Sydney Life??

Old Jul 21st 2008, 12:19 pm
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Default Sydney Life??

Hi Guys,

As my partner and I are currently going through the processof our 457 Visa to move to Sydney at end of September.

I was just wandering if anyone could provide their view of Sydney since moving there, and anything that we should do or take into account before moving to Sydney, as we have never been there ... crazy yes I know!!

It would just be nice to get an idea of life in Sydney from those brave people who have taken the plunge?

Thanks for taking the time to answer.. and I would like to say what a great forum, very helpful!!
S&S

XXX
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Old Jul 21st 2008, 1:00 pm
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Default Re: Sydney Life??

Originally Posted by Soton2Sydney View Post
Hi Guys,

As my partner and I are currently going through the processof our 457 Visa to move to Sydney at end of September.

I was just wandering if anyone could provide their view of Sydney since moving there, and anything that we should do or take into account before moving to Sydney, as we have never been there ... crazy yes I know!!

It would just be nice to get an idea of life in Sydney from those brave people who have taken the plunge?

Thanks for taking the time to answer.. and I would like to say what a great forum, very helpful!!
S&S

XXX
Aaahhh, Sydney.

I'm originally from Gosport - though I did work in Southampton for a few years - and I've lived in Sydney for nearly 29 years.

It's knock-your-socks off beautiful all year round. You have the buzz of a city with a population of 5m and all the facilities that go hand-in-hand with that - but also dozens of gorgeous beaches within the city boundaries and some amazingly diverse scenery within a short drive.

There are countless bars, cafes and restaurants to spend time in and endless activities to participate in. Plenty of culture too, if that's what you want. The weather is great for 9 months of the year (too cold for me right now). Shopping and eating are the best you get anywhere. To me it's the perfect city.

Downsides are the cost of housing. To live in the nice, desirable, convenient suburbs costs a lot - though you tend to get better value if you're renting. We've been in the property market here for so long we have a good-sized house in a great beach suburb. I will admit that it's not so easy for people arriving these days..
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Old Jul 21st 2008, 2:54 pm
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Default Re: Sydney Life??

Originally Posted by NickyC View Post
Aaahhh, Sydney.

I'm originally from Gosport - though I did work in Southampton for a few years - and I've lived in Sydney for nearly 29 years.

It's knock-your-socks off beautiful all year round. You have the buzz of a city with a population of 5m and all the facilities that go hand-in-hand with that - but also dozens of gorgeous beaches within the city boundaries and some amazingly diverse scenery within a short drive.

There are countless bars, cafes and restaurants to spend time in and endless activities to participate in. Plenty of culture too, if that's what you want. The weather is great for 9 months of the year (too cold for me right now). Shopping and eating are the best you get anywhere. To me it's the perfect city.

Downsides are the cost of housing. To live in the nice, desirable, convenient suburbs costs a lot - though you tend to get better value if you're renting. We've been in the property market here for so long we have a good-sized house in a great beach suburb. I will admit that it's not so easy for people arriving these days..
i agree
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Old Jul 22nd 2008, 12:54 am
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Default Re: Sydney Life??

Hi Guys,

As my partner and I are currently going through the processof our 457 Visa to move to Sydney at end of September.

I was just wandering if anyone could provide their view of Sydney since moving there, and anything that we should do or take into account before moving to Sydney, as we have never been there ... crazy yes I know!!

It would just be nice to get an idea of life in Sydney from those brave people who have taken the plunge?

Thanks for taking the time to answer.. and I would like to say what a great forum, very helpful!!
S&S

XXX
Here's my view:

PROS
-The weather is so much better than the UK it isnt true. Even winter is good weather here.
-The food and restaurant culture is far better than the UK. What constitutes good food in the UK would be what you feed a dog here.
-There are little cafes everywhere selling amazing food.
-The work culture is pretty similar, wages are similar to the UK (outside London) in things like IT and Finance.
-I personally feel Sydney is quite a vibrant place in terms of entrepreneurialism. there is a lot of money here and people determined to do well more so than in a lot of places in the UK. I think the days of it being a globval backwater are over. Certainly feels that way being here.

CONS
-The TV here is so bad it is painful. We have foxtel and it is just hour after hour of utter sh1te. There is no structure to an evenings television like in the UK I can sit down to Newsnight on BBC2 followed by Newsnight Review followed by Jonathan Ross on BBC1 - i cant stress enough how bad the tv is. Its mind-boggling.
-There is a definite lack of culture here. Aussies would get angry at you saying it but its hard to put your finger on. Sydney undoubtedly has culture like great restaurants, fashion, theatre etc but its quite superificial eg. a show like Little Britain or The Office or the great music scene we have in the UK could never come out of here. Its all very generic and bland if you ask me.
-There are no proper pubs here like you would get in the UK. People will disagree and mention The Rocks area of Sydney but an Aussie pub is somewhere people go for a drink after work not like in the UK where (for better or worse) life revolves around it.
-Sydney is expensive. Sounds daft but things like Mars Bars are well more expensive than the UK and ofcourse houses. If you can like the Sydney lifestyle in a nice suburb it is an amazing place but venture West and its a real depressing place - and unlike a UK dump it is totally devoid of charm at least some of our dumps have some architectural charm.

I should add that I am over here for 3 months working in Sydney and trying to make a decision on whether to come out here to live with my girlfriend or stay in the UK. Sorry if some of my views are quite negative but always interested to hear what others think.
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Old Jul 22nd 2008, 1:27 am
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Default Re: Sydney Life??

Originally Posted by Soton2Sydney View Post
Hi Guys,

As my partner and I are currently going through the processof our 457 Visa to move to Sydney at end of September.

I was just wandering if anyone could provide their view of Sydney since moving there, and anything that we should do or take into account before moving to Sydney, as we have never been there ... crazy yes I know!!

It would just be nice to get an idea of life in Sydney from those brave people who have taken the plunge?

Thanks for taking the time to answer.. and I would like to say what a great forum, very helpful!!
S&S

XXX
Give your interests and what you are looking for and people will be able to give you more detailed advice.

I tend to think Sydney is the only city worth considering moving to because of my interests but I know it will leave other people standing cold if they want low cost cost beach side living.

You sound like a single couple so would recommend city centre or inner harbour apartment North Side or Eastern Beaches rather than a Upper North Shore suburb or the Hills district or the Shire. This would give you more access to events in the centre and the evening clubs and pubs.

Get a place for three months if you can. Just so you can change it if something else takes your fancy

Plan to spend the first three months getting out and about even if you are not great activitiy people - this will give you a taste of what Sydney has to offer. Pick a place each weekend and make sure you visit other areas, Palm Beach, Manly, Blue Mountains, Hunter valley, Upper Hawksbury, Central Coast, Kiama, Souther highlands - use the city as a weekday place and make sure you go out to each of the inner burbs to eat or drink to get a real feel for the differences there can be.

Ignorance of the differences in Sydney can catch you out and you can believe it is all rather parachoical burbs (which it is) if you do not make an effort to do different things.

Make sure you do walking tours (with a map) of Sydney before it gets too hot - some of the coasal walks are fabulous but also the walks around the city and parks and museums can be amazing.

Get out to see the dawn over one of the beaches - pack a morning coffee and lounge over the Sunday papers.

You can also miss some of the attractions of living in such a place if you centralise your activities about one area. There is horse riding in Centennial park - wonderful place, racing at randwick but also Rose Hill and other courses. Getting a train out to parramatta for lunch and coming back in on the Cat can be an eye opener about how much of Sydney there is. Hire a Kayak/boat and do some of the inland water ways. Keep an eye open for the acts on at different RSLs and go out and join a daft night at one.

Save your money up and keep tabs on the cheaper flights to the other cites and have a weekend away - and then come back and marvel at how much more Sydney has! If you find something in another city or hear someone talking about a trip they have made - check out the websites and you are sure to find Sydney has a similar (if not better) activity.

Make sure you have a list to tick off - do all the things you never did but always planned to in the UK - and then add to it and do all the things you would not be too willing to do and try them out.

have fun and list a few more of your details if you need specifics on Sydney, I am old married mother but know there is a young and lively crowd on here with plenty of advice.

Cheers
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Old Jul 22nd 2008, 4:01 am
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Default Re: Sydney Life??

Originally Posted by Soton2Sydney View Post
Hi Guys,

As my partner and I are currently going through the processof our 457 Visa to move to Sydney at end of September.

I was just wandering if anyone could provide their view of Sydney since moving there, and anything that we should do or take into account before moving to Sydney, as we have never been there ... crazy yes I know!!

It would just be nice to get an idea of life in Sydney from those brave people who have taken the plunge?

Thanks for taking the time to answer.. and I would like to say what a great forum, very helpful!!
S&S

XXX
We've lived in and around Southamtpn (though I'm a Northerner), and now in Sydney, for a second time. First, it is about 100 times better than Southampton city. But that's not a very fair comparison obviously. so here are the pros and cons that we have experienced having been here, back in the UK, and back here again!

For:
  • Possibly the best weather overall in the world for a major city. 300 days of sunshine. Even winters are nice (outside, anyway).
  • Friendly people generally and a cosmopolitan and pretty well-integrated culture. Easy to meet people.
  • Great and varied beaches on your doorstep.
  • So much to do and see...so much there is little need to leave the city. There is something for everyone. You don't have to spend much in Sydney to have a good time so long as you like the outdoors.
  • Great festivals and major events - Musica Viva Australia, Sculpture by the Sea, Mardi Gras, Biennale of Sydney, Chinese New Year, City to Surf, Tea, Coffee and Chololate festival, Film Festival, and other major sporting, art, music and religious events, the list goes on.
  • Amazing cafes and restaurants, mostly very cheap (great Thai main meals for $10.50 eat in, for example). Good coffee (bad coffee is not tolerated).
  • Great place to bring up children of all ages. Outdoor birthday parties at little or no cost. Play parks galore. Beaches. Parks. Events. They really can't get bored here.
  • Good education options, especially primary schools, Catholic secondary schools, Unis (I think UNSW and USyd rank in top 50 in the world according to The Times).
  • Some amazing city parks, esp. the Botanic Gardens and Centenial Park.
  • Renting is cheap relative to buying and for a big city - generally much less than the interest alone.
  • Lots of work generally.
  • Low crime and low fear of crime in many areas.
  • Upbeat 'this is an amazing city' atttitude that does not seem to wear off over time.
  • Several national parks quite accessible.
  • The most beautiful harbour in the world.

Against:
  • Horrifically expensive housing, especially to buy. Possibly the lowest affordability and most arrogant, egotistic, narcissistic estate agents in the world.
  • Can become a bit of an island as it hardly seems worth venturing outside the city.
  • Many public secondary schools are not great. Catholic schools generally better.
  • Far too many cars, too many aggressive drivers, too many new roads.
  • Inadequate public transport outside the central suburbs.
  • Very poor Governance by NSW Government, and no decent alternative.
  • No real evidence of town planning.
  • It is really no place for cyclists.
  • In some circles (not mine), epidemic levels of affluenza and vacuous property obsession.
  • Houses can be cold in winter (often colder than outside) and hard to heat.
  • The height of summer can be uncomfortably hot and humid on some days.
  • November can bring lots of annoying flies.
  • Suncream is needed for at least 2/3 of the year, probably more, and a right pain in the arse.

There are many others fors and againsts that apply to Australia as a whole. I've not included these.

Last edited by ShozInOz; Jul 22nd 2008 at 4:09 am.
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Old Jul 22nd 2008, 5:36 am
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Default Re: Sydney Life??

In a nutshell - Sydney is just like London but with good weather and a slightly less horrific crime rate - can be good or bad depends on what you're after?
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Old Jul 22nd 2008, 1:11 pm
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Default Re: Sydney Life??

Thanks Guys for all your views on Sydney Life.. its really been helpful. The thing my partner and I are into are, Horse riding, walks, nightlife, eating out a lot!!! , cooking, football, socializing with friends, etc the usual stuff. So hopefully by the sounds of things this appears Sydney is a good place to meet our demands on a place.
Reading your pro's is making me very excited and itching to embark on our new adventure, and the cons don't appear to be that bad.. as I could think of loads of cons of England. Really appreciate everyone's honest answers.

One question.. we will be renting, what is the best way to approach the renting market, and is there anything we can do before leaving the UK. We have a idea of where we would live.(Woolohara) but is it worth nearer the time contacting agents etc.. also is it true many people in Sydney are paying over the requested amount each month to bag apartment/houses etc??
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Old Jul 22nd 2008, 1:16 pm
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Default Re: Sydney Life??

Originally Posted by jimbo_d View Post
In a nutshell - Sydney is just like London but with good weather and a slightly less horrific crime rate - can be good or bad depends on what you're after?
Totally same crime rate - same as the world over!

different area and crime rates are manipulated

more money = possibly different area to live in, means you have a garage to put your car in!

Depends on what you want the crime area stats to say in your area.

Please noboby move to Aus if they think the crime is less!!!
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Old Jul 22nd 2008, 1:22 pm
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Default Re: Sydney Life??

Fantastic thread! My hubby is moving to Sydney area with his job. We are going for a look-see visit at the end of August with our two children (aged two and a half and six months) so it has given us tons of ideas of things to do!
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Old Jul 22nd 2008, 1:55 pm
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Default Re: Sydney Life??

would you say these view are specific to Sydney, or would you generalise the whole of Australia into it?
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Old Jul 22nd 2008, 2:00 pm
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Default Re: Sydney Life??

We have been here just over three months, have been here on holiday a couple of times before.

Pretty much agree with most of what other people have said. We are loving it so far...managed to get jobs quite quickly and are currently buying our own house, move in in a couple of weeks.

It has been a bit easier for us than most cos we are staying with my family until we move, so we haven't had to worry about some where to rent first.

I think you'll find it colder than you would expect in the winter...mainly in the mornings and the evenings. During the day, and to the horror of my work colleagues, I can still be walking around in a short sleeved shirt during the day. Because my car is parked outside at the moment, I have had ice on the screen a couple of times!

The traffic can be really bad. I have gone from a 5 minute commute in Chatham to 45 minutes in Sydney...although it doesn't feel like you are actually in the car that long. During the rush hour which I would say starts around 5am to 9am, you can probably double the time you actually expect a journey to take. Outside rush hour, the roads and motorways are good!

We are living in the western suburbs. I guess like most places there are good and bad areas. We have been fortunate enough to have the advice of our family as to the places to avoid.

The people are very friendly.... it is very multicultural.

We feel very comfortable and at home in Sydney
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Old Jul 22nd 2008, 2:34 pm
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Default Re: Sydney Life??

Originally Posted by m1tch_3ll View Post
would you say these view are specific to Sydney, or would you generalise the whole of Australia into it?
well Byron Bay aint' nothing like Sydney! except for the cost of housing which is pretty well expensive everywhere! working conditions can vary too. wages can be higher in sydney but also cost of living is aswell.

and state to state can be different too, different climate etc lends to different lifestyles.
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Old Jul 22nd 2008, 3:15 pm
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Default Re: Sydney Life??

Originally Posted by m1tch_3ll View Post
would you say these view are specific to Sydney, or would you generalise the whole of Australia into it?
Could you generalise the whole of the UK into Berkshire? or Lancashire?

Aus is no different - its a very diverse country.....

Last edited by Pollyana; Jul 22nd 2008 at 3:19 pm.
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Old Jul 22nd 2008, 7:28 pm
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Default Re: Sydney Life??

Just wanted to say this has been a really informative thread and much appreciation to those Sydney-siders etc. for contributing.
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