So you’ve landed in Australia and you are officially an overseas student in one of Australia’s universities? No doubt that this move has been quite stressful for you. Nevertheless, it will all be worth it once you get yourself accustomed to your new environment and people.
But how can you make this transition easier? How can you prevent yourself from experiencing culture shock? To help with that, here are 10 tips to help you adjust to life as an overseas student in Australia.
- Accommodation close to public transport
One of your main concerns is likely to be where you will live. As an overseas student, finding accommodation close to public transport should be high on your list of priorities. This can save you both time and money by avoiding costly transportation and cutting back on traffic congestion. Be sure to research how far away your accommodation will be from bus stops, train stations, or ferry terminals before committing.
- Apply TFN ( Tax file number) on ATO
Apply for TFN on the ATO (Australian Taxation Office). This file number identifies you for tax as well as superannuation purposes. The best part is that it’s free to apply and it’s yours for life. Processing your TFN application typically takes 28 days.
You can apply online on the ATO website. To make sure your application goes smoothly, read through all of the ATO website before you start your application. It would be better if you can find someone who has already gone through it and ask them questions if anything is unclear.
- Write an appropriate Resume (CV/biodata)
You’ll need to write a resume (aka bio-data) or curriculum vitae so you can apply for work in Australia. Your resume/CV is an introduction to yourself and explains why your skills and experience make you a good fit for whatever job you’re applying to.
Remember, it needs to be tailored specifically to each position that you apply for – don’t use one generic resume/CV! Instead, create several different versions based on where you’re applying. If there are any gaps in your employment history or other red flags on your resume/CV, prepare a cover letter explaining them.
- Manage a part-time job
Whether you’re staying with friends or relatives or commuting from a hostel, your housing situation won’t be as luxurious as it is back home. But that doesn’t mean your expenses have to climb accordingly. Look for part-time work opportunities to offset costs.
- Drop the resume directly to the managers or owner
If you want to get noticed by a recruiter, you need to get your resume directly into their hands. The best way to do that is to deliver it personally to them or their office. Bring two copies with you, one stapled and one loose, and make sure they know your resume is not on your computer but hand-delivered.
Also mention where you heard about them (if online) and why you are interested in working for their company. You can also bring along a printed copy of your LinkedIn profile as well as any other information about yourself which might be relevant to them.
- Do not leave assignments or study till the last minute
Leaving important tasks until the last minute may cause some big problems, so it’s better to plan your work as soon as possible. What’s more, planning and working ahead of time will give you enough time to make some mistakes and find ways to fix them before the due date. It may take some effort at first, but when you get used to it, you will realize how much easier your life becomes.
- Have classmates close to your circle
If you’re new to a school, connect with your classmates and build relationships early on. This will help you find a sense of belonging faster, even before orientation or student life events start up. You can make these friends during class time, or after class at school events. There are also online communities where students from different schools can interact – like Study Room! It’s all about building connections that last beyond initial introductions.
- Use the university resource to the maximum limit
Make sure you keep yourself informed of what’s available on campus. Once there, make use of your new home and the available resources as much as possible. Talk to other students about their experiences, attend events, ask questions and get involved!
- Use the summer vacation to your favor – work the maximum hours you legally allowed
Take advantage of the flexibility that summer vacation provides. This is a golden opportunity to make some extra cash. You can find a part-time job or even start an independent business.
You can legally work up to 38 hours per week during the school year and up to 48 hours per week during vacation periods (including weekends). This means that if you take advantage of every minute of your free time during summer vacation, by the end of your first semester in Australia, you could be making an extra $2,500 AUD!
- Make sure to hang out- Australia is beautiful!!
We know you’re probably feeling a bit overwhelmed right now. But don’t panic! Australia is beautiful, and the people are friendly. There are so many places to see and things to do! You just have to make sure that you get out there and explore while you can. Also, make sure to hang out with other people who are also new in town. You’ll be surprised how much easier it is to learn about the place when you’re doing it with others!
Want extra tips? Here’s more:
- Open student bank account
The first thing you need to do when you arrive in Australia is open a student bank account. This should be done as soon as possible in order to avoid the risk of being unable to access your money. You may be required to provide proof of identity, such as your passport, visa, or birth certificate.
Opening a student bank account not only gives you access to your money. It also offers a place where all your school-related expenses go. So when tax time comes around, there are no surprises. It’s also great for keeping track of how much money you spend on food, housing, and other things because it helps you budget better.
- Plan your weekly meal
It’s easy to get carried away with buying food items that you don’t need, so make a list before you go shopping! Make sure you have 5-6 meals planned out each week so that you don’t have to worry about what’s for dinner while you’re studying. Also, choosing fresh ingredients over pre-packaged foods will help keep your meal plan healthy and delicious!
Well, there you have it. You’ve made it to the end of our list of top 10 tips for new arrival overseas students in Australia! We hope this has helped you feel more prepared for what’s ahead, and that you are now ready to meet the challenges of your new life with confidence and ease.
We love hearing about your experiences. So please don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions or comments!