Living in Australia

Introduction to Australia

Australia is the sixth largest country in the world and the world smallest continent situated between the Indian and Pacific Ocean. Australia is made up of six states which are New South Wales, Queensland, Victoria, Northern Territory, South Australia and Western Australia. Australia's capital is Canberra. The country is incredibly diverse ranging from beaches, reefs, gorges, bushes and rain forests. Australia has a population of 23 million. Its largest city is Sydney followed by Melbourne. Australia's government system is a federal parliamentary democracy. Australia is a multicultural country and believes in equal opportunity and human rights it's a place many call home.


Parramattta is located in the Sydney region, a vibrant, cosmopolitan city with a diverse population featuring a rich history, internationally-recognised tourist attractions and an exciting calendar of events. Sydney is one of the world's most loved cities and it has a lively and vibrant buzz that makes it the ultimate winter destination. There are always plenty of things to do in Sydney from summer to winter – from sightseeing and world-class dining, to great walks and fun in the sand at one of Sydney's idyllic beaches. 

 Gold Coast

Gold Coast is one of the most beautiful coastal city in on the east coast of Australia, with Southport being recognised as the central business district (CBD) of the Gold Coast City. Gold coast is renowned for its iconic Surfers Paradise beach to the dining precincts of Main Beach and Broadbeach and surrounded by the lush, green hinterland. There is so much to see and do for every age group. Beautiful sunny weather and exciting theme parks, attract millions of visitors to the Gold Coast each year.
For more information on the Gold Coast and the events please visit


Cairns City is located in Far North Queensland and is a tourist destination which is very popular for its tropical climate and World Heritage listed Great Barrier Reef, amazing tropical rainforests, Rivers and other attractions. Cairns is a city with rich arts and culture with many art exhibitions, museums, galleries, theatres, live performances and concerts all through the year.
For further information on Cairns please visit
Living in Cairns ( A guide for Residents)

Weather and Seasons

Sydney enjoys a sunny, Mediterranean-style climate all year round with more than 340 sunny days per year. Summers are warm to hot and winters are mild, with rainfall spread fairly evenly throughout the year. Summer is from December to February, autumn is between March and May followed by winter from June to August and then Spring from September to November.

Gold Coast has a comfortable sub-tropical climate ideal for outdoor enjoyment all-year round. The Gold Coast averages 245 days of fine and sunny weather each year and has an average rainfall of about 1400mm annually, the majority of which falls in the summer period (December - February). . The Hinterland is slightly cooler with maximum winter temperatures around 16°C. In winter, clear skies and dry air mean cool nights.

Cairns is located in the tropics and has a warm humid climate. Cairns weather has 2 distinct seasons - a warm dry season from April to November and a wet season from November to March with tropical monsoons that includes tropical cyclones. On average Cairns receives over 2000mm of rain every year.

Living costs in Australia

Knowing the average living costs in Australia is an important part of your financial preparation. For your reference, here are some of the costs associated with living and studying in Australia. (All costs are in Australian dollars and linked to the consumer price index.)


  • Hostels and Guesthouses - $110 to $170 per week
  • Shared Rental - $95 to $230 per week
  • Homestay - $250 to $350 per week
  • Rental - $185 to $460 per week

Other living expenses

  • Groceries and eating out - $100 to $300 per week
  • Gas, electricity - $70 to $190 per week
  • Phone and Internet - $40 to $75 per week
  • Public transport - $30 to $75 per week
  • Car (after purchase) - $200 to $320 per week
  • Entertainment - $100 to $175 per week

Minimum cost of living

The Department Home Affairs has financial requirements you must meet in order to receive a student visa for Australia. From 1 July 2019 the 12 month living cost is:

  • You - $21,250
  • Partner or spouse - $7,800
  • Child - $3,250

All costs are per year in Australian dollars. To convert to your own currency, visit (opens in a new window)
The Australian Government provides information and guidance on managing your finances. You can read more at (opens in a new window)
If you experience financial trouble while in Australia, talk to your institution's international student support staff for assistance.