Living in Sydney

Sydney is the largest city in Australia and one of the most popular cities in the world! Being the capital city of New South Wales, this cosmopolis has attracted people from all over the globe. Not only multicultural residents from all different backgrounds, but Australia also has an enormous variety of animals and plants which are unique on the planet. Studying and living in Sydney is enjoyable. For overseas students, it is very important for you to know the studying and living standard in Sydney. You can always check up-to-date information of study in Sydney at


A Good Choice for Study

There are more than 50,000 overseas students studying in Australia and each year. They have chosen Australia for several reasons: 

  • Australia has a high-quality education system, the equal of any country in the world.
  • Australia offers traditional education in reputable schools, institutes, colleges and universities.
  • Awards from Australian institutions of higher education are recognized internationally.
  • Australian schools, institutes, colleges and universities have established networks of welfare and support to help overseas students.
  • The Australian education system includes informality and accessibility of academic staff, the availability of computers, small group tutorials and close supervision.
  • Living costs and tuition costs compare well with other countries and most overseas students are permitted to work part-time.
  • Australia is a safe, stable country with a pleasant climate.



Sydney enjoys a temperate climate with four distinct seasons in the year – spring, summer, winter and autumn. Below is a guide to the average daily temperatures.

Spring September – November 12-22 degrees

Summer December to February 28-32 degrees

Autumn March to May 12 – 20 degrees

Winter June to August 10 – 15 degrees

Sports and other outdoor activities are possible at all times of the year.



Australian contemporary arts reflect the world’s oldest continuous cultural traditions and also a diverse, multicultural society. Our visual and performing arts communities receive international acclaim for their vibrancy, originality and cutting-edge work in the arts, literature, stage and cinema, dance, classical music and contemporary Australian rock music.

The National Museum of Australia opened as part of Australia’s Centenary of Federation celebrations in 2001. It is co-located with the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies in the nation’s capital city of Canberra and adds to more than 1000 museums throughout Australia.



More than 100 ethnic groups are represented in Australia, making Australia one of the most culturally diverse countries in the world. Australia’s dynamic multiculturalism can be attributed to its unique combination of Indigenous cultures, early European settlement and immigration from all parts of the world.

Australians value the wealth of cultural diversity and social sophistication that international students bring to our campuses and our communities. We take great care in looking after international students and helping them to adjust to the Australian way of life. International students also gain great benefits from their education in Australia and make lifelong friendships.



Although English is the official language, a host of other languages is spoken in Australia. As one of the most culturally diverse countries in the world, many Australians are naturally fluent in other languages. More than 2.4 million Australians speak a language other than English at home. Within the education and training system, about 15 percent of those of working age studying for an educational qualification have English as a second language. More than 800,000 Australians speak a European Union language, apart from English, in the home. Another 800,000 Australians speak an Asian language in the home.

In Australia not only is there the opportunity to improve your English through specialist study in an English-speaking environment but all sectors of Australian education and training provide tuition in many other languages as well.

English, as it is spoken in Australia, is very easily understood by nearly all people from other English-speaking nations. While there are some minor differences in accent between the cities and country areas the difference is much less than you will find in America, Britain and Canada where French is also spoken. As you improve your English in Australia you will learn some of our slang, and have much fun explaining the meanings to your friends and relatives at home.



Australia is predominantly a Christian country, however; all religions are represented in our multicultural society. Australians respect the freedom of people to practice their choice of religion. Churches, mosques, temples and synagogues are located in most major cities. Some universities have their own spiritual groups on campus.


Australia has an efficient public transport system (buses, trains and trams) in all cities. Many students ride bicycles on campus and some even have their own car for longer travel. There are also train, bus and air services between cities and towns. Students using public transport can apply for a student concession card that entitles them to discounted fares.

Study with dependant

Where applicant plan to bring school-aged child to study with you in Australia, you must make proper arrangement of schooling and welfare for the child. Compulsory education in Australia starts at around the age of five or six years, with minor variations between the states and territories. A school year in Australia starts in January and finishes in December.

For more information about schooling in Australia, please go to


Australia uses a dollars and cents system of decimal currency with 100 cents in a dollar. The banknotes in use are $5, $10, $20, $50 and $100. Coins used are the silver coloured 5 cents, 10 cents, 20 cents and 50 cents and the gold coloured $1 and $2 coins.

Australia’s development of the polymer (plastic) banknote heralds the introduction of advanced banknote technology for the new millennium and rewrites world standards in design. Not only does this leading-edge polymer technology offer immense security benefits but its concepts of cleanliness, environmental responsibility and recyclability set an example for the world to follow.




With one of the highest standards of living in the world, Australia offers modern transport systems. Australia has an extensive public transport system that includes trains, buses, tramways, ferries, two major national airlines and a number of regional airlines. Metropolitan areas are divided into zones and your ticket type and cost depends on which zone you are going to travel in and for how long.

Tourist students may drive in Australia on a valid overseas drivers licence but if the document is not in the English language the visitor must carry a translation with the permit. An international driving licence is not sufficient by itself.

Metered taxicabs operate in all major cities and towns. You will find taxi ranks at transport terminals, main hotels or shopping centres or you can hail taxis in the street. A light and sign on the roof indicate if a cab is vacant. There is a minimum charge for hiring and then a charge per kilometre travelled. Taxi drivers do not have to be tipped.


Australia has a very good health care system. All Australians pay a Medicare levy (additional tax) to fund the public health system and ensure everyone gets access to public system doctors, hospitals and other healthcare services. People who pay extra into a private health insurance fund receive certain privileges when they use private health care services. International students studying in Australia are required to have Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) for the duration of their student visa.

Money and Banks

Australian currency is the only legal tender in Australia. When you first arrive, money from other countries can be changed at the exchange facilities located at international airports, banks and major hotels. Traveller’s cheques are easier to use if already in Australian dollars, however, banks will cash traveller’s cheques in virtually any currency. Major hotels and some shops will cash traveller’s cheques, depending on individual store policy.

It is a good idea to set up an Australian bank account. You will need to provide your visa and evidence of residency. Banking services in Australia are extremely competitive. Over 20 local and numerous international banking groups are represented in Australia. All major banks have a branch in cities and regional centres. Most shopping centres have Automatic Teller Machines (ATM) facilities. These machines can be used for deposits and, in many instances, withdrawals 24 hours a day. Most1 department stores, supermarkets and specialist shops have electronic transfer terminals (EFTPOS) where cash withdrawals can also be made in addition to purchasing goods. More information on banking is available at Study in Australia


Campuses offer spacious surroundings suitable for social, sporting and other outdoor activities. They are also centrally located for students to experience the sophistication of our cities and excitement of our entertainment facilities. There are plenty of opportunities for international students to have an enjoyable time with friends.

Sports and recreation

Australians are very keen on sport and outdoor activities and have gained a worldwide reputation, both as individuals and as teams. Hosting the Year 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney highlights Australia as a leading destination for international events.

Australia has more than 120 national sporting organisations and thousands of state, regional and club bodies. It is estimated that 6.5 million people, about a third of the population, are registered sports participants. While there are over 120 sporting organisations, Australians also take part in bushwalking, fishing, boating and water sports.


Australia has a modern telecommunications system with mobile and internet access generally available at low cost. Public telephones are available at all Post Offices, shopping centres and are often situated on street corners. Public pay phones accept a variety of coins and Phone cards. Phone cards are pre-paid for use in public pay phones and can be bought at a large number of retail outlets in denominations of $A5, $A10, $A20 and $A50. Credit phones take most major credit cards such as American Express, Visa, Master card and Diners International and can be found at international and domestic airports, central city locations and hotels.

Mobile phones are very popular and can be purchased from a number of retailers.


Australia has a fantastic variety of food. Our top quality meat, fish, fruits and vegetables are exported to markets all around the globe. There is a large range of fruit and vegetables available at Australian produce markets. You should have no difficulty in finding the foods that you are used to at home.

You can sample almost every type of cuisine available throughout the world in our many restaurants. There are elegant restaurants or typical Aussie pubs. Ethnic restaurants offer cuisines from all around the world. Good food at reasonable prices can be found at bistros or cafes. And for those who like takeaway, most of the major global fast food chains are well represented. The adventurous can try some of our ‘bush tucker’.