If you are just arriving in Australia, larger issues about your stay are probably taken care of, but there are common problems, although small, you might have to find a way around. Here is a look at some problems that may blow out of hand and you are going to need help with – especially if you have come here to learn English.
- Bank and phone etc. Despite being a multicultural country, simple things like opening a bank account and hooking up your phone will require a little more identification that in other countries. Australia has a point system for identification – meaning that you need to fulfill a certain amount of points to qualify. What this means is that one piece of identification is not enough and you will need to get help with this. Your passport and some other documents with your name and address will be very helpful. Banks and other institutions rarely have non-English services.
- Public transport. Despite being a big country, Australia’s public transport is not highly developed. If you are in any rural situation you will find that there is nothing available at all. Cars are still very important in Australia and you will find that out fast.
- Smoking. Smoking is very expensive in Australia and a packet of cigarettes can cost up to 10 times more than many other countries. Finding somewhere you can smoke can also be prohibitive. There are large fines for smoking in many places and you will find yourself in awkward situations if you continue to smoke. Quitting is a serious option with noticeable social benefits in Australia.
- Study style. Australian study techniques are some of the most modern in the world. You will find that you are required to learn on your own, and develop your own opinion. Being able to express your opinion and justify that will be more important than learning and repeating. This can be quite challenging for many students especially for those from Asian cultures, that still rely heavily on wrote-learning techniques. Whether you are looking at modern marketing courses or more traditional studies, the approach will be the same.
- Working. This is a common problem for many international students. Finding appropriate work for their skills can be very difficult. Even finding work that is much below your skills can be difficult in a very competitive environment. Being prepared for this and finding out where you are best suited, and looking to your school or organisation will help.
- Internet. Unfortunately you may find internet costly and a little slow compared to your home country. Australia’s internet speeds and cost are considerably higher than many countries. Finding ways to share your cost can be very useful. Sharing accommodation and sharing the cost of internet connection is one of the best ways.
- Some foods. Remember some of the things that you take for granted in your own country may be special and imported in Australia. You can find what you need, but you are going to have to pay for it. Adjusting to local tastes will certainly save you a lot of cash. Looking for items that are similar but not from your home may be quite different. Importing yourself may not be an option.
It may sound a little tough after reading these points, but it is important that you speak with others and your school and organisation. There will have to be some changes that you will need to make.