Australia is among the most popular destinations in the entire world for would-be expats and tourists alike. But exactly why are so many of us so keen to up sticks and move to the land down under? At first, the answer might not be so clear; making the switch does, after all, involve navigating the country’s notoriously treacherous points-based migration system. If you aren’t a world-class expert in your field, or a multi-millionaire looking to pump huge amounts of money into the Australian economy, then you’ll need to fill out a bunch of forms, and be accepted based on your existing links with the country and the skills you’re able to contribute. Among the best ways to approach the problem is to first find work and then make an application – that way you may quality for an employer-sponsored visa. Fortunately, there are plenty of jobs in Australia for UK citizens, and so making the transition shouldn’t be too much trouble.
Let’s take a look at some of the factors that might persuade you to emigrate to Australia.
One of the most difficult things to overcome when moving to a new home is the culture shock. And the biggest component of this culture shock is undoubtedly constituted by the language barrier. Fortunately, if you’re an English-speaker looking to move to Australia, you’ll have no such barrier to overcome – since if you’re reading this, then you’re already able to understand the vast majority of the utterances you’ll encounter during your stay in Australia. Naturally, you’ll need to adjust a little bit – there are strange expressions and words that you might need to ask about, and the accent might get incomprehensible at times. But these things are part of the experience of living in Australia – and after a few months you’ll get used to them. Similarly, after a few years you might develop an accent of your own!
While it might be something that many of us take for granted, Australia is a democracy, and comes with all of the benefits that go along with it. Once you’re an Australian citizen, you’ll have the right to vote in Australian elections, and enjoy all of the accompanying privileges (even when your preferred candidate doesn’t emerge victorious). In fact, you won’t have a choice in the matter – as voting is compulsory. You’ll need to turn up and put a slip in the box – even if you don’t choose a candidate. The result is that more than ninety-percent of people turn up to participate in the process, and as such the policy is supported by a majority of Australians.
The country is also home to a plethora of vibrant and interesting plants and animals. Among these the most famous are undoubtedly the country’s marsupial mammals, who carry their young around in pouches. These include the kangaroo, which hops around on both legs simultaneously, using massive springy sinew to propel itself from place to place with a minimum of effort. Then there’s the koala, a bear which isn’t really a bear that climbs trees and sleeps for up to eighteen hours a day. Then there’s the Tasmanian devil, a dog-sized carnivorous creature with an enormous mouth and a frightening yowl. If you’re planning to visit Australia, of course, then a visit to the Great Barrier Reef should feature high on your list of priorities – it’s home to the greatest diversity of animal life on the planet, and is sure to make a good trip great.
The weather in Australia is somewhat different to that which we enjoy here. While the climate isn’t universally balmy, and you can expect the occasional tropical storm along the coasts, the country still enjoys plentiful sunshine during the summer – and so you’ll be able to head down to the local beach to soak up some rays. Of course, being in the Southern Hemisphere, Australian summers and winters occur at opposite times of the year to those we experience here in the UK – and thus you might celebrate Christmas in shorts while Barbequing your turkey over hot coals!
Australians are just as enthusiastic about sport as almost every other nation on the planet. Among the nation’s favourite pastimes are cricket, rugby and Australian-rules football. If you’re into the more widespread variety of football, you’ll still find it enjoyed across the country, along with sports like golf and surfing, for which Australia boasts all the natural features required. If you’re into your sport, therefore, a move down under is sure to prove worthwhile!