Tips for Pinoy Migrants to Australia

Australia is a wonderful place to live, and it’s no wonder many Filipinos would like to settle there. To those who have secured visa and received the go-signal that it’s legitimate for them to settle in Down Under, the wish to stay there is replaced by wishing to survive there. What should I do when you arrive in Australia? What kind of life awaits me out there? All valid questions, but maybe before we even think of them, isn’t it appropriate to think about what I need to do even before I arrive in Australia?

Gather reference information from past employers
While waiting for your flight or arrival of your visa, spending your remaining days in the Philippines with family and friends is a given. But at the same time, you’ll also need to make sure you get necessary documents ready before you go. Ask your past employers about the possibility of getting a call from Australia as reference check for a job placement. They’ll be willing to cooperate and extend their recommendations as long as you’ve been a good employee. Phone number, company website address, recommendation letters and other related information from past employers would be useful.

Melbourne, Australia. Photo credit:[email protected]/

Familiarize your new home
You don’t have to wait to be in Australia to know more about it. For example, knowing the climate would give you an idea what type of clothing to wear (and necessarily bring in time for your travel). Other useful information includes transportation system, type of food, forbidden items to bring to Australia and presence of Filipino communities in your destination locality.

Research for potential accommodation
Australia’s cost of living is expectedly higher than in Manila or other cities in the Philippines. So unless there is already a job waiting for you there, it will take a bit of an investment to settle down. An apartment paid daily or weekly is a better alternative than a hotel. Once you’ll find a job, it will be much easier to find an apartment for longer term settlement.

Alternatively, can display information about Filipinos in Australia who have extra rooms to spare and accommodate you for a short period of time. Within the website, you may be able to meet Filipinos in Australia who could help answer questions pertaining to living in the country.

Bring lots of clothing
Clothes are expensive commodities to buy in Australia so it is advisable to bring as much clothing as possible. Take note that winter season comes in June until August so if you are arriving in Australia during these months, it is important to bring warm jacket during these months.

Bring your GSM phone
Your phone in the Philippines can still be used in Australia since the country also uses GSM. You only need to get an adaptor for your mobile phone charger.

Bring Australian or US dollars
While exchanging Philippine peso to Australian dollars sounds ideal, bringing in US dollars is also a wise move. There is no minimum amount you need to show to Immigration officials (although you need to declare cash above A$10,000), so bring sufficient amount to support your stay in Australia.

Do not bring food or seeds
Bringing food and other imports over to Australia is not allowed due to its strict customs regulations. From laser pointers to cat and dog fur products, instant noodles and even airline food, you’ll be asked to throw them into the airport garbage bins and render them useless. Don’t attempt to hide anything as incoming visitors and returning residents will be subjected to sniffing dogs in the airport.

Bring your credit card
If you use your credit card in the Philippines (and hopefully paying them on time), they should also be useful in Australia especially during times of dire financial need. Since it’s not likely that credit card companies will approve applications for someone who just arrived, bringing your old reliable credit card will be a life saver. Once you get a job, you can get supplementary credit card as necessary with high likelihood of approval.

Hopefully, these tips are helpful. For more information on living in Australia, you can find useful links below.