Some to work, travel, find a new way of life or simply want to settle short term.
Stylish, arty Melbourne is a city that’s both dynamic and cosmopolitan, and proud of its place as Australia’s cultural capital. Its stately Gold Rush–era architecture and a multicultural make-up reflect the city’s recent history, while edgy street art, top museums and sticky-carpeted band venues point to its present-day personality.
Melbourne is best experienced as a local would, with its character largely reliant upon its collection of inner-city neighbourhoods. Despite a long-standing north–south divide (flashy St Kilda versus hipster Fitzroy), there’s a coolness about its bars, cafes, restaurants, festivals and people that transcends the borders. The city centre has meanwhile reinvented itself with chic laneway eateries and rooftop bars opening in former industrial buildings.
Sport is also crucial to the fabric of the town, taking on something of a religious nature here. Melburnians are passionate about AFL football (‘footy’), cricket and horse racing, and also love their grand-slam tennis and Formula One car racing.
I recently moved here after 6 months backpacking Asia. It’s cold, civilised and pretty cool. Chilled vibes, quirky cafes, endless entertainment, sport central and just an awesome place to be.
Known for being the best city to live in; I came to give it a go.
I wanted to share with you some of my tips & tricks for moving to Melbourne.
1. Use Public transport.
Melbourne has a decent public transport system. Despite everyone obsessed with Uber, and espresso martinis, the tram system is pretty efficient.
As confusing as it can be at first, pretty off putting coming from Asia, it’s the leading transportation around the city. Almost a 24 hour system, reliable, it’s something to get used too and get to know.
2. Get Gumtree.
Don’t have it? Get it? Don’t know what it is? Search it.
Many jobs are posted daily with job vacancies, business’ hiring and lots of work advertised.
You can post your own ad if looking for work People will be able to contact you through Gumtree if interested.
Not only that but it’s a great place to look for accomadation or to buy something. Everyone seems to be using it so don’t miss out!
3. Use social media & it’s benefits.
Almost everyone has social media, I have even seen random little Cambodian villages on facebook. Social media has many negatives however there is one massive benifit when it comes to traveling.
Get on those social media pages. Join the groups, read the blogs, search Instagram. There are some great Facebook groups here to help with lots of information on backpacking Australia, living in Australia and more. These pages are designed to help find information and help you engage with other people also moving and living in Melbourne.
Search #hashtagged places in the city and see what is going on. I always find lovely little coffee houses by having a ponder on Instagram. Click here to follow @_littletravelbird on Instagram and see what new places I have been finding.
Melbourne has something constantly going on. I am sure it is possible to save, I have too, however there is a lot going on. Melbourne is revolved around eating out, hidden hippy bars, vintage shops, the best places for coffee and so much more. Constant entertainment and great sport activities, theatres and shopping, arenas and stadiums, Melbourne is a very active city, make use of it!
If you are coming to seriously save some dollar, maybe think of somewhere else to settle. With an income and some budgeting, anyone can save with the right priorities, however Melbourne is such a vibrant city with so much to do, enjoy it!
Pizza night in the city
5. Find a house share
Everyone all over Melbourne is in a house share, whether you are a backpacker, student, professional or just a travel bum, a house share is normally pretty affordable, a great place to meet people and an easy way of living. Find the area you want to live in, with ads for accommodation constantly on Gumtree or on Facebook pages, you will have no problem finding a room!
I have a good friend living in St. Kilda, where I was crashing when I arrived. I now have an affordable cute little flat in St. Kilda with 5 others. It is easy, convenient and affordable. If you don’t have anyone to stay with, hostels are a good place to head to first to meet people and get to know the area once you’re here.
6. Do your RSA/Permit/Visa research
Most places have restrictions on who can work where and for how long. For us British, it is ridiculosuly easy to come over to live & work down under. For other countries, the rules and regulations can be different so check the conditions of where you are from.
To work and live over here in Melbourne, you will need a working holiday visa. These are easy to get hold of and can use them up to 12 months from applying. It will cost around £230/ $500 AU. This gives you a year in the country which you can extend to two years if you do 88 days of agrictulture work.
You can’t bartend without an RSA. Hospitality is a big deal in Australia, especially in Melbourne. Bartenders need to attend a short RSA course. For those wanting hospitaity work, look at getting it booked and out the way. It’s easy and means you can get work straight away. Employees wont ask for it until you have been working with them for 3 weeks but it’s a good idea to get it done. Each state in Australia will require a different RSA.
7. Get an income.
It is easy to be busy enough with exploring the city. I could spend endless days down by the beach, wondering the streets of Fitzroy, drinking out on Chapel street or finding the best resturants in the CBD but Melbourne focuses on great entertainment, food and drink, live music and sport.
There is a lot going on and things to do and see. If you are looking on moving to Melbourne, get your self a job and have some sort of income!
8. Be prepared with the weather
Melbourne is known for the random weather. Wake up to the sun beaming and clear blue skies and by the evening it can get pretty rainy and miserable.
The photo above was taken on a ridiculously wet and dull saturday day in the middle of winter, while I went to get the tram to work, this was my view of the sunset.
The weather is constantly changing so come prepared. I flew in from Asia on the 1st June where winter was starting. Despite being used to 45 degree heat, it can get very cold.
I am currently living in my hat and scarf, needing to keep the heating on. Depending on what time of year you come to Melbourne, always be prepared. Melbourne is south of Australia and can get some of the coldest weather!
Despite being in the middle of winter at the moment, it is still an improvement on English weather!
Morning beach run
9. City life
Melbourne is a major city.
You won’t be in the country side, or close to the desert. Instead, are loads of suburbs filled with awesome streets filled with independant buisness and local cafes. Despite the CBD being a great place to explore, make sure to spend lots of time exploring the suburbs.
Places like hippy Fitzroy, flashy St. Kilda, Prahan, Brighton, South Melbourne and more are my favourite places to hang out.
10. Make use of the coffee culture
Melbourne is known for the epic coffee scene. With some of the best coffee, baristas and places to drink them, embrace it all. Give the coffee shops a good chance and explore what Melbourne hospitality has to offer!
There you go. There are so many interesting and funky places in Melbourne. Despite suffering from one big culture shock coming from Asia, Melbourne has not let me down! These are just my opinions & tips, any feedback would be appreciated.