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Moving to Perth, Australia: A Comprehensive Guide for students

Moving to Perth, Australia: A Comprehensive Guide for students

Welcome to Perth, Western Australia

Photo: Elizabeth Quay, Perth, Western Australia

Moving to a new country, whether as a student or a permanent resident, presents significant challenges. This is especially true for individuals from developing countries like Nepal who migrate to developed nations such as Australia. The transition to a new culture and environment can be overwhelming, making it essential to adapt quickly. In this article, we will provide a comprehensive guide for Nepalese individuals planning to move to Perth, Western Australia. This guide aims to offer valuable insights into Australia’s systems and assist newcomers in navigating their new surroundings effectively.

Perth, the capital of Western Australia, is the fourth-largest city in the country and covers an extensive land area of 6,418 sq. km. Although Perth boasts a vast territory, its population remains relatively low. However, Western Australia is experiencing significant growth, resulting in an influx of migrants to Perth. The government has actively promoted migration to the region, creating numerous opportunities for new arrivals. To ensure a smooth transition, there are several essential factors that new entrants to Perth should consider. This article will address a few key aspects for newcomers:

Secure Accommodation:

It is highly recommended to arrange suitable accommodation prior to your arrival in Perth. Given the current rental/housing crisis and expensive accommodation costs, finding temporary housing initially can be helpful. For students, most universities offer on-campus accommodation, which is more affordable. For detailed information on the rental/housing market, please refer to our dedicated blog on the topic.

Obtain a SIM Card:

Upon arrival, obtaining a SIM card is essential. Perth offers a range of providers, catering to different budgets and network preferences. Popular options include Telstra, Optus, Vodafone, and more. Select a provider that aligns with your needs and budget while considering network coverage.

Open a Bank Account:

To manage your finances effectively, it is crucial to open a bank account. The recommended banks in Australia are Commonwealth Bank, ANZ Bank, Westpac, and NAB. To open an account, you will generally need a passport as a form of photo ID. However, official identity proofs like a driver’s license or Australian photo ID can also be accepted.

Obtain a Tax File Number (TFN) and Australian Business Number (ABN):

After your arrival in Australia, it is important to apply for a Tax File Number (TFN) and an Australian Business Number (ABN) if applicable. A TFN is like a PAN card in Nepal, recording your tax details from salary earnings. You must have a TFN to receive salary payments. Your TFN is generated once in your lifetime, so ensure you store it securely. Given the increasing scams in Australia, refrain from sharing your TFN with anyone except your employer and bank, and only if it is legitimate. Further information on scams in Australia can be found in our dedicated blog.

On the other hand, an Australian Business Number (ABN) is necessary if you plan to register a business in Australia. Unlike the TFN, the tax for your earnings through an ABN will be paid at the end of the financial year when filing your tax return. Please note that you will need an Australian Business Number for services like Uber Eats, Uber, DoorDash, and similar platforms. You can generate your Tax File Number through the provided link, and your Australian Business Number through the respective link.

Tax File Number through this link: https://www.ato.gov.au/Individuals/Tax-file-number/Apply-for-a-TFN/

Australian Business Number through this link: https://www.abr.gov.au/business-super-funds-charities/applying-abn

Obtain a Smart Rider Card:

In order to facilitate your travel within Perth, it is advisable to obtain a Smart Rider Card from selected outlets. These outlets are often located in shopping malls, and a list of selected smart rider outlets can be found on the Transperth website. The Smart Rider Card functions as a travel pass, requiring you to tap in when boarding public transport and tap out when disembarking. Topping up the card’s balance can be done by directly debiting your bank account, which is the most convenient option and offers certain discounts. Alternatively, you can top up your card at bus or train stations.

Important Tips for Students:

If you are a student, there are a few additional considerations. Upon your arrival in Australia, promptly update your address and contact number with your university or college, and order your Student ID card as soon as possible. Most educational institutions provide smart rider cards to students at discounted rates compared to retail outlets. These cards offer concessions on travel fares, making commuting more convenient and cost-effective for students. To register your smart rider card for student concessions, please contact your education provider.

Job Market:

Perth’s job market is currently flourishing, offering numerous opportunities for both full-time workers and part-time positions for students. Reliable job platforms such as Seek, Indeed, and LinkedIn can help you explore different employment options. However, it is essential to be cautious of scams. We have provided a link to our blog on ongoing scams in Western Australia for more information.

We hope this article has covered the essential aspects to consider when arriving in Western Australia, ensuring you are well-prepared and informed. If you have any specific questions or suggestions for future blogs, please feel free to leave a comment. We appreciate your time and wish you a wonderful journey in Australia. Best of luck!

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