Making a career move overseas can be a daunting prospect, however we’re hopeful that we can be of help. In our latest Odyssey Exclusive series, ‘Arriving in…’ we’re going to take a look at your journey to a new life abroad.
We’ll aim to cover all the basics to make sure that you’re as prepared as you can be for the move, and get the most out of life in your new homeland.
In the third in this exclusive series we’re going to look at Western Australia. A vast region that is home to Perth, one of the country’s major cities.
Getting there: Despite the lengthy flight time, getting to Australia isn’t a major issue - with almost all major carriers and airports operating flights to the country. Flying to Perth is an option, with Emirates, Etihad, Qantas, KLM and Virgin Australia all offering services via Dubai.
From March 2018 Qantas will also offer a direct flight from London Heathrow to Perth for the very first time, making travelling even easier.
Perth Airport itself is located near the heart of the city, however it’s worth researching the distance between the airport and your new place of work. Western Australia is an enormous region, and travelling even halfway across it to a town like Kalgoorlie can take more than six hours by car.
Accommodation: Accomodation in Western Australia can vary depending on where you are based. If you choose to live near the city centre then modern apartment blocks, and smaller townhouses are common, whilst the further into the suburbs or countryside you go the more you’ll get for your money.
Rent prices are around 23% lower than they are in London, however the cost of living can come as a shock, with groceries and utilities both costing more than they would in the UK.
Keeping in contact: Staying in touch with family back home from Western Australia is only likely to hit one major hurdle - the time difference. Perth is eight hours ahead of GMT, making it potentially awkward to find a suitable time to call.
Internet speeds are good - especially in the city itself - whilst mobile networks Telstra, Virgin and Vodafone all offer strong signals, and expanding 4G coverage.
Basic rules: Australia is as liberal and as free a country as you’re likely to find, however there are a few rules to follow whilst living there:
- Be open and friendly with the locals, just as they are with you. Acting secretively isn’t going to help you fit in with the relaxed Aussie population.
- Don’t approach the wildlife without an expert. Koala bears may look cuddly, but they can be dangerous!
- Don’t schedule any meetings for Friday afternoons.
- Australians are very fair people, and so it’s normal to equally split any bills if you’re out for dinner or drinks.
- Contracts are often based on weekly or fortnightly rates - so if you see a deal that looks too good to be true, make sure to read the small print!
Getting around: Australia is a huge country, and Perth is frequently referred to as the most remote city on earth. The nearest city of more than one million people is Adelaide - over 2,000km away!
As a result it’s best to travel by plane. Most remote villages in Western Australia will have a small airport nearby, with plenty of cheap flights available to help you get around.
For medics there are a small number of ‘flying doctors’, who work for the Royal Flying Doctor Service of Australia, one of the world’s most comprehensive aeromedical services.
Things to see: Despite being surrounded by dusty outback, there is plenty to see and do in Western Australia - especially if natural beauty is your thing. We’ve compiled a quick list of five things not to miss out on:
- Kings Park & Botanic Garden - Located near the centre of Perth, this stunning green space feels like an oasis in the busy city.
- Cable Beach - Where you can watch the sunset over the ocean, whilst enjoying a quiet drink in a beachside bar.
- Fremantle Prison - Designated as a World Heritage Site in 2010, this former prison offers a range of fascinating guided tours.
- The Art Gallery of Western Australia - The main art gallery in the region offers a range of permanent and travelling exhibitions, covering everything from modern to indigenous art.
- Western Australian Museum - Learn more about the history of where you’re now living in the country’s oldest museum.
The working environment: Working in Australia can be a unique experience, so we’ve created a little list of things to expect:
- Smart business attire should be worn to all meetings. Usually a suit, with black shoes and a black belt.
- Don’t be afraid to speak up, even if your opinion differs from those you are with. That shows engagement in the conversation topic, and is preferable to not contributing at all.
- Avoid common business clichés, Australians are straight talking and want to get to the point.
- Stay humble. Don’t be afraid to talk up your achievements where relevant, however avoid boasting. It won’t go down well.
- Arrive early, as it’s common for meetings to start and finish ahead of schedule.
- Organise your finances before making the move, have you converted enough money, do you have an overseas bank account, should you be paying any tax at home?
- Will your credit/debit cards work abroad?
- Is your airport pickup sorted, and do you know where you’re staying when you arrive?
- Do you have a phone that will work in your new location?
- When is your official start date?