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Expat Communities in Australia – Where to Find Them?

Australian Flag in the wind with Sydney Opera House in the background

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Moving to Australia can be both exciting and overwhelming, but this country is definitely worth considering! With its great quality of life, stunning scenery, and diverse cities, there’s something for everyone.

Whether you’re looking for job opportunities, a certain lifestyle, or a welcoming community, it’s important to think about what matters most to you. Australia has so much to offer, and I’m sure you’ll find a place that feels like home in no time!

Sydney: A Cultural Melting Pot

Sydney is a vibrant and diverse city with a population of over 5.3 million people. The currency used in Sydney is the Australian dollar (AUD), and the time zone is GMT+10 during standard time and GMT+11 during daylight saving time. The climate in Sydney is humid subtropical, with hot summers and mild winters. In case of an emergency, the number to call is 000.

If you’re planning to work in Sydney, you’ll need a longer-term visa that allows you to work and live there legally. There are different types of work and business visas available, and the exact visa you need depends on your situation. Newland Chase can help you figure out the type of visa you’ll need and guide you through the application process. Living in Sydney can be expensive, with high costs of residence, especially for rent.

However, high wages help offset those higher costs. Rental rates vary depending on the location, with areas close to the city center being more expensive than the suburbs.

 The average annual salary in Sydney is A$80,000. 

Australia Expat Communities - How to Find Them - Guide and Tips - Living in Australia

Intermediate monthly costs

Expense Cost (per month)
Rent for a one-bedroom apartment $711
Median home asking price $1.3 million
Cost of living for a family of four (without rent) $6,654
Cost of living for one person (without rent) $2,012
Internet $75
Gas and electric $164
Water $67
Transit (gas for car) $198
Transit (mass transit) $177
Grocery bill (per person) $433

Sydney has 33 different suburbs to choose from, each with its own unique character and atmosphere. Some of the top neighborhoods favored by expats include Surry Hills, Newtown, Darlinghurst, Paddington, Manly, Mosman, and Normanhurst. These neighborhoods offer a range of amenities, from trendy cafes and restaurants to beautiful beaches and parks.

If you’re moving to Sydney with school-age children, it’s important to research good schools in your potential neighborhoods beforehand. While sending your children to public school requires less planning, you’ll want to reach out and apply in advance to private and international schools, as these typically have smaller class sizes and are more selective.

Melbourne: A Haven for Arts, Music, and Food

Melbourne is a great place for expats to live in Australia. It is known for its vibrant arts scene, sports culture, and excellent quality of life. However, it is the second most expensive city in Australia, with a high cost of living. Housing prices are the main culprit, but they are still more affordable than in Sydney.

Rental rates and housing costs are more expensive in the city center, with prices decreasing the more you head out into the surrounding suburbs. Despite the high cost of living, expats should keep in mind that Australia’s high wages help defray those higher living costs.

 The average annual income in Melbourne is A$75,000. 

Melbourne - Expat Communities in Australia

Average monthly costs

Expense Cost (per month)
Rent for a one-bedroom apartment $1,387
Median home asking price $1.02 million
Cost of living for a family of four (without rent) $6,854
Cost of living for one person (without rent) $2,006
Internet $87
Utilities (gas, water, electric) $312
Transit (monthly pass) $200
Grocery bill (per person) $430
Melbourne has hundreds of suburbs and neighborhoods to choose from, ranging from hip and trendy districts to laid-back suburbs with peaceful parks. Here are some of the top areas favored by expats:

Best for young professionals:

  • South Yarra: This affluent and cosmopolitan suburb is known for its trendy cafes, restaurants, and boutique shops along Chapel Street. It’s close to the Central Business District (CBD) and offers a vibrant nightlife.
  • Brunswick: Full of beer gardens, multicultural dining options, live music venues, and funky shops, the inner-city Brunswick area is sure to appeal to young couples and professionals seeking an alternative, counterculture lifestyle in the heart of the city.
  • St. Kilda: Located along the picturesque Port Phillip Bay, St. Kilda is a lively beachside suburb with a bohemian atmosphere. It’s popular among expats for its beachfront lifestyle, cultural events, and the famous Luna Park amusement park.
  • Docklands: This waterfront precinct is situated just west of the CBD and offers modern apartment living with stunning views of the harbor. Known for its contemporary architecture, excellent dining options, and proximity to entertainment venues, like Marvel Stadium, it’s ideal for expats who prefer a modern urban lifestyle.
  • Richmond: Richmond is a vibrant inner-city suburb known for its eclectic mix of cultures, excellent dining, and sporting events, including matches at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG). It has a variety of housing options and a strong sense of community, making it a popular choice for expats seeking a dynamic urban experience.

Most suitable for families:

  • Black Rock: Situated right on the beach, this family-friendly district is great for active families, thanks to its miles of beach, abundant parks, sports facilities, and walking and cycling trails.
  • In the eastern suburbs, Balwyn is a highly sought-after choice for families due to its top-rated public and private schools. It also boasts numerous parks, including the expansive Beckett Park, and offers a tranquil suburban feel while still being well-connected to the CBD.
  • Camberwell: Camberwell is another eastern suburb known for its excellent schools and family-oriented amenities. The Camberwell Junction area offers a bustling shopping and dining scene, and the suburb is dotted with parks and playgrounds, such as Fordham Gardens and Camberwell Sports Ground.
  • Brighton: Located by the bay, Brighton is an affluent suburb with a strong emphasis on family living. It features top-rated educational options, including Brighton Grammar School and Firbank Grammar School. The beachside lifestyle, beautiful green spaces, like Dendy Park, and a range of family-friendly activities make it highly desirable.
  • Malvern: Malvern, in Melbourne’s southeast, boasts a range of prestigious schools, such as Malvern Central School and Malvern Primary School. Families can enjoy Malvern’s leafy streets, Central Park, and easy access to shopping along Glenferrie Road.

Best for budgets:

  • In Melbourne’s southeast, you’ll find Cranbourne, a suburb renowned for its budget-friendly housing and convenient access to amenities such as shopping centers and schools.
  • Werribee: In Melbourne’s western suburbs, Werribee attracts families and cost-conscious young professionals with its budget-friendly housing and a variety of schools. It’s also home to Werribee Open Range Zoo and Werribee Park, offering family-friendly recreational opportunities.
  • Footscray: The inner-west Footscray offers a wide range of multicultural dining experiences and is well-connected to the CBD for a public transportation commute.

Brisbane: A Paradise for Nature Enthusiasts

Brisbane - Expat Communities in Australia

Brisbane is a nature lover’s paradise that offers the perfect blend of city living and natural attractions. With its stunning beaches, thriving music and arts scene, and an abundance of bars and shopping arcades, there is always something to do and enjoy in Brisbane. Brisbane locals are famous for their relaxed and laid-back attitude, making it the perfect place for those who prioritize a healthy work-life balance with their loved ones.

 While Brisbane may have a higher cost of living compared to other Australian cities, it still offers great value for money. 
  • For a single person is approximately AUD 3,642 monthly and AUD 43,704 annually.
  • For a family of four, expenses in Brisbane are around AUD 7,676 monthly and AUD 92,112 annually.
  • Students can expect to pay around AUD 2,500 monthly and AUD 30,000 annually for living expenses in Brisbane.

However, living in Brisbane does come with its downsides.

The city is prone to natural disasters such as floods and cyclones, and traffic congestion can be a problem during peak hours. Nonetheless, the pros of living in Brisbane far outweigh the cons, making it an excellent choice for those seeking a relaxed lifestyle with plenty of opportunities for work and play.

Adelaide – An Ideal City for Families and Individuals Alike

Adelaide is not only an attractive destination for those seeking a balanced lifestyle but also for families and individuals looking for a high quality of life at an affordable price. The city offers a low cost of living, with a comfortable monthly budget for a single person totaling around $2,783, including rent in a centrally located area.

Families will appreciate Adelaide’s quality education system, with some of the best private schools located in the suburbs of Medindie and Walkerville, which are popular among wealthy expat families. The city also boasts top-notch healthcare facilities, ensuring that residents have access to the best medical care.

In addition to its quality of life, Adelaide offers ample employment opportunities in industries such as healthcare, education, and manufacturing. The city’s thriving job market, combined with its affordable cost of living, makes it an excellent place for individuals and families to establish a new life. But it’s not all work and no play in Adelaide.

The city is home to a variety of fun-thrilled places, including beautiful parks and gardens, world-class museums and galleries, and a vibrant food and wine scene. With so much to offer, it’s no wonder that Adelaide is becoming an increasingly popular destination for expats from around the world.

Living in Perth: Is it Right for You?

Living in Perth - Expat Communities in Australia

Perth is a dream destination for many expats who have plans for moving to Australia, and it’s not hard to see why. The city’s stunning natural beauty, top-notch healthcare system, and reliable public transport are just a few of the perks of living in this West Coast gem.

But, as with any city, Perth has its pros and cons. If you’re considering a move to Perth, you’ll be happy to know that the city’s economy is on the rise, especially in the mining and resources sectors.

This means plenty of job opportunities for those in the industry. Plus, with its beautiful beaches, exciting attractions, and diverse neighborhoods, Perth truly has something for everyone.

However, it’s important to note that the cost of living in Perth is relatively high.

  • A single person can expect to spend around 3620 AUD per month or 43,440 AUD annually,
  • Family of four may need to budget around 8106 AUD monthly or 97,272 AUD annually.

When it comes to finding a place to live in Perth, it’s essential to choose an area that suits your lifestyle and needs. From the bustling city center to the quieter suburbs, Perth has plenty of options to choose from.

Building Connections Facilitates a Smooth Transition

By joining groups on platforms like InterNations or Facebook, you can navigate daily life in Australia more seamlessly. These communities offer valuable insights into housing options, job opportunities, and advice from fellow expats who have already made the transition.

The International Citizens’ guide also recommends attending local events and festivals to immerse yourself in Australian culture and meet new people. Making friends through shared hobbies or attending gatherings allows you to quickly establish a sense of belonging, no matter which city you choose.

Is It Worth Moving to Australia?

Australia is a great place to live, with so many amazing cities to choose from! When you’re trying to decide which one is right for you, it’s important to think about things like job opportunities, the kind of lifestyle you want, and the vibe of the community. And hey, don’t forget about expat communities!

You can benefit greatly from their assistance when you’re first settling in, and you’ll have the opportunity to meet amazing individuals who have gone through similar experiences. Trust me, finding the perfect Aussie city for you is totally possible!