Living In Australia / Accommodation

TRANSPORT Moorabbin Airport is close to major public transport routes and therefore easily accessible. For those students wishing to purchase or rent a car we can provide advice and assistance in organising this. It is possible to purchase a second hand car if you wish to drive yourself. For public transport information visit Public Transport Victoria

RECREATION Melbourne and its surrounds provide numerous recreational and sporting opportunities including surfing, snow skiing, sailing, rollerblading, bushwalking and just about every sporting club you can think of. The school encourages your participation in such activities and can advise you as to the best places to visit and/or how to go about becoming involved in local sporting competitions. Please go to: for more information.

CHILDREN If you have school age children accompanying you, they must be included in a family Overseas Student Health Charge coverage and it should be noted that whether at a Government or non-Government school, they would be required to pay full fees. Please visit:

MELBOURNE Melbourne is the capital city of Victoria and has a population of approximately 3.5 million. The city is situated on Port Philip Bay on the south eastern coast of Australia. Melbourne is clean, safe city with a lot of beautiful parks and gardens. It is cosmopolitan, multicultural city-famous for its wide variety of restaurants, shopping centres, entertainment venues and sporting facilities. It is comfortable, easy city in which to live.

ACCOMMODATION Accomodation can be rented local to Moorabbin Airport. Tristar Aviation can assist yiou with contacting local services.

CLIMATE Melbourne has a comfortable temperate climate with 4 seasons. Summer is generally hot and dry, and winter is cool with occasional rain. It is a good idea to bring a woollen sweater or windproof jacket for the winter months. In summer, light cotton clothing is best. Bureau of meteorology:

DRIVING IN AUSTRALIA Cars are most common form of transport. In Australia, cars drive on the left hand side of the road and seatbelts must be worn by everyone in the car.

The driver must have either an Australian driver's licence or must bring an international driving permit from your country. Drink driving (driving when under the influence of alcohol) is strictly prohibited. Failure to obey drink-driving laws may result in loss of licence and a heavy fine.

Traffic in Melbourne is not as heavy as in most other major cities. This is not an excuse to speed. Speeding incurs heavy fines and loss of licence. Always stick to the speed limit and keep your passengers safe. As a passenger, ask your driver to slow down if you feel uncomfortable.

Car insurance is essential if you are thinking of owning a car in Australia. A student who buys a car is very strongly advised to purchase third party and comprehensive insurance to cover you and other drivers in the event of an accident. We do not recommend that you consider buying a car if you are unable to meet these costs. Visit:

TAXIS Taxis may seem expensive to students. Why not share the cost with friends and arrive home quickly and safely. Taxis are metered, so you can see the cost in front of you. There is minimum "flag fall" charge, and then a charge per kilometre travelled. Taxi drivers do not expect to be tipped. Visit

CURRENCY Australia uses the decimal system- with 100 cents to the dollar. The bank notes in use are $5.00 (pink), $10.00 (blue), $20.00 (orange), $50.00 (yellow), and $100.00 (green). Silver coloured coins are 5, 10, 20, 50 cents and the $1 and $2 dollar coins are gold-coloured. It should never be necessary for you carry large amounts of cash around.

COST OF LIVING Living in Australia is not expensive. You would require approximately AUD$250-$300 per week for food, transport, rent and entertainment.

The lifestyle in Australia is safe and friendly. Australians have a high standard of living. The climate is pleasant, there is plenty of food and the vast natural resources in Australia enable most people to live well. Fruit, vegetables and meat are available fresh at reasonable prices, particularly when shopping at the market. Clothing and personal effects are usually good quality, available at a wide variety of prices.

When thinking about your budget, remember that you are responsible paying for:

  • Accommodation costs
  • Living expenses including food, power, telephone, transport and entertainment
  • Emergency expenses
  • Airfare

    BANKING Banking hours are generally from 9.30am to 4.00pm five days a week- Monday to Friday. You will need your passport and your Confirmation of Enrolment as proof of identification when you open a bank account.

    There are 2 basics types of accounts:

  • An everyday Savings Account. You get a cash card for use Automatic Teller Machines (ATMs) - open 24 hours a day. You also get a cheque facility.
  • An Investment Account. This is for large amounts of money. The interest rates are higher, but you may not be able to access the money as quickly.

    Your bank can assist you with international money transfers too.

    Credits cards and charge cards are widely accepted in Australia. The most common are: Visa, American Express, Dinners Club, Master Card, and Bank Card.

    ATM cards can be used in Australia both at Automatic Teller Machines and most retail locations as long as they have been validated for international access. Cardholders are required to use their Personal Identification Number (PIN) when obtaining cash or services. It is advisable never to reveal your PIN to another person. Visit: Banks in Melbourne


    Australian has a modern Telephone system. Public telephones where you can call overseas are available at all Post Offices and shopping centres.

    Credit card telephones take most major credit cards and can be found at international and domestic airports, central city locations, hotels, large post offices and most railway stations. Phone cards are pre-paid for use in public payphones and can be bought at a large number of retail outlets in denominations of $5, $10, $30 and $50

    If you are rent a private telephone from one of the telephone companies in Australia, you will receive for a fee an itemised account showing each call at the end of every 3 months. The cost of local calls in Melbourne is 40 cents from a public telephone and 25 cents from a private telephone.

    International calls range from 90 cents to $2.50 per minute depending on the country that you call. Check for country codes, area codes and time difference in you telephone book. The international direct dialling code from Australia is 0011. Calls are cheaper after 9.00pm and at the weekends. If you buy a telephone card for international phone calls, you'll save even more and be able to speak to your family even longer.

    Mobile phones are also readily available for purchase although it is advisable to shop around as there are may different payment plans available.



    Domestic electricity in Australia is 240/250 Volts (AC50Hz). The Australian three pin outlet is different from most countries so you will need an adapter plug. Adapters and plugs are readily available at large department stores.


    The water in Melbourne is probably the cleanest in Australia. It is safe to drink water from the tap-there is need to boil water or buy bottled water.


    Australia is a multicultural society, so it is very east to buy foods from different countries. Asian food is very popular in Australia. There is a Chinatown in all major cities and Asian restaurants in the city and all suburbs. Enjoy the many cuisine's Melbourne has to offer! Or cook for your friends at home!

    Suburbs close to Tristar Aviation where students can shop for multicultural food include Box Hill, Clayton, and Springvale a short bus ride away. You should have no trouble finding your favourite fruit and vegetables, and more at supermarkets or produce markets. Meat is cheap and plentiful.

    Restaurants may be "fully licenced" to sell alcohol or may be 'BYO' (bring your own drinks/alcohol to the restaurant). Most restaurants open six or seven days a week often closing on Mondays.

    It is not compulsory to tip at restaurants. If you feel that the service and food has been very good, you may leave a tip- it will be appreciated.


    Australia's major cities and suburbs have excellent shopping facilities. Shopping hours are usually 9.00 am to 5.30 pm Monday to Wednesday, and 9.00 am to 9.00 pm on Thursday and Friday. However larger shopping centres are also open 9.30 am to 5.00 pm on Saturdays and Sundays. Most large Supermarkets open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

    Southland Shopping Centre, a modern, indoor shopping centre, is 5-10 minutes by bus from Moorabbin Airport. Southland has everything from food, clothes, restaurants, a cinema complex other entertainment venues to doctors, dentist and gymnasium. The centre is open seven days a week. Visit:


    A Student Visa allows the student to work a maximum of 20 hours per week. This must not interfer with the students study comittments. The student is required to attend a minimum of 90% of his/her scheduled classes.

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    Tristar Aviation

    14 Northern Avenue
    Moorabbin Airport
    Victoria 3194

    Ph:+61 (0)3 9580 6200
    Fax+61 (0)3 9580 7133
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