Life in Australia

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Internationally recognised qualifications in

One of the Most Vibrant Cities

Australia is a unique and diverse country in every way - in culture, population, climate, geography, and history.


Australia is multicultural and multiracial country and this can be experienced in the country's food, lifestyle and cultural practices.

Australia has rich and important cultural heritage from its indigenous people, who play a significant role in Australian society.


Sydney has a mild climate, especially in winter, but be aware that the weather is subject to quick changes.

Students should bring clothing for hot and wintry weather, wind, rain and strong sunshine, regardless of the time of the year. For more information visit weather in NSW.

Campus Location

Apsley College is located in Parramatta. The City of Parramatta, is located in Greater western Sydney on the banks of the Parramatta River.

Parramatta is a major business and commercial centre, Parramatta is also the major transport hub for Western Sydney, servicing trains and buses, as well as having a ferry wharf and future light rail and metro services.


Into Australia

When you arrive in Australia, you will need to show your passport and incoming passenger card at a Customs and Immigration checkpoint. You may be asked questions about your stay before your passport is stamped and handed back once you have passed through the immigration checkpoint, you should collect your bags ensuring that you check your baggage and check that nothing is missing or damaged. If something is missing or you notice damage, go to the baggage counter and advise them of your problem.

Staff at the baggage counter will help you to find missing baggage or lodge a claim for damage to your belongings. Once you have your luggage you will go through customs where your luggage may be checked. Australia has strict quarantine laws to stop people from bringing in certain food and plant items. You should declare any items that you are bringing in on the form given to you on the plane.

If customs officers decide that the item you are bringing in are not safe, they will be confiscated and destroyed. If you fail to declare or dispose of any quarantine items, or make a false declaration, you may receive a fine or be prosecuted. All international mail is also screened and checked by customs. If you want further information, visit the Australian Quarantine and Inspection Service (AQIS) website at

Arriving into Australia

Getting from Sydney Airport to Parramatta

Go to Airport Domestic or Airport International Train Stations Platform 1. Catch the train to Central station and change to Platform 18 for your train to Parramatta. Travel time is approximately 20 minutes.

Keeping in Contact

Before you leave home, you should provide your family and friends, and your education provider in Australia, with details of your flights to Australia and where you will be staying when you arrive. (Do not change these details without informing them.) Once you have arrived in Australia, you should then let your family and friends know that you have arrived safely. For safety reasons, always let someone know where you are.

Know More

About Country

The currency of Australia is the Australian Dollar. Ideally, you should change your money into Australian dollars before you arrive but if you haven't, you will need to change some as soon as you arrive - you will usually be able to do this at the airport.

Once you have arrived into Sydney you can also change more money into Australian dollars at any bank or currency exchange. Note, however, that banks are not open on the weekend and while airport currency exchanges are generally open, the rate is usually not as good as with a bank. You should not carry large sums of money with you and it is best to only have the money that you will need for the first few days and then arrange to have the rest of the funds transferred to you in Australia.

The amount you will need to bring with you will depend on whether you have already paid for your accommodation before you arrive. Think about how much money you will need to last you for a couple of weeks.

Find out more about money matters by visiting

International Students studying in Australia have various housing options, they can choose to stay in Homestay Accommodation, Renting, Shared Accommodation.

Typical accommodation costs in Sydney are as follows:

  • 1 bedroom flat - $250 to $300 per week
  • 1 bedroom flat - $250 to $300 per week
  • 2 to 3 bedroom flat or house - $450 to $550 per week

If you intend to bring your family with you, they will also need to have a visa and be covered by health insurance. Family members include your partner (married or de facto) and your children under 18 years of age. You will need to provide proof of your family relationships with official documents including birth certificates and marriage certificates. For more details, visit

Where you have dependent children that need to attend childcare or school, you should be aware of the following costs:

Typical childcare costs in Sydney are as follows:

  • Centre-based childcare $100+ per day
  • Family day care $12+ per hour
  • Nannies $15+ per hour
  • Au pairs (living in your home) $500 to $600+ per week

Find out more at:

Schools fees apply to most dependents of temporary residents in New South Wales. There are some exceptions, for further information visit the DEC International website.

To find out more about application processes and costs go to:

You should also be aware that the above costs for childcare and schooling are in addition to living costs. According to the figure given below is an estimate only to give an indication of the basic rate of living costs under Australia's migration regulations.

Australia has a special system of health cover for international students called Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC). You will need to buy OSHC before you come to Australia to cover you from when you arrive. The Department of Immigration and Citizenship requires you to maintain OSHC for the duration of your time on a student visa in Australia.

You can choose to take out OSHC with a provider recommended by us, or with the Australian OSHC provider of your choice. There are five providers of OSHC in Australia. Visit these websites to find detailed information on what they cover and to decide which provider is right for you.

  • Australian Health Management OSHC :
  • BUPA Australia :
  • Medibank Private :
  • OSHC Worldcare :
  • NIB OSHC :

As a student visa holder, you can work up to 40 hours a fortnight during term time (in session) and as many hours as you like during holidays (out of session).

Visit the following website to find out more about working in Australia, including how to find a job.

Immigration regulations in Australia require international students to show evidence that they can contribute to the cost of living and studying in Australia. This helps to ensure students are better able to make the most of their studies and have a safe and enjoyable experience in Australia.

While international students can supplement their income with money earned through part-time work in Australia, the 'living costs' requirement helps to support the success of students in their studies by ensuring that they do not have to rely on such work to meet all their expenses.

The basic rate of living costs under the migration regulations increase with Australia's cost of living. Under these regulations prospective student visa applicants must have access to at least the following funds to meet living costs requirements (excluding tuition fees):

  • A$19,830 a year for a student. This includes clothing, food, accommodation, transportation, entertainment and travel costs in Sydney - but excludes tuition costs.

Students must demonstrate that the funds they are relying upon to meet the costs of studying in Australia will be genuinely available to them during their stay in Australia.

The figures above are indicative only and that costs can vary significantly depending on where you live in Australia. You should be prepared in case your living costs are greater than the indicated figures.

For further information about studying and living in Australia refer to website Study in Australia, this is the Australian Government's official resource for international students.