Hi I'm 21 from England and I am planning to travel to Australia on a working visa in Jan 2012 alone, has anyone got any tips on how to start planning/what to consider/into packages etc?
Have come across Oz Intro and Bunac, any experiences?
How easy is it to get work, I would be looking at possibly temporary admin jobs?
Any advice however little or small would be great!!
I'd just get a Greyhound pass or buy a car instead of going with a company that organises everything for you because Australia really isn't a place where you need help to find accommodation or good deals on day trips etc., especially if English is your first language.
Plus you'll meet tons of people who will give you advice on the places they have already been to and which hostels to stay in. The Lonely Planet is a good addition to that. If you're scared of travelling by yourself, maybe consider booking a package for the first few weeks but unless you're so shy that you're scared to talk to people, you'll never _not_ meet other travellers.
From my experience, you can get much better value if you travel by Greyhound buses (they have great bus passes for longer distances or time spans) or other public transport and just organise your own accommodation and book packages only for the day trips you actually want to do. When you do book (several) trips through travel agents such as Peter Pans, ALWAYS try to negotiate. "Hey, I booked this other trips with you guys two weeks ago, can I get a discount?" Usually worked for me. Booking several trips in one package is the cheapest option (by trips I mean things like two nights on a boat in the Whitsundays, three days on Fraser Island, snorkelling in the Great Barrier Reef etc.).
If I were you, I'd fly to Sydney or Perth and just stay there for a week or two to figure out what you want to do and talk to people, then book a Greyhound bus pass or a flight somewhere else or buy a car and a tent or something. Camping is probably not quite as sociable as sleeping in hostels (I'm not an expert here, I only stayed at hostels and did couchsurfing) but you'll meet more Australians and there will still be other travellers.
Work might be difficult, I was there in 2009 and a lot of places were not hiring people from outside of Australia because of the economic crisis. I don't know if that has improved. It will certainly be of advantage if you have work experience in admin jobs but I really wouldn't recommend being picky with the kinds of jobs you're willing to take.
Hope this helps!
Thanks so much for the info really helpful! Never done this sort of thing and have decided to take a career break to go away for the year, daunting but gonna be great.
I will be sure to use your advice.
The above post is excellent - very informative! My experience of planning has been to look first off at the places I'd like to visit in Oz - East Coast for barrier reef, Fraser Island etc then look into flights for different places - sometimes Sydney or Melbourne are cheaper to fly to than others - and once I've done that, start looking at booking a hostel for 7ish days somewhere. (I'm starting in Cairns on 27th Sept and just booked 10 days in a hostel then winging it from there )
Also, a lot of things these intro packages arrange for you (accom, bank accounts, medicare etc) can be done very easily by yourself out there (I've got several friends out there at the mo) so it's nothing to worry over. Meeting people is something I'm a bit nervous about but I've been told hostels are the best place to do that!
I'm a little worried about the job situation too but again I've been told that it is better than the UK (not hard at the moment!) and you do pick up work pretty easily. As above, best perhaps to stick to the industry you've got the most experience in for starters and then you can search for other things.
Lastly, the Lonely Planet guidebook has been like my right hand - buy one or get one from your local library. Irreplaceable for a source of info!
That's the thing I want to be sure I get to visit all the must see places aswell as finding work and earning some money to keep me going! The more I read and research it seems to be that so many people go it alone and meet people in hostels like you say and end up doing the same things these intro packages provide but sooo much cheaper! This makes it less scary!
I'm thinking of starting in Sydney and finding some temp work.
I've just been made redundant so I know only to well what the job situation is like here at the moment and that is why I am using it to my advantage! I have only started doing some research so hopefully as the weeks go on all will become a bit more clear, alot of people tend to say they booked a hostel somewhere for a few days and then just planned everything once they got there, maybe the best idea?
My main concern was just affording to visit the different areas and knowing what I am doing but hey that's what the adventure is all about!!
I will be sure to get the Lonely Planet guidebook!!
Thanks for your help, hope you have a wicked time!! x
I think the money situations always a bit of a concern, esp if (like us in the UK) we've only got experiences of the bad side of the economy (unemployment etc). I was really worried about finding a job but after speaking to people, I've chilled a bit.
Yeah, all will become clearer the more you read and research - things are finally starting to clear for me and I've been doing this nearly 8 months!
Definitely best idea to book hostel for a few days - but not too long in case it's not for you - then you don't have to worry about that once you're there and then you can try sorting out where you want to go next. I've not experienced it personally having not gone yet but I can imagine just asking staff and people in the hostel where they've gone/what there is to see etc is a huge source of knowledge and you might hear of something you hadn't previously heard of.
I know it's difficult but try and save, save, save - had to give up on the nights out I usually have to save some money. Surprising how much not going out can save LOL!