Hi JulieWe are family of 5 from Bristol, Julie, Rob, Chloe 20, Tommy 18 & Callum 4. I have read many stories of different experiences since joining this forum and have loved reading them so thought I would post ours.
Our visa (175 Independent) was granted in September 2010 (after many years of planning) which was a bit of a shock really as we thought it would take much longer than the 5 months since applying, plus we completed the whole visa process ourselves, but it was a great feeling to know that we had been accepted. In October we put our house on the market via an online estate agent who required a fixed fee of just under £500 (NO COMMISSION) to put our details onto Rightmove.co.uk and started to make our plans to leave, which was going to be around June 2011 as my older son finished his education – perfect timing!
While waiting for house to sell etc. my husband decided to start trying to look for a job in Oz, by the way we were originally heading for Queensland, so applied for pretty much everything and also applied directly to big companies, which seemed to get some positive replies but all of them said contact us when you arrive – which is pretty common story. We decided then that maybe a good idea would be for my husband to fly out for a week and try and meet with as many companies as he could, so he flew out to Brisbane for a week in November and had about 3 interviews lined up plus what he could manage to sort while he was there. All pretty positive interviews except they had nothing to offer at that moment and suggested keeping in touch, which he did.
We had a few viewings with the house before Christmas but nothing much happened until beginning of January when we got 3 offers in one day, so that was it done and no commission -bonus!! So it was all systems go! things were really happening.
Not long after house sale one of the companies that Rob had met in Brisbane contacted him to say there was a position available in Adelaide and would he consider it, and if interested could he meet with their local office in Bristol for informal chat, which he did and he got the job plus some relocation expenses – another bonus!! Only thing was they wanted him to start ASAP which meant he would leave before us, so he left at the beginning of April and headed to Adelaide which left me to sort out everything in the UK, house sale, shippers, sale the cars, blah blah blah which was pretty stressful at times and to be honest I felt very overwhelmed and even slightly panicky. At least this way we didn’t have the worry of going over with no work and not knowing how long it would take to find work, plus he could sort long term rental for us for when we all arrived.
If there is any advice I can give anyone in the process of doing this right now is make lists, I used a spread sheet and listed everything I could think of, I worked backwards from leaving date and slotted everything into order, and keep looking at it every day because you will always remember something else! And it’s never too early to start one.
We had leaving party the weekend before we were due to leave, and when people said goodbye I would reply “it’s not goodbye, we will see you later”, doesn’t seem so bad then.
So our day of departure had arrived, we were packed and ready to go (although baggage was very overweight) with 40KGs of checked baggage each (free extra allowance with Singapore Airlines) plus hand luggage, and couple of suitcases to send unaccompanied we were off! I had prepared myself mentally that the flight was going to be awful with a 4 year old, everyone kept saying he will be fine, but I thought if I think the worse then it can only get better…and he was absolutely fine, changed him into his pyjamas and he had his blanket and pillow and he slept pretty much most of the way from London to Singapore, we had about 5 hours in Singapore and we booked into the transit hotel (which you need to pre book) for a rest and shower before heading onto Adelaide. The hotel in Singapore was brilliant and was so nice to freshen up and put clean clothes on, makes you feel so much better. The time flew by and before we knew it we were in the air again and on our way to Adelaide and again little one slept most of it.
So we arrived on 25 June 2011, which was almost 11 weeks ago! Time has really flown by, and we have achieved so much, furnished the house, little one in Kindy, Banks, Medicare, Tax File Numbers, eldest daughter has a job, bought cars and still found time to explore what’s around us. We have been to some of the vineyards in Maclaren Vale for tastings, been to several of the local beaches (although still a little chilly at around 18 degrees), visited Victor Harbour in the hope of spotting some Whales which we didn’t on that day…..we happened to be in Port Noarlunga (about 10 minutes away from home) last weekend having leisurely stroll along the jetty when my eldest son said “oh look mum there’s a whale” and sure enough there they were, two of them swimming slowly by within 20-30 metres from us…….amazing experience!!
It’s still early days for us but so far so good, things are different here and it does take a bit of getting used too, but you just gotta have an open mind, don’t have too many expectations, take whatever help is offered and get out there and make the effort.
Good luck to all those who are currently making the move or are waiting too, it is worth the wait!
Julie & Co.
Great post, we have been here 10 weeks tomorrow :)