Moving abroad from the UK to Australia can be intimidating, especially if you don’t know what to expect. If you’re planning on relocating your family, we understand how overwhelming it can feel.
Robyn Vogels, the Owner of Personnel Relocations, lived in the UK for nearly ten years and is here to share three things many British underestimate when they move “Down under”. Underestimates can cause stress and waste money, so read on.
UK to Australia: 3 Differences Between
The first thing many people moving from the UK to Australia underestimate is the weather – sure, it’s a British thing, we know, but stereotyping the weather can leave you cold. Although Australia has a much warmer climate than Britain, it doesn’t mean it’s hot all year round.
Melbourne and Tasmania have more seasonal weather than other states. So it should be top of your list if you still like a good(ish) winter and not too hot in summer.
Winter months in this region are typically mild, with temperatures ranging from 0-15 degrees Celsius. Although it’s unlikely to be as cold as the UK during winter, you should still ensure you’re prepared for some chilly weather!
When looking for a rental in Melbourne, it is the law that there is heating (not throughout, but some, at least).
The direction of the wind can significantly impact the temperature, and wind changes can send the temperature plummeting in minutes. If you have heard that Melbourne can have four seasons in one day, the wind has a lot to do with this.
Remember, the north is the warm “outback”, and the south is Antarctica, so the weather can fluctuate quickly depending on the wind direction.
Whilst Melbourne might be colder, it is, in fact, Sydney that has the most rainfall – BUT also boasts more sunny days than Melbourne! Yes, you read that right. Sydney has higher rainfall because it is more torrential rain.
During summer, many places in Australia have days of extreme heat— most major cities will endure temperatures of 40+ degrees Celsius. So Brisbane might not be for you if you don’t like humidity or torrential rains.
The size of the country
The second underestimation people often have when moving from the UK to Australia is the country size. This may not seem too important until you consider commute times from work or school.
When attempting to understand the sheer size of Australia in comparison to that of the United Kingdom, it may prove difficult – but you know it is bigger right?
Numerous families have dual incomes and secure jobs, yet they tend to underestimate just how far apart these roles are from a potential home, which is further impacted if they have children who need to be at school at 9 am.
If you are early on in your relocation and need advice, I strongly recommend booking a consultation with me to discuss your options and potential pitfalls in your decisions.
Public transport in Australia is less convenient than in Britain, and there are fewer train lines than in other European cities. That’s why having access to a car is essential, so you can get around quickly and easily without relying on public transportation.
Speaking of cars, approximately 65% of homes Down Under have two cars these days, a number that has grown steadily due to the expansion in urban areas. Don’t forget to account for all those costs, such as insurance, tolls and fuel, when budgeting – owning two vehicles comes with more than just its share of expenses!
Finally, schooling in Australia can be pretty different from what British families are used to—especially in subjects such as Maths or English Literature. This is because they use different curriculums and assessment systems than GCSEs in Britain.
There are also three streams of schooling available in Australia:
- private schools with fees depending on location and facilities offered;
- religious-based schools, which usually follow their own curriculum; and
- public or state schooling, which has no fees attached but is zoned. This means you must find a home prior to enrolment. It is also important to mention that not all visas allow free public schooling. Please check this with your immigration agent.
Child care in Australia
If you’re looking for childcare options, there are plenty.
Early childhood education and care (ECEC) services are provided for children from birth to five years of age. These services include long day care, family day care, outside school hours care, and preschool. They are designed to support children’s development and learning, as well as provide care for families who are working or studying.
Long daycare centres are the most common form of ECEC services in Australia. They provide care for children from birth to five years of age, usually between 7 am and 6 pm. They are typically staffed by trained and qualified educators. Think of LeapFrog in the UK.
Family daycare services provide care for small groups of children in the homes of registered carers. These services are usually more flexible than long daycare centres and can be tailored to meet the specific needs of families. These facilities are all registered and vetted by the local council.
Outside school hours, care services provide care for school-aged children before and after school, as well as during school holidays. These services are usually located in school or community centres and offer a range of activities and programs for children. An example of this is Camp Australia.
Preschool, also known as kindergarten, is a form of early childhood education provided for children the year before they start formal schooling. Trained and qualified educators usually deliver it and follow a curriculum focusing on children’s social, emotional, and cognitive development.
The government regulates all ECEC services in Australia and must meet certain standards of quality, safety, and education.
If you meet the requirements, you can access financial assistance through the Child Care Subsidy program to help with the cost of ECEC services.
How Personnel Relocations can help
Moving abroad can be daunting—but with some preparation, research and understanding of what lies ahead, you’ll soon find that your transition will go smoother than expected!
We are here to help and can even refer you to our trusted removalists, forex or help you open a bank account.
At Personnel Relocations, we want our clients to feel prepared for their new life abroad by providing comprehensive relocation services, whether they are moving from the UK to Australia or elsewhere globally. Get in touch today and let us help make your move a success!