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Cost of Living While You Study and Work in Australia

Cost of Living While You Study and Work in Australia - Virtual Student AgencyYou are ready to study and work in Australia, but before you begin, you must familiarize your self with your new city and find a place to live.

It is a good idea to visit the institution to check in and get to know your way around. The Virtual Student Agency is here to help. Do not forget to check the message boards if you are looking for roommates. Beautiful Australia is going to seem like a very different place to most students who are not used to traveling outside their native land.

You may find that to live, study, and work in Australia, it is a little more expensive than it would be at home. Some things will be more expensive but most of your costs will be around the same or sometimes a little lower. You must compare the value of your earnings and the items you can buy for it.


The average student who comes to study and work in Australia does not have a lot to spend and will be on a tight budget. On living costs, you can expect to spend anywhere from $360 to $400 per week, depending on your lifestyle. Most people do not figure entertainment into their cost of living budget but it is an important part of your stay here. If you are the kind of student who believes in all work and no play, you will miss some very exciting cultural entertainment and experiences that could serve you well later in life and work. Let us start, however, with accommodations.

What you pay for living space will widely depend on your location. If you choose to live, study and work in Australia in the heart of the city where you can experience everything within walking distance of where you live, you can expect to pay around $1,000 for an apartment. The further away you get from the main strip of any capitol city, the less expensive it becomes.

Renting a nice apartment in the suburbs outside of the city, or a house, which is often less expensive than an apartment while you study and work in Australia, would be much more desirable for the student who is looking to stretch his allowance. The rent in the suburbs is around $275 to $300. Public transportation is excellent and affordable in most Australia cities.

In either case, the city or the suburbs, landlords ask for four weeks rent and sometimes require a security department which is returned minus any damage to the rental, should there be any. If you acquire a roommate, you can split the cost. The more roommates the better which is one reason many students prefer a house in the suburbs to an apartment in the city.

Utilities to pay during study and work in Australia

Unlike many places in the world, water is free and abundant in Australia. Other utilities, like gas and water are reasonable compared to many places. The costs of these can be controlled by their careful use and the weather in Australia makes it much easier to do.


You can find some great deals on fruit and vegetables that are grown in Australia. Beef and lamb are very affordable even if you study and work in Australia, as these are also farmed right here in the land down under. For other items, especially packaged items like cereal, coffee, and bread that are a bit more expensive, there are discount stores and numerous sales every week. A thrifty shopper should have no trouble at all when it comes to saving money on their food bill. There are also stores that sell for less by selling items in bulk not just for whom study and work in Australia, but for everyone.

Here is a short list of some everyday items and their approximate cost, before sales and coupons. This will give you an idea of overall costs.

  • Milk is approximately $2.50 to $2.90 per two liter container.
  • Bread is approximately $2.50 to $3.00 per loaf.
  • Cereal is $3.00 to $4.00.
  • Instant Coffee runs about $3.00 to $4.00 a jar.

(Fruit, vegetables, and stock that are raised locally are very affordable. This includes lamb and beef. Packaged goods are expensive and this generally includes staple foods)


Australia is quickly becoming known worldwide for its fashion. There are many great clothing designers that are putting Australia on the fashion world map. With that said, how much you will spend on clothes will depend on your tastes in clothes. If you are the kind of person that loves to wear the latest designs from the greatest designers, this kind of fun clothing will cost you much more than those who prefer to keep it simple with jeans and t-shirts. However, Australia has many discount clothing stores like K-mart that can help you find a fair middle ground.

Transportation for those who study and work in Australia

There are numerous ways for a student to get around in the cities of Australia. Melbourne is home of the largest tram system on the planet. There are also numerous state and city rail services owned by an even wider variety of government and private investors.

The capital cities of Australia are served by trains, buses, monorails, trams, and taxicabs. Use them well when you study and work in Australia.

International and domestic travel

Domestic travel is relatively inexpensive for whom study and work in Australia, especially when you factor in all of the beauty that you get to experience while traveling in Australia. From the blue waters and white beaches along the glorious coast to the canopied rain forests to the wondrous art of the cities, domestic travel by bus or rail could be ten times more expensive and still be worth every penny.

International travel fluctuates and is less expensive than one might think with the fare wars that seem to wage endlessly. When it is spring and summer in other parts of the world and travel is heaviest, it is fall and winter in Australia.


Toiletries and basic hygiene needs are no more expensive in Australia than in other places due to heavy import but the cost is defrayed in the numerous discount stores throughout the country.

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Virtual Student Agency 

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Together with my team at Virtual Student Agency we provide free services for international students willing to study in Australia from the idea through all applications until graduation and over.

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