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“No worries, mate!”
Are you ready to meet friendly people, enjoy a great work-life balance and bask in some southern sunshine? Australia may be your perfect new home.
If you want to move to Australia from the UK, you are not alone. According to the Australian census bureau, more than 1.2 million UK citizens live in Australia. Brits are the largest group of immigrants, at more than 15% of the total number of overseas-born individuals in Australia.
And no wonder. With gorgeous scenery, a temperate climate, and vibrant, livable cities, Australia is a great option for UK residents moving to improve their career or enjoy their retirement.
Is Australia a healthy place to live
Many UK citizens emigrate to Australia for its healthy lifestyle. The country offers nature-lovers incredible opportunities for skiing, hiking, cycling, and playing golf. Watersports lovers can parasail high above the waves, learn to surf in secluded coves, and explore the underwater beauty of the world-famous Great Barrier Reef.
Australia is also a mecca for fans of competitive sports. Rugby, Australian Rules Football, cricket, volleyball, golf, and tennis are part of the fiercely competitive sports scene. If you can play one of these sports, even better.
If you go to an international match, get ready to cheer, “Aussie Aussie Aussie, Oiy Oiy Oiy!”
At 7.692 million square kilometres, Australia is more than 30 times larger than the UK. However, most of its 25M+ population live in coastal areas. Inland Australia is largely uninhabited.
Where should I live in Australia?
Australia is made up of the Northern and Australian Capital Territories and the states of Western Australia, Tasmania, South Australia, Queensland, and New South Wales. The city of Sydney is the largest, with 5.367m residents, followed by Melbourne with 5.159m residents. The next most populous cities are Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide, Gold Coast, Newcastle, and Canberra.
Which part of Australia is the nicest? Ask any Aussie, and you may hear some strong opinions…
Remote and quirky Perth is more than 1300km from the nearest city. Adelaide is known for vineyards, festivals and its foodie culture. The areas around Melbourne offer skiing, beaches, and some of the country’s best golf courses.
Sydney – with its famous Opera House and harbour – is a bustling home to more than 5 million “Sydneysiders.” With 280+ days of sunshine per year, Brisbane is one of the fastest growing cities in Australia.
And in the far north of Australia, hot and sultry Darwin is known for its national parks and breathtaking sunsets.
Take your pick! You can find a brilliant new adventure wherever you decide to live in Australia.
A moving checklist written by expats for expats
We love relocation and we want your move to Australia to be a success. To help you plan your move, we have created an Ultimate Checklist specifically for UK citizens who want to move to Australia.
It was written by expats and our very own Sterling Lexicon Move Specialists. Let us know if you have any questions!
Before you move, there are a few things to check…
Australia recently updated its COVID-19 immigration restrictions. According to the government, “Since 21 February 2022, all fully vaccinated visa holders can travel to Australia without a travel exemption. Unvaccinated visa holders will still need a valid travel exemption to enter Australia.”
You may also need a digital passenger declaration and a PCR test prior to your departure from the UK. Check Australia Covid travel requirements here.
Most states and territories require travellers to take a COVID-19 test within 24 hours of arrival. Quarantines may be compulsory. Requirements vary by state and details can be viewed at https://www.australia.gov.au/states.
For short-term visits (up to 90 days), British passport-holders may enter Australia with an Electronic Travel Authorisation or eVisitor visa. For longer stays, UK citizens need a visa to work, study, or retire in Australia.
Have you already started your visa application? If yes, it’s time to request moving quotes. You can request a quote here. If you need a visa to Australia, speak with one of our dedicated visa and immigration specialists.
Australia offers more than 100 types of visas. Most new residents in Australia will enter under a work visa, such as:
New Employees -for sponsored employees or those holding special skills
Global Talent Visa
Business and investment visas -for business owners of new or existing businesses in Australia:
Business Innovation and Investment Visa (Subclass 888) – Permanent
Other visa types include:
*Information provided above is for awareness purposes only and should not be used as legal advice. Please consult a qualified immigration lawyer for details about your specific situation.
If you are interested in moving to Australia, contact your UK Sterling Lexicon office. We can work with our overseas realtor networks to help you find temporary accommodation options, properties for lease, or even a home for purchase.
Australia’s universal healthcare scheme, known as Medicare, offers residents and some visitors free or low-cost health care services. This includes hospital treatment, medications, and some medical services.
Private medical insurance in Australia is optional for most residents, but high-income earners without medical insurance are subject to a Medicare Levy Surcharge. Australia has a large number of healthcare insurance plans (30,000 and counting), and selecting the right plan can be confusing. A government-mandated website offers clear pricing and plan descriptions.
Brits who are moving to Australia can feel confident using the Australian healthcare system. A recent Commonwealth Fund study ranked Australia 3rd in the world for access to care, healthcare outcomes, and other metrics. Australia was outranked only by Norway and the Netherlands. (If you are curious, the UK came in 4th.)
Health insurance quote for UK citizens moving to Australia: UK citizens may want to purchase health insurance at home before they move. Sterling Lexicon has an arrangement with William Russell, which offers competitive health insurance quotes. Get a quote today.
The Sterling Lexicon Promise
Book with confidence. Book to reserve your move date and if things change you can change your moving dates.
Sterling Lexicon is an accredited international mover who provides professional support throughout your move – here in the UK and at your destination. FIDI protected.
First, find an accredited removal company that specialises in overseas moves
Be careful! Moving your household goods more than 21,000 km from the UK to Australia is very different from moving house in town.
Only request moving quotes from accredited, reputable removal companies who specialise in overseas packing and shipping. Reputable international moving companies use overseas-quality packing materials and techniques, and they have a global network that can safely ship your belongings.
Not sure how to find a reputable company? Here are a few insider tips:
Your moving company should guarantee your international delivery
A good international removal company will guarantee the door-to-door delivery of your household goods from the UK to Australia. Your moving company should be certified and insured.
Your moving company should be internationally accredited by FIDI
Ask if your mover is FIDI certified. FIDI is the only international industry association to use independent auditors. FIDI-certified moving companies are either FAIM or FAIM Plus, the highest standard of moving services worldwide.
To request a moving quote, most companies offer an online Move Quote Form. If your mover has local offices in the UK, you may call them directly or send an email.
Your moving quote should be free and may be based on an in-person or virtual survey.
Speak to experienced International Move Specialists not Sales People
At Sterling Lexicon, your consultation will be conducted by an experienced International Move Specialist, rather than a salesperson. Our Move Specialists have years of experience in the moving industry and are committed to making your move a success. They will walk you through the international move process and answer any questions you have.
Home and Virtual Surveys
The first step in getting a moving quote is a home survey. These can be done in person or via a video survey, which can be a Covid-safe and convenient option.
Whether in person or via a video, your move surveyor will review the contents of your home, the items you would like to move, and the items that need to be stored. You can ask your move surveyor about:
Your moving surveyor should inform you If your move will require special lifting equipment, crating, disassembly, or special protective materials.
**Antiques, fine art and other high-value items should be identified for customs and special insurance.
Sterling Lexicon Video Survey App
We offer COVID-safe, quick and easy video surveys.
Request your international move summary and quote in writing
Once you receive your quote, confirm that it includes the details and items you discussed with your move surveyor. If you have requested quotes from multiple companies, ask for a like-for-like comparison.
Top Tip! Over the phone and ballpark quotes should be taken with a pinch of salt. They may provide a quick cost estimate, but your actual costs may vary substantially.
Sterling Lexicon price promise: if you are comparing quotes, please speak to your Sterling Lexicon Move Specialist.
Our customers say that our Move Specialists are one of the top reasons they love working with Sterling Lexicon.
Our caring and supportive Move Specialists have long tenures in the moving industry and are experts at what they do. They know that moving can be stressful, and they are committed to making your move go smoothly.
In your pre-move consultation, your Move Specialist will learn the details of your move and your unique needs. Your Move Specialist can help identify potential challenges that might arise during your move and help head them off before they become a problem.
After you review your move summaries and quotes, it’s time to accept your preferred provider and book your move date.
Ask your removals company for written confirmation of the important dates of your move:
Share these dates with your family and your support network.
To reserve your moving date, you may be asked to make a payment. This can usually be done by credit card over the phone or online. With Sterling Lexicon you can pay online here.
Track and manage your move online
Whenever possible, choose a moving company that allows you to fill in forms and track your move online. Sterling Lexicon offers 24/7 shipment tracking, so you know where your shipment is enroute.
Customs requirements for moving household goods from the UK to Australia
Individuals who are moving their household goods from the UK to Australia will need to provide copies of personal documents such as passports and Australian visas. Customs forms will be required by the Australian Border Force.
Moving shipments arriving in Australia are considered Unaccompanied Personal Effects UPE (B534). Automobiles and other large items must be accompanied by an Import Declaration and may be subject to import duty, GST, and luxury tax.
As an island nation, Australia has strict customs requirements and restrictions. If you work with Sterling Lexicon, our experts in international moving and customs requirements can help simplify the customs declaration process for you.
Moving a pet from the UK to Australia
Relocating a pet can be scary. Your pets are part of your family and it is difficult to put them on an aeroplane, not knowing if they are safe and comfortable.
Even worse, relocating a pet is time-consuming and complex. To move your pet overseas, you need to arrange for vaccinations, veterinary documents, and government inspections. You have to purchase travel-approved crating that is the correct style and size, and arrange for a safe airline itinerary, which may require an overnight stay in a ‘pet hotel’.
To simplify this process and ensure your pet has an easy and safe trip, we highly recommend professional pet relocation services.
‘Pet movers’ provide door-to-door pet relocation. They advise you on importation requirements, take care of necessary paperwork, and find the easiest travel itinerary for your pet. If your dog or cat needs to stay in a pet hotel, they will arrange for a veterinarian to check that your pet is healthy and can continue on their journey. The best pet relocation companies will provide you with updates and photographs throughout your pet’s journey.
Pet relocation services are more expensive than moving a pet on your own. But the peace of mind you get knowing that your pet is well cared for is priceless.
Can I move to Australia with pets
Yes, you can take a pet to Australia, but your pet will need a valid import permit to enter the country. Permit application deadlines – including proof of vaccinations and tests – can be 180 days or more before your arrival, so you should begin the application process as soon as you find out you are moving.
The following dog breeds are prohibited in Australia:
Australia offers a comprehensive checklist for importing pets.
**This advice is for general informational purposes and does not replace the requirements of the Australian government or the recommendations of a veterinarian.
Once you set your packing dates, it’s time to prepare your home in the UK for your move to Australia!
How to prepare for moving day
Before moving day, take some time to sort through your belongings. Once you decide what items you will take with you to Australia, divide the remaining items into categories of long-term storage, short-term storage, and items to be donated or sold. Make sure that prohibited items are removed from the packing area.
“Empty, Drained, Clean and Dry”
All items shipped into Australia are subject to biosecurity control, which checks for pests. The Australian government recommends that all imported items be “empty, drained, clean and dry” prior to packing. Do not reuse packing materials that originally carried food or drinks. Contaminated items may be seized or destroyed.
If you work with Sterling Lexicon, your Move Specialist can explain Australian customs restrictions to you.
Items that are restricted and prohibited for personal moves to Australia
As per the Australia Border Force, the following items cannot be shipped as Unaccompanied Personal Effects:
**These restrictions may change. If in doubt, speak to your Move Specialist for further guidance.
Air vs. Sea Shipments from the UK to Australia
Depending on your schedule and the items you plan to move, your shipment may include both air and sea shipments. Items that need to be shipped quickly are sent by air. Sea shipments take longer and are typically larger shipments. Prior to your packing day, put items for your air shipment aside. They will be packed and sent separately.
To help make packing day go smoothly, your moving company may provide stickers labelled Air, Sea, Storage, and Don’t Pack. If not, you can create your own with colour-coded Post-It notes.
Bits box for your first day in your new home
Create a box marked Pack Last, Open First. This is where you and your movers will put any small parts from disassembled furniture, nuts and bolts, screws, remote controls, etc..
If you have children, help them create a “first day” box full of toys, colouring books, markers and games. Ask your movers to load these boxes last into your shipment so they can be one of the first things you open.
Items to set aside to travel with you
Set aside the following items into a clearly identifiable container marked Do Not Pack:
Passport(s), visa(s), phones and chargers, power packs, adaptors, documents, employment references, health insurance cover, jewellery and medication. Keep important documents such as insurance policies and a copy of your mortgage or lease in a wallet. Have physical and digital copies ready for inspection.
It’s moving day! Expect your moving crew to arrive on schedule and to introduce themselves. Show your crew foreman the items that are designated for air, sea, and storage. You should also point out any high value or fragile items as well as items that you are not taking.
Professional movers work efficiently, so expect for your home to quickly be a whirlwind of activity. Typically a kitchen crew takes time to carefully pack your dishes and glassware while other packers will begin by wrapping furniture and packing up other rooms. If your packing takes more than one day, your bedding and mattresses will be packed last.
Top Tip! Ask friends or family to help take care of your young children and pets on moving day.
Professionally trained international packing crews
Sterling Lexicon’s professional international packing crews are some of the best in the business and have been working for the company for many years. We only use people we would trust in our own home, so we know they will be professional and respectful in yours too. Their experience ensures all your personal possessions are packed perfectly to withstand being handled and transported over thousands of miles.
Eco-friendly export packing materials
Your items will make a long sea journey en route to Australia, and your crew will use special techniques and materials to prepare them for an overseas trip. These include 4-6 ply export wrap, thick-walled packing boxes, acid free tissue paper, cornering for protecting furniture edges and thick carding to protect surfaces from scratching and tearing.
Your itemised packing inventory
At the end of the final packing day, you will receive your itemised packing inventory. Keep this until you receive your possessions in Australia.
International transit protection
The land and sea voyage between London and Sydney is more than 21,000 kilometres. Your packing crew will do everything they can to safely prepare your belongings for their journey. However, items on sea voyages can be exposed to severe weather and ocean conditions.
We highly recommend transit protection, which provides insurance for your possessions –from the point of packing in the UK to their delivery in Australia.
Top Tip! Declare the full replacement value of your belongings on your insurance forms. Most insurers will only reimburse your claim up to the value you declare. This is especially important for high value items and items in sets.
With Sterling Lexicon, track your move online with 24/7 shipment tracking.
Before your departure, make sure that you have all of your personal documents and visa paperwork. Check for any changes to Covid-related travel restrictions in Australia and leave plenty of time to travel to the airport.
Look at the weather forecast for Australia and congratulate yourself on your exciting new adventure!
Inform your Move Specialist after you arrive in Australia. Once your air and sea shipments have cleared customs, your Move Specialist will arrange for their delivery to your home.
It’s time to set up the essentials including water, electricity, internet and phone service. Open a local bank account and get recommendations for a local doctor, dentist, and other health care providers.
Now that you have moved into your new home in Australia, it’s time to explore and enjoy your new neighbourhood! Get settled and meet new friends through local expat groups and activity groups.
If there is anything that your Sterling Lexicon Move Specialist can do to help you settle into your new home, please contact us right away. We would love to hear from you.
Sterling Lexicon provides visa services for our corporate clients around the world, and we can help you too! If you need an Australian visa, speak with our visa and immigration specialists today. Contact the team.
If you are moving from the UK to Australia, you may want to consider taking your car with you. Like in the UK, cars drive on the left, and automobiles in Australia are expensive to purchase.
The total cost of shipping your car to Australia will include the price for door-to-door shipping as well as a goods and services tax charged by the Australian government. Newer automobiles and luxury cars may also be subject to import duties and additional tax.
In order to import your automobile into Australia, you must receive vehicle import approval. Approval is subject to various criteria, such as:
For assistance exporting your car from the UK to Australia, contact your Sterling Lexicon vehicle moving specialist.
Each year our caring and supportive Move Specialists help returning residents, diplomats, professionals, families, and retirees move to Australia.
We are passionate about relocation and we want to simplify the moving process for you.
Relax and enjoy your new adventure – Speak with one of our Move Specialists today!