First weeks in Cairns

Old Jul 19th 2007, 2:00 pm
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Default First weeks in Cairns

Background for those who don't know I'm a newly qualified nurse with a job in Cairns on a 457 visa, married to 'windog' with two daughters 11 & 9 who are all still in the UK hopefully selling our house.

I chose to fly Air New Zealand via LA and Auckland to get the extra baggage allowance, hell of a journey to do in one go with no stopovers

Was met at the airport and taken to my accommodation that was arranged (and paid for) by the hospital for the first two weeks. Central Plaza 4* apartments near the hospital, fully furnished but out of my price range as a long term option. Finding somewhere to live was one of my biggest concerns and when someone from work offered me a room at their house I jumped at it rather than deal with a load of real estate agents on my own. Don't know if this was the right thing to do or not as I like my own space but it's cheap and has been a good way to meet people. When the rest of the family are coming I'll start looking for something else. One observation is that there is not much to rent for less than 350 a week (not for a family anyway) plenty of units and townhouses but houses in nice areas are $350+.

As I'm on my own I haven't done big grocery shops but things that seem pricey...cucumber, lettuce both around $2.50 and other fruit and veg, bread also. There are local markets which are nice to stroll around and they are definately cheaper.

Things that are cheaper here, wine...buying boxes is the most economical way, it's possible to get a nice shiraz 2 litre box for less than $9 OR you can get 5 litre boxes for about $12 but I haven't tasted that stuff yet. Buying bottles seems no cheaper than UK. Petrol also cheaper, $1.26 a litre for unleaded.

Cairns is a lovely green city surrounded my mountains with loads to do, you can pay loads to go on reef trips or rainforrest tours but there is also plenty of free entertainment, the esplanade lagoon, muddys park, crystal cascades (local swimming hole - nearly trod on a snake while walking there!), beaches, botanical gardens, centenary lakes etc

Met with Mr and Mrs Bix who very kindly helped me find a car to buy Thanks.
Was able to get finance with a $500 deposit but definately read the terms and conditions because they seem quite different to any I've come across in the UK .

Have been up and down in mood, obviously missing my family and will be happier when they get here and we can all be under the same roof again but on the whole things are good. My job is going well, I've been well supported and colleagues have all been really welcoming.

Just hope when the others get here they like it as much as I do
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Old Jul 19th 2007, 2:24 pm
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Default Re: First weeks in Cairns

Hi

Glad your settling in ok, it will be tough without your family but worth it in the long run . How are you finding work compared to the NHS? Only tell me good stuff (although doubt it'll change my mind!).

julie x
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Old Jul 19th 2007, 2:30 pm
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Default Re: First weeks in Cairns

Good start Nursie. Long may it get easier when family arrives. All the best
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Old Jul 19th 2007, 3:59 pm
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Default Re: First weeks in Cairns

Sounds as though you have landed on your feet and that things are moving along nicely. Cairns is great isn't it? Once your family arrive you can the relax abit and start to get into some routine. Good luck to you all.

Mandy
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Old Jul 19th 2007, 5:49 pm
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Default Re: First weeks in Cairns

Glad to see things seem good so far, we've been waiting in anticipation of your post.

Keep on posting, when you can, all about the hospital and the area, anything you come across, all those hopefully heading your way want to know everything good and bad.

Hope everything stays good for you.
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Old Jul 19th 2007, 8:25 pm
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Default Re: First weeks in Cairns

My wifes a paramedic and weve just started the process, but are hoping to get placed in the Cairns area, posts like this are a godsend to us and many more.
i hope you keep us updated, and hope things go from strength to strength for you.
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Old Jul 19th 2007, 9:00 pm
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Default Re: First weeks in Cairns

Great post! Must be very hard to be there without family but you sound very positive so well done!
How is the weather in cairns?
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Old Jul 20th 2007, 2:03 am
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Default Re: First weeks in Cairns

Glad your settling in ok, it will be tough without your family but worth it in the long run . How are you finding work compared to the NHS? Only tell me good stuff (although doubt it'll change my mind!).
Only worked 4 days so far, hospital is bright and modern, right next to the sea. Hardest thing is trying to adjust to a whole new health system and they use different drug names just to confuse me more but they know i'm a new grad and giving me lot's of support.

Good start Nursie. Long may it get easier when family arrives. All the best


Sounds as though you have landed on your feet and that things are moving along nicely. Cairns is great isn't it? Once your family arrive you can the relax abit and start to get into some routine. Good luck to you all.
Thanks

Glad to see things seem good so far, we've been waiting in anticipation of your post.

Keep on posting, when you can, all about the hospital and the area, anything you come across, all those hopefully heading your way want to know everything good and bad.

Hope everything stays good for you.]
Thanks, the hospital is not too big, I've only really seen the theatre dept so far...there are 8 theatres so pretty busy. I thought there would be loads of UK nurses but I've only met a handful so far but everybody has been really welcoming Are you coming to Cairns? I can't remember who's going where.

My wifes a paramedic and weve just started the process, but are hoping to get placed in the Cairns area, posts like this are a godsend to us and many more.
i hope you keep us updated, and hope things go from strength to strength for you.
Glad to help in any way I can

Great post! Must be very hard to be there without family but you sound very positive so well done!
How is the weather in cairns?
Yes I miss them more than I thought possible, feel bad about all the times I've told them I'm too busy to do things with them and would give anything to be able to take swimming in the lagoon right now
The weather has been glorious every day, cool in the evenings and warm and sunny in the day time
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Old Jul 20th 2007, 9:39 am
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Default Re: First weeks in Cairns

[QUOTE=wannabauzzienurse;5077468] One observation is that there is not much to rent for less than 350 a week (not for a family anyway) plenty of units and townhouses but houses in nice areas are $350+.

Hope you dont mind me asking but was the expensive rentals all in Cairns central itself or have you looked in outlaying suburbs about 10 - 15 km away is it much better there. we will be looking at family rentals with 2 boys

Kaye
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Old Jul 20th 2007, 11:19 am
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Default Re: First weeks in Cairns

[QUOTE=wardy2;5081765]
Originally Posted by wannabauzzienurse View Post
One observation is that there is not much to rent for less than 350 a week (not for a family anyway) plenty of units and townhouses but houses in nice areas are $350+.

Hope you dont mind me asking but was the expensive rentals all in Cairns central itself or have you looked in outlaying suburbs about 10 - 15 km away is it much better there. we will be looking at family rentals with 2 boys

Kaye
we made decision before i got here that we wanted to live on the northern side of town (whitfield, stratford, brinsmead, redlynch, smithfield etc all 10-20minutes from CBD) and this area is more expensive, you get more for your money to the south (mount sheridan, white rock, bentley park, edmonton etc) there are some nice houses down that way but for me to get to the hospital north side is better
Bix is a good one to ask he's been here much longer than me and knows his suburbs
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Old Jul 20th 2007, 11:42 am
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Default Re: First weeks in Cairns

We are hoping to come out to cairns, sometime soon!!!!!

Depends on the visa, which is a real bug bear at the moment. (8 weeks and still waiting to hear).

Glad to hear that the hospital staff are welcoming, and i would have expected quite a few UK nurses, with all the talk on BE, i would have expected mostly UK nurses by now.

Anyway good to see that you seem to be sttling in, keep us posted on all developments, any info will be useful.
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Old Jul 20th 2007, 11:51 am
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Default Re: First weeks in Cairns

Spoke to Bix about suburbs thanks anyway, just wondered if the prices you were quoting were central Cairns.

We are looking similar north suburbs although Kewarrra beach, Trinity Beach even Kuranda are looking great possiblities.

Initially dont mind renting a 2 bedroom but if we settle, hopefully quickly will be looking to possibly buy dont want to be priced out by leaving it too long.

We can always sell.

Hope to see you soon

Kaye
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Old Jul 20th 2007, 11:28 pm
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Default Re: First weeks in Cairns

Originally Posted by wardy2 View Post
Spoke to Bix about suburbs thanks anyway, just wondered if the prices you were quoting were central Cairns.

We are looking similar north suburbs although Kewarrra beach, Trinity Beach even Kuranda are looking great possiblities.

Initially dont mind renting a 2 bedroom but if we settle, hopefully quickly will be looking to possibly buy dont want to be priced out by leaving it too long.

We can always sell.

Hope to see you soon

Kaye
Central Cairns is mainly units/apartments, holiday accommodation, there are some houses but maybe not the best place for a family. It's difficult trying to decide where to live and now that I'm here I still can't decide.
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Old Jul 21st 2007, 9:01 am
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Default Re: First weeks in Cairns

Originally Posted by wannabauzzienurse View Post
Background for those who don't know I'm a newly qualified nurse with a job in Cairns on a 457 visa, married to 'windog' with two daughters 11 & 9 who are all still in the UK hopefully selling our house.

I chose to fly Air New Zealand via LA and Auckland to get the extra baggage allowance, hell of a journey to do in one go with no stopovers

Was met at the airport and taken to my accommodation that was arranged (and paid for) by the hospital for the first two weeks. Central Plaza 4* apartments near the hospital, fully furnished but out of my price range as a long term option. Finding somewhere to live was one of my biggest concerns and when someone from work offered me a room at their house I jumped at it rather than deal with a load of real estate agents on my own. Don't know if this was the right thing to do or not as I like my own space but it's cheap and has been a good way to meet people. When the rest of the family are coming I'll start looking for something else. One observation is that there is not much to rent for less than 350 a week (not for a family anyway) plenty of units and townhouses but houses in nice areas are $350+.

As I'm on my own I haven't done big grocery shops but things that seem pricey...cucumber, lettuce both around $2.50 and other fruit and veg, bread also. There are local markets which are nice to stroll around and they are definately cheaper.

Things that are cheaper here, wine...buying boxes is the most economical way, it's possible to get a nice shiraz 2 litre box for less than $9 OR you can get 5 litre boxes for about $12 but I haven't tasted that stuff yet. Buying bottles seems no cheaper than UK. Petrol also cheaper, $1.26 a litre for unleaded.

Cairns is a lovely green city surrounded my mountains with loads to do, you can pay loads to go on reef trips or rainforrest tours but there is also plenty of free entertainment, the esplanade lagoon, muddys park, crystal cascades (local swimming hole - nearly trod on a snake while walking there!), beaches, botanical gardens, centenary lakes etc

Met with Mr and Mrs Bix who very kindly helped me find a car to buy Thanks.
Was able to get finance with a $500 deposit but definately read the terms and conditions because they seem quite different to any I've come across in the UK .

Have been up and down in mood, obviously missing my family and will be happier when they get here and we can all be under the same roof again but on the whole things are good. My job is going well, I've been well supported and colleagues have all been really welcoming.

Just hope when the others get here they like it as much as I do

Hi

Glad to hear you are settling in. It is hard coming without your family. I came with two of my children initially and it was incredibly hard, so I can imagine how hard it is come by yourself.
I wish you all the best and hope you are all reunited soon.

Amanda
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Old Jul 22nd 2007, 7:52 am
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Default Re: First weeks in Cairns

Sounds like you're getting pretty well organised. Well done you. I can't imagine how hard it must be being without your family - any sign of a house sale?

Hope you continue to enjoy Cairns, and good luck getting the house sold quickly
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