Being an international student comes with a lot of exciting activities. after packing the Essential Items for Studying Abroad in Australia, you need to start your journey now! However, how to settle in and get the best out of your stay? Australia, like any other country of the world, has its own living peculiarities. Although settling in is not as challenging as it appears, you need to put a few things in place.
In this article, we will be taking a look at the essential steps to take as a new international student in Australia, to help you settle down fast and easy.
Mix and Mingle
As an international student in a new country, chances are you don’t know many people in your new environment yet. However, that shouldn’t be a problem. In a few months, you would have known and meet a lot of new people and made new connections. Before the official resumption, make time to visit your housemates, neighbours, or attend social group gatherings. There are international student communities you can join on social media.
These connections will help you to make friends and ease your settling in as an international student in Australia. In some cases, your University might offer special welcome programs where you can connect with the friends, staff, and alumni of your school. There are usually a lot of programs and events when the semester eventually begins. Try to participate in as many as you can, especially those for international students. You will meet a lot of people and get familiar with like minds.
Set up your bank account and draw a budget
Now that you are living independently, you will need to start planning on a suitable money management method. The first thing is to set up your bank account as well as a budget. Opening an Australian bank account as an international student is not difficult. The requirements include proof of enrolment, proof of your Australian address, your Australian Tax File Number, and photo identification. You can get your Tax File Number from the Australian Tax office. You can check your prospective Australian bank’s website for more information on the requirements.
Proceed to the bank with all these documents to open a personal Australian bank account. Such banks may also exchange your currencies, provided you came in with some money from home. Lastly, create a budget to suit your lifestyle and needs as an international student.
Get familiar with the language
While English is the official language of Australia on paper, you will be surprised to find out that Australians speak a clearly different language. Their sentences and conversations are always filled with many Aussie slangs and idioms. It can be difficult to flow with them at first, and this is why you should take your time to learn the local language.
You may attend free English workshops at your school where they teach conversational English. If it helps, look out for another international student looking to learn the language and work together. This will help you learn faster and easier.
Know more about the University Life
Most Australian university campuses tend to appear very large at first. It can be overwhelming at first, but once you take time to know the environment, you will find out they aren’t as huge as they appear. Take walks around your campus to get familiar with essential locations, such as the libraries, the halls, museums, and administrative buildings.
You will discover that the experience and the environment is a significant step-up from what you are used while in college. Universities offer more freedom, and you will have to do most of the planning to suit your schedule. There are usually a couple of local bars and cafes on campus where you can have lunch and dinner.
Learn how to be safe
Australian roads are global standards. They are adequately maintained and furnished with prominent signage and excellent lighting. Australian roads are made for large and small vehicles, as well as light rail and bicycles. There are also spaces for pedestrians.
Walking on the streets is inevitable, and this is why you must be smart and careful with how you go about it. Here are some other vital precautions for walking on the streets;
Cross the roads at designated pedestrian crossings or where there are traffic lights.
Never leave any of your items unattended to, for instance, leaving your laptop on the table in a public library.
Try not to stay out late into the night, especially if you are alone and in a new environment. Always keep your mobile or cellphone with you and avoid isolated or dark areas. Do not take shortcuts or isolated routes when walking alone. Walk away quickly if unusual people or characters approach you.
Kindly consult your University’s support and safety department for more helpful and useful information.
Australia is blessed with a handful of beautiful outdoor scenes and landscapes, both natural and humanmade. There are beaches, bushes, and parks – all waiting for you to explore. However, to make sure these explorations go as planned, it is essential to abide by the following precautions;
Do not swim at a beach where there are no lifesavers or where there are no patrolled areas.
Watch out for the warning signs in rivers, oceans, or lakes before entering them. Avoid obstacles, dangerous animals, or strong water currents.
Always go hiking in the company of others, and go with the right gears. Also, do proper research on the place beforehand to see if there are potential dangers or slippery attacks.
Consult a visitor information centre official, a surf lifesaver, or a park ranger for expert advice before proceeding to explore these places.
Handling an emergency
In the case of an emergency, your first point of security contact as an international student studying and living in Australia is the security unit of your University. You will find them on campus – it is essential to get familiar with them and see how they can be of assistance. Ensure to get their designated phone numbers and keep them handy. You may also get designated mobile apps (if any) installed on your mobile devices. Feel free to contact them whenever you feel unsafe or in the case of an accident.
CatEight offers course finder and school application online service for international students looking to settle in Australia. Check out News and Tips of CatEight for useful articles and content on course and visa application, as well as how to get the best out of your experience as an international student in Australia.