Cost of Living in Australia: My Personal Experience

January 2015: Updated to include living costs for all three places I have lived in the suburbs of Adelaide.

I was warned about the high cost of living in Australia before moving here, though luckily it is not as bad as I thought it would be. Perhaps it is because I came directly from France rather than the US, but I feel as though the only expense that is very high in Australia is rent. Yet keeping in mind that there are only 20 million people in this entire country (roughly the size of the US minus Alaska) and that most of them live in the big cities near the coasts, it’s understandable that the rents would be higher in a city of millions of people compared to 50 thousand, which was the average size of cities where I’ve previously lived.

Sizes of Australia and US compared

Rents have also increased in recent years due to the mining boom and the strength of the Australian dollar, which was just a few cents off the US dollar in the 2010’s.  For comparison, it was $1 USD = $1.50 AUD ten years ago. (By 2015, the AUD had decreased in value to about $1.20 for $1 USD). Once you leave the large cities and head to the countryside, prices are much cheaper and similar to what I’ve found in the Midwest. Yet living in the countryside in Australia is a bit harder than in the US because of the lack of people, which means a lack of certain infrastructure facilities and services. Many of the small towns only have populations in the hundreds.

However, cost of living is only half the story. Incomes also need to be taken into account. It doesn’t really matter what the cost of living is or how much you make; what matters most is how much money you have left over each month. In France, my bills were high but my salary was incredibly low. In Australia, my bills are still high but my salary is 50% more than what I made in France – and keep in mind that my income in Australia is a living stipend that is just above poverty level, whereas my income in France was for a full-time job that required a Master’s degree. So I am much better off financially in Australia.

Cost of Living in Australia

For anyone who is interested in living in Australia, here is what I have paid and currently pay living close to Adelaide (only about 5 miles/8 kms from the city center) for three different locations. Keep in mind that I am single with no kids AND prices are much higher in Sydney/Melbourne/Brisbane so if you are planning on moving somewhere else in Australia and you have a family, these costs may not help you much. If you are a student in Adelaide, you can expect to pay between $130 and $180 a week (about $560-$780 per month) if you rent a room in an apartment or house, and that usually includes utilities such as electricity/gas, water, and internet. Check your university’s accommodation website for listings, as well as for current rents.

1. Monthly Bills for apartment near campus

Rent (includes water): $1300

– two-bedroom, furnished 60 M2 apartment run by a student housing company that is 2 minutes from campus so I could walk. Obviously I could have cut this in half if I had a roommate but I quite enjoyed having the whole place to myself. (Other big cities have higher rents; luckily Adelaide is not as expensive as everywhere else.)

Electricity: $50 for most of the year; $100 during “winter”

– there was no actual heating system in the apartment so I had electric heaters, which meant that this bill was higher in the winter months. No gas in this apartment (only electric stove/oven).

Internet: $30

– for 10 GB of data per month, but you can definitely find cheaper/more data. Since I was in student housing, it was just easier to use their pre-paid internet. Some companies do offer unlimited DSL internet (no data caps) for about $60 a month, but their customer service is not the greatest.

Cell phone: $30 (pre-paid through Telstra, which I rarely use)

Groceries: $150

Transportation: $15 (about half off normal bus fares thanks to my student ID)

Laundry: $8

  • Total monthly bills: about $1600

2. Monthly bills for house near campus + car (2012-2014)

Rent (includes water): $1540

– three-bedroom house, within walking distance to campus. I had one or two housemates for some of the time to reduce costs.

Electricity/Gas: $100-$150

– gas stove and hot water heater plus ducted heating/cooling; having both gas and electricity means paying two supply charges of over $70 each quarter in addition to usage charges

Internet: $60

– for 150 GB of data per month (DSL connection through Internode)

Cell phone: $15 (pre-paid, which I rarely use)

Groceries: $180-$200 (I adopted a cat in 2012 and his food is expensive because he is spoiled)

Gas/Petrol: $40-$50 (I didn’t have to drive much since I lived near campus)

  • Total monthly bills: about $2000 (maximum without housemates)

3. Monthly bills for house near campus + car (2014-2015)

Rent (includes water): $1250

– three-bedroom house, within walking distance to campus. I have one housemate (but she was gone for 6 months so I paid full rent during that time).

Electricity/Gas: $200

– gas oven/stove and hot water heater plus one heater in lounge; having both gas and electricity means paying two supply charges of over $70 each quarter in addition to usage charges. This house is a bit older and very drafty so it’s insanely cold in winter and the heater uses both gas and electricity.

Internet: $73

– for 50 GB of data per month (I couldn’t get DSL in this location so I had to get a cable connection)

Cell phone: $15 (pre-paid, which I rarely use)

Groceries: $180-$200

Gas/Petrol: $40-50 (I don’t have to drive much since I live near campus)

  • Total monthly bills: about $1800 (maximum without housemates)

Yearly Bills

Private health insurance (optical/dental): $264

Renter’s insurance: $170

Car registration: $600

Vet plan for cat (consultations/vaccinations): $280

No residency card because my visa is valid for the duration of my PhD. (Though I did pay $550 to get the visa in the first place.)

No income taxes because my living stipend is tax-free, and currently income up to $18,200 is not taxed either.

No occupancy tax on my apartment or houses.

There are other costs to factor in, especially if you move to a new place, such as disconnection and reconnection fees for electricity/gas, cancellation fees for breaking contracts, and new phone line installation for internet connections (even if you never plan on using the phone line!). When I moved between houses in 2014, I had to pay around $150 for electricity/gas to be moved and $358 for a new phone line in order to get cable internet connected. I also bought a lot of furniture and appliances since the houses I lived in were not furnished (except for an oven) but you can find really inexpensive stuff on Gumtree.

Prices for other things such as clothes, books, electronics, etc. are more expensive than in the US but it is quite easy to find sales and discounts, especially after Christmas and during the end of the fiscal year (June-July). Some stores such as Kmart and The Reject Shop have lower prices as well. Telecommunications are more expensive than France but comparable to the US. Bundles for home phone/TV/internet are around $100-150 a month. Food items can be hit or miss, especially fruits and vegetables, depending on the weather. Bananas were $15 a kilo when I first arrived in 2011 because the crops had been wiped out by cyclone Yasi in Queensland, but now the prices are back down to less than $2 a kilo. Look for food that’s labeled “quick sale” – the expiration date will be that day or the following day so you’ll need to eat it quickly but it will be much cheaper.

Cost of Living in Australia: Bananas were really this expensive in 2011!

Staples such as bread, milk, and pasta are quite cheap but cereal, yogurt and cheese are more expensive than I would have expected. Gas is just over $5 USD a gallon ($1.33 AUD a liter) while eating at restaurants and going to the movies are pretty much New York prices. Since Australia is an island that is rather far from everywhere and has strict import and quarantine rules (to protect from diseases or pests further destroying the native populations), higher prices are reasonable for some things. But with the strength of the Aussie dollar and the ease of shopping online nowadays especially at US stores, there is more competition for local stores to lower prices.

If anyone would like specific prices for certain things, let me know.

  • Thanks for this informative post! I am currently studying for/applying to grad schools, and I am considering a few schools in Australia. Just the other day I was wondering about the cost of living in Australia, so this was very helpful. Thanks again. (The part about rent being high but your salary being high as well was especially encouraging!) 🙂

    • You’re welcome Amy! FYI, most scholarships/living stipends pay tuition, health insurance and provide either around 23k or 28k per year. Students tend to get additional funding for projects too, and there’s usually a research fund to help pay for supplies (books, for example) and traveling to conferences.

      I’ve been told that the unis in the ATN (Australian Technology Network) are more generous with scholarships for international students, in case you haven’t really decided on a school yet.

      • Zoey


        I would like to come to Australia for my masters and i don’t have any scholarship befits so i am just wondering if my tuition fees and living expenses could be covered from my part time working.I am genuinely interested but just worried that if it is not enough when i reach there.So please,advice me on how to go about. My tuition fee would cost meh AUD 36000 for whole course.

      • visula

        to apply for a scholarship what are the requirements we need?

        • It depends on the university you are applying to. They have all the information on their websites.

          • Janhavi

            hi jenny, we thinking to move to Australia, my husband is getting opportunity to wrk there, almost in Perth, can u inform me about thecost of living in Perth, we are having kid of 3 years. both of us are Engineers, Mech. me and Husban civil. How is job positin for Mechanical Engineering, and which school is best for my son. Can we get daycare centers nearby . thanks . i hope u willdefinately help us. bye

          • Mousumi

            Hi Jennie,I found your posts helpful. we are thinking to apply for PR for Australia.I am a software engineer and my husband is in banking.Can you suggest us which place will be suitable for us?Also how good are the job opportunities for our field and salary offered?

  • Emily

    Amazing, it sounds like Australia is more like Alaska than I would have thought: remote, small population (Alaska hasn’t hit 1 million yet!), great distances between towns, small towns with indigenous populations and HIGH PRICES! Rent for 500 square feet in a rough neighborhood is about $900 here and our internet is $60+/month and capped. Gas is almost $4/gallon and groceries are about 25% more expensive here than elsewhere in the U.S. Seems like the deciding factor is distance from largely populated areas/countries.

    • Yes, once you leave the big capital cities, it is quite remote and isolated. Our weather is better though. 🙂

  • Jo

    Is a stipend that allows you to pay $1300 a month in rent really just above poverty level? 

    • Yes, and actually for 2011, the Australian Postgraduate Award was below the poverty line.

      Pages 4-5:

  • I’d love to move to Australia but the only thing that’s keeping me is that I would have to put my poor dog through a 20+ hours flight and quarantine 🙁

    Maybe later on in life!

    • I know what you mean! I’m glad I was able to leave Canaille in France where I know he is being taken care of, but I do miss him. I couldn’t bear to put him through quarantine let alone the flights.

  • Doddapaneni 74

    Hi Jennie

    Your Info is very help full, Can you provide me few more details please? I am in negosiating salary with IT company in Austrailia and Base location might be in Syndney. Can you please tell with your exp is 130k a resonable salary? I will bring my wife and kid after 6months.. Keeping in this how do you sujjest? I worked most part of asian countires but never worked in aus… When I was going to other bblogs it made me little friten 🙂 cost of leaving in AUS. Please provide me deail matrxs to my ID  .

    • Tristan Mumford

      I saw this blog. All I can say to people is be careful. Jennie’s costs of living aren’t really representative, but the purchase prices of items are.

      For example we are really careful with our electricity but it comes to maybe $700-$900 / qtr. Groceries, again being really brutal for a family of 4 come to realistically ~200/week and that factors in an interstate drive to a supermarket because it still works out over $100 cheaper than shopping at the one a few streets away.
      Car registration costs for the basics (no comprehensive) will run you from ~$600 – ~$1100 / year depending on where you live. Fuel is up around $1.60/L too.
      If you need car parts it pays to import because local prices are 5 to 10x more on the same part as sold internationally.
      We get about $30000/year, and even owning our own house and myself being able to build / repair pretty much anything we still barely make ends meet. It is an expensive country for the average person.

      • Well I am single with no kids, so of course your costs will be much higher. Plus it seems like you live in a much more expensive part of Australia. $1.60 for gas? yikes. Here it’s usually around $1.35.

        My electricity/gas is now about $250 a quarter for a 3 bedroom house with air conditioning. My car rego is $700 a year including basic insurance. I’m going to update this post once I calculate my costs now that I’ve moved out of the apartment and bought a car.

        • Samantha

          The big thing that struck me about this comment was that
          you say you make 30,000 a year but are still paying full price for car
          registration? A low income like that you should be entitled to a concession
          card… Or is that past the cut off point now? With a concession card car rego
          comes to around $300, plus you’re entitled to discounted or bulk billed health
          care. In Melbourne I’ve rarely seen petrol prices go up to $1.60 (it’s usually
          between $1.30-$1.40) – but since you’re saying that you have to drive interstate
          to go to the supermarket, I assume you live in a regional/rural area? Since I’m
          young and single and I don’t have a family to look after, but for someone in my
          situation living in a big city I felt her cost of living ideas were
          representative of a lot of people in her situation.

        • mats

          allot of people on here dont take into consideration our tax income brackets and dwelling prices in capital cities. like yourself im single with no kids on a good income but our dwelling prices are the big killer.
          if you take all that into consideration i d love to know what your calculations would be like then.

  • Samantha

    Great article! It’s great to see an article about the cost of living in a country where the writer points out there are always two sides to figuring out how expensive a country is to live in. A) How much everything costs B) How much you earn. I’ve lived in many different countries – Malaysia, Finland and Norway. Most people will tell you everything in Malaysia is ‘cheap’ just from looking at the prices of things – 5 dollars for a 20 minute taxi ride, breakfast for a dollar. Then look at a country like Norway where the costs of things seem ridiculously expensive – like $13 for a beer. And yet in Malaysia I saw a lot more poverty and in Scandinavia there was a much higher standard of living. The reason being the cost of things were all relative to how much everyone was earning (and how much the Government gave for free). In Malaysia – it was normal to be paid 7 Ringgits/hour – the equivalent of roughly $2 an hour. Once you are only earning the local Malaysian currency, the cost of living is no longer as cheap as it was when you were comparing it to dollars.  

    • Lee

      Hi, I am now staying at Malaysia and perhaps I plan to work in Australia one day. Do you lived in any part of Australian before ? How much do you think I need to earn if I want to live a comfortable life in Australia, for instance Melbourne, based on your opinion ? Thanks

  • Brodie Wales

    The price of Banana’s is inflated at the moment though due to various natural disasters so that is a somewhat misleading picture! 🙂

    Otherwise, yes, it is a relatively expensive country to live in. Be thankful you live in Adelaide and not Sydney though!

    • Yes, that picture was from July when I first arrived. I am very grateful to live in Adelaide. The cost of rent alone in Sydney and Melbourne blows my mind!!

  • Nobledrummer72

    right now i live in illinois i am looking into a job as a coal miner in australia but im not sure what the pay is and i do have a large family to take with me wife and 4 kids so thats alot to support so if you can find out any information i would be forever grateful right now i make 23 dollars an hour but i have been infatuated with australia my whole life we would like to live in a small town illinois is one of the highest tax states in us right now and if its not too much different in price and the mines pay better it could be a dream come true for me and my family

    • Coal miners here earn more but the cost of living is also much higher than the Midwest. I think the hourly wage is $35. At least in South Australia, the miners at Roxby Downs usually earn between $60-100k, but they also have to fly in fly out every week since it’s so far from Adelaide or any other large cities. The Australian government was offering more visas to Americans to bring in skilled labor to the mines, though most are out west which is even more expensive and isolated. I’m not sure how many positions/visas are available but it’s worth looking into.

  • dj

    Hello Jennie..I really appreciate to have read your post. It’s so informative. I’m planning to take a post graduate studies in Australia. Can you suggest which state is good to study which has a cheaper education fee or cost of living.

    Thank you so much. Have a good day;)

    • South Australia has the lowest cost of living. 🙂

  • Minal Pathak

    You have shared really good part for australia. Me n my husband are looking to shift there within 1 yr. Can you please brief me some details regarding jobs for software developers and weather of australia?? And can you please tell me which is best city to live in australia with good job opportunities and better living???

    • priya

      Hi, I am also looking to do that along with my husband in next year and want to know the IT jobs in Business analysis/technical communication etc. Could you advice the job prospects please?

  • Mark Andrew Rodriguez

    Hi Jennie.

    Good day to you.

    Thank you very much for this very very informative article. I am planning to migrate to South Australia maybe late this year or early next year and before this article I have no idea what’s the cost of living in SA. Now I have a much clearer picture of what is ahead of me. Couple of question though, how wide is the gap between the difference in cost of living of a student living in SA versus a professional living in SA? And I’d like to get your opinion on how hard to land a job there in SA for jobs like a store clerk for example? I figure this would be my first job there initially just to keep up with the bills you mentioned, or is this job not enough?
    Very informative article indeed! Thanks a lot!

    • Hi Andrew,

      it really just depends on if you’re going to rent a place alone or have flatmates and if you’re going to buy a car. I live alone in a house and I own a car so my expenses are higher than normal students but I can still get by on $30,000 a year.

      I don’t know much about wages or how easy it is to find jobs here though. The minimum wage is around $600 per week though (so more than $30k per year), which is more than my university scholarship. The income tax threshold was recently raised as well, so you won’t have to pay taxes on any income up to $18,200. You can probably live in shared accommodation for less than $200 a week including utilities, so you’d just need to factor in food, transportation, etc.

  • Len

    Hi Ms Wagner! My husband and I will be leaving this week for australia and we would be living at murray bridge. We were given a 457 visa (Long stay) we will be working there. How much would we pay per week if we will just rent a room which is fully furnished?

    • I actually don’t know much about Murray Bridge but I assume the cost of living is lower than in Adelaide. You can check rental listings on or for average prices.

  • Deep

    Hi Jennie,

    As I was looking for information on cost of living in Adelaide I came across your blog.

    I am planning to move to Adelaide to do my PhD in University of Adelaide. They have offered me a scholarship of AUD 24000 per year. Do you feel it will be ok for me and my wife who will also be accompanying me to survive in Adelaide.
    I would appreciate a prompt reply from your side.

    • Samantha

      Hi Deep – I just saw your comment and thought I should reply to you even though I’m not Jennie 🙂 I don’t live in Adelaide (I live in Melbourne which is more expensive) but I think that is no where near enough if that is your sole income for two people. It only works out to about $460 per week, and in Australia minimum wage is around $600/week – your wife would need to working as well if you couldn’t get an additional job, or you’d want at least a decent amount of savings before coming here – hope that helps! 🙂

      • Deep

        Hi Samantha,
        Thank you for the information.

        As the visa policy me as well as my wife will be allowed to work only after I start my PhD program.
        I would surely like to do a part time job as far as my wife is concerned she is currently working as a recruitment consultant. So Samantha, do you feel she can get a job of her choice in Adelaide and is there any ample part time job available there in Adelaide.

        • Samantha

          Honestly – I have no idea, sorry! I’ve never lived in Adelaide, the unemployment rate is very low in Australia in general (around 5%) Part-time work is easier to find than full-time work in general, but I can’t help you that much since I live in a different state 🙂

    • My scholarship is the same rate, and I can survive on it but I am single. I live in a house (alone) and own a car so as long as you don’t have a lot of other expenses it is possible to survive on the scholarship alone. Finding a part-time job should be rather easy, for both you and your wife. One semester of tutoring at uni pays around $6000, and the minimum wage here is rather high so any part-time job will really help with the expenses. I know a lot of PhD students who moved here with their spouse and started out solely with the scholarship, so you definitely would not be alone.

      • Deep

        Hi Jennie,
        Thanks a lot. Yes both of us are planning to do at least some part time job. The issue is that once you get married its almost impossible to be away from each other specially when you are planning for 3 years. Hopefully we will get something and survive decently.

  • rachaelaus

    I am traveling to Adelaide for a semester at Flinder’s University. Is that the school you worked for? If so, could I ask about more info, and if not, have you heard of it? Thanks!

    • I’m at UniSA, but Flinders is the third uni in the Adelaide area (in addition to U of Adelaide.) It isn’t actually in the city though; it’s further south. I don’t know much about that university but I can try to answer questions. If not, you can always check out and talk to other students on their Facebook page.

      • Rock longrich dickson wwc

        Hi dear jennie if i want to work and live in australia melbourne how get the visas job??and i want to know how cost living in melbourne??thank frm malaysia!

  • tracey

    Hello i would love to live in the usa but i am not qualified in alot have 4 kids one with a disability in a brief glance it looks cheaper in the usa I would like to comment on the above blog i spend 350.00 per quater electricity gas is 130 for 2 months winter is 250-300 per 2 months internet is 140 per month 300 gig 150 gig on peak and 150 off peak phone rental calls and 750 mobile call allowance foxtel(cable) 112.00 per month petrol is 50 -60 per week grocericies 300 per week my rent is cheapest as i have government housing at 550 per month and water is about 120 per quarter i currently dont work maybe one day real soon i will get to live in the states

  • Faith

    Hi Jennie,

    I am considering moving to Australia and I am currently living in South Africa. I have 1 child and the information you provided was pretty helpful. I was just wondering i am negotiating with my employer for a salary between 65k and 80k. will that be sufficient to support me and my child who is school going age.

    • Sounds reasonable to me, though I’m not experienced with costs of school age children. The average income here is around 50k for a single person.

  • jena

    Yes, ty found your comments most helpful. Considering the move. I presently live off of my pension..which is net 4600.00 us dollars. Will that be enough?? to live with monthly. Oh how does one receive permanent residency there. Is there any information that you can offer, I’d be most appreciative. Doing this alone, so its a bit scarry for me.I”m retired from the nyc police department. Looking for either a studio or one bedroom preferably trendy hip kind of setting..looking also for some good restaurants that are in walking distance to apt. Any suggested areas? Havent any clue as to city…just want it to be pretty and most importantly safe. Ty,i I so look forwatd to hearing from you.

    • That’s more than twice what I earn here and I can afford a 3 bedroom house and a car in the suburbs of Adelaide. East coast cities are much more expensive, so it really just depends on where you want to go. You can check out official visa info here:

  • I am curious as to what mechanics make per hour in Australia as i am working on my Associates Degree in Diesel Technologies and have been wanting to live in Australia

  • Jenn

    I don’t know what you live off of, but the average grocery bills for GOOD food, i.e. eating veggies and not only toast bread add up to $100 per week. I’ve asked around and this is the common amount people spend here (Northern Rivers region).

    • I live off of fruits, veggies, yogurt, pasta, rice, and chicken. I make my own bread, muffins, pancakes, etc., I buy ingredients in bulk and lots of produce on quick sale. I average $35-40 per week on food. (I also only weigh about 45 kilos so my stomach is quite small.)

  • Jennie, this is by far the best information on Australia I have read. Thanks for sharing these updates.

    I would request you to assist me as I am planning for a PR to Australia and Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney are some of the listed options for me.

    As I would be moving with my family (wife and 1 child), would you be able to give me a ball park figure on a monthly expense on rental, utility bills, transportation and children school fees so that I can plan better for my stay there.
    Thanks once again for this blog and will await for a reply from you.

  • James

    Good website, but i’m puzzled by your extremely low cost of living, maybe its because you live in adelaide in some suburb which maybe cheaper compared to melbourne?

    We are a couple in melbourne and barely get by $80,000 (before tax) its literally a struggle in Melbourne. Rent is $2100 per month for a 2bed in a safe low crime area, power and water is about $150 per month (we dont use much), groceries cost no less than $180-200 per WEEK (be its really really expensive here, fuel is $400 per month, parking charges $50 per week, gas $50 per month, health insurance $200 per month (not including car reg, insurance and maintenace) we pretty much can’t go out on outings maybe once a month. A movie for 2 will put us down $50, dinner in a midrange place $100. Holidays cost a fortune can barely afford them. The prices are going up on weekly basis, most ppl just can’t keep up.

    • Adelaide is definitely cheaper than the east coast. Water is included in the rents here; not sure if it’s just an Adelaide or SA thing but none of the rentals I looked at made you pay water separately. Electricity/gas is probably lower here too since our weather isn’t as cold in the winter.

      My health insurance is included in my university stipend, except for the supplementary coverage but even that is really cheap. I live a few blocks from the university so I don’t even need a car. I rarely use it which is why I spend only $40 a month on petrol.

      I buy fruits/veggies from vendors and at markets, plus I go shopping often so I can get cheaper quick sale items. But I can stop by the shops on my walk home from the university so it’s very convenient for me. I know it’s more difficult to go to the store every other day when you commute to work and would have to waste petrol to do so.

      I rarely buy things at full price in grocery stores. I look out for things that are on sale (especially bread and chicken), and buy a lot at once. You can freeze a lot of food to use later. I get toiletries (shampoo, body wash, etc.) from The Reject Shop and Kmart since they are so much cheaper there (plus Kmart often has sales – I just stocked up on 7 bottles of lotion!)

      I still buy clothes and books sometimes from the US since they are so expensive here. Even with shipping costs, the price overall can be cheaper – though Australian Kmart and Target seem to offer reasonable prices on clothes. I rarely go to the movies or out to dinner – and when I do, I go to cheap bistro places where I can get dinner for $15.

      I don’t know how people get by in Melbourne or Sydney. I am able to live on $30,000 a year here with no problems (even with paying the full rent by myself since I live alone) but I know that would be impossible on the east coast.

      So, the moral of the story is: move to Adelaide! 🙂 Seriously, cheaper rent, cheaper food, cheaper electricity/gas since winters are milder, and you can walk/bike to work from many places in the suburbs so no need to waste money on petrol. We even have free wifi throughout the city so you don’t even have to pay for data on your phone!

      • Ahmad Al-Gendy

        Hi Jennie
        what about jobs and business at Adelaide, what is the suitable salary in which a family of 4 persons can live?

        thanks in advance

  • Tina

    My boyfriend and I are considering relocating permanently…I am a registered nurse-psychiatric background and he is a Emergency Medical Services helicopter pilot… is there a need for these fields in Au and if so what is the avg salary for each? I have a Bachelors and he has an airline transport pilot license and 20 yrs flying experience. Thanks.


    dear , can u please guide me that whats the monthly rent of a studio apartment in an average area? furthermore you also tell me which type of jobs are available in australia particularly in perth for student visa holders and how many dollars a student can earn weekly? in last give me a idea that whats an average expenses and earnings of a student there??? regards burhan

  • Aaron Matthews

    I’m currently in school for marine biology and I would love to move to Australia. However, I can’t seem to find out any information as to how much a Marine biology salary is. If you could give some kind of insight that would be very helpful

  • Gladys

    Hello. we’d like to get more informations and suggestions from you. me and my sister are planning to go to Australia. for work and study. Please e-mail me at
    Thank you so much. I would appreciate your speedy response. I’ll just wait then.

  • Hi Jennie, that is a very thorough write-up on Australia’s cost of living. You have taken a step back from a focusing on a particular state, to cover all the important details we have to know about Australia. It is great to know how the economy runs for a typical household in Australia, especially when I intend to live away from home next year. I understand that this was posted awhile back. I do have one query with regards to the changes that may have occurred over the 2012-2013 period. The value of the AUS dollar seems to be staying strong, do you think this situation will affect the market prices of our household necessities?

  • Kim

    Hello and thank you for this very useful post. I hope to commence studies in Australia soon and this has helped to give me a clearer picture of the cost of living there.

  • arsela

    My name is arsela i m working as a radiographer in aga kan university and hospital i have one baby me n my husband deided to come to australia but i m really scared after reading and when i herad that cost of living in australia is too much high??i m planning to apply on student visa as i need to study more in this field pls anyone guide me regarding this country…

  • arlene

    thank you for sharing your story there in australia,i wish i can go there too and teach primary pupils…

  • ColoradoMark

    Hi Jenny,
    I might have an opportunity to relocate for a few years to a sister company in Adelaide in the next few months and I had a few questions that you might be able to answer. I was thinking of living near the beach (i.e. easy walking distance on a regular basis), but still relatively close to the city center and to work. My questions are: what beach area would you recommend that is close to Adelaide International Airport (work) and the city center? What would a 1 or 2 bedroom fully furnished apartment run (ballpark)? How is the public transportation system? How is the bike situation in the city, as I think I will be rising my road bike to work and most places? Also, not sure on this one, but do you know roughly what the wages are in Adelaide as compared to the USA? I live in Denver, CO as an accountant and would be taking on a manger role in Adelaide and have no idea where to start salary negotiations. Thanks for any help!

    • Glenelg, Henley, and Grange are the closest beaches to the airport and city. I’m not sure of prices there since I live on the other side of the city, but you can look at for current listings. I paid $300 a week (includes water) for a furnished 2 bedroom apartment when I first arrived. Now I live in a 3 bedroom (unfurnished) house for $355 a week (includes water). Public transportation here is not that great – buses tend to be late. You should be able to bike into the city though; they’ve been creating new bike lanes. Wages here seem higher than in the US (maybe not NY wages, but definitely higher than what I’m used to). I don’t know about accountants, but for university lecturers (even post-docs) the starting pay is usually above $60k. Minimum wage here is like $15 an hour or just over $30k a year. Vacation is 4 weeks a year too, not a measly two weeks.

  • Ahmad Al-Gendy

    I’m thinking seriously to move to Australia, you really transferred a positive figure for living there.
    Could you please send your valuable recommendations for the best cities to move to, in which prices & rents are reasonable, climate is moderate no matter to be at city center off-course but in which I can have a job or make business.

    P.S: I’m married & have 2 daughter (8 & 4) and I’m already running my own business (supplying medical products to hospitals & medical centers)
    Thanks a lot & really wish more progress

  • Yes, there in many small town in Australia.But life is very peaceful at that places.

  • Australia is an ideal place to live in. The cost can be so high but I think it’s the experience that matters most.

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  • Jessica Bowen

    How do you find jobs in Australia I am thinking of moving here from USA with my husband and son. Also how do you find what are the best schools in the area? Thanks

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  • yoga els

    Hello my name is yoga.. i plan to take master degree at flinders university (AAS scholarship).. can u give me some advises about where/which area i should look for house/unit/apartment rent (preferably near campus) and how much its price (exclude or include water,gas,etc). Thank you sir.

  • Adam Leatherbarrow

    The way you explained those things is incredible, your monthly bill will definitely guide others who ware thinking to moving in Australia. I appreciate you for sharing this king of stuff. Although I have few questions about (cheapest area, friendly neighbor hood) where can I find this kind of place.

  • Tracy

    I have a pension of 200 USD. I am by myself. Where can I live in be happy on my income?

    • Ultima Choice

      Far far from a major city. Unless you don’t mind sharing a house. You might be able to rent a room in an old inner city house for $200-250 AUD per week? If you move out to regional Australia you can probably get a house for $500 AUD per week.

  • Tracy

    Sorry, I meant 2000 USD.