I have been visiting this forum now for a little while checking out all the gossip and information that is availiable for us budding travellers. It is great to see such a helpful community of users willing to lend a hand! Anyway keep up the good work TP.
Now as the title of this post should suggest i am in the process of now planning my move over to the UK for an extended pariod of time (beginning around November 2005 for a year and a bit). I have been checking out the other posts on here regarding working holidays, and a lot of information has been helpful. My situation is slightly different and i have a question that i cant find in other posts. Here goes...
I reside in Perth, Western Australia and have been here since i was 4yrs old, the good news is that i am british born, which makes my decision to go on a working holiday so much easier (i can hear all the other people interested in working holidays in britain shouting obscenities wishing they had a british passport), but to make life a little harder i am travelling with my girlfriend who is an aussie, so i feel the pain for everyone going through the process of getting your visa's. I went back to England for 6 weeks back in christmas 2000 (when there were the decent snowfalls over most of the country) and since then i have had the desire to return for a longer time to experience the history/life/charms of my native country.
So for my question... to work in the UK, i believe one needs a National health insurance number (?? from memory think thats what its called) which basically does the same thing as a Tax File Number here in OZ. Are you granted with this number the day you are born or is it something that you apply for when you get to working age? If so, i was told be someone who recently went to UK, that you cannot simply phone up and get told your number. I was wondering if anyone could assist in giving me some information regarding the issue of my NH number and how to obtain it etc.
The other side to it is my girlfriend on her working holiday visa... does the WHV mean that she is allocated with her own temporary number and therefore does not need to do any more applications when we get over there?
We are hoping to stay with different family for periods of time (so as to try not to overstay our welcome) up in Grimsby/Cleethorpes/Hull. I already look to have a potential accounting job for when i get over there, so we are well on the way to getting things sorted out. As a separate question (and completely different subject) Ryanair flights leave from Stanstead airport which am i right is saying would be about 3 hour drive from grimsby??? without looking at the other low cost websites yet, are there other cheap alternatives that depart for europe from closer to where i will be staying?
well the post has become fairly big now so i will leave my questions at that in order to prevent you all from becoming bored!
Thanks in advance for any help and if for any chance you are someone looking at coming to OZ and in particular Perth, i will repay the favour if you wish!
Copy the following web site addresses or cut and paste to your search engine and read the official words rather than try to tellyou in my own words the answers to your questions about NI and work.
Ryanair is one of the budget airlines others fly out of East Midlands airport and will be a better bet.
If you want any more help from me just get back to me and I will do all I can, have enjoyed my stays in Perth with my wife's cousin, she lives near Yanchip Park.
All the information about N.I.numbers is on web site
for working holiday visa information look at these sites - the best source of information is the British Embassy nearest to where you live there is a web site -
other sites that can help are
www.workingintheuk.gov.uk/working_in_the_uk/ en/homepage/schemes_and_programmes/working_holidaymaker.html - 43k
thanks for that information on the NI. Will be checking it out then.
Glad to hear you like your time here in Perth. I am not too far away from Yanchep National Park. I live in Joondalup about 20 mins away.
BMI Baby flights depart from East Midlands Airport, which is near Nottingham, Derby and Loughborough. That's probably not too much of a journey the east coast. I recently got a return to Dublin from there for two pence!
Mid 2005 the new Doncaster Robin Hood Airport (I think that's what its called) is due to open. I don't know what budget airlines will go from it but there probably will be cheap flights to Europe etc from there, and its not at all far from Grimbsy/Hull.
Also, you can get cheap flights now from Coventry (tiny airport), I think it's ThomsonAir.
Stanstead is really difficult to get to, and the cheap flights aren't really much use when you're paying twice as much in train fares to get to the airport!
The National Insurance Number is the number allocated to you for all your dealings with Inland Revenue and the Department for Work and Pensions. It is two letters, six digits and another letter. You must apply for one as soon as you start work or claim benefit. To get one, providing you satisfy the conditions you'll have to contact your nearest Social Security office and ask for an appointment to be interviewed for a NI number. At the interview you will need to be able to prove your identity. Try looking on www.dwp.gov.uk for more info.
Too right about the sighs of frustration from those of us who struggled with work permits etc.
Anyway - I will say my fav piece of advice - get a UK bank account before you leave home. Just trust me on this. You will need it and its not like your NI number which you can only apply for here - you pretty much can only apply form your bank account from home so research which banks do it in your area and get one to set it up.
As for the NIN - I was reading the replies and I can only tell you one more thing - expect it to take a LONG time. Not only to get your interview (mine was well over 2 weeks) but it can take 6 months to get your NIN card so do it as soon as you get a job! Bureaucracy is the name of the game and its slower than chess here! Even the wait when you get to your appointment can take ages so take a mag too!
You and your girlfrind will probably benefit form the advice Global Visas can give. I got recommended them and they are terrific - everyone I spoke to was excellent - they really know what they are doing and are straight up - they will tell you if they can't help you but like as not they will work out something you hadn't known about. Just google GLobal Visas (sorry - I would but this thing is so slow today!) and you should easily find the site!
Good luck - let me know if you need any other help.
My understanding is that you have to apply for the NI number, and that it can take quite a while to come through.
I think BOB FLINN's advice is good; go to the Inland revenue site.
Another thing; forget this "open a bank ccount before you go" business. I found this completely impossible. There are no official links between Australian banks and UK banks, an dealing with a UK bank remotely is next to impossible. I was told that my current bank (ANZ) would help organise it. Well, you can imagine going into your local ANZ branch and asking for assistance in setting up a foregin bankl account.... "a what?"
Even when you are over there, the UK banks want to see proof of UK address, utility bills, etc so why are they going to give you an account when you rea not even in the country? But then, that's my experience, TravelMc's was obviously different.
Thanks for the info people!!! very helpful
Interestingly regarding the UK bank account, from reading other posts on the site, i thought i should look at getting a bank account.
At the various travelex places around i have seen signs up saying "going to UK? get a bank account here". So i went in to ask them what the deal was. Basically they said that they act as a middle man to the bank (HSBC) and me. It takes a while to go through, somthing in the order of 4 weeks. What they need are as follows
Australian utility bill showing address
Minimum deposit of 1500 pounds
so i think as a tip to aussie travellers maybe this is a good way to go, as you can get everything done before getting there and dont have to worry about the crap of having a billing address in the UK etc (maybe take a bit of stress from the mind too??)
With regard to the minimum deposit in the account, i wonder if this will be a sufficient account for my girlfriend to show for her visa requirements. Currently it says that around $4500 is what is needed. Does that mean they want to see an australian account or any account will do as long as it equates to the dollar amount? Not sure on that one, i would have thought that having pounds would have been better, but you never know with these type of things.
Another question regarding the bank statements, which maybe could be answered by someone who has travelled on a visa before. Does it matter if the account is in joint names? Obviously setting up 2 uk accounts for my girlfriend and i means 2 lots of the initial deposits. On the other hand if we show our joint australian account does it impact the amount of money needed in the account as it is regarded to be half mine (as a british person) and half hers (as an aussie on the visa)???? Dunno about that one, getting a bit technical now, maybe i need to ring them and spend 2 hours on hold while someone gets to the phone.....
What do you all think?