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How Much Does It Cost To Move To Australia

Published by Chris Townsend

How Much Does It Cost To Move To Australia

With its lush rainforests, exceptional work-life balance, and great weather, the land down under is an appealing place to live for anyone bold enough to relocate to a different hemisphere. However, before you can enjoy the sparkling blue seas, golden beaches, and rich greenery, you need to deal with all the logistics.

Among those considering moving to Australia, one of the most common questions is, “how much does it cost to move to Australia? and it is a very valid question. We understand the desire to want to know exactly how much money you should set aside to migrate to Australia.

Unfortunately, it can be difficult to give exact numbers, as there are so many factors involved. However, we will do our best to provide estimates. Continue reading to obtain a better idea of what it takes to move to Australia, and what it’ll cost.

What Does It Cost To Move To Australia

As much as we’d love to provide you with exact numbers for what your move to Australia is going to cost you, we can’t do this without knowing your individual situation. Though, we can take a look at some of the key costs involved:

  • Australian visa fees and visa related expenses
  • Costs of shipping your goods internationally to Australia
  • Costs of traveling to Australia

Let’s examine each of these costs in further detail to understand the average overall cost of moving to Australia.

Australian Visa Fees

There are numerous visas that you can apply for when moving to Australia, each with their own applicable fees and charges. The visas are separated into categories: visit, study, work, live, other, and repealed or closed visas. Prices range from as low as $485 for a work and holiday visa or $620 for a student visa, to as much as $7,715 for a partner visa or $4,045 for a permanent residence visa. These numbers are all in Australian dollars.

Head to the Australian Department of Home Affair’s website to find the specific visa that you’re looking for.

What Does It Cost To Move To Australia

In addition to the visa application fees, there are a number of other visa related expenses that you should budget appropriately for. These include, but are not limited to, the following:

Medical examination

Depending on which visa you’re applying for, where you’re coming from, and how long you plan to be in Australia, you’ll need to get either a full medical exam or just a chest x-ray. In most cases, these will not be covered by your health insurance and you’ll be expected to pay out of pocket.

Police clearance certificate

The fees for a Police Clearance Certificate will depend on what country and/or state you are receiving the clearance from. In some cases, you may also need to pay for fingerprinting. For those coming from the United States, you will be required to get a police clearance for every state you have lived in for the past 12 months.

Fees for a criminal history record vary based on state, but typically cost an average of $30 per person. Though, fingerprinting and notary seals are additional expenses. In addition to a police clearance certificate, you might also have to get an FBI clearance. To have an identity history summary check performed by the FBI, you will need to be fingerprinted.

Cost of Shipping Goods to Australia

For starters, the best way to know exactly how much it’s going to cost to have your household goods shipped to Australia is to obtain an estimate from a reputable international mover. For the most accurate estimate, you want the moving company to come out to your home to perform an in-home estimate. In which case they will take an inventory of everything that needs to be shipped and come up with a realistic estimate.

It’s also important that you collect a minimum of three different quotes. That way you can effectively compare each company’s experience, and how they operate, and try to get the best deal possible. Australia has very strict regulations regarding quarantine that you must be aware of. This makes it absolutely crucial to choose an international moving company that is experienced with shipping goods to Australia.

When it comes to the cost of shipping your goods to Australia, there are some important terms and factors you should know:

  • Full Container Load (FCL) vs. Less than Container Load (LCL): FCL means that you are taking up the entirety of the container, whereas, LCL is when you share the container with someone else who is also shipping their belongings to Australia. The benefit of Less than Container Load is that you also share the cost. Though, you may have to wait until the shipping company can fill the rest of the container before they ship your stuff.
  • Shipping Container Sizes: 20-foot and 40-foot are the two standard shipping container sizes. Generally speaking, a 20-foot container can house the contents of a three-bedroom house, while a 40-foot container can ship a three-bedroom house and a car or a five-bedroom house.
  • Door-to-door shipping vs. Port-to-port shipping: Door-to-door shipping means that the company you hire packs the container for you at your home, transports it the port where it is shipped to Australia, and then unloads everything at your new home. Port-to-port, on the other hand, means you’re responsible for getting your items to the port in your origin country and then retrieving them from the port when they arrive in Australia.

With these factors in mind, we’ve put together a table of some estimated costs for shipping goods to Australia from the United States.

Origin LocationDestination Location20-ft Container CostTrip Duration
New York City, NYMelbourne, Australia$2,9405 to 6 weeks
New York City, NYSydney, Australia$3,0005 to 6 weeks
New York City, NYAdelaide, Australia$2,9705 to 6 weeks
Los Angeles, CAMelbourne, Australia$1,1603 to 4 weeks
Los Angeles, CASydney, Australia$1,1803 to 4 weeks
Los Angeles, CAAdelaide, Australia$1,1703 to 4 weeks

Note: Keep in mind that these estimates do not include any add-ons, such as professional packing and unpacking, door-to-door service, and insurance coverage. So, expect the quotes that you receive from moving companies to be quite a bit higher.

How Much Does It Cost To Immigrate To Australia

Once you figure out how you’re going to get all your stuff to Australia, you must have a plan for how you and your family are going to get there. Of course, you want to start shopping around for flights as earlier as possible to get the best prices. If you’re not already aware, flying to Australia is pretty expensive, and one-way tickets are often just as expensive as a round trip.

If you book at the right time – meaning at least two weeks before departure and avoiding high season – you could get one-way tickets for as little as:

  • Los Angeles to Australia: $670
  • New York to Australia: $878
  • Chicago to Australia: $806

If you have some flexibility with your move, August is the cheapest month to fly to Australia. Whereas, January, November, and December are the most expensive.
For more information about preparing for and planning your move to Australia, and to receive your free, no-obligation estimate, contact Three Movers today!

Frequently Asked Questions

Chris Townsend is a moving professional and relocation expert that has more than 10 years of experience in the moving industry. With a background that includes working in virtually every aspect of the company, he has distinguished himself as an integral part of our operations with expertise in all things related to moving. Chris has a keen eye for detail and brings intelligence and passion to every project he’s involved with.

While getting his degree in communications from Santa Clara University, Chris started out with the company working in the field as part of our team of professional moving associates. Following graduation, he was promoted to our main office, where he has thrived in a role that involves increasing responsibility and requires him to wear many different hats. Some days, you may find him answering the phone and providing moving estimates, others he may be writing for our moving blog, and another day he may be coordinating a large corporate moving job or helping us with our marketing efforts. Chris has authored many of our in-depth moving guides, as well as provided our clients with information and advice to handle the complexities of their upcoming moving plans. Simply put, there’s nothing he can’t do and we wouldn’t be where we are today without him.

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