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First things first....


DesertDaisy
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Right, now that we know that we will be in Perth in November, I have to make up a list of essential contact information for my hubby. He will go over first and once he has found us a house etc, we will join him. What are the essentials that dh will need to know? We will be going over on a 457 visa.

Oh, and we wont have computer access from mid-September, so I need to write it all down for him!

Any start-up tips would be welcome!

Off hand, my list would include:

Real estate agents

Medical coverage

Schools

Banks

Car dealers

Insurance

Fortunately he has immediate accommodation. I am fortunate enough to have a cousin living in Perth, and she has offered to have him stay with her.

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.....Find the nearest beach and go for a swim!!! Yay!! :P (Sorry, I cannot help you out on Perth other than that.....)

Good luck with everything - November is here before you know it.... B)

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Hi DD

something you did not mention on your list:

Convert drivers licence to West Australian licence

Will post if I think of something more.

Lindy-Lee

:P

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Is the 457 visa a permanent or a temporary visa.

If permanent, he'll be covered by Australia's Medicare health scheme, but if temporary, he'd be wise to take out "visitor's health insurance".

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Hi DD,

  • Sunglasses! :lol: The light is incredibly bright over here. We got quite a shock when we came out of the airport in Perth.
  • Oh, yes, stuff yourself with proper South African biltong and chilli-bites before you come. :lol:

  • Tax file number. I am not sure, but I think you can apply for that before you come here.
  • The same with medical coverage. You can sort that out beforehand. Look at IMAN, Medibank Private (you have to use their contracted hospitals) HIF and HBF. We chose IMAN (or AHI as they also call themselves) as they have the least waiting periods and less fuss than the other medical schemes after learning our lesson the hard way. We first went with Australian Unity, they were the cheapest, they have a nice policy on paper, but they do not cover any pre-existing conditions at all - no waiting periods, never! - and THEY decide if it was pre-existing. We ended up paying cash for everything, as they have a way of proving every single thing as being 'pre-existing'! B)

  • Internet and phone companies. Telstra may be the biggest, but certainly not the best...

  • Travel insurance before either of you fly. It is a condition of your visa, as is the health insurance.

  • A map of the CAT bus/train-routes in Perth. (Free service) A nice thing to do if you are new in the city is to just drive around on all the cat busses for an hour or two. That way you get aquinted with the inner city. You can buy a family pass (when you and the kids arrive) at the station, I think it costs $7 and with that a family can use all busses, trains and ferries for one day. Nice! ;)

  • Sunblock and a hat. (And thongs!!!! :ilikeit::whome: )

  • Pictures of you and the kids :ph34r:

Things to leave behind:

  • Paranoia (spelling?)
  • Stress
  • Fear of hi-jackings, murder etc.

Good luck and have fun! Your dreams are finally coming true. :P

Greetings,

Dreamy

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[*]Internet and phone companies. Telstra may be the biggest, but certainly not the best...

[*]A map of the CAT bus/train-routes in Perth. (Free service) A nice thing to do if you are new in the city is to just drive around on all the cat busses for an hour or two. That way you get aquinted with the inner city. You can buy a family pass (when you and the kids arrive) at the station, I think it costs $7 and with that a family can use all busses, trains and ferries for one day. Nice! :ilikeit:

Made me think... you can get sim cards for mobiles on airport. That was important to us. Was the only contact hubby and I had while he was here without me and girls (a whole 6 days B) )

And maybe get a Perth map book (street directory) Trust me, we went NOWHERE without that book in the begining. :P With our luck we might have gone to local shop and ended up in Sydney ;):ph34r:

Aus$: either exchange on airport in SA or as soon as you land in Perth at airport.

Lindy-Lee

:whome:

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Ooh, travel insurance. I didn't know that was a requirement. Do I need to get it before arriving in Australia? What companies offer travel insurance?

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Hi DD,

If you pay for your tickets with a credit card, travel insurance is usually included. Unfortunately, if you buy your tickets from IOM, you cannot do it that way. They don't accept credit card details, and when you deposit the money, it shows IOM and not an airline, so your credit card company does not accept it. Find out from your medical fund if they will cover you if you are applying for one before you leave SA. Otherwise you will need to be covered by travel insurance until such time as your medical fund is activated.

We got our isurance from TIC, who is part of the SANTAM group. It cost us R1360 for 5 people for 2 weeks.

Greetings,

Dreamy

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Can someone recommend a rental agent for us?

And recommendations for schools/banks/car & household insurance/prepaid mobile phone etc etc?

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Hi DD

I can only tell you from our own experience:

Prepaid mobile: We get the most value from the Vodafone Red Sim. You can choose when you recharge if you want more text, or cheaper calls. They also have a $49 maxicap that gives you $230 worth of calls, with 20 minutes of international calls inccluded in that. It is however only valid for thirty days.

Insurance: We got very good service for car and household insurance from RAC, and cheap as well. They gave us the maximum no claim bonus, just on our word.

Banks: Westpac was best when it came to service.

Can't tell you much about schools or rental agents in Perth, but i'm sure someone else can help. There should also be a greater choice in the 'big city'. I'll leave it to the city-dwellers to enlighten you to the other choices. <_<

Greetings,

Dreamy

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Hi DD

when it came to mobile we also went for Vodafone. Very happy on it.

Insurance we are with SGIO for car and house.

Schools is difficult as you have to go to school in your catchment zone unless you go private as far as I know.

good luck and c u soon

Lindy-Lee

<_<

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HI DD,

Not sure how much time your husband has to make the decisions about school and rental.

I found that it was much easier once we had decided in which suburbs we wanted to rent. We narowed it down to about three and then looked at the different schools within these suburbs. Then we contacted a few rental agencies within these suburbs to see what was available. Also the West Australian newsaper every Wednesday and Saturday has a real estate section where properties to let are listed - we found this usefull as all the agents advertise in the paper.

Mariette

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mmmmmmmmmmmm........

. . . . this looks like a typical case of a bloke being given a huge list of things "to do" by his missus before he's even arrived.

Any chance of him having a beer first and just taking in the fact that he's heading for Australia??

"A Bloke"

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I'm feeling very overwhelmed today. I wanted to start contacting schools, but because I don't know what area we will be living in, can't. And then when I tried to start looking at areas, I got flummoxed as well. I just don't know where to start or what to do first.

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Hi DD,

Don't worry too much about it. Once you get to Perth, you can drive around and have a look at the suburbs. You'll know what you are looking for, and when you've found the right place, you can start finding houses and schools. It is not going to help fussing about it now, and trying to make a decision based on the Internet, and other people's input. We can supply you with facts and opinions, but only you will know what is right for your family. You will only be able to make these kinds of decisions once you have seen these places with your own eyes. Things look so totally different on a computer screen, than they do in real life.

Expect your life to be a bit of a jumble for a while, and relax about it, it is normal. Things will get back to it's normal, orderly state before you know it. I know you want to get your kids in school as soon as possible, but putting them in a school that you don't like, might be more harmful than keeping them out of school for another week or two until you find the right one. Let your hubby do the groundwork, and then you can go and make the final decision when you get there. That is my opinion :P anyway.

Greetings, ;)

Dreamy

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We also did not know where to start looking when we decided that Perth was where we were going. We knew we wanted to be an short car ride from the beach and not near industry, so we chose the northern suburbs as the oil refineries, etc are south of Perth between Freo and Rockinham. We did not want to be further north than Joondalup and wanted to be on the ocean side of the Wanneroo Road. Then we just looked at the suburbs with houses for sale in our budget.

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I am gradually feeling less stressed...

We are finally getting the paperwork done, and our stuff should be with the agent on Sunday/Monday. It would be sooner.... except our weekends are different here (Thurs & Fri) except from 1 Sept, our weekends change AGAIN, making it Fri & Sat, leaving this weekend a 3 day one! Which means I can't get to our embassy to get copies stamped.... Otherwise the stuff would go today!

Our employer is not providing us with any relocation money, but thats okay, we weren't expecting any. However, they are going to be providing us with free medical cover for our first month, which will help while we get sorted!

We even have somewhere to stay when we first arrive - I have a cousin in Perth, who has offered us a place with her until we find our own home. Takes a bit of stress off, but at the same time, I really don't want to be a burden for too long.

I think for me, the key is really going to be to find a school and suburb... I'd would honestly prefer to choose a suburb based on the level of schooling, rather than choosing a suburb and then getting stuck with a lousy school.

We will be on a tight budget for the first few months, as I will only be able to look for a job properly once I have settled the kids into a decent school.

We have also decided to open our bank account with Westpac, purely for convenience sake.

Any feedback anyone can give me on ANYTHING related to first days/settling in/good (reasonably priced) suburbs will be welcome...

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I agree with Olly, DD - further to my PM to you, we decided on Northern subs as well, close to the beach. Once you get here, you'll see, it will all fall into place. Only you know what suburbs you'd prefer, as I did, when I clapped eyes on Hillarys / Kallaroo / Ocean Reef - all near the beach area - I knew instantly thats where I wanted to be - and this is from one who was quite adamant that she'd settle in the Southern suburbs. You can never tell until you actually see it. And the standard of schooling, private or not, is all good. Moenie worry nie, watch net! ;) It'll all be cool, you'll see. Good luck, and here's wishing you loads of energy and strength and happiness too! :ilikeit:

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We were told before we came, by a friend of a friend in the education department, that some of the state schools are bad. Sorry I don't remember which ones. He said Churchlands, Carine and Rossmoyne were amongst the best state schools in Perth performing better than some private schools. So we looked for rentals in the catchment area of Carine as it had the right subject choice for my eldest daughter who is in the last years of high school.

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