Recently I met the wonderful Claire, blogger/writer/contents strategics from Peterborough. Claire invited me along to a Jack the Ripper event in London which was when I discovered her talented blog. Claire is passionate about travel and has written a piece expressing her views towards taking the next step when travelling.
“As a travel lover, I’ve always fancied the idea of taking the next step and making the travel life my daily reality. In fact, after I left University, I was pretty sure that my plan was going to be to move to Canada for a year, maybe even two, but circumstances dictated that I didn’t in the end. I’ve not ruled it out though – at 24 (okay, okay, I’m 25 next week!), I’m still young enough that in a few years, I can head on out. Besides, I’ve lived in America for work aged 19 for 3 months, and I get to go away at least three times a year, so I’m not doing too badly!
My ‘little’ sister, however (she’s nearly 22… but she will always be my little sister!), has just moved to Australia and I’m going to be eternally jealous (until, of course, I eventually do it myself!). Despite not being an envious person in nature at all, when it comes to the fact that it’s bitterly cold over in not-so-sunny England, it’s hard to deal with the fact that she’s lazing around on a lovely warm beach in Sydney. My sister (like me!) can be a bit of an anxious person, and so I’m really proud of her for taking this step. She’s one of those people who has mentioned doing this for quite a while, but I sort of never imagined she’d actually do it. Now, however, she has a job and everything, and she has an apartment with her boyfriend and some nice flatmates right on the Harbour.
So, how does she recommend taking the plunge, especially if you’re a scaredy cat? First of all – just do it. That might seem like pretty “DUH!” advice, but if you keep putting it off, it’ll never happen. She went through STA Travel for her working holiday visa (for 18-30 year olds, inclusive), but you can go through Bunac, and probably others, too. It’s handy to have the advice of a company if you’re a beginner, because they’ll start you off nicely, and sort out initial meetings and hostels and bank accounts. But, if you’re a seasoned pro, you can probably go without and get a visa by your own means.
Secondly, you should make a huge checklist before you leave – you don’t want to forget anything. There’s some pretty handy tips here, especially if you’re moving long term, or you have a house (since my boyfriend owns property, this is going to be a bloody nightmare for us if we ever do go…!). The flights are obviously also another consideration point – they went via Thailand to break it up a bit and see more whilst they were off adventuring.
When my sister and Tom, her boyfriend got there, they’d saved up a fair bit of money to last them a while. However, they looked for jobs straight away because Sydney – where they chose to start off – is so expensive! In a panic, my sister accepted the first job she was offered and whilst she doesn’t love it (it’s a coffee shop), she said she was glad to get it to keep her savings in check. Her main piece of advice is to stick to what you know when applying (she’d worked in coffee shops here, so…), even if it’s not your fave. However, if you don’t like the idea of doing something you don’t love, perhaps get some different experience before you leave – she didn’t hear anything back from those industries she’d never worked in!
When it comes to searching itself, she used Gumtree, but there’s also an Australian branch of Indeed, and loads of others, too. She just used her CV and cover letter. When it comes to the job thing, bear in mind that she’s now saying she wishes she’d travelled first – so she could have seen what she wanted without limitations. Over there, make sure you’re getting a payslip and doing it all by the book – cash in hand could get you deported!
When looking for a place to live, Emma said you should be so careful of scams. If it looks too good to be true? It probably is! They were offered a penthouse for an absolute steal, but the landlady was conveniently ‘out of the country’ and had apparently left her keys with Fed Ex under the instruction of her property solicitor. They were ignored when it came to them asking to speak to this alleged ‘solicitor’, and they narrowly escaped being conned out of a lot of money. If you’re savvy, again, Gumtree was great, as was Craigslist and Flatshare.com.au. Just make sure you get a phone as soon as you get there, because their initial emails from their starting place at a hostel were ignored, and it was only when they started calling that they got responses. Their place now looks lovely!
My sister is having a great time, but there are days she feels homesick – don’t be afraid to admit that! But she’d recommend it wholeheartedly, because the good far outweighs the bad. The experience is incredible, and I think you’ll grow so much by doing it.
Of course, things might work slightly differently depending on where you move to, but this is the general framework of stuff you’ll have to think about! As I know Rebekah is moving to Aus in June, too, I thought this might be the handiest for her blog!
Claire Louise x”
Hope you guy’s enjoyed Claire’s article! be sure to check her out. Rebekah xx