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Australia - Expats

Australia is one of the most popular destinations for expats and in some areas of the country almost a third of residents are foreign born. Expats tend not to have their own communities, although in some cities there are strong communities of expats that do not have English as their first language. The total number of expats resident in Australia is estimated to be around 5.5 million people. The most popular regions with expats are Western Australia and Queensland.

The majority of expats arriving in Australia each year come from the UK. Of the 5.5 million expats already resident in the country, more than 1.2 million are British, although these trends are showing signs of changing. There are almost half a million people from New Zealand now resident in Australia, more than 300,000 from China, more than 250,000 from India and almost the same amount from Italy. Migration from Europe is now steadily decreasing as migrants from the US and Asia are finding Australia an attractive prospect. Expats who choose to settle outside the cities tend to be from Europe and those from other regions prefer to be in the cities.

Migrants from Africa are also beginning to increase in number with communities from the Sudan and South Africa beginning to grow, although their numbers are still relatively small when compared with communities from other nations.

Australia is the country of choice for those who want a more outdoors lifestyle. Sports are popular and the excellent climate means that many people lead an active lifestyle. Expats are made welcome no matter where they go in the country and the friendly atmosphere is also helping to draw in expats from all over the world. Another reason to move to Australia is the opportunity for work, particularly for those who are skilled workers such as medical professionals, engineers and teachers. There are many opportunities for those who want to progress but if you do not have the right skills it is unlikely that you will be granted a visa. This ensures that the quality of life is good for all and immigrants are not arriving simply to take advantage of a state benefits system.

The cities are among the most popular destinations in the country for expats and one of the most popular is Sydney. It has everything you need for a cosmopolitan lifestyle from beaches to cultural attractions and it is estimated that around 40% of the residents were born in another country. Sydney is suitable for those with families as well as professionals and offers a very high standard of living. It has often been voted one of the most popular cities in the world to live in and as a result the cost of living can be higher here than in other parts of the country. The city has relatively low crime rates and is welcoming to people of all races and religions.

Melbourne is another popular city that has been named one of the most ‘livable’ cities in the world. The city has a laid back nature and while it may not be as trendy as Sydney, it is very popular with those who have families as there are good schools and all the amenities that you need. There is a lower cost of living than in Sydney which is ideal for those who are moving on a lower budget.

The city of Brisbane is known for its friendly people, clean streets and welcoming atmosphere. The excellent climate means that the outdoor lifestyle is strong and there are many parks where families can spend the day playing sports and having a BBQ. The city has a man-made beach in the centre which attracts hundreds of people at weekends and if you want to live outside the city and commute to work the public transport links are excellent. Brisbane also has a low crime rate.

The cities have the advantage of having more work opportunities as well as a more varied social life than more rural areas. Most expats who move to rural areas do so because they have already found work in those areas. In the cities there are often societies for expats so that you can make friends and their advice can be invaluable.

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