Australia is one of the most popular destinations for Brits looking for a long-term escape from the English weather in favour of sunning it up all year round. With excellent healthcare facilities, quality education and beautiful houses available to purchase at a fraction of the price in the UK, it’s no wonder that many individuals and families are deciding to relocate to Australia.
Here we outline the key things to take into consideration before making the big move.
For expats looking to make the permanent move, visa acquisition may prove rather tricky. Australia has a notoriously tough immigration policy which works on a points-based system where you typically must show that you have family or a job waiting for you once you arrive.
Australia’s permanent visa, also known as the ‘skilled’ visa is the path that most people will choose when looking to obtain permanent residency.
The two most common permanent residency visas for skilled workers are:
Skilled – Independent (Visa 189): For skilled workers under the age of 50 whose professions are in high demand, but do not need sponsorship by a family member, employer or a state. The full list of professions, known as the Medium and Long-term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL), can be found here, as set by the Australian Government.
Skilled – Nominated (Visa 190): This visa type is similar to the above, though here a skilled worker is nominated by a particular Australian state or territory government. The fields where skilled workers are needed will change from state to state when there are particular shortages in its local economy at that time, so it’s worth checking back at a later time. However, you must live in the state or territory which has nominated you for the first two years of your Australian residency.
Other permanent visas
There are also several other specific permanent visa types, including those for family members or spouses, those with a ‘distinguished talent’ or those investing in Australian businesses. You can search for the type of visa you require for your Australian relocation here.
Processing of permanent visas can take up to 12 months, so it’s wise to plan ahead and give yourself lots of time to make the necessary arrangements. Moreover, visa applications are not cheap and successful applicants will have to pay the government around £2000 before emigrating.
International Removals to Australia
Relocation to Australia from the UK will require shipping your possessions. If this is a long-term move then it is recommended that a container is used to ship your belongings. In most cases, sea freight shipping will take between 8-12 weeks, however, if essential goods are needed as soon as possible, air freight might be the best option.
The cost of moving your belongings to Australia will depend on the size and amount of possessions you wish to take. Many removals experts will offer ‘part load’ services, which effectively means sharing the vehicle with other goods and therefore splitting the costs of the move too, making the process that bit cheaper. However, if you have a lot of stuff, this might not be a feasible option.
To make the process as stress-free as you can do, it’s important to choose an expert company which specialises in international removals and has shipped to your destination thousands of times before. You can check out whether they’re legitimate and trustworthy by looking at online review sites and asking people in forums, whilst also ensuring they are BAR, IAM and ISO 9001 accredited.
When relocating to Australia, you will want to set up a bank account as soon as is possible and ideally within six weeks. This is relatively simple and can even be done through many banks’ online migration services prior to arrival, saving time and hassle. Moreover, several UK banks also have Australian branches or special ties with Australian banks, so it’s worth doing your research before your big move to decide what the best option is for you.
Transferring money from the UK to Australia before you move or making international payments will be necessary, so it’s important to seek the help of trustworthy foreign currency exchange service providers so as to avoid nasty exchange rates and to save you some hassle.
Australia is, quite literally, on the other side of the world, which means flight times are extremely long. While there are daily routes to Australia from the UK on many airlines, none of these are direct, so it’s worth shopping around to find a route which is right for you. Many cheaper routes will have multiple stop-overs that can be as long as 50+ hours, so be sure to check travel time carefully, particularly if you’re travelling with children.
Other things to consider
- Cancel your UK subscriptions e.g. mobile phone, home bills, insurance, TV license etc.
- Let all the relevant authorities know that you are leaving.
- Make sure you have your medical documents and other important paperwork.
- Redirect your post to your new address (if you know it).
- Check out expat forums such as EasyExpat, for peer-to-peer support and guides.
Contact us today if you would like to discuss international removals to Australia – we are on-hand to offer expert advice, excellent customer service and competitive pricing.