It’s not surprising why Australia is considered as a premium study destination by so many international students – both from China and around the world. Australia has seven of the world’s top 100 universities (according to the 2018 Best Global Universities Rankings)1. And not only does it rank highly academically, it also has some of the best student cities in the world (six in the top 50, in fact)2.
If you’re considering Australia as the ideal destination to continue your studies, here are some things to consider.
Connecting with the Chinese community in Australia
Aside from studying, thousands of Chinese nationals have chosen to make Australia home – in fact after English, Mandarin is the most widely spoken language in Australia3. Getting in touch with your local Australia China Friendship Society is a good place to start if you want to get in touch with other local Chinese in Australia; depending on where you study your educational provider may have a Chinese student organisation as well.
If you’re planning on studying in Australia, you’ll need to apply for a student visa. It’s important you understand all the conditions attached to your class of visa, such as if you’re able to work while studying and what health insurance cover you’ll need. You can find information about student visas in Australia at the Australian Government Department of Home Affairs website.
Factor in the cost of living
Aside from course fees and tuition costs, it’s important to factor in the cost of living while studying in Australia. One of the key requirements of gaining a student visa is being able to show evidence that you’ll be able to financially support yourself (and any dependents) while you’re studying. You can find details of the current financial requirements on the Home Affairs website.
Working while studying
Here’s some good news. Depending on your student visa, you can work up to 40 hours per fortnight during term time as well as unlimited hours during course breaks. This not only gives you the chance to cover some of your living costs, it can be a great way to make new friends and build contacts as well.
Find out more about student visa work conditions.
Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC)
As a condition of your student visa, you’ll need to have Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) arranged before you arrive in Australia. OSHC provides medical and hospital cover in Australia and can either be arranged through your education provider or you can choose an approved OSHC provider yourself. Your OSHC overage needs to be for the duration of your study visa.
Find out more about health insurance for students.
Depending on where you study, you’ll likely have a range of different accommodation options to suit both your budget and lifestyle, including on campus accommodation, homestays and shared accommodation. Your university or educational institution may be able to help you with arranging accommodation – it’s worthwhile looking at their website or contacting them directly.
Arranging your banking in Australia
One of the things you’ll need to do is sort out your banking in Australia. The good news is this is likely to be a lot easier than you’d think – in fact with some banks you can open up an Australian bank account up to 12 months before you arrive (although you will need to show your ID in branch once you arrive in Australia).
With Westpac, you can open up a student bank account online in less than 10 minutes and transfer money straight away into your new account, and attend one of our local branches as you’ll need to verify your ID before you start using your new account.
Find out more about opening an account with Westpac
Want to know more about moving to Australia from China to study?
The Australian government has a dedicated website for Chinese students wanting to study in Australia. For more information, take a look at https://www.studyinaustralia.gov.au/chinese/china.