Student visa (Subclass 500)
- You can stay for the duration of your course
- You must be enrolled in a full time course registered on the official website Cricos
- You must hold Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC), or fall in one of the exemption categories
- You can only work up to 40 hours in a fortnight. A fortnight means the period of 14 days starting on a Monday.
From AUD630, unless exempt.
Between 3 and 5 months
As an international student in Australia, you are required to have Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) for the entire duration of your study in Australia.
It includes cover for visits to the doctor, some hospital treatment, ambulance cover and limited pharmaceuticals (medicines).
Along with your OSHC you might want to consider purchasing private health insurance to cover items that your OSHC does not cover.
Once you have received confirmation of your university, you should look for accommodation that suits your needs and budget.
Your university’s student services can assist you in suggesting housing agencies.
Short-term accommodation might be a good option when you first arrive in Australia:
- Hostels and discounted rates on hotels.
- Temporary housing which may be offered through your institution while you get settled. Talk to your institution's international support staff or check their website for details.
Most universities have comfortable and furnished apartment-style living on campus or close by, sometimes with cleaning and meals included. Contact your institution directly to find out the accommodation options they have available.
You can rent or 'lease' a property by yourself or with friends. This can be done through a real estate agent or privately.
Homestay with a family can be a good option for younger students as you will have all the comforts of an established home, often with meals and cleaning included.
Minimum cost of living
The Department of Home Affairs has financial requirements you must meet in order to receive a student visa for Australia. As of October 2019 the 12-month living costs are - AUD$21,041 for students.
Here is an approximate guide of the costs associated with living and studying in Australia:
- Hostels and Guesthouses - $90 to $150 per week
- Shared Rental - $85 to $215 per week
- On campus - $90 to $280 per week
- Homestay - $235 to $325 per week
- Rental - $165 to $440 per week
- Boarding schools - $11,000 to $22,000 a year
Other living expenses
- Groceries and eating out - $80 to $280 per week
- Gas, electricity - $35 to $140 per week
- Phone and Internet - $20 to $55 per week
- Public transport - $15 to $55 per week
- Car (after purchase) - $150 to $260 per week
- Entertainment - $80 to $150 per week
Working while studying
Working while you study in Australia can help complement your study and living experience. There are both on-campus jobs as well as local jobs available and often universities have an office which would help you find the right one for you.
Most student visas allow you to work for up to 40 hours every two weeks while your course is in session, and unrestricted hours during any scheduled course break, but before you undertake any paid work you need to make sure your visa allows you to work. Find out more at the Department of Home Affairs website.
There are plenty of ways to find work that suits you, including:
- Newspapers and online job sites.
- Some institutions provide job notice-boards on campus and online. Contact your institution’s international student support staff to find out what options your institution offers.
- Register your details at a recruitment firm; many of them help place people in casual or short-term work.
Internships in Australia
Internships are temporary work placements in workplaces and education institutions. Internships can be paid or unpaid depending on the industry and the length of placement, and are a great opportunity to gain hands-on experience in the area of your study.
Visa and internships
There are several student and work visas that allow international students to intern in Australia. Different conditions can apply when it comes to the period of your internship, including: how many hours a day/week you can intern, and whether you can earn money as an intern. Further information on visa conditions can be found on the Department of Home Affairs website.
Some institutions run an orientation week (also known as ‘O Week’) for new students. You will learn about your institution, take tours of facilities, and meet people who will also be studying at your institution.
If your institution has an ‘O Week’ it is important that you attend to learn how to get the most out of your institution and study experience.
If you have any problems or questions once you leave the airport, call your institution’s international support staff. These details will be in your enrolment and orientation information.