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  1. Hello everyone! We (2 Adults and 2 kids) are making our way to Canberra in about 4 months time , and we have a few questions about the Canberra city / surrounding area : Schools: Where are the good primary schools? Suburbs : Where are good family suburbs that have rentals of $400 - $500 pw ? Any suggestions / insight of the general area will be much appreciated! thanks
  2. NickiD

    Child's Passport Renewal

    I have had to renew one of my children's passports since arriving in Sydney. I filled in the form, paid the fee and posted it off to Canberra. I since received an email from the SAHC saying that I needed to also complete the BI-529 and email it back to them. This form is "DETERMINATION OF CITIZENSHIP STATUS" and am I unsure of how to correctly complete the form. My son(s), husband and I were all born in SA, having emigrated in August 2015. I'm not sure how to answer the questions posed to all three of us that ask: "If you were absent from South Africa state - (a) Date(s) of your departure (b) Reason(s) for your departure (c) The date on which you returned to South Africa permanently" Does this include us coming to Australia (in which case we're NEVER returning to SA permanently) or just being absent when our son was born? SO CONFUSED! BI-529_Status_Determine.pdf
  3. Hi Everyone, We have been in Melbourne for a few days now and hope to convert our drivers licences at Vic roads on Monday. I see there is a Fee of $18,50. If we convert to Victorian licences and move to Canberra, what will the implications be - does anyone have advice? (Their website doesn't seem as clear as Vicroads) How long can i stay an interstate driver and do I have to convert? - Is there a cost associated? Is it better to convert now to Victoria and then again in a month or so? Should I just drive on my RSA license and convert in ACT if and when necessary?
  4. MarieM

    Newbie to Canberra

    Hi all, I've been living in Timor-Leste for the past 3 years, where I met me a nice Aussie Diplomat - so I'm following the man over the waters back to Canberra. We've been back and forth 4 times this past year and going again in December for a few weeks - mostly to go stock the house we just bought in Canberra - and the official move is 10 Feb. How many SA's in Canberra? Probably not too many - not the place I thought I'd be moving to, if I ever moved to Australia! Haha So, my partner-visa is due for final processing by April, and until then I get to amuse myself setting up house. I'd love to meet up with some fellow South Africans to make the move a bit easier. I'm glad I found this forum online! I was actually only looking for bed-sizes to buy some linen and came across a feed in the forum. xx
  5. Jasper

    7 months in...

    It seems the Canberra community forum needs a bit of love, and I remember how useful it was for me in the planning phase to look back on people's opinions and thoughts as they've gone through it, and how things go in the initial months. So I thought I should jump back in and give an update - mine being the last one from just a few weeks in - now over 7 months in. My wife and I arrived at the end of January, in Canberra. Where I quickly got started at a job I found on arrival, while my wife still searched through February and most of March. She was eventually employed through meeting people at a work function of mine, who called her the next day, offered her a job and she started the following day. We have been told multiple times that that's how Canberra works. It's all about networking. And that's definitely true. The job market is tough, particularly in Canberra where a number of public service jobs are specifically for citizens and even the ones that are open for permanent residents, are still slanted to citizens. Not for any nefarious quota system, but simply because you need Aussie work experience - to understand the culture, the market, the needs of the consumer etc. That's not to say there isn't work, there is. The private sector is bustling and it's down to what you're willing to do I guess. My wife has a major qualification, but is working as a temp admin assistant on minimum wage. I'm only a little bit higher and earn a bottom of the rung salary. And we're tremendously grateful. I'd be happy to pick fruit in the fields, wash dishes or mow lawns - and many many people have do so to get their start, and have become incredibly successful doing so. We have been very fortunate with our immigration in that we are employed, have all but refurnished our home after arriving with nothing, bought a car, are expecting our first child, made some wonderful friends, eaten out, travelled to the coast and the alps, and save a lot of our weekly paycheck to pay cash for our purchased and avoid all debt. It's not because we landed with our butts in the butter, or are "just lucky" - it comes from over 2 years of planning before we immigrated, and a ton of research. We make lists of all of the things we need to buy for the house (we only recently bought a bread knife!), and we research their prices, and plan each purchase. One week we're able to get a piece of furniture, and the next is a saving week, and perhaps next it's a soup ladle and some work clothes, etc. You make your own luck in this world, and I've had many opportunities to look back on this experience and the choice to immigrate. It's particularly difficult because we came alone... just my wife, and I and our furry kids. We have no family or friends here (well, we have friends NOW). And I wouldn't change a damn thing. Canberra is a wonderful place, with outrageously gorgeous scenery, wonderful parks and lake fronts to walk through, it's safe, and the coffee and food culture is one of the best in the world. The drive to work takes all of 10 minutes, and maybe some mornings I have a few bumper to bumper moments at red lights - and I live 16 kms from work. The people are friendly, and helpful at every level. Whether your cashier at a local supermarket, call centre operators, doctors, nurses, tradies and everyone in between. It's no utopia. There is some crime in places, like anywhere in the world, there are homeless, and there are problems. The government has it's issues and the Liberal Party have Tony Abbott - as South Africans, this is all laughable. You'll hear how expensive it is to live - and some things are expensive, but if you stop converting and just live when you earn the currency, your spending power has far better than in South Africa - and if you shop clever, it can save huge amounts. And you're still able to treat yourself to niceties too. No one is going to just make success happen, that's not how life works. You do. And you have a damn find opportunity to do so in Aus. Whether Canberra, or anywhere else. Fortune favours the bold, and to everyone in the terrifying immigration process at the moment, it's worth every single tear. All the best.
  6. Well, my wife and I have now been in Canberra for a few weeks. We landed in Sydney on the 22nd of January, and drove through on the morning of the 23rd - with an incredibly early start owing to jetlag which after 11000km is no joke! I also highly recommend driving in to the ACT, it's a light drive (3 hours) and offers up beautiful scenery you would otherwise miss entirely. Upon arrival, we had set up to stay at the Ibis Canberra (old Formula 1) until the end of January, with a hire car until then too, to allow us time to settle in and find our roots. The key was to get employed, homed, and buy some odds and ends we'll need (we sold everything to start from scratch). Thanks to an incredibly first world system, we were able to have our bank accounts and medicare done on the day we drove in; we had our dogs licenced, our bus passes done and by the end of Saturday 24th, we had applied for a home to rent. Within the next week, we'd found employment, secured the home, bought some inexpensive Salvos (Salvation Army) furniture and some cheap goods to set up a little home for ourselves and managed to fit in some incredible Australia Day celebrations through the long weekend. There is far too much to include in a quick little post, but sufficit to say - Canberra is amazing. It's most definitely not a stuffy public servant town, or a quiet sleepy village. It's a bustling metropolis filled with incredible culture, AMAZING food and coffee, incredibly variety, tremendous shopping experiences - all interspersed amongst a wide open vista of green trees, open plains and beautiful views. Canberra offers you everything you need - what you choose to get out of it is entirely up to you. I've found the people to be amongst the most friendly and helpful that I've ever come across in the world. The service has been 2nd to none, whether with call centre operators, cashiers, waiters, or even the guys down at the tip. There are a lot of things to get used to, coming from SA, like the ways the estate agents work (use the websites and book inspections yourself - they just do the paperwork) - and PARKING! Oh the parking! Recycling is huge and the refuse system is a new adjustment because they do it properly - and we're not used to that. It's an amazing, wonderful place filled with opportunity. It's all up to you whether or not you're willing to find it. Our dogs also finally joined us earlier this week - a tremendously smooth process (PetPort were fantastic on the SA side, and the Eastern Creek quarantine facility was lovely.). The dog parks are wonderful and our pups are having a wonderful time adjusting to the clean air and amazing smells. I can go on and on - but thought I should share some good news about Canberra, in reality - now that we finally arrived and particularly because this community doesn't get nearly enough praise as it should deserve.
  7. Hi Everyone! I am a clinical trial research pharmacist. Got VETASSESS approval, but now I need a job offer from Canberra (according to my migration agent- are they not supposed to be linked to recruiting agents too?). Any advice is welcome :-)
  8. Toitjie

    My first job in Australia

    I thought it might be a good idea to split this from my journal, as finding a job must be the nr 1 stressor after actually getting the visa! I told a friend yesterday that waiting for the visa, we all think our lives are in limbo, but after this period in Australia, waiting to land a job, I realised that waiting for the visa was nothing, my life went on, I had a job to go to. Here I was literally living in limbo, waiting for a job, seeing my bank balance decrease daily and calculating how much longer I can survive before we had to take more drastic action and start looking at Sydney or Melbourne. As I mentioned in my journal, after searching for a job for just over 4/5 months, I have found one. Im extremely excited yet nervous to start this new adventure in my life. I have worked for 18 years for the same company and 15 of those in the role I had when I left so this change for me is huge. Also, the sales aspect of this recruitment role is new to me. I really hope that i will excel in this Recruitment has always been a passion of mine, especially in the industrial side of things, and that is where I will be now too, so for that Im quite happy about. Plus they are going to send me to Sydney for three days' training - looking forward to that!! The few tips that I can give to prospective newbies are: 1. Start browsing all the sites so that you get a good overall idea of the type of positions available, the salary scales and how they advertise. In many of the positions you have to address specific selection criteria and those are critical. Those are really used as a sifting tool so yours need to be on point. 2. Have your resume redone so that the correct language for the industry is used. When this is done you can use that type of wording on your cover letter and selection criteria and linkedin profile so all speak the same language 3. I cannot stress enough how beneficial it was to me to do volunteer work. I realise that it might not always be easy to get into a company, even working for free, but do your homework and select a few companies where you would like to work (preferably doing something in your line of experience). Other volunteer work such as care&share is also good, I just think that if you do volunteer work in your field it would benefit you so much more. 4. Landing a job rests so much on your background but also so much on the individual that interviews you. I have zero agency experience and no sales background, yet I landed 2 interviews with Recruitment Agencies for a consultant within their ranks. i was surprised at this because I thought the market was tight, and since I lacked sales experience there would certainly be more experienced candidates than me. and for one of the interviews I think this is largely correct. It's for an IT recruitment company and I got the impression that my lack of sales experience was a bit of an issue. but still...I got an interview and as for the other company - although they know my background, they were still very happy to afford me the opportunity. The lady that interviewed me and I got on from the start, she is a lovely person and we really had more of a chat than an interview, and the rest is history all I want to say by mentioning nr 4 - there is hope. lots of it. If I can do this, anyone can. And this is a tighter than normal labour-market at the moment, so the opportunities are there, you just have to ensure that your ammunition are in place and in perfect working order (CV) and apply for as many positions as you can (it took me around 60) As soon as I start working I will use this thread to recount my experiences...hopefully it will all be ok (I hate that first day walk in into a unknown territory)
  9. Hi My in-laws are returning to SA and have a number to things to sell. This would suite a couple or small family starting out in Canberra. The items include: Double bed + headboard Bedside tables dressing table 2 x 2 seater couch TV home theatre 5.1 low TV unit Fridge/freezer washing machine Tumble dryer. You can pay in rands before your leave and we will accept any reasonable offer. Please message me if you interested and I can provide picture Thanks T
  10. Hi All, can any one tell me whats it like living in Canberra? Is it good place for the kids. Thinking of moving their but coming from the uk. We have never been to Oz but know someone that lives there that can help us with renting a house and all the genaral stuff that newbies needs to do ones they inter the country. Is ACT a state by itself or does it fall under NSW? Merry Christmas
  11. Glenno


    Hi All, We are aiming to move to Canberra in January 2014 and I was just wondering how easy or not it is to find work? My wife is a beauty therapist and my background is Sales and Client Service. I will be quite happy to take on work from any decent company and am not to phased about finding any specific job. But I would just like to find out what your experience has been in finding a job on arriving in Canberra? (i.e how long did it take?, did you have to go for loads of interviews etc?) thanks a mill.
  12. Hi Folks, I thought I'd do a short introduction having just joined the forum and amidst the process of this whirlwind! We're a young couple, just starting out our lives together with our dog and heading on to bigger and brighter things - that being the hope of Canberra. Mid-2012 we decided to start looking into immigration in earnest, and I contacted a number of Migration agents to make enquiries. After much back and forth, we realised that it would be impossible to pay the costs of the Migration Agent as well as everything else, and then be able to afford food when we arrived! So, with some tips from people who'd done it before, we decided to go it alone. I'm an anal retentive researcher so thankfully we've been on the right track. Initially we looked at the obvious choices of Sydney, Melbourne etc but discovered my occupation is ONLY listed in ACT... to which my response was... Where the hell is Canberra? (I hadn't paid much attention). Well, lots of research later and we discovered that actually, this place is probably IDEAL.. so onward into the process. First step, getting the initial funds.. we had investments, so sorted that out. Booked IELTS for me (primary applicant), which I wrote at the beginning of March this year, got the result.. 8.5 average ... the damned reading gave me an 8! I was annoyed until I confirmed that 8 - 9 gave me the full points, so I felt a bit better about that. Vetassess went and did it's thing for 2 months while we waited anxiously. This also started around March, and got the positive assessment back in May... then waiting for the physical documents to arrive, which (even though I sprang for the courier fee) still took forever once it hit our shores. The trickier part has been getting all the documents ready and certified, and particularly the statement of service from an employer who doesn't know I'm going yet, and can't know for quite some time! Then we did the ACT State Nomination online, submitted all the documents, and the website timed out on us a number of times as I filled things in... so I ended up with a few lapsed applications.. but got everything through and submitted. And then immediately panicked that we hadn't said the right things, worked out our budgets wrong, or will just have flat-out done something wrong. But either way, here we are. Desperately awaiting our results, hoping Canberra will be our new home! The timeline is that we'll arrive at the end of December 2014. Mainly because we'll need time to put the house on the market, and give enough time for registration to happen after the sale so we actually get the money (market willing!!) plus add 6 months for our dog's quarantine in SA (no question that was going to be a cost we'd pay.. hence cutting Migration Agent). So backdating it all, brings us to about the beginning of 2014, which by then I'm hoping we'll have heard about our visa! Oh and don't let me get started on the drama of trying to get our Unabridged Birth Certificates at Home Affairs! The actual process was easy... but the 5 hour wait in line wasn't fun! So we're waiting for those (figured, rather have them soon, than need them when it's too late) - and the same applies for Police Clearance. And there we have it... our little family anxiously waiting and being spoilt by everything we read which now makes us say "They don't do that in Canberra you know" every chance get. I started this saying I'd be short.. so, Hello all! Thanks for all the info! Sorry about the long post in the end. J
  13. Jasper

    The Road to Canberra

    As part of the process of relieving the stress and strains from the process, perhaps the concept of Journaling wouldn't be altogether a bad idea. I must admit I've never been one for the idea of a journal, nor considered myself one to put my feelings on paper, or bits and bytes for that matter. But lets, shall we? In Chapter 1 of what may potentially be a series of posts on our road to Canberra, we'll see the origin story of our intrepid explorers - who for the sake of the narrative I'll refer to in 3rd person. Nothing more than a literary device for a lazy writer and will most likely slip in and out of various tenses and voices. It began on a cool spring morning, although to be honest, I haven't a clue what the weather was like. I barely noticed what it's like today, but on that cool, spring morning of 2012, our intrepid explorers - newly engaged and fresh faced like the same morning dew on that spring morning we just established was completely made up, a question arose. It wasn't something either of them had discussed before, but a question both had long since considered. "Do you want to immigrate?", she asked with a hesitation that can only be described with the unspoken subtext of "I've been thinking about this for a while but it sounds crazy, no?" To which he responded almost immediately, "Actually now that you mention it, I was thinking about that a lot recently - yes!"... to which his unspoken subtext also responded "yep, you're right, it does sound crazy but hey let's find out". To this day it is unclear how their subtexts were able to communicate. With the subject broached, they left it at that for the evening having no real idea what they'd gotten themselves into and even less of an idea of where to begin. Little did they know that the truly biggest part of their journey had already occurred. The next morning, while working a full 8 to 5 day at the office, the lesser half of our intrepid explorers did what can only be described as an outrageously little amount of work. The kind of small amounts only truly discussed by men in white coats, who stand around Hadron Colliders discussing the infinitesimal possibilities of particles in the universe, and their sandwiches. The latter being less important, and more often than not, cheese based. Throughout the day of boson-esque sized amounts of work, the lesser half read as much as he could, with multiple browser tabs, and multiple downloaded PDFS and booklets he'd found online, tips and comments, thoughts and feelings, tweets and videos, and every configuration of discussion about immigration and what was involved his internet connection could accommodate. He compared immigration laws across various countries and continents, climate conditions, images, google maps and street views, weighing up the options and choices. The ADSL line was later quoted as having said "sheeesh". A few things became almost instantly clear to him: Canada was too cold, and the UK was too gloomy, but Australia was Goldilocksian - a technical term (well, it is now). After much eye rubbing, and messages between both the lesser and better half that ranged from an excited frenzy to a bewildered panic, the couple had realised two very important things: This was no easy feat. The decision was still yes. - Chapter 2: "We're off to see the Wizard, I think?"
  14. Hi again all So I've been trying to pull a budget together based on expected salaries and expenses. I've used all the resources I could find on the interweb to try and get this as accurate as possible...now I'd like to draw on the experience of the Canberran contingent of SAAus to give me your opinions on where I need to tweak my expectations. Next to each income/expense I've added the source however if you think I'm off the marke please let me know. As it stands, we'll have loads more disposable income in Canberra than we do at the moment in UK doing exactly the same jobs. And that includes a house with a garden and free sunshine! Seems too good to be true...can you let me know if it is please:-) BUDGET Description Ave Source Income Marketing Manager salary $5,104 $80,000pa - http://www.payscale.com/research/AU/Job=Marketing_Manager/Salary#by_State (nett - http://www.paycalculator.com.au/) Exec Sec salary $4,010 $60,000pa - http://www.payscale.com/research/AU/Job=Executive_Assistant/Salary#by_State (nett - http://www.paycalculator.com.au/) Expenditure - 2 people Home rent -$2,200 http://www.allhomes.com.au/ Council Rates -$133 http://www.justlanded.com/english/Australia/Australia-Guide/Money/Cost-of-Living (Took the total annual and split over 12 months) Water -$74 Water usage -$35 Contents insurance -$35 Electricity -$139 Gas -$61 Transport - Public -$225 https://www.transport.act.gov.au/myway/fares.html#Adult Groceries -$140 http://www.justlanded.com/english/Australia/Australia-Guide/Money/Cost-of-Living Mobile -$130 https://onlineshop.telstra.com.au/ Internet $50 http://www.telstra.com.au/internet/home-broadband-bigpond-elite-plans/ TV -$109 https://www.foxtel.com.au/shop/packages-and-deals/?execution=e1s1 Entertainment -$2,500 Finger in the air! Holiday savings -$1,000 Finger in the air! Life savings -$2,000 Finger in the air! Nett $383 A SURPLUS…SURELY NOT! Hope the pasted table came out ok! C
  15. Annabel

    Anyone moving to Canberra? ACT

    My husband has been offered a position in Brisbane, which he has accepted. We will have to break our lease for our home in Amaroo. If anyone is interested, please PM me. Its a lovely two storey 3 bedroom, 2 bathroom, spacious townhouse with a manageable garden. - Double lock up garage with internal access - Separate toilet upstairs and powder room downstairs - Large living, dining and family rooms ... - Small rear courtyard - Balcony, walk-in robe and ensuite off main bedroom $460pw. The agent is Sue Grant from Elders, who accepted our application without us having employment. I know so many people coming from SA worry about finding a home without jobs, so this could be the home for you! The local school is Amaroo School, which both our boys are at. Its lovely, and they settled in from day one. If you would like photos, I can also email. Thanks..
  16. Hi all, It's been a long time since I visited the forum. How are you all? Life in Canberra is fabulous and we're now getting into our 6th year in Aus. Now I know that most of the people on this forum have kids - sorry, this post isn't for you. This post is for the few of us who, by choice, don't have/want kids. Mr Mupersan & I would love to meet other couples (or singles) who are child free by choice. I've started a fb group, so please join and as soon as we have a few members, I'll organise an event - drinks/coffee/bbq/dinner. Link to the fb group Child Free By Choice - Canberra: https://www.facebook.com/groups/496854607019277/ Hope to meet some fellow CF-ers. Cheers, Mrs Mupersan
  17. I have been meaning to write about our journey for a while, but I was not sure where to begin or what people wanted read. All I can say is that we are so happy and have met up with many of the amazing people from this forum! So firstly thank you everyone for making our journey that little bit easier. The night before we left SA we decided to go out to Spur one last time to celebrate with family. Big mistake. Both our girls (4yrs & 7yrs) threw up all night long. They were so sick and we wondered if we would ever get on the flight. At 11am they were exhausted and sleeping and had no energy to say their goodbyes to family. It was awful but in a way a blessing as all the attention was on getting these two girls better rather than on the fact we had a flight to catch later that afternoon. That was where the bad luck ended though. The kids managed the flight to JHB fine and they had begun to perk up whilst we were waiting for the flight to Sydney. Our flights were called and we boarded only to find out that our little family of four had been upgraded. We could not believe it when we were handed glasses of champaign whilst waiting for the rest of the flight to board. I told the girls that we could not open the blankets or ear phones in case they realised their mistake and we were moved! We weren't.... I really got started to grin when a tablecloth was put on the little tables when we got served our dinners on a real plate with real knives and forks. Never thought we would be the lucky ones who got upgraded. We landed on a Thursday drove up to Canberra and stayed at a cottage in Kaleen (Http://www.stayz.com.au/93275) small but perfect. Friday we visited our daughters school and after all the correspondence we were greeted with hugs. Spent a busy Saturday looking for properties and registering with Medicare. Found a place we liked and signed a years lease on the Monday. Everything was going so well and was so quick and easy. We then packed our bags and went to the coast for 2 weeks. http://www.stayz.com.au/7435 we decided as we had to get a fully furnished short term rental, we may as well make a holiday of it because it would cost the same at the coast or in Canberra. It was stunning, we began to relax after a long and hectic roller coaster ride. 2 weeks ago we moved into our long term rental home in Forde and my daughter started school. We bought mattresses, a fridge and an outdoor table set to use inside until the container arrived. A wonderful forum member dropped off pots, pans, plates, cutlery and a kettle. We were sorted. We dropped our daughter off at school and after a few tears she was led to her new classroom. Man was that hard. I definitely had to hold back my own tears and hubby admitted later he too found it hard. She was the first one in our family to go out into the big Ozzie world on her own. Thank goodness for another forum member whose kids also go to the school. She reassured us and gave us some great adviced on what we should do over the next few days to get organised. The next day, as we walked onto the playground to drop our daughter off at school a girl fom her class ran up to her and gave her a hug. My mummy heart did flick flacks... I felt so relieved this was going to be alright. Well, we are still living with the basics, camping in our new home (container has cleared customs though). Our home may be empty but our hearts are not. Although we knew no one when we arrived, we have been blown away by the support and care of forum members. Every weekend we have been into their homes for braais or a coffee. I already feel that we have made some true friends. On Sunday we met up with the (CCC - Canberra Coffee Club). What an awesome and welcoming group of people. We left with big smiles on our faces and plans for next Sunday. Again I can't thank you guys enough. Things I can't wait to get out of the container....... Our bikes, can't wait to go exploring and the washing machine!!! Although I have been doing washing at another forum members house (thanks Nicola)it will be good to get some regular loads of washing on. Lol. So in a nutshell all the worries, anxious moments have ended up being more than OK. We love it here! The sun has shone brightly everyday (something we really missed in the UK) and it feels safe (a reason we could not go back to SA). Those boxes we needed to be ticked....... Have been ticked! To everyone who is still on the roller coaster, hang in there. It is tough but it is so worth it! Keglin
  18. claudiodr

    A quick(ish) hello

    Hi everyone I just wanted to introduce myself, explain our story; and hopefully get your input on the dreaded process of applying for a visa! My wife and I are jo'burgers living in the UK (30min outside London). We migrated straight after getting our qualifications back in 2007 but after 6 years of mud, mould and sun-less summers we've decided to take the plunge, pack up and start over in Aus. It was a tough decision, my brothers are both in the UK and my folks returned to Portugal after 50 odd years in Africa to be closer to the kids...and now we're moving half way around the world again! Also, we'd built a life here; Diane has her own photography company, we have a 3 year old nephew to whom we’ll become strangers and we've made some good friends (although not as many or as close as we would've liked – the English can be a very different bunch to Saffas). So, now that we decided to do it, we've gone in full steam ahead with research and getting everything needed for the application. We have discussed our options with an agent and since I have a degree in Marketing and 6 years experience we are eligible to submit an EOI for a Skilled 190 visa. We were initially hoping to settle in Sydney but since I’m applying as a Marketing Specialist, and only ACT has this occupation on its SOL we are now finding out all we can about ACT and Canberra particularly. Marketing Specialists are only in Limited demand meaning MORE paperwork and hoop jumping but our agent is confident that we should get in. When D and I first started looking at Canberra we were a little concerned about what Aussies thought of their capital…not many people had nice things to say about it! Then we were fortunate enough to find SAAustralia and saw, firstly that there were loads of Saffas living there (which is AWESOME!) and that the people who lived there loved it! I've put the negativity down to typical local rivalry because all the photos videos etc I’ve seen of the area look gorgeous! As for the cold winters…6 years on the soggy island has prep’d us for the worst, Canberra should be a breeze:-) My only real concern is around employment, from what I've seen on job sites there are very little Marketing opportunities in ACT and as I can’t be employed by the government (please correct me if I'm wrong but I read that somewhere) this leaves very little else in the way of job availability! Can anyone living in ACT comment on this please? In terms of where we are in the process, we've now collated all the documents required and I’ve booked in for the English language test on 17th November. The only thing outstanding is the skills assessment (which I believe can take up to 4 months!) and then we’ll be ready to submit the EOI! We’re hoping to have the Visa in our hands around April 2014 which ties in nicely with some other bits and pieces like our fixed mortgage period coming to an end and then over for good we go! Well, I hope that wasn't too long-winded! I really look forward to getting to know you all better of the coming months and of course joining CCC in June 2014;-) Thanks Claudio (and in spirit, Diane)
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