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Parentwhogotin posted a topic in Aussie ChatComing to Australia? I’ve been here 8 years now and I’ve often thought of this Forum – I used it a lot in the days when I was applying for my Visa. Now I’ve been here 8 years – here’s my story and what I find the best and the worst and Oz! In 2010 after more than 2 years of jumping through ever bigger hurdles at last my Contributory Parent visa was granted and I became on the Northern Beaches in Sydney. In case the rules changed I immediately set about applying for Citizenship - another nightmare of paperwork - but attained Citizenship in 2011. Note: if you are computer literate and reasonably organised you can do the application yourself. If you employ an Agent you still have to gather the same info - but give it to your agent who submits it – don’t bother, do it yourself and save a heap of money. In 2017 - after 12 years each in Australia and not finding love - my two daughters decided to give up on Oz to return to the UK! Everyone expected I would go back, but by then had my own home and running my boutique, HoundDogHotel (still am) so I stayed on - because life here is, imo, far superior to anything the UK can offer. Having said that, there are truly some things an English person (especially a female) may struggle with. Others may have different views, here's my list: THE WORST Huntsmen Spiders. I posted pics of a massive one of these that died in my garage - it's leg span was almost 6". Everyone tells you they are fine and eat the nasty things, but when they are so fast its terrifying. Even more distressing when they keep turning up in your bedroom (one on bed head another one was on my pillow). I will never get used to them. Cockroaches. Disgusting. Even with an immaculate and clean home these things somehow find a way to appear in your house. Use Cockroach baits or you will see them all through summer if they find a corner to breed. Australians have a lot of great ways, but saying thank you at Zebra Crossings is not one of them. They saunter across and if anyone does raise a hand - bet your life its a Brit. It's obviously cultural as it doesn't bother Aussie drivers, but it drives me demented. It’s usual to go barefoot at the beach, but in Malls and shops? Feral! Now there's an Aussie word you'll get used to hearing. Many Aussies don't know what listening means and when you talk they often stare into space. But don't take it personally, they're not interested, they just want you to shut up so they can keep talking. Trades people (aka Tradies) think unreliability is an Olympic sport - and they excel at it. Time and again when booked for a small job they simply fail to turn up and you never hear from them again. Australia is not the relaxed land of Crocodile Dundee. It is a shockingly bureaucratic Country. There are rules, more rules, and even more petty rules. Basically Australia has monetised bureaucracy. You might have had years of expertise in a business, but will not be able to work in it here without going back to school to get a 'Cert IV Certificate' of some kind. I'd run my own successful Management Training company in London for 10 years - yet not allowed to train in Australia without paying for a Cert IV. In theory it is possible to get around this if you can prove you have qualifications - but getting the proof and paperwork together is so onerous most people don't bother and end paying for a joke Cert 4. When we had dogs in England the freedom to take them where you wanted was something I took for granted. Being here with a dog you’ll be shocked at the massive limitations on where you can take them off leash. Basically no where, unless it is permitted with a sign. The 'leash free' areas that do exist are few and far between, and the physical size of these Ovals is small. Considering there are 1,000s of beaches very few allow dogs - and you can't use the whole beach, just sections of it. Break the rules if you want, but fines are upwards of $250 per infringement. I really, really miss Epping Forest. Female? You will miss Marks and Spencer. Not the clothes - they became rubbish years ago - but dear God the food here is 20 years behind the UK. The ready meals in Coles and Woolworths are not fit for human consumption they are so poor. I have a very sweet tooth, yet supermarket cakes are so full of sugar you cannot taste anything else. Reason is that sugar is a very cheap ingredient. It amuses when Australians who have never been to the UK tell me the food here - especially their meat - is far superior to what we get in England. Having lived in both countries I can state positively the meat from the two main supermarkets, Coles and Woolworths is dire. Even the most expensive stuff is not even a close runner up to the quality at M&S for example. The Snags (sausages to you) they put on the BarB are revolting. Nasty and cheap. The bacon is – well it’s weird. Only Coles sells a specific ‘dry cure’ which is like the bacon you will be used to. And the bread is truly dreadful. Even so called specialist bakers make uninspiring pap. I can get decent bread at one French Bakers - except is 160 ks round trip. Considering this is a land of sheep - the clothes from the likes of Target are dreadful beyond words. Lacking style, cheap acrylic clothes and plastic shoes. A sea of tat. Myer and David Jones are better - but expensive, think John Lewis/Selfridges prices equivalent. The school zones which are 90 mins morning and again in the afternoon when you have to drive at 40k per hours = 25 mph = is plain annoying and unnecessary for such long periods - 90 mins twice a day. OK that is a long list of negatives - so why do I stay? THE BEST The light and beautiful open skies Australia has the biggest bluest skies that, for reasons I can't explain, seem vast compared with the view of skies in England No six month long Winters! Winters are not only mild, but some so called Winter days are better then UK summer ones. I used to get down with the Winters in England, but here with the light your spirits are lifted. Wildlife wildlife is big brassy and when when its not trying to kill you pretty fabulous. The birds are mainly huge (but they do have tiny wrens) and a huge variety of bird life. Pelicans bigger than small children, stunning Parrots, raucous and handsome Sulphur Crested Cockatoos, hilarious amusing and argumentative Rainbow Lorikeets. In my garden - and I'm not close to Bush, had Stick insects over a foot long, Water dragons right out of Jurassic Park, and yes the ever dreaded Huntsman. I have never seen a snake, dead or alive, on the streets. However, you would not walk off a path in summer as it is a risk not worth taking. In London one local journey regularly took me 40 mins to go 4 miles, whereas here, whilst Sydney traffic is pretty bad, living most other places it is a pleasure to drive around. Garden If you like gardening then some of the plants you can get are fabulous, exotic and colourful. I have a plant called a Mandeville and it throws dramatic red flowers all summer. The Aussies Poor listening skills and not staying thanks at Zebra crossing aside - Aussies are genuinely nice people. I’ve made loads of friends, they are welcoming and accepting of us Brits invading their country. You don’t see heaps of litter and filth along the side of roads as Aussies have enormous amounts of Civic pride. They tend not to litter as much as people in the UK do and are proud of their country and areas where they live. You will often see an individual clearing up litter in their street - and they won't get an officious council officer fining them for doing that. There are big community clear ups too and it's like big fun parties when locals turn up and clean up voluntarily. Aussies are so honest! Again and again people lose things which are more often than not returned to their rightful owners. On the same theme, there is far less crime than the UK. Moped thieves are unheard of, and whilst people don't leave doors unlocked in cities, burglary is rare. I've never heard of anyone being burgled in my area. The Housing It took a long time to get used to the different look of the housing here – hardly any garden and lots of house. Very individual styles. Different ways of building. But now I love it. Makes for variation and interest. My house here is far bigger than the one in the UK and having a smaller garden is great - lower maintenance. At the time I applied for my Contributory Parent Visa - aka buying your way in - the cost was $35,000 and a two year wait to be processed On top of the $35,000 you pay $10,000 bond (held for 10 years) and if you cannot support yourself and apply for Government assistance inside that 10 years you forfeit your bond. Seemed tough at the time, but on reflection I think it's right. I wish the UK was as strict with those who want to enter and live there. You certainly have no hope of turning up in Australia and taking houses and being given money. It just does not happen. If you’ve made it to the bottom well done! Be happy to answer questionsJ
Hi guys, I'm sure there have been many similar posts to this!! My partner is an Australian and I am a Brit, we plan to move to Australia next year with our two young children. I have been 100% up for the big move but i have become completely terrified and am even having slight second thoughts by what i have read about the Huntsman spider!! Sounds ridiculous that something like that would effect such an important decision doesn't it?! But i can't stop worrying about it!! What i really wanted to know is whether what i have read are pretty extreme cases or are they very likely to happen and if they do, do you tend to just adjust to it or do they always scare the hell out of you? I am perfectly aware that they are harmless, it's not that it's just the sheer size of them that scares me so much!! i have heard that they often come into your home, can hide in most places and tend to be about 4 inches in diameter. My worry is that i am going to be scared of doing anything in my own home incase i bump into one and especially driving with what i've read about the sun visors!! I'm really hoping i have just read a load of horror stories as my partners mum who has lived in hervey bay for 20 years has only ever had 2 tiny ones but just wanted to hear from a few others regarding this issue please? Are they always this big and realistically how often do you get them? I have also read some horrendous tales about them being in your car again how likely is this? Sorry to harp on like a loon just want to be clear on whether this is as bigger problem as i am imagining in my head!! We plan to live on the Sunshine Coast or nearer Brisbane. All advice would be greatly appreciated in helping out this neurotic Brit mother!! Thanks so much!!
came across our first huntsman yesterday. . . oh my god, what a disappointment! This one really was nothing much to worry about - small little body and all skinny legs! I was expecting something much bigger and certainly hairier! What did I do about this little fella? Just gave him a good shoeing. he disintergrated very easily and quickly with one swift belt of my shoe. My youngest daughter is terrified of daddy long legs, and I was worried how she would react. She too had a good laugh at this supposedly 'huge' spider. (Although she did not want to get near it) She was very relieved to see it was really not so bad after all! seen no snakes, spiders not scary, and just as I am beginning to relax, up sneaks a BIG.... who know what!
One thing that most people seem to panic about when moving to Oz are those little 8 legged critters who like to lurk under the loo seat and scare last night's dinner right on out of you! This quick and painless test will see if you have what it takes to survive living in a place where they like to take a nap in your sun visors, showers and shoes ..... Rachel :biggrin: