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Aussie passports applied for today!!

Aussie passports applied for today!!

Old Oct 9th 2012, 12:40 am
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Default Aussie passports applied for today!!

Hi all..
before we arrived in Australia I was addicted to this website and asked many questions and got lots of useful (and not so useful) opinions on life over here. Then we got our 457 visa and arrived, since then I havent posted too much on here and have often felt guilty for not giving an update as i know i used to love reading about how different people were getting on...

This morning we uploaded our application for Australian Citizenship after 4 wonderful years on the Northern Beaches of Sydney.
so, with that in mind here is our story so far...

Way back in late 2007 a friend of a friend got offered a job out in sydney with a big construction company and was emailing back telling everyone how great it was and how relatively easy it was to get a 457 visa and get out here. I was working as a quantity surveyor in dublin, building tesco stores for a living and not really having very much fun at all so i took a punt and emailed my cv to this friend of a friend who passed it on and low and behold 3 weeks later i had a job offer to come out here.this was early 2008.

at first we had no intention of coming out, i had never been, my wife had been here as a back packer years ago and to be honest if it wasnt for her telling me we had nothing to lose and lets just go and see how we go then i would probably have stayed put.

my wifes sister was getting married in september 2008 and luckily enough for us the company were prepared to wait for us till after the wedding so we arrived in sydney at the end of september 2008.

the 457 visa came through very quickly and rather annoyingly it was awarded and dated from the month of april 2008 (that was when it we applied) so that meant we kind of wasted 5 months of the visa.

we arrived and loved it from the word go...sure there were pressures for the first few months, i was working long hours and we had one child at the time who was 3 years old, my wife was left to her own devices for most of the day looking after a 3 yr old. we didnt know a sinner in sydney and the first few months proved to be quite tiring for her, i was loving it though and was busy in my new job, meeting lots of new people and being busy..
bit by bit though things impoved..the best thing was when we managed to get our little boy into kindergarden, he made some new friends and my wife became friend with the mums and bit my bit things grew from there.
so about the 457 visa..

i have read on here many different views of it, but this is my personal experience of it.

you get lafha, the company i was working for were very good to me..the accounts department told me what the minimum salary a person of my grade could get away with being paid and then basically they were able to give me the difference from that minimum to what i was being paid ( which was about $80k back then) tax free, it was great.
however, there were a few draw backs....
schools in nsw...if you are on a 457 visa in nsw you have to pay for your kids to go to school, even if it is a free (public) school. we sent out little boy to kindy and we had to pay $5k a year in school fees.

but that aside...the 457 visa got us into australia very quickly, i had no issues with my employed trying to screw me around or anything like that and they ended up giving us sponsorship for permanent residency after 24months. we could have stayed on the 457 and the lucrative lafha for longer but we wanted peace of mind to know we could stay here if we wanted to so we applied for our PR status in jan 2011. i all came through really quick and on the 21 feb 2011 we had our pr awarded.

then we had our second child here, another little boy, and he gets a passport as we had pr when he was born
its kinda weird when you get the pr it comes as a pdf attachement in an email (or ours was anyway) and it was all a bit of an anticlimax really...that was our goal, get the pr and see how the land lies and make our minds up on whats what....

on the whole...life here is great...spring time now and its about 23 degrees..last weekend, our little babies first birthday, the weather was 33 degrees and roasting hot..we love the outside and if nothing else giving the kids an opportunity to go to nippers ( beach activity every sunday morning for kids from the age of 6 to 15...teaching them water safety, board training, lots and lots of great stuff) watching my older boy who is 7 now getting stuck in (by no means is he the best...but he gives it a go and has fun) ..what more can a parent really ask for...sitting on the sand having a coffee watching all this going on, well it makes you feel lucky to be here really..

it isnt utopia though, by no means..its pricey here. my wife doesnt work. luckily for us i earn a fair amount so she doesnt have to, but still..in sydney you dont get much change out of $800k for an apartment that is close to the beach...you can go out west and buy a beautiful big house on a big block of land for about $550/$700K but the thing is we didnt come to australia to be living hours from the beach...so our choice is to rent, its not a flash place, it is near the beach and we pay $700/week rent.

food is pricey here in the shops. we dont get much change out of $250/week on food.
cable tv..i love watching the uk premiership....foxtel (sky) is $60 per month including the sports channels.
alcohol is pricey too...eg, a case of corona beer (24 bottles) is the best part of $50.
petrol is cheap, or cheaper than the uk

clothes are pricey here too...but with internet shopping things are changing..

an example..i wanted a new pair of diesel jeans..shops in sydney had a pair of them for $380...i went in, tried them on, found the exact pair i wanted, and bought them from house of fraser (with free shipping) from the uk, for 65(pounds)...some mark up!!

...but on the whole..this place is great...i guess its what you make of it...you meet lots of people over time, some you gel with, lots you dont...i miss friends and family but...i know i would feel like i had let my kids down if i took them back to being stuck indoors playing on their playstations for hours and hours all weekend as its too miserable to go outside and play.

so that about sums up what i think of the place after 4 years...feel free to memo and ask about most anything...

it will be interesting to see how long now it takes to get an aussie passport!!

good luck

Russ
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Old Oct 9th 2012, 8:44 pm
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Default Re: Aussie passports applied for today!!

Great update, very realistic approach!
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Old Oct 9th 2012, 9:09 pm
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Default Re: Aussie passports applied for today!!

We arrived in August 2008 and spent the first 6 weeks in Manly. It is a nice place. Congrats on your citizenship- must get on with my application: it has been sitting on the coffee table for ages, only half done.
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Old Oct 9th 2012, 11:21 pm
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Default Re: Aussie passports applied for today!!

Nice one, I'll race you on the passports. No sign of a letter yet, 1 week in.
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Old Oct 10th 2012, 12:03 am
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Default Re: Aussie passports applied for today!!

Originally Posted by knockoff nige View Post
Nice one, I'll race you on the passports. No sign of a letter yet, 1 week in.
nothing to do except sit back and wait!!
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Old Oct 10th 2012, 10:31 pm
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Default Re: Aussie passports applied for today!!

Originally Posted by knockoff nige View Post
Nice one, I'll race you on the passports. No sign of a letter yet, 1 week in.
I got my email invite to go for citezenship interview this morning!!
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Old Oct 10th 2012, 10:39 pm
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Default Re: Aussie passports applied for today!!

Originally Posted by Russ_Sarah View Post
I got my email invite to go for citezenship interview this morning!!
Damn it What date is the interview?
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Old Oct 10th 2012, 11:25 pm
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Default Re: Aussie passports applied for today!!

Originally Posted by knockoff nige View Post
Damn it What date is the interview?
next week, wednesday at 1.20pm!!
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Old Oct 10th 2012, 11:26 pm
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Default Re: Aussie passports applied for today!!

Originally Posted by knockoff nige View Post
Damn it What date is the interview?
where in ireland are you from by the way..

dublin boy here
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Old Oct 10th 2012, 11:27 pm
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Default Re: Aussie passports applied for today!!

Originally Posted by Russ_Sarah View Post
next week, wednesday at 1.20pm!!
I called them to ask about mine. They said its being processed. Exactly what I see online. No help. Oh well.
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Old Oct 10th 2012, 11:30 pm
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Default Re: Aussie passports applied for today!!

Just got my email. Next Thursday at 10:40am. Exciting. Maybe that phone call got their attention. I'm from Mayo but lived in Dublin for 10 years.
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Old Oct 11th 2012, 12:14 am
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Default Re: Aussie passports applied for today!!

Originally Posted by knockoff nige View Post
Just got my email. Next Thursday at 10:40am. Exciting. Maybe that phone call got their attention. I'm from Mayo but lived in Dublin for 10 years.
congratulations!!
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