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TheSmithFamily

What's the one thing you wish you'd considered before heading out to Oz?

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My husband and I wish we had looked into the company (sponsor) a bit more came over with loads of promises and got none of them and then lost the job...now he cannot find work and we have to go back to uk by end Feb...It turned out that the sponsor has sponsored around 4 employees a year and 'got rid' of them within a few weeks...We think we know why they do this but cannot prove it of course..so my advise check out the company for EVERY eventuality before coming out and GET IT IN WRITING!!

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Maybe consider coming out to initially to try it out - don't burn bridges in UK, if possible rent out yr house, etc. etc. I say this because 18 months ago we left for UK, after 30 years in Oz (we both grew up in UK) - we had been to uk loads of times on holiday and thought we would enjoy the change - but when it came to actually living there for a length of time we (or I in particular) couldn't wait to get back to Oz. So in hindsight I wish I'd just tried it out for a year, then made a decision. It's cost us a lot of money!

 

Also I think at the end of the day a big factor in my experience is a sense of belonging: it's an intangible thing that you can't pre-plan; it takes time, and is different for each person. It would make much more sense for me to be in UK for a few more years but I just feel at home in Oz, and have chosen quality of life over financial security. I've been back a week and best decision I've made!

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Hmmm not entirely true. It depends what area of expertise your qualifications lie in. My husband and I have not had to reprove ourselves at all. In fact my husband was offered his position based on them not being able to find someone suitably qualified in Australia. Our overseas experience, and perspective, has been highly regarded here, as has the qualifications we can actually prove on paper. With the qualifications we have there would be no suggestion at having to re do them! That would be laughable!

 

If you are career minded and 35+, I'd give Brisbane a miss. I work in IT, have been here 6 years and am stuck doing very junior roles. It's not just me, many of my experienced, qualified but older mates have gone through the same thing. Brisbane is a relationship based, ego driven culture, worse than just nepotistic - but jobs are often given to mates who aren't quite up to the job. This still shocks me, as it leads to a very low bar, and any criticism of this is seen as 'negative' and very career limiting. More experienced people tend to be a threat to project/program mgrs who have never worked interstate, let alone internationally. This sadly, triumphs over any desire to deliver great results - As an example, I joined one project where the PM was in place for a year at 1K a day and hadn't yet delivered a project plan. The program manager (a close friend of his) used to bemoan that it was a great shame that he was finding it difficult as he was 'such a great bloke' I got a plan out in 2 weeks but got asked to leave as I suggested that they used HR for a fairer recruitment process instead of appointing people directly.

The plus side of this in Brisbane is that if you are a graduate with <5 years experience it is possible to get very senior positions as long as you are connected/well networked and it doesn't harm anyone to be reasonably decorative as well. You're unlikely to be tumbled (as long as you keep recruiting juniors) and very unlikely to be challenged if you have senior influential friends

 

My understanding from a number of people who have given up on Brisbane IT and moved interstate is that standards are considerably higher in Melbourne and Sydney

Edited by Chortlepuss

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sorry, got a bit off topic! I did realise that my career would take a bit of a dive in Oz, so can't say I wasn't warned. I was pretty well prepared, but the one thing I wished I'd understood before I came to Australia is how challenging renting would be, and how poor the quality of rental accomodation is here. I owned a lovely house in the UK (luckily still have it), and wasn't prepared for how shabby rentals here - no effort is made to repair them, carpets and fittings are very old, a gas cooker and a heat proof worktop places houses into the 'luxury' bracket. Tenants really are the bottom of the pile and if you want to live near the city and your budget is limited (<$750) per week in Brisbane you need to prepare yourself for some pretty poor housing - There is a lot of competition! I haven't lived in a house like my present one since I was a student. It was fun in the 80's and I just didn't care. But I do care now.

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I'm with Petals and Ramot - done my time with the parenting thing and not inclined to be "used". We never had baby sitters either and we were fiercely independent and self sufficient mainly because we had to be. My daughter in law OTOH is needy and for 18 months while they lived in our granny flat she thought we were surrogate parents even though I had a full time job at the tIme and was absolutely knackered. Now we are on the other side of the world she has basically dumped it all on her mother who actually encourages the helplessness (I don't get it!) my son has been spending much of his time in the bush building their house so they can go out and be self sufficient! LOL that's a joke, she'll flounder if she doesnt have the village to raise her kids! Contact with the grandkids is nice but I want to be able to hand them back! If you are like my daughter in law then emigration would be a nightmare I should think! (She's barely coping with US being the ones to move!)

 

Us too, despite having my hubbies family 20 mins away in the UK, never any baby sitting offers which made us a very self-sufficient unit and I have to be honest and say it probably made our move much easier as we weren't used to relying on others


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Us too, despite having my hubbies family 20 mins away in the UK, never any baby sitting offers which made us a very self-sufficient unit and I have to be honest and say it probably made our move much easier as we weren't used to relying on others

 

Snap! We never had a night out on our own until Jake was 17. Nobody ever offered to babysit and we certainly wouldn't ask. Thinking about it, we really had nothing to lose in the "support" department when we came here. The only person that ever offered us a "night alone" was a Child Safety Officer who could see that at one stage we were practically "burned out." She offered, despite knowing that the department would frown on the familiarity..................she'd only been our officer for 5 weeks and offered more than our blood family ever would. Straight out of Uni (more or less), with more empathy/compassion than those 20yrs her senior. I only hope the job didn't send ther the way it sent others.


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I advise keep plenty money aside, get will sorted and some sort of agreement with the OH if thing don't work out ! Just incase 1 person decides to stay, and the other person wants to go home. Especially if children involved in the move get it in writing that OH will let Children go home if necessary. Rent your house out, don't leave any debts in UK. Don't burn your bridges never say never !

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As a family of 4 who are hoping to make the move to Oz in the next 2/3 years we are wondering what is the one thing people heading back to the UK wish they had considered, or taken into account, before their move which perhaps they didn't?

 

I know a lot of people are as thorough as they can be when researching the move and I know that in some cases you simply will never know until you are living the life in Australia whether it's for you or not. But I'm sure there must be things which people have overlooked which may have potentially made a difference?

 

Let me just say Oz was very good to me ......i slotted straight in ......I achieved a lot in Oz in 6 years

and at the time i was younger ......it came easy .

The UK is a harder school altogether .......iam at the top of the hill now .....but its been a damn sight harder ..........but it had to be done .....i couldnt walk away.

 

I love both places equally ....." oil and water ".....i call it ......because they are nothing alike .......NOTHING AT ALL .

 

The one thing i didnt allow for in Oz was HOMESICKNESS ......god its painful ......and missing the silliest things ......it hits like a freight train ......when you least expect it

 

Could i live in Oz now ......12 months a year ......forever ......i dont think so .......i would miss too much .

.....but i would do it for my girls

 

Could i do 1 month a year , every year .......oh yes ......its getting closer


BUT I DONT FEEL AFRAID

AS LONG AS I GAZE AT

WATERLOO SUNSET

IAM IN PARADISE

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Snap! We never had a night out on our own until Jake was 17. Nobody ever offered to babysit and we certainly wouldn't ask.

 

Just an aside question, but why didn't you ever ask? You never know, your family could have just been waiting for you to ask, otherwise assuming you were coping just fine. My partners sister asked us quite a lot to babysit, and we were always happy to do so as we loved spending time with the nephews and helping out our family. I know my Mum can't wait until my siblings and I start having children as she just loves babies in particular. I don't think asking relatives to look after your kids says anything about how independent you are either. It's often just sensible and something humans have done for probably hundreds and hundreds of generations.


Making some hay whilst the sun shines

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Just an aside question, but why didn't you ever ask?

 

In the case of my wife's family, because they made it clear from the outset that they thought we were mistaken in starting a family. Our marriage would never last with the age difference blah, blah. Whenever we visited them with the kids, they showed no interest whatsoever and found them, quote: "a terrible inconvenience." At first I felt sorry for them in respect of waht they were missing out on, but they were clearly very "cold" people and it wore thin after a while and we just stopped visiting them and they made no effort to visit us.

 

With regards to my family, they made such a balls of raising me that I wouldn't want my kids anywhere near 'em.


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In the case of my wife's family, because they made it clear from the outset that they thought we were mistaken in starting a family. Our marriage would never last with the age difference blah, blah. Whenever we visited them with the kids, they showed no interest whatsoever and found them, quote: "a terrible inconvenience." At first I felt sorry for them in respect of waht they were missing out on, but they were clearly very "cold" people and it wore thin after a while and we just stopped visiting them and they made no effort to visit us.

 

With regards to my family, they made such a balls of raising me that I wouldn't want my kids anywhere near 'em.

 

Fair enough!

 

I can't imagine being in that situation where you cannot trust your families to take proper care of your children. Completely opposite for me, we're planning on starting a family soon and I actually feel guilty that by being in Oz I will actually prevent my mum from being a babysitter. At least my brother's baby will be born later this year so that will keep her happy!


Making some hay whilst the sun shines

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As a family of 4 who are hoping to make the move to Oz in the next 2/3 years we are wondering what is the one thing people heading back to the UK wish they had considered, or taken into account, before their move which perhaps they didn't?

 

I know a lot of people are as thorough as they can be when researching the move and I know that in some cases you simply will never know until you are living the life in Australia whether it's for you or not. But I'm sure there must be things which people have overlooked which may have potentially made a difference?

 

Hi, Thats like 'The Million Dollar Question!' but sorry I cant really advise you on this as everyone is different so it wouldn't be fair if I listed off all my dislikes etc.. ...all I can say is I probably did more than most, over the last 4 years I have travelled all over Aus, I did every bit of research I could and spent a fortune in the process, I decided to settle in Adelaide SA on a PR visa, so thats where I am now but I am moving back to the uk in March. I was aware of many of the bad points in Au before the move so I had my concerns, but non of that mattered to me, its didn't matter what I read or what people told me, I just needed to make the move and find out for myself, just like many others that move here. I do have my own list of things I dislike about Aus, and like I said some of these I knew about before the move, others I have discovered whilst living here. My only advise is if you can afford to do it then give it a go, but dont assume you can stick it out no matter how bad it gets, and don't think it will be a walk in the park, (I hope it is for you) the place is not for everyone and for me its certainly not.

 

Question:Would I have still made the move if I could turn the clock back 4 years, knowing what I know now???

 

Answer: Yes, because its been a great life experience and I feel that it was something I needed to do in order for me to move forward with my life, and what I have learnt from this is that I will now be content with my life back in the UK, and will never take my friends, family and good old Blighty for granted ever again. Its been an expensive adventure but like I say, if you can afford to do it then why not.

 

Good Luck

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I totally agree with shel and many of the other posts, this is our second time in Oz to live and are again heading back to the UK....various reasons really, family or weather definitely not our main reason. In IMO childrens education is well behind here and our children went into private schools too. There is really no feeling of belonging after 2 years many Oz still ask 3 times what you are asking for??!!. Many friendships superficial and will fade once people know how much your bank balance holds or what you driving!!. Employment wise many Oz are preferred for jobs this I have been first hand experience of and many expats I know have been here over 5 years and are still "casual", additionallly after speaking to many older expat generations here, they say OZ is no longer Utopia, but I personally think that is worldly wide (high hardcore crime, shootings etc on the news on a nightly basis, currency transfer rate is now $1.53 -£1; this makes the weekly shop at least $250/family) many are also making the move back to the Uk. I am not dissing Australia has the weather and beaches, outdoor life is brilliant if you have the time to enjoy it....however, it is a VERY EXPENSIVE decision. Has long has you are prepared to come to OZ with enough to buy a house outright and have surplus to be possibly unemployed for 6 months + then you might survive. From our own very costly experience our advice to anyone would be.... instead of spending your life savings on trying to get visas and dragging the kids to the other side of the world why not try another part of the UK and invest in a holiday property in Europe, frequent Easyjet flights would be far cheaper than ANY holiday you will pay for outside Australia (once you are living here!!!)...Best of Luck to anyone chasing the dream!!!

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Guest guest22466

1. The Hague Convention Laws with regards to returning to the UK with your children...you cant :( unless other parent agrees...

2. How much it would change the marriage, now divorced, only was in oz two years.

3. How much we would miss family and friends.

4. How expensive it now is to keep a roof over your head here.

5. How hard it can be to get a job now.

6. How lonely it can get.

7. How hard it is to make really good friends.

8. How much I miss my father who just passed away this year with cancer in the UK.

9. How guilty I feel as my 87 year old mother is now sick and alone in the UK and I cant do anything from here for her.

10. I could go on but thats just a few from MY experience...:)

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....... if you have children that settle in Aus as they mature, it can make you feel very trapped here if they all adapt and don't think even think about the UK anymore (like most of them do)....

 

That's it, your freedom to choose to return to the UK has gone!

Unless you leave your children behind??

 

This was my biggest fear when we were in oz that my kids would want to stay and I would be trapped forever. I would have adapted but it wouldn't have been my choice. Fortunately they loved their time in oz but are flourishing back in uk. I miss the beauty and wish oz had been better than it is but reality is what we need to live with.

 

The thing about the kids is so important - have friends who went out- he had an affair(Ozzie girls love the accent) they split up - now he has refused permission for her to take kids home not even for a visit she's well and truly trapped. You don't think it would happen to you but you don't know.

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she's well and truly trapped. You don't think it would happen to you but you don't know.

 

Two sides to every story. Maybe he feels trapped if he let 'em go.................mature adults should be able to work things out without there being "sides".


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Guest chris955

It would be the worst situation ever, being trapped in a country you didnt want to be in. Our situation is we could happily live in either country but for many others one partner isnt where they want to be and often there is no way out, especially when kids are involved.

 

This was my biggest fear when we were in oz that my kids would want to stay and I would be trapped forever. I would have adapted but it wouldn't have been my choice. Fortunately they loved their time in oz but are flourishing back in uk. I miss the beauty and wish oz had been better than it is but reality is what we need to live with.

 

The thing about the kids is so important - have friends who went out- he had an affair(Ozzie girls love the accent) they split up - now he has refused permission for her to take kids home not even for a visit she's well and truly trapped. You don't think it would happen to you but you don't know.

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Two sides to every story. Maybe he feels trapped if he let 'em go.................mature adults should be able to work things out without there being "sides".

 

more to this one than meets the eye, but she didn't ask him to leave her for someone half his age with no-one out there to support her with young children and then have the courts take their passports. The mature thing would be to resolve marital issues first and consider best interests of all involved and not be so flattered by a young girls attention that you screw up all their lives. Sorry to rant but if this had happened to me I would have been devastated. She is devastated and powerless.

 

When we went out I was staggered at how the women loved my husband - he got so much attention from Ozzie ladies because of his accent - he was oblivious to most of it and it wasn't as issue for us _ i thought it was quite sweet for him (knowing my OH is a decent bloke) I used to get him to negotiate discounts in the electrical store where the saleswoman was clearly smitten - he did great! But for some men with less secure marriages the temptation is too much.

 

The key issue is marital problems follow you anyway and if there are any skeletons in the cupboard a move this big often bring them out - so be prepared.

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