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Adelaide: my story so far!


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I only discovered this forum after I arrived in Adelaide! I would like to get hold of some locals in Adelaide if anyone is interested?

I hope that people don’t mind but I would like to share my experiences, both good and bad with my move here. I would also like to share some contact info to maybe make things easier for other families like mine.

Where to start!

Arrival in Adelaide was interesting! It was cold and wet! Even for people who have experience of False Bay every day I found it a shock. The cold here is a different cold if that makes any sense? Anyway…if you arrive in winter bring warm clothes.

We were met at the airport by Tammy who is also South African. It was the right decision to be met by someone. It would have been an absolute nightmare to have arrived with all our luggage and then hired a car or used a taxi. She had a large people carrier with loads of space and a car seat for the little one. The collection was a free service as part of our house rental so that was a perk!

Our rental house was totally brilliant, much better than the pictures and no nasty surprises. It had everything including free phone calls and no charges for anything else. I booked with her for 6 weeks but I wish that it was for longer as her house is better than the one we are renting now! She calls herself Homes down under and her contact details are www.homesdownunder.com.au If I had booked for longer I would have had more time to get a better long term rental so that’s an important point. I was under pressure to find somewhere to live in the 6 weeks that I stayed there.

Main thing to make note of is the heating…it’s good thing to try to check out before you book anywhere. Our house had an aircon that heats and cools and every room was temperature controlled. Without it, we would have been frozen as the night time temperatures have been as low as 4 degrees. I can’t thank Tammy enough….. as well as a great house she also bought some food for our arrival and went the extra mile sorting out our medicare registration (took us to the centre), our tax numbers and even sorted out our drivers licences. She had a contact for a driving instructor who’s a migrant himself and after a couple of lessons we passed out with another instructor! Not at all like Gallows Hill or Hillstar traffic in Cape Town!!! If anyone wants the telephone number of Brian the driving instructor just ask me and I will send you the number. Anyway, enough praises but needless to say it really helped us find our feet and settle in knowing that there was someone to help us.

I hired a car from Budget car rental. Their details are www.budget.com.au

Tammy took us through to get the car the day after we landed so another thank you there. They charged us $33 per day which was reasonable. The car enabled us to look around at the different suburbs and it’s here that things aren’t so lekker!

Be very very careful where you live. There are some really suspect areas with run down houses and overgrown gardens with car collections! If I was to try to explain it in terms of SA then I would say that it’s just as bad as the townships in some suburbs! What is a real shock is the amount of corrugated tin. I thought that we were leaving the townships behind! They use tin for walls and even homes and it’s a shock. The houses are nowhere near as good as our Cape Town houses and I also miss the amount of proper trees and shrubs. Sorry, just my opinion but there’s no way that ugly gums compare with our trees!

Adelaide is a city of small businesses. There are roads that have businesses stretching for km’s and km’s and it all looks the same in some areas. It’s easy to get lost as lots of it is the same thing over and over. There are roads like Marion road and main south road which is just like Voortrekker Road, stretching on for ever. We started off in the south side of the city where some of the best beaches are as that’s where our rental house is (Christies Beach) and explored. The north of the city has the heavy industry, lots of trucks and traffic and it was very clear that it’s not the place for us. Our 1 year rental house is also in Christies Beach and the areas around us are stunning. If anyone is wondering where to stay then the areas of Christies, Port Noarlunga and Seaford are a great location. Port Noarlunga south just won the cleanest beach in Australia award. I wouldn’t go any further out of the city though as transport and travel gets too extreme. There’s a shopping and entertainment centre, beaches, stunning wine region at McLaren vale and everything that we need. Thankfully there’s no cape south easter!

We bought a car from the government car auction. They sell off the government cars when they are a few years old. I now drive a big Holden Commodore station wagon that has a gas and petrol tank. Gas is really cheap (less than 60 cents a litre) and with it being a government car it has both fuels as they are environment conscious. We paid $14000 for it but it still has a warranty. The auction is every 2 weeks and it was so efficient and easy. The web site is www.auctions.sa.gov.au

You can get a catalogue and view and bid online. The internet side of things is so advanced here!

Getting a long term rental house was strange experience. You only get 20 minutes in the middle of the afternoon to look at houses! The rental agents want references as well and you need 100 points of identification. We were really fortunate that Tammy knew the agent and she gave us a reference as well. Sort out your admin as soon as you get here!

Another really important issue is medicare and family assistance. I had no idea that I was entitled to any help from the government. With my permanent residence visa we are entitled to a payment every 2 weeks to help with bringing up children. We also get rent assistance! I would never have known if I hadn’t been told when I was taken there. All the rent that I paid for the furnished rental house and now for the long term rental is subsidised by the Australian government. I never expected a cent and it’s a welcome help as things are very expensive. Whoever you rent from, just get them to complete the form for you and send it in. The payment comes from Centrelink who’s contact details are www.centrelink.gov.au

I will put on another post when I have been here a little longer. Like everyone else we are waiting for summer!

I have met South Africans in the shops and you hear Afrikaans all the time! Not regretting the move!


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We were in Adelaide in Feb/Mar this year and stayed in Christies Beach for 1 week. We are due over early 2010 and are considering Seaford or Christies. Thanks for the links for temporary accomodation, will definitely investigate. Much of what you say regarding Adelaide is what we found as well. We have some other South African friends also living in Christies who we chat to regularly. They have been there about 3 years now and re very happy and would never return. I would like to keep in touch with you to see how things go and possibly ask questions.



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My first travelling long distance in Oz will be to Adelaide in November. I am attending a 2 day conference.

I will have to ask the locals about the weather in early November. In Canberra we r still having fairly cold mornings.Today was 3.How have you found the temps in Adelaide?

Cheers Louise

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It looks like you are South of Adelaide. There is a couple of ex South Africans meeting at Hallett Cove East Primary School, Quailo Ave at 9:30am on Sundays for Church. Come along and make some new friends.


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