After just over one year in Australia I finally feel like I can part some wisdom to wannabe travellers those planning to flee the nest and see some of this amazing World we live in.
So Here Goes
1. Whatever you’ve saved it’s not enough – keep saving! It’s a lot more expensive than you think.
2. It won’t be that easy to get a job – especially if you head to a major city first. The words ‘Working Holiday Visa’ do not appeal to employers offering entry-level (post uni) jobs – I applied for SO MANY marketing jobs, rarely worth your time. Plus there’s so many others out there competing for them. But when one comes along be ready – get your tax file number (TFN) (it can take up to three weeks) and open a bank account.
3. If it seems too good to be true, it probably is – sorry but there’s a reason this is a cliché, it’s true. And hey, chasing sponsorship? Ask yourself if it really is what you want.
4. Spiders and snakes won’t be everywhere. After a year I still haven’t seen a black widow or funnel-web or any snakes! Thank god. Do get to know what species are in that part of Oz though incase one happens to come along – they aren’t all deadly!
5. Unless you have saved one hell of a lot, the first few weeks won’t be what you imagined. They will be stressful; you’ll probably be living on mince or baked beans and spending your time sweating, running around with CV’s and blisters from those new sandals you just had to buy before you left home.
6. You really don’t need a new wardrobe to go travelling, I had a HUGE clear-out before I left and I still ended up with a busted suitcase with three wheels – pack less!
7. Hostels – there are good ones and bad ones and you will most likely stay in at least one awful hostel. Picture this: ants all over the kitchen counters and bathrooms, questionable “clean” sheets, loud music through the night and some very dodgy characters around.
8. On that note – suitcase locks and/or chains essential! Don’t just assume nobody will steal your stuff, if they can get away with it they will. Especially in dorm rooms.
9. If you plan on going to rural areas ask what phone network is best, or I’ll just tell you – Telstra has the most coverage in Australia. Also, be on the lookout for free Wi-Fi hotspots (gold) and maybe even join the local library for going online, printing CV’s etc, it’s very useful.
10. Some of us just aren’t cut out for the backpacker lifestyle (me) they call us ‘flashpackers’ and I’m totally okay with being one.
So those are my 10 lessons learnt from one year in Australia – there’ll probably be 20 next year! Also, feel free to share your travelling lessons if you have any