If the laidback Australian lifestyle looks appealing to you, then a vacation or even a long-term stay might be right for you. Here’s what you can expect.
If you’re only familiar with the pop culture version of Australia, your ideas on the culture and lifestyle may be limited. You might imagine kangaroos hopping through public spaces, endless expanses of sun-drenched beaches, and Vegemite sandwiches. While there are grains of truth to those preconceptions, it’s a narrow view of what this island nation has to offer.
It’s a diverse country, home to a multitude of cultures and communities. And the Australian lifestyle reflects that.
To understand how these disparate traditions and ways of life come together to create a unified people, then learn more about what it’s like to live, work, and play in Australia.
A “No Worries” Mindset is Central to Australian Culture
One Australian stereotype that does tend to hold true is that many people lead a laid-back lifestyle.
Friends will drop in unannounced. But they’ll usually remember to bring a party favor along with them. You’ll hear the phrase “no worries, mate” exchanged between strangers in the pub or on the street.
Above all, Australians will try to never let the stress of the day get in the way of enjoying the moment.
Australians are also thought of as unfailingly friendly. While there’s bound to be some sour apples in every bunch, this is another stereotype that proves true a lot more often than it doesn’t.
There’s a cultural attitude that a stranger is only a friend you haven’t met before. This creates a warm, welcoming atmosphere for newcomers and longtime neighbors alike.
One caveat is a good-natured prank that Australians have been known to play on tourists.
Everyone knows how colorful Australian slang can be. But aside from a few basic words, most outsiders don’t have a grasp of the full lexicon. So for a lark, some people make a game of coming up with outlandish colloquialisms and convincing their guests that they’re part of the general parlance.
It’s a harmless rib done in good humor. If that’s the worst thing a stranger will do to you, then they’re a pretty decent sort, all things considered.
Australians Love Their Nature and Wildlife
If you’ve never been, it’s easy to imagine the entire continent is nothing but unforgiving outback, save for the coastlines. Some foreigners are even under the impression that it never rains in Australia. That misconception has even become an in-joke among the locals.
In reality, the Australian landscape is almost as diverse as its population. There are the dusty deserts and white sand beaches, of course. But there are also rainforests rich in exotic flora and fauna. And the Great Barrier Reef is one of the most biodiverse maritime habitats on Earth.
You don’t need to travel far to meet some new animal friends. While people overestimate how often you’ll find wild kangaroos migrating through a parking lot, it does happen. Koalas, wallabies, and even penguins may share your neighborhood with you.
For their part, Australians love to spend time out in their country’s magnificent wilds. So if you plan on making friends during your time there, it would behoove you to gain an interest in surfing or hiking.
Working in Australia
Australia is enjoying a bit of an economic boom these days. Major corporations, financial institutions, tech firms, and even foreign governments need offices in the Asian Pacific as a matter of practicality. The region is home to major markets and geopolitical assets that are hard to ignore.
In the past, many of these groups would establish their regional headquarters in Singapore, or sometimes Japan. But many newer startups and tech concerns are now opting for Australia instead.
Melbourne in particular picked up a reputation for being “the San Francisco of Australia” over the last few years, establishing itself as a global tech and finance hotspot. But other metro areas like Syndey are likewise in a prosperous period.
Part of this is due to sheer practicality. English is Australia’s common language, making it an appealing place for firms from other Anglophone countries to set up shop. The government also offers financial incentives for foreign businesses and investors, as well as fast-track visa processing and permanent residence for some workers.
But a lot of countries offer comparable benefits. What’s won over a lot of younger entrepreneurs and innovators is the business culture. Australia fosters a work-life balance that you don’t find in places like New York or Tokyo. It makes it appealing to a more modern business mindset, where people work to live as much as they live to work.
How to Move to Australia
As with any country, you’ll need to go through a bit of bureaucracy before you can call Australia your home. The good news is that there are several visa options semi-permanent residents can pursue. And Australia is one of the easier countries to gain citizenship for travelers who want to make their long-term homes there.
Instead of there being any major procedural hurdles, the big challenges tend to be economic.
Australia has a high cost of living, even by the standards of other developed nations. Housing costs, in particular, are among the most expensive in the world.
Even modest places to live far from the beaches or downtown areas can command seven figures on the market. Renters can expect to pay prices in line with those property values.
That doesn’t mean relocating to Australia is a pipe dream, however. Many ex-pats make it work. Landing a high-paying job in Australia’s thriving economy certainly helps, as does finding the right lenders for home loans.
Live the Australian Lifestyle
Australia is a land like no other. From natural wonders you can’t find anywhere else to a welcoming and vibrant culture, it’s easy to understand why so many expatriates make their home there. The Australian lifestyle has something for everyone. Majestic as it is, remember that Australia is only one potential destination for your next vacation or long-term excursion. There’s a whole wide world out there to explore. For inspiration for your next adventure, check out our other lifestyle posts.