The Australian people are friendly and helpful, proud of their lifestyle, heritage, culture and natural assets, and generally well-travelled.
With the declines of the USA and European economies, Australia is rapidly becoming a major player in the world economic hierarchy. Earning potential and standards of living are certainly above average for a large proportion of the population, yet Australia is still in great need of skilled people to help continue its solid growth.
Thousands of people move to Australia each year to seek out the very many opportunities and the Australian visa system is structured with this in mind, encouraging all individuals and families who can add value to the country to move to Australia.
The country has a great deal of natural beauty, with pristine beaches, fabulous mountain ranges, national parks and heritage sites. There is also a unique animal kingdom and lots of places to experience adventure sports.
Australians love their sport and the outdoors, but they love to gamble too, and the pokies (poker machines or fruit machines) and horse-racing take their particular fancy. You can find pokies in almost every Australian pub and some even have betting agencies onsite.
Life in Australia is such that you work to live, and not live to work. Enjoying yourself outside the confines of an office is a key feature of the Australian lifestyle, and most companies stress a positive work-life balance to all employees.
The image of the typical laid-back Australian in surf shorts, a t-shirt and flip-flops (or “thongs” as they are called in Australia!) is not that far from the truth given the warmer climate and relaxed culture of the inhabitants.
Public transport and driving in Australia
Australians drive on the left-hand side of the road. There are well-developed highways between all of the major cities, but given the distances, they can be very long, straight stretches of road!
When you move to Australia you also need to be mindful of road taxes, registration and insurance fees, and also toll road charges, which get automatically deducted from your Australian bank account via a system known as e-TAG.
Public transport in most cities is very good, and all of the capital cities have fully-developed train systems (Melbourne has an excellent tram system too). Other cities are investing large sums of money to upgrade their public transport network. Buses are also a very popular form of transport, and most cities also have specialised services (train and/or bus) which run to the airport.
Australians love eating out and a typical restaurant meal will be between $30 to $60 per head, with a starter at around $9-15 and a main course $20-$40.
Going to the pub (bar) is another favourite pastime for Australians. Depending on which state you live in, a schooner of beer (usually 425ml) will cost around $5-6, a pint (568ml) will cost about $8-10, while a glass of wine will be $5-7 per glass.
RSL clubs, bowls clubs and football (AFL Aussie rules and NRL rugby league) clubs are also a ubiquitous social and entertainment option for people of all ages due to the cheap drinks and meals offers.
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