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More Travel For Your Dollar – Why 2014 Is The Year To Go Down Under

For many of us, there’s a stage in our lives when we feel like we’re stuck in a bit of a rut. Whether it be in a current job, at school or university, or even if you’re in that inbetweeny stage – sometimes you just need a change.

It’s not a secret that Australia’s a popular destination for young travellers – last year over 432,000 Working Holiday Visas were issued in the UK alone – but why is 2014 the year to go?

Well, aside from it being an incredible country to travel, financially it could be one of the best moves of your life.

Firstly there’s the current exchange rate. At the beginning of January this year, the Australian Dollar (AUD) to Great British Pound (GBP) exchange rate was at its lowest since 2009 at AU$0.53 to £1. So what does that mean to you? Well, it means that when you’re converting your money into dollars you’ll be nearly doubling your cash. Not great for those Aussies coming over to the UK, but great news for you! Think of it as free money (that you worked your ass off for).

Next? Well, you’ve got to love their wages. Ok, so this isn’t a point that’s restricted to this year, but it’s always worth a mention that Australian wages are a great deal higher than the pittance we’re used to in the UK. For example, if you work at a bar, wages tend to start at around $20 p/h. Raise that to $25 on a Saturday, $30 on a Sunday and $45 on a public holiday, and you start to see that you could be making some serious money. Not bad for casual employment!

That not enough money for you? Have some more then! If you’ve been researching working in Australia at all (or you fancy finding out all your need to know in my all-encompassing guide *cough* plug *cough*), you might have heard of Superannuation. Your Superannuation is basically a pension fund that your employer pays into on top of your wages. “But what has this got to do with travelling Down Under in 2014??” you may (or may not) cry. Well, the previous rate of payment was 9% of what you earned, but in July this year it went up to 9.5%. Now that may not sound like a lot, but with the previous rate on a $32,000 wage (very possible in full-time employment) you would receive $2880, but with the 0.5% rise that would take it to $3040. And the best bit? This percentage will be increasing every year until 2022 when it will cap at 12%.

If you haven’t currently got dollar signs in your eyes after reading that I strongly recommend you get your sight tested.

So, three great reasons why 2014 is the year to move Down Under. Need I say any more??

 

I hope you have found this post helpful, and if you have any burning questions or posts you would like me to do, please email me at workanywhereoz@gmail.com

And, as always, there’s the book. So without further ado…

 For loads of information on working and travelling in Australia, get Work Anywhere: Australia the guide today!

 

Top Photo Blogs of Australia

We all love to think we’re pro-photographers on our travels, and with the help of intstagram, those cheeky beach sunset snaps don’t look half bad! But when it comes to photoblogging, these guys really know how to do it. Australia’s a stunning country, and these photographers really capture its essence. Check out my fave photo bloggers from around the country:

Luke Tscharke Photography – Photoblogger of the Year 2013. What more needs to be said?

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Heiko Waechter – Melbourne is famed for its urban culture, and Heiko manages to capture so much of that in just a single picture.

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Michael Snedic – Showing us what amazing wildlife we have the chance to see (and often take for granted) in Australia.

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The Things I Saw – An almost dreamlike Wizard of Oz Kansas meets the Australian Outback…a completely original take on outdoor photography in the country.

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Club of The Waves – This blog doesn’t entirely focus on Australia, but what is a photo blog review without a few pics of hot surfers doing what they do best? You’re welcome.

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For loads of information on working and travelling in Australia, get Work Anywhere: Australia the guide today!

10 Reasons To Pack Your Bags and Head Down Under

There are about a million reasons to jump on a plane and see a new part of the world, but why Australia? Well, here’s a few reasons:

  1. There are so many faces to Australia you never know what you’re going to see next. One day you can be sunning yourself on the second best beach in the world (Whitehaven – The Whitsunday Islands), and the next you could be riding a camel or skiing down a mountain! If that doesn’t leave you spoilt for choice, I don’t know what will.
  2. It can be a good move financially. Many people believe that when they go away on their travels they will come home with a great tan and empty pockets. But why not save as you go? With the average backpacker’s annual wage at around AU$30,000 for casual jobs, you can afford to enjoy the lifestyle whilst getting together the money for your next trip! I’ve even known people to save up for a deposit on a house for when they returned home, so the possibilities really are endless
  3. Tim Minchin. Enough said. 
  4. You can finally do something you’ve always dreamed about. Be it diving on the Great Barrier Reef, learning to surf, exploring the bush or just travelling in general, there are so many opportunities to do new things you’ll be guaranteed to go home with at least a few ticks off the old bucket list.
  5. Lose your solo travel virginity. If you’re thinking of going travelling alone for the first time, this is a great place to start. It’s an English speaking country and one of the safest countries I have ever travelled in. You’ll find it so easy to settle in, and you can even drink the tap water (bonus for those with sensitive tummies).
  6. You will make some of the best friends you’ll ever have. Nothing brings people together like being stuck in a smelly hostel room with no money and just a bag of goon (look it up). There’s nothing like a few kindred spirits on the road, and when you look back on those memories you’ll be glad they were there to make it the trip of a lifetime.
  7. The Aussies have a great sense of humour and they really know how to laugh at themselves. It’s good to remember not to take yourself so seriously sometimes! 
  8. The Great Barrier Reef. Now Australia has countless amazing places to see, but the GBR has to top all of these. One of the 7 natural wonders of the world, this coral reef spans along 1,600 miles of ocean, and is home to some of the most stunning aquatic life you will ever see. And the best bit is whether you’re a diver, a snorkeler, or you prefer to view it in a glass bottom boat, everyone now has the opportunity to visit it.
  9. Whether you’re a sun, sea, sand or snow bunny there really is something for everyone – so why choose? You’re in a country with some of the most versatile climates in the world, making Oz a destination like no other. Grab hold of the opportunity to go wherever you like and see whatever you want all in the one place. Not many countries compare.
  10. Pack your bags because it’s Australia. And it’s freaking awesome. I’ve never met a person who regretted travelling to Oz, myself included, and it’s hardly a hard sell. Go see what all the fuss is about. 

For loads of information on working and travelling in Australia, get Work Anywhere: Australia the guide today!

Venom antidote at the ready…

So it’s nothing new to hear that Australia’s home to some pretty scary wildlife – but how about the top 10 deadliest? Well, The Telegraph has compiled this lovely list for you so now you know what REALLY to watch out for!

Think in two years I’ve had run ins with about 5 of these guys and made it out unscathed – not bad for a novice!

Check out the article in the link below:

Australia’s Deadliest Creatures

For loads of information on working and travelling in Australia, check out Work Anywhere: Australia the book today!

Happy St Paddy’s Day!

It only comes around once a year, then you spend the remainder of the year getting over it…it’s the delightful celebration of good ol’ St Paddy. Whilst most of you might be feeling the burn from a weekend of pre-celebrations, let’s not forget that today is in fact the big day – yet another reason to let your hair down one more time!

And with practically half the population of Ireland moving Down Under over the past couple of years, let’s just say that it’s not going to be difficult to find some good craic if you’re in Oz for the big day.

So let’s forget about work for one more day and focus on celebrating what the Irish do best – drink.

Cheers!

Happy Australia Day!

That great day has come around once again, and that means one thing – an excuse to throw a party! All around the country flags and glasses are being raised in celebration of a momentous occasion in the nation’s history, and, more importantly, a day off work.

“But what is Australia Day all about?” I hear you cry.

Well, kids…

Australia Day was invented to mark the anniversary of the first fleet of British ships to arrive in Sydney in 1788. Packed full of convicts, there was no way this was a bad idea. Luckily enough though, it worked out alright in the end, and those crafty Pommies thought they would quite like to stay for good. Yay!

Nowadays, Australians use it as a day to celebrate the country’s diversity, and has now become the nation’s largest public event, with families and friends alike gathering together for fun and festivities.

The holiday has also been nicknamed ‘Invasion Day’ by many in the Aboriginal community for, well, obvious reasons.

So that’s the history lesson over folks. Time to sit back, relax and enjoy the day.

Whether you’re beaching, boozing or barbecuing (or if you’re lucky, all three) I hope you have a fabulous Australia Day!

New Year’s Resolutions…

The new year has arrived, and with most of us waking up with sore heads and empty pockets it’s time to start pondering our new year’s resolutions. I, for one, will not be boozing again until February, which is probably a good idea as over the last couple of weeks I appear to have consumed enough alcohol to kill a small horse. And with a £5 bet on it there really is no going back.

How about we just keep it simple this year and just hope for health and happiness? Oh, and a winning lottery ticket too. Obviously.

Writing with such a poorly head isn’t easy, so that’s enough babble from me for today. Hope you all have an amazing 2014, but if not, just remember, there’s always next year.

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