I am a 23 year old gay male Korean. I am an American citizen planning to leave for Australia next week.
I am a U.S. licensed hairdresser. Australia does not recognize U.S. cosmetology licenses so I will have to go to school again.
I have boiled it down to 2 schools: Pivot Point Academy in Melbourne, and Gold Coast Institiute of TAFE.
I would highly appreciate advice on these topics in reference to the two cities aforementioned:
1) Safety: being Asian AND gay AND an expat. I've never rode public transportation in my life aside from a taxi. I will
however have to for a while until I get settled and purchase a car. Is crime the same in both cities? Racism? Homophobia?
I know Melbourne has an advanced public transportation system but how about Gold Coast?
2) Education: Since we are not talking about traditional universities, I understand this question may not be answerable but
would it be wiser to attend the Pivot Point Academy in Melbourne? It's in the city for one, and Pivot Point Academy is actually an internationally
recognized cosmetology school. How credible is Gold Coast Institute of TAFE? They both offer the same certification. Certificate III in hairdressing.
3) Cost of living: I lived in a 2 million dollar house in the states. My mortgage was $1800 a month. Through my research, for $1800 a month in Melbourne CBD
I can get a closet sized studio apartment with a toilet and a microwave. I do understand that income is significantly higher in Oz but I am coming on a Traveler's visa
that I plan to switch to a student or working holiday visa. I think the weekly limit to work is only 20 hours a week on a student visa. Because I have to pay my tuition
in full and in cash (since I am not a citizen and won't be receiving any scholarships or grants), I cannot afford to go months eating away at my savings paying literally HUNDREDS
of dollars a week for such lackluster accommodations. Not to mention the increased price of utilities, food, etc in Oz. Gold Coast IS cheaper yes, but is it worth it in the long run?
4) Lifestyle: I'm not a huge party person. I went out for dinners and movies a lot throughout the week and I did go out to the clubs and bars on the weekends.
I have lived in the city and I have lived in the suburbs. I personally prefer the suburbs. Then again city life in Melbourne is probably a lot different than Manhattan.
I have never lived by a beach. In fact I haven't been to a beach in years. It's always been my dream to live by the beach but Melbourne has them too and I'm obviously
not a surfer so that doesn't give Gold Coast that much more appeal. Do I prefer a more relaxed lifestyle over a busy city life? Yes.
5) Quality of life: I once thought life revolved around driving my Lexus, wearing the most expensive clothes, and living in a fancy mansion. I am over it now. I grew up I guess
you could say. I have no more greed. I would be happy just living in a decent apartment with a cute little kitty, driving a decent car, making decent money. No more stress, no more
pressure. Sure, it's nice to have nice things. Would I be making a lot less money on the Gold Coast compared to Melbourne as a hairdresser?
6) Asian community: I heard both GC and Melbourne both had big asian communities (I'm primarily concerned about the Korean community). How are they in the two cities?
7) Climate: Cold I can deal with. Dry heat I can deal with. Humidity I CANNOT deal with. It can be soul shatteringly freezing or hellfire hot, but if it's damp or humid, I will shrivel up and die.
8) Nightlife: As aforementioned, I'm not a huge party person, but of course like everyone else I like going to clubs or bars since I'm still young. Gay clubs and bars kind of disgust me, I always went
out to straight clubs in the U.S.. Do both cities have a good variety of both?
With ALL THE INFORMATION above, I hope you guys will give me some good advice. If you say go to Gold Coast, WHERE in Gold Coast? If you say Melbourne, please explain WHY in reference to the info above.
Thank you so much for your time and I will truly appreciate any and all advice.