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Living in Australia

From boundless sunshine and breathtaking scenery to a peaceful, laidback lifestyle and a stable economy, there are plenty of reasons Australia is an attractive place to live.

To help you make the most of your new home, here are five of our favourite things about living in Australia―plus some handy tips to help you settle in.

Australian cities are ranked among the best in the world. According to The Economist Intelligence Unit, four of the world’s top 10 liveable cities are Australian―with Melbourne in number one position, followed by Adelaide, Sydney and Perth at equal fifth, seventh and eighth.1

Meanwhile, the United Nations says Australia has the world’s second-highest standard of living, as measured by the Human Development Index,2 which takes into account factors such as healthcare, education, wealth and job opportunities.

Australia boasts some of the world’s most beautiful and diverse natural landscapes. Across the island continent you’ll find lush rainforests, snowy peaks and awe-inspiring deserts ― not to mention world-famous beaches and cosmopolitan cities.

So no matter whether you’re into surfing or skiing, cities or countryside, Australia truly has something for everyone. We’re also home to a host of unique plants and animals―and not just kangaroos and koalas. In fact, we have more than a million species of animals and plants, many of which cannot be found anywhere else in the world.3

Australia is one of the most multicultural countries in the world. Almost one in four Australians were born overseas, with over 300 languages spoken across the nation.4

This eclectic mix of people and cultures has created a distinctive Australian identity and spirit. It also means we’re able to enjoy the very best in food, music, and fashion from around the globe. And with plenty of friendly faces in our thriving local communities, you’ll never feel too far from home.

In Australia, you can access a universal healthcare system called Medicare ― one of the most affordable and comprehensive in the world.5 Medicare helps cover all or some of the cost of everything from doctor visits, to specialist consultations and aged care services.

Medicare may be one of the reasons Australians now enjoy one of the highest life expectancies on the planet. On average, both men and women can look forward to celebrating their 80th birthday.6

The average Australian fulltime worker now earns around AU$1,500 a week,7 making Australians the world’s fourth-highest wage earners in purchasing power terms.8

But it’s also important to remember that our cost of living is also among the highest in the world, with many goods transported thousands of kilometres before they reach our shores.9 Particularly in major cities, you may have to spend more on food, clothes, transport, accommodation and entertainment than you’re used to at home. So making the most of your income in Australia could take a little forward planning.

Fortunately, our International Premier and Retail Banking team are here for guidance. You can also open an Australian bank account online up to three months before you travel to Australia, so you can have funds ready and waiting for when you arrive. 

Things you should know 

1 Economist Intelligence Unit, Global Liveability Ranking, 2015

United Nations, Human Development Report, 2015

3 Australian Government, Our Natural Environment, 2016

4 Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, The Land and Its People, 2015

5 Health, Education and Training Institute, The Australian Healthcare System, 2015

6 Australian Bureau of Statistics, November 2015

7 Australian Bureau of Statistics, Average Weekly Earnings, Australia (6302), November 2015

8 World Economic Forum, What is the average wage around the world? 2015

9 Deutsche Bank Research, The Random Walk, Mapping the World's Prices, April 2015

The advice on this website has been prepared without considering your objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on the advice, please consider its appropriateness to your circumstances. Please view our Financial Services Guide.