Scotland. Secret Harbour is lovely. Yes Perth maybe one of the most isolated cities but how man times do you really want to go on holiday. We like camping and have been to Albany, Kalbarri, Jurien Bay and Bussleton. All are lovely places. Its what you make of a place. I don't want to move. I have a 4 double bedroom house, large kitchen dining area, games room, front room, big laundry, 2 bathrooms and only 800mtrs from the beach.The bus stop is 400mtrs away and I caught this bus the other day with the boys to Perth via the train. It cost us $11( bus and trains included) and I was in the city with in 1.5hrs. This included the walk to the bus stop.

ripsishere Thu 17-Jan-13 06:30:24

I've never lived in Aus but have visited friends in Melbourne and Sydney. If I was to move there, I'd go for Eden.
I don't know what the infrastructure is like, but the place itself is gorgeous.

Mosman Fri 18-Jan-13 00:10:47

Emmyloo - that happened to me on 18th December I actually posted about it in primary education at the time, it is not crap it happened.
We have been on a waiting list for day care for 8 months with not a single phone call from the 6 nurseries with an offer of a full time place. If that's not your experience bully for you. It has been mine.

Mosman Fri 18-Jan-13 00:14:18

You have massive skill gaps in Perth, I speak with employers all day every day up and down st George's terrace, they complain they cannot even upskill the work force they can access by sending them to university, the courses aren't adequate. Its laughable the country with all the oil and gas doesn't teach it's own citizens how to get at it.

Snazzynewyear Fri 18-Jan-13 00:20:01

If money was no object, Sydney. Love it. But more realistically Melbourne. Brisbane is also very nice but I couldn't cope with that level of heat all the time. Haven't been to Perth.

Sharksandfishes Fri 18-Jan-13 00:26:31

We're in Sydney. It's hideously expensive but I wouldn't live anywhere else, would stay in UK!

We did a year in 2003/4 so had experienced the costs, etc and knew what to expect. I do think too many people decide to bring their whole family to the other side of the world without doing enough research

Mosman Fri 18-Jan-13 00:50:20

You're right sharks but equally there's a lot you cannot know until you actually get here, numerous schools are that fed up with people having yours before they've got a rental house they won't even show you arou d until they see the paperwork, by which point your options are take it or leave it.
I do say to people do an online shop with Coles or woolworths and fill your basket with what you'd normally buy just don't check out lol to give you an idea as to what your food and household bill will look like. That was our biggest mistake. We'd have still come bug I might have been more prepared and negotiated a better package.

Dottiespots Fri 18-Jan-13 01:45:26

Im Australian and have lived in Melbourne,Sydney,Perth,Karatha,Gladstone,Brisbane. My parents live in Queensland on the Gold Coast. They were living in Perth but it wasnt hot enough for my mum so they moved back to Queensland. Perth was laid back and beautiful.Used to go to the beach after school. Karatha was in the north west of western Australia and everywhere was red sand. Lots of cyclones in
the season. Very very hot in the outback but the scenery you drive around is gorgeous and everywhere is very remote.Melbourne (went to boarding school there.......MLC anyone???) Melbourne very old, lovely city, cold in winter. You can go skiing in the mountains in Victoria. Sydney...busy and cosmopolitan. Brisbane.....lovely city....didnt spend much time there. Lived in Gladstone further up the coast. Absolutely gorgeous place, beautiful weather, beautiful scenery, lovely holiday islands off the coast. The beaches are some of the best in the world. Cyclones again but you learn to live with the threat of them.
All in all I would have to say that Queensland is the most beautiful place to live but if you want a more European style then Sydney would be nice.

tryingtoleave Fri 18-Jan-13 02:12:52

I wil put in a surprise vote for Canberra. No beach, but two hours to snow and coast. The people are nice (I was just back for a visit and had forgotten how people say hello when they get in a lift and chat to you in the shops). Housing is affordable, outside the few central trendy suburbs. It has a small town feeling but most of the population are well educated and fairly affluent so there are great restaurants and cafes and lots of 'culture'. The population is quite transitional, so people are ready to make friends. Winters are cold and summers hot, but some people like the seasons.

tryingtoleave Fri 18-Jan-13 02:16:09

Oh, and the way you get your kids into childcare is by calling every week in case a spot has come up and being willing to start with just a few days. They are not going to call you when they have people bugging them constantly for spots. I got dd into the most highly regarded childcare in Canberra by being persistent. I got both my dcs into childcare when we moved to Sydney (despite being very anxious about it). In fact I found a few places to choose from.

Mosman Fri 18-Jan-13 02:21:51

Unfortunately my employer isn't willing to start with a few days, shame because you are right once you're through the door it seems people are then offered more days as they come up and everyone else stats on the waiting list forever.
As for calling every week I was pretty much told to pisd off for calling every month so good luck with that.

tryingtoleave Fri 18-Jan-13 03:39:24

You could have taken two days and got a nanny for three instead of all week. Maybe you didn't speak to them nicely?

Of course they offer extra days to existing clients.

Mosman Fri 18-Jan-13 03:45:48

I spoke to them perfectly nicely .... I couldn't take two days because they haven't got two days to offer me and what is the nanny supposed to do on the other two days ? People have to earn a living and a three day working week isn't an option for many in Perth, we could do with being paid for 8 !

emmyloo2 Fri 18-Jan-13 03:47:14

Mosman, we have a skills shortage because there are so many new projects, not because our universities are shit. Honestly, how can you possibly say our whole education system is rubbish. It's completely incorrect and I would know, I have studied and worked in a number of countries.

Re the childcare situation - I know people who have found spots straight away, full-time. However, for some of the more popular centres, yes there can be waiting lists. However, everyone I know who needs a spot finds somewhere quite quickly.

Mosman Fri 18-Jan-13 04:08:03

Actually it's not because there are so many projects at all, I have seen the predictions by 2015 there will be high unemployment in WA due to the unskilled labour being surplus to requirements, unless something significantly changes - which it could of course. However I'm afraid what I hear over and over again and the senior management at Thiess, Rio, Chevron, Leightons can't all be wrong is that the graduates leave unprepared despite believing they are job ready and so graduates from elsewhere pip them to the post for many roles. That is a fact from the horses mouth.
As individuals many people are quick leaners and once they have a foot in the door can progress and do very well despite their education, you could say that about many many people all over the world. But now the gates have been opened I think many Australian's will be sat scratching their heads wondering why their standard of living is dropping, they aren't getting roles nevermind the salaries they once enjoyed.
Do I want my children studying here, not if I can help it and PLC and Scotch offering the IB so their students can study abroad gives me the impression I'm not the only one.

Mosman Fri 18-Jan-13 04:11:45

Again Emmyloo2 "Somewhere" isn't good enough for my child - some of the centre's you see wouldn't be allowed to operate in the UK, it is like stepping back 20 years. Yes I could have thrown him in somewhere but you only get one chance to be a toddler. That combined with the childcare needing to be accessible by bus as a secound car simply isn't an option given the price of them, does limit your options.
I do hate it when some smart arse comes along and tells you how to solve all the problems in your life without actually being in possession of any of the facts let alone all of them.

Mandurah is foul. fgs don't go to Perth or anywhere in WA. It's bandit country and utterly miles from anywhere and anything. Sydney or melbourne are the only places to be imo.

emmyloo2 Fri 18-Jan-13 04:26:34

Ok Mosman, sorry I am such a smart arse. You are right. I know nothing. I have only lived here for 35 years. I know nothing about Perth, its education system or the child care system.

FWIW - I am not being a smart arse but some of what you are saying is just not accurate. And there will not be high unemployment in 2015 I can assure you. I work in the mining industry and know it well. The work is not going anywhere.

Perhaps you are right about graduates from other countries being more qualified but I don't think that is the case. I think the issue, certainly for the projects I work on, is that there is a lack of skilled people. I.e. not graduates but people with experience and specialised experience in the industry. Graduates are a dime a dozen. Companies aren't bringing in graduates from overseas - they are bringing qualified people in from overseas because we don't have enough people with experience in Perth.

But what do I know - I am a product of our terrible education system, or does my Masters from a US School fix that? Who knows.

And yes I agree there are issues in our state schools and the education system, which is highlighted regularly in the media. However, private schools are different - and yes PLC and Scotch offer the IB and I think it's fantastic. No idea what the difference is but I am sure it is good. Any better than say the education you get at a Hale or Christchurch or St Marys? Very much doubt it.

LoopsInHoops Fri 18-Jan-13 04:36:38

Wow Emmyloo, I'm shocked at how rude you've been!

emmyloo2 Fri 18-Jan-13 04:40:37

I am not being rude Loops - I am just trying to correct some inaccuracies.

I wasn't the one who called someone a smart arse!

Re-read my posts - perhaps I was a little "passionate" but not rude.

Mosman Fri 18-Jan-13 04:54:28

You were and are rude, calling somebody's else's experiences bullshit is rude.
Time will tell, but living somewhere for 35 years doesn't give you more insight than the government agencies predicting and planning around the population and the infrastructure for example.

And yes I agree there are issues in our state schools and the education system, which is highlighted regularly in the media.

So basically you agree with my first post then hmm

emmyloo2 Fri 18-Jan-13 04:59:17

Yes but living abroad for 9 years does give me some insight.

I still think your portrayal of Perth is bullshit. OK maybe bullshit was harsh but I don't think it paints a fair picture for someone asking about Perth to be told the schools and universities are crap, and we are all useless and unskilled. I agree with you that the costs of living are high.

I apologise if I came across as rude. I am not a rude person I assure you.

SavoyCabbage Fri 18-Jan-13 05:06:14

Schools definitely do let children wander off without permission.

I am a supply teacher. I've never been to a school where anyone made sure the children in their class have been collected or walked home. The onus is on the child. My Britishness often forces me to go out with the class I am teaching that day but I have to manufacture an excuse to do so. It is not the norm.

More than half of the schools I have worked in don't take a register in the afternoon.

The buildings and grounds are in no way secure. My own dc's school has a right of way through it, and it totally open to bush land at the back, a park on one side (no gate between) and a six lane road at the front.

Mosman Fri 18-Jan-13 05:08:37

I didn't say all Australians were all useless or unskilled. I do think your state schools are crap.

emmyloo2 Fri 18-Jan-13 05:10:52

OK maybe they are crap. I am not going to argue the point anymore. My son will be attending a state primary school so I can only hope you are wrong!

LoopsInHoops Fri 18-Jan-13 05:30:56

Mosman said she was unimpressed that her DD was allowed/able to wander off.

You wrote: "Mosman, sorry but you are talking absolute rubbish. Schools do not simply let children wander off without permission. What utter crap."

You are rude, and accuse her of lying about something that must have been very distressing for her. Incredibly rude. I get that you're passionately loyal about your local area, but there's no need to put yourself across as so nasty.

emmyloo2 Fri 18-Jan-13 05:39:02

I didn't realise she was talking about her own daughter - I thought she was talking generally about children wandering off.

I have apologised for being rude.

tryingtoleave Fri 18-Jan-13 05:39:10

In Canberra, the schools don't even have fences...

But mosman, you won't put your child just anywhere, but you got a nanny that hit your dc?

You obviously don't think much of uk state system either, because you wanted your dcs in private school there.

I went from my Australian undergrad to come top of a masters in the uk. There are significant differences in the educational systems, but not all mean it is worse here.

emmyloo2 Fri 18-Jan-13 05:42:14

Yes that's true tryingtoleave. I don't think the schools have fences - well certainly mine didn't. I must admit I never thought about that but I guess it wasn't an issue when I was at school.

Mosman Fri 18-Jan-13 05:46:48

Hitting my child wasn't a specification on the fucking job advertisement hmm
I employed an ex teacher, you wouldn't expect to go far wrong there would you ? Especially given she had a working with children's card and references.

Mosman Fri 18-Jan-13 05:48:00

And yes you're right i wasn't blown away by the UK state system either, luckily the private schools do actually seem to be the one affordable aspect of Perth at the moment - once you can get a place.

emmyloo2 Fri 18-Jan-13 05:54:12

See Mosman - I think private schools are incredibly expensive! But I guess maybe they are cheaper than UK private schools. $20,000 for primary school per year? Seems outrageous to me. That's why we will send our schools to state primary schools. However, if money wasn't an issue, I think I would go private school, except I am not sure about single sex schools for little kids.

Einsty Fri 18-Jan-13 05:56:23

FFS, one of the worst aspects of Australia is the defensiveness in the face of any criticism - and the tendency to blame any failings on the individual experiencing them. Gets in the way of making improvements IMO - essential, as Australia won't get away with coasting forever hmm

emmyloo2 Fri 18-Jan-13 06:00:48

There is an element of truth to that Einsty. I think we can be quite defensive, but isn't that true of other countries, if people move to the countries and then criticize them? I think a lot of other people would get defensive, not just Australians.

I am not sure why you say we coast? A lot of us work incredibly hard.

I do take your point though - and perhaps I am guilty of the same thing - there is a big thing in Perth of "if you don't like it leave", which annoys me. But it's a bit like your family - you can criticize them but watch out if anyone else does. I am like that with Perth - I routinely moan about things I don't like (lack of daylight savings) but do get defensive when others who move from abroad criticise it.

Thumbwitch Fri 18-Jan-13 06:12:19

<<studiously ignores the mild bunfighting>>

Up until a couple of weeks ago I would have said Tasmania because it has the (for me) nicest weather. But then they had the lightning strike fires, which, fair play, could happen anywhere - so I'm a little less keen.

Other than that, anywhere cooler than here is today! Fucking 44 degrees in the shade - very unbloody funny. Lots of whinging about it from friends on FB (native Aussies, btw) - have only seen one person think it's great. 3 friends have air con struggling to work; one friend is in a rental with no aircon and the internal house temp is 49 degrees.

Make sure you can handle heat before you come out here. It's supposedly low humidity today as well hmm

sleepywombat Fri 18-Jan-13 06:16:51

My Aussie dh agrees with the coasting. He thinks we're relying on mining far too much, as despite bringing in lots of dosh (atm), is actually a very tiny industry, employing very few people.

We're in a real quandry re moving/staying. The schools in our area are pretty rubbish & HUGE (4 form entry, all of them). Our ds1 is a sensitive soul & I'd love him to go to an English village state school. But our life is here, we love swimming in the creek at the bottom of the road & evening walks on the beach...

Thumbwitch Fri 18-Jan-13 06:25:11

My Aussie DH works in a business that supplies to mining. With the coal price dropping, mines in NSW and QLD are cutting back, closing (temporarily and permanently), reducing shifts etc. This year is going to be bad for orders for his company because of this - mining is not a secure industry (well coal mining isn't) at the moment.

Lastofthepodpeople Fri 18-Jan-13 06:29:30

Could I hijack a little (sorry xbenedict) and ask for any experiences of Adelaide?

Thumbwitch Fri 18-Jan-13 06:32:18

Lastofthepodpeople - you'd probably do better to start your own thread asking specifically about Adelaide - Tortoise has said something about it on here though.

tryingtoleave Fri 18-Jan-13 06:57:59

Look, there are plenty of fair criticisms that could be made. 44 degrees in Sydney is one. Although we've had a nice day. Swim in the early morning, sit in air con for day then just come in from another swim now. But mosman has nothing good to say about anyone or anything, as far as I can see

saffronwblue Fri 18-Jan-13 07:16:58

Mosman has clearly had a bad experience with one school. I don't think this qualifies her to say that all schools in Australia are terrible.

OP a lot of the conversation at the moment is about the relentlessness of climate change and increased heat and bushfire risk.

Australian private schools ( and a few state ones as well) are starting to offer the IB not so that people can study overseas but as a way of enriching and stretching very able students. I don't see that as evidence of a poor system.

tryingtoleave Fri 18-Jan-13 08:16:45

I also suspect some schools are doing the IB so their final results can't be ranked against other schools.

Mosman Fri 18-Jan-13 08:51:05

Oh with respect i am not basing my decision one one school, i looked around plenty and speak to parents about their experiences, aussies, indians, chinese, brits. The brits that love the schools tend to come from complete dumps in the UK where frankly anything would be an improvement. The most disparaging comments tend to come from the Australians themselves whilst writing cheques for private schools, which themselves aint all that.

CanIHaveAPetGiraffePlease Fri 18-Jan-13 08:58:51

My husbands family are Australian so we have wondered about moving to Australia (decided we really wouldn't but that's for other reasons).

Hobart is lovely, pretty, good weather by my standards (ie not incredibly hot in summer!) but is quite insular and Island like.

We'd decided if we would we would go to Melbourne (and visit Hobart). The schools my family are at are fine but must depend on area (just like the UK).

Mosman Fri 18-Jan-13 09:12:59

People I have met from Perth have actually moved to Victoria for the schools so you might be placed than most there.

CanIHaveAPetGiraffePlease Fri 18-Jan-13 09:19:03

Are you going to come back to the UK Mosman? We realised that emigrating now wasn't the same that it was in the previous generation which is what everyone seems to remember.

Mosman Fri 18-Jan-13 09:33:25

Well the hilarity of it is we will have to permanent residency before we will stand a hope in hells chance of being able to save enough to come home.
I don't not like Perth but we should have sent DH out first to get a job and send dollars home, sorted lots back in the UK first and then when he had found good schools and a house in Sydney gone out.
For DH it's been a good move so he won't come back, not sure what I will do long term, post DC's being at home.

CanIHaveAPetGiraffePlease Fri 18-Jan-13 10:40:51

Sounds complicated. My husband (Australian) decided he prefers the UK so it saved me having to agonise over the decision but we could have easily moved if we had wanted to.

(Just realised that my previous post doesn't make much sense - oops! Need to wake up.)

Napsalot Fri 18-Jan-13 11:26:51

There are pros and cons of every city -to enjoy living in Perth I think you have to embrace that it is isolated but that is part of its charm. Possibly not the best place for a visit (lacking in tourist attractions unlike say Melbourne or Sydney), but a nice place to live. Close to the beach, laid back, good weather generally. Air conditioning in Australia changes your experience and is therefore essential IMO (although a surprising number of people don't have it).

Mosman Fri 18-Jan-13 11:56:21

I don't think emigrating is ever easy, the first two years seem to be the worse where ever you go and if you come back people have moved on with their own lives whilst you've been having an adventure.
Hubby announced just now he loves Perth so that appears to be that unless he gets eaten by one of the many sharks circling the locality.

Snazzynewyear Fri 18-Jan-13 12:33:30

Sharks do seem particularly drawn to Perth! Of course there is a downside to living anywhere.

ben5 Fri 18-Jan-13 13:52:28

emmyloo like you I love Perth. I love the schools. Mine are in state and couldn't ask for better. Private is alot cheaper than UK and is an option for high school. There are private and state I'm looking at for my schools. Mosman your views on Perth are the same as I have for Scotland!!! and probable the ones my mum had for chedddar in Somerset!!
Not to sure where the talk of sharks came from but there have been more deaths on roads than shark attacks but we aren't killing all drivers !!! but this is a different thred!!

Juustanothermnetter Fri 18-Jan-13 14:55:55

Melbourne is brilliant. Weather is hot in summer and mild in spring /autumn (low 20's) and cold in winter. I used to do day trips from Melbourne bayside to the ski fields - a long day but amazing to be able to decide to ski tomorrow and just go do it. It's also amazing to be able to walk down to the beach/go sailing in the summer.

It's very expensive to live, housing is particularly expensive and you need a car as public transport is nowhere near England standard. I'd also advise private eduction for high school but costs can be affordable much more so than uk.

Good luck! We are making the move back again ina couple of years and I can't wait!!

WhataSook Sun 20-Jan-13 10:55:08

I agree with Juust, Melbourne is great! I've also lived in Sydney and Brisbane and what I like about Melbourne is you get seasons, something you definitely dont get in Brisbane and Sydney's winter was about 4 weeks of cool weather!

I cant wait to move back either....18 months and counting smile

Tortoiseonthehalfshell Mon 21-Jan-13 03:14:38

Lastofthepodpeople, start your thread and I will happily come and be opinionated on it for you. There's a few MNetters in Adelaide, or at least there used to be; a few years ago about 8 of us met up for dinner so there'll be a few of us who can help.

I agree with Ben5 and Emmyloo. On the whole, Perth is a fantastic place to live.
We have moved internationally several times, have been in state and private schools etc. I really wanted Melbourne instead of Perth with the Australian move, because it does feel so much more like 'home' (European). But our time in Perth has been extremely happy.

Children are in local state school (and I love that there is no need for fencing, and they can just walk home - they are told to return to teacher if parent is not around, if that is the norm for them), while awaiting private school place. State school has been perfectly adequate, extending them where possible. There are elements of London school I preferred, but generally we are happy with their school, and so are they.

Health system is good. My DH takes train to work, it is air conditioned, regular, never delayed due to pollen, heat, sand, sharks, whatever. Best of all is the active lifestyle. DC are involved at life saving club etc, its so good to see hundreds of children running and swimming and having fun, instead of being behind closed doors. Of course they are lathered in sunblock, hats on etc.

That said, there is no denying that the cultural side of life is not much appreciated here (maybe we're in the wrong area for that?). When any show comes to Perth, you have to seize the moment! We've travelled to Asia a few times from here, as its so close, and airline sales make it quite affordable.

To Mosman I would say, the new arrivals that I know who have needed childcare places, have only managed by phoning and visiting every few days, generally making a nuisance of themselves. Good luck!

StupidFlanders Mon 21-Jan-13 05:42:51

The only advice I could offer would be to ask people who LIKE where they live to explain why.

I learnt this tip when someone was explaining how she chose a school for her dd.

Some people are negative and have had bad isolated experiences which colour their perception of the whole place. Ask what people like about the place and see if it resonates with you.

EIizaDay Mon 21-Jan-13 06:00:01

Serious question here to the people saying "it's laid back". What do you mean?
Please give me some examples.

'Laid back' = casual wear and flip flops are acceptable at all times, people are friendly and never in a hurry (this can and will annoy any Londoner, but you do get used to it) so the check out staff will have a chat, whether you're running late or not. Basically any pretentious habits will be lost very quickly.

Thumbwitch Mon 21-Jan-13 07:23:39

"never in a hurry" - this applies to tradies a lot of the time as well, in our experience! but then the same could be said of UK tradesmen so no real difference. grin

saffronwblue Mon 21-Jan-13 07:40:44

Don't wear casual clothes and flip flops (thongs) in a corporate setting! There are some yummy mummies done to the nines outside particular school gates.

Treat others as equals, even in service settings. Get in the front seat next to the taxi driver.

OP do you prefer living in rural settings or cities? Do you prefer dry heat to tropical? I would consider these preferences before choosing which bit of Australia to live in.

EIizaDay Mon 21-Jan-13 12:34:16

Mmm well I wouldn't say wearing flip flops and casual wear = laid back, I'd say it was sloppy a lot of the time. I've been on many a flight and can spot the "laid back" Aussies who turn up dressed for the beach (vest, little shorts and flip flops) shock

I live in Brisbane and to say there is no pretentiousness makes me grin. IME a lot of the service industries here (shops, restaurants etc) seem to look down on the customer. This "hiya guys" to my elderly parents-in-laws wasn't really appreciated. My MIL went in to a shop and it was "Hiya, how are you going? What you up to this weekend?"

I've spent many years in Australia and am still confused about where this "laid back" tag comes from unless it means that people are constantly late for meetings (but then again I'd use another word for that).

Napsalot Mon 21-Jan-13 13:22:34

Laid back to me is not having life full of the hustle and bustle of a big city -trains aren't over crowded, people go to the beach or for a walk after work, generally on less of a timetable of rushing places. Doesn't mean that you are not on time for meetings or should lower your standard of dress.

And Mosman I too wanted to add that I found (fulltime) daycare at the last minute in Australia by calling around. Just in case that helps.

SillyOldHector Mon 21-Jan-13 20:43:52

We moved for a year to secret harbour in Perth where dh was a gp. I can honestly say it was the most fabulous and miserable one year ive had in equal measure. Gut wrenching homesickness, the hell that is private rental. The nightmare of trying to get good school places. The fab side was having more family time together. Dh walked to work, surgery was by the sea. Now he lives away during the week and works in a black country practice. We had a great time exploring the region. I do wonder what life would be like now if i had stuck it out, but the homesickness came as a huge shock to me and i wasnt prepared to see how i felt in 5 years time, when realistically, because of dh's profession we would have reached the point of no return. Dh misses Perth, i do too, but ultimately i think we made the right decision to come back. Moving overseas is a huge decision to make, especially in your 40s. We were able to leave our house, furniture and cars behind when we moved so it would be easier to come back. Perth is beautiful but i can agree with quite a lot of what Mosman has said. If we had our time again i think Melbourne might have suited us more.

ClaudiaSchiffer Wed 23-Jan-13 06:27:36

If I could live anywhere in Australia - this is fantasy as I'm assuming money is no object, it'd probably be some 'mazin' harbourside palace in Sydney or Toorak mansion in Melbourne. I think I'd be perfectly content with either city.

However, I live in Adelaide. <WAVES A BIG HELLO TO TORTOISE>. The upsides of which are . . .

Lovely climate - think southern Europe - hot dry summers, cool wet winters.

Manageable (small) city - some may call it dull (me), but it is lovely to be able to drive into the city center and park and shop easily.

Reasonably affordable housing, well compared to Syd/Melb/Perth.

Proximity to glorious wineries.

Er . . . prob lots more.

To wade into the education debate, I think the standards here are lower at an equivalent age than in the UK ie my 7.7 yr old daughter is just about to start Year 2 whereas in the UK she would be part way though Year 3 (I think) and the subsequent expectations for a year 2 rather than a year 3 are lower iyswim.

My 5.4 yr old is in Reception FOR ANOTHER WHOLE YEAR. This quite pisses me off. But hey ho.

Tortoiseonthehalfshell Wed 23-Jan-13 11:47:49


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