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Australian Student Visa Changes

Here are the most recent updates regarding Student Visa in Australia. Borders are still closed, but there is some good news for international students.

Update (14th of October 2021):

Australian borders will reopen soon and the first international students will return to Australia in December 2021.

Original blog article: Did you know that some students will not have to pay for their next visa application?

Australian Government is making several visa changes in order to help international students who are planning to study in Australia and those who already have their Student Visas, but their studies are impacted by the pandemic:

  • The Government will recommence granting student visas in all locations lodged outside Australia. This means when borders re-open, students will already have visas and be able to make arrangements to travel.
  • International students will be able to lodge a further student visa application free of charge if they are unable to complete their studies within their original visa validity due to COVID-19.
  • Student visa holders studying online outside Australia due to COVID-19 will be able to use that study to count towards the Australian study requirement for a post-study work visa.
  • Graduates who held a student visa will be eligible to apply for a post-study work visa outside Australia if they are unable to return due to COVID-19.
  • Additional time will be given for applicants to provide English language results where COVID-19 has disrupted access to these services.

What should you do?

These are welcomed changes, especially for those of you who already have their Student Visas. E.g. if you were on holiday in your home country when the borders got shut and you were unable to return to Australia. The real change for all new offshore applicants will be when the travel ban gets lifted.

Until then we recommend our offshore clients just enrol (for as little as $250 AUD) and wait with their visa application until the borders are re-opened. If this is your case, let us know and we can help you to find the right course. This way you don’t miss out on the current course promotions without having to pay the Student Visa fee until you are sure you can come to Australia. Schools were forced to temporarily lower their tuition fees due to the pandemic so why not take advantage of it?

Are you in Australia at the moment and your current visa (e.g. a Working Holiday Visa) is expiring soon? There are no major changes for you and you will need to apply for a new visa. Despite the current situation, most of our onshore clients usually get their Student Visas granted very quickly. Feel free to request a quote from Study Anywhere and we can help you to move to a Student Visa or to renew your current Student Visa.

New visa options for Hong Kong citizens

Australia is also starting to offer several visa options for Hongkongers because of the escalated situation between mainland China and Hong Kong. The main change for students is perhaps the longer duration of the Graduate Visa. Students from Hong Kong will now be able to get 5 years of Graduate Visa (instead of 18 or 24 months). Feel free to contact us if you are interested in studying a course eligible for the Graduate Visa.

Do you have any questions about the Australian Student Visa? Check out Frequently Asked Questions.

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Australian Department of Home Affairs is changing the Student Visa application fee from the 1st of July 2019.

The cost of a Student Visa in Australia (Subclass 500) is now $620 (an increase from $575). If you will be applying in Australia and your current visa was granted while you were in Australia, be prepared that the Department of Home Affairs will charge you another $700 (Subsequent Temporary Application Charge) on top of the $620. This is often the case when someone is moving from the second year of Working Holiday Visa and this fee has not changed since 1. 7. 2019.

If you are planning to include your partner in your Student Visa application, you will be charged another $430 (Additional Applicant Charge 18+) by the Department of Home Affairs.

Do you want to save as much money on your Student Visa in Australia as possible? Why not take advantage of our current special offer? You can choose the cheapest course in Sydney and study for as little as $4,000 / year ($1,000 every three months). Contact us now for a free quote and all the details.

Students enrolling with Study Anywhere will get free assistance with their Student Visa applications by our registered migration agent.

All prices are in Australian Dollars (AUD). Please, check the website of the Department of Home Affairs for all the details about a Student Visa in Australia and FAQs on our website.

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The article is written by Paola Bianchi  Cover pic by Kieren Andrews

Is general knowledge that Eureka Tower is the tallest building, that the tram network is one of the largest one in the world, and that the city is full of alleys with ever-changing graffiti. We have seen these images all over the web. All these are real facts. But there is some information about this city that you might get wrong.

It is not the most liveable city in the world

Melbourne has been chosen several years in a row as the most liveable city in the world. But not anymore! According to the Economist Intelligence Unit rankings, Vienna is now the top number one in 2018. Melbourne got the second spot and Sydney got the fifth. Not because something is not going forward for Melburnians, but It seems that the Austrian city is doing even better.

pic 1Pic by Johan Mouchet

It is not ideal for night owls

Big cities are known for having stores open 24hs per seven days. So even if you get hungry at 3am, there is somewhere to go for a quick bite. However, in Melbourne is rare to find shops open that late. Shops shut down relatively early. As a general rule, cafes close by 4pm or 5pm, restaurants by 10pm or 11pm, retail stores at 6pm except on certain days like Friday.

pic 2Pic by Kevin laminto 

Not many people live in the city

It’s said that Melbourne is home for around 4.5 million people. But as stats show, the residential population is over 148,000 (as of 2016) in the City of Melbourne. This area counts the CBD and some inner suburbs like Parkville and Southbank. That means that the grand majority lives in The Greater Melbourne. Another interesting fact is that almost 1 million walk in the city on an average weekday.

pic 3Pic by  Akshay Chauhan

Hot wheatear doesn’t last long

When thinking about Australia, we usually imagine ourselves on a hot day sunbathing in white sandy beaches, spotting kangaroos in the wild and, let’s be honest, looking after our back while swimming because of sharks. That’s not the case at all about Melbourne. You might find wild fauna but the sunny hot days just last for the summer season which is December, January and February. The rest of the year tends to be cold, rainy and windy. Take a look at these averages temperatures:

Season Average maximum Average minimum
Summer (December to February): warm to hot 25°C (77°F) 14°C (57°F)
Autumn (March to May): mild 20°C (68°F) 11°C (52°F)
Winter (June to August): cool to brisk 14°C (57°F) 7°C (45°F)
Spring (September to November): cool to mild 20°C (68°F) 10°C (50°F)

 

Closest best surf spot is not Torquay

The west coast of Port Philip Bay is famous for its surfing. Mainly, Torquay beach is a favourite for all levels, and Bells beach is popular for the Rip Curl Competitions, both close to the Great Ocean Road. But if you head to the East coast of the bay and to the open sea you will find lots of fantastic surf spots like Flinders beach, The Pines, Honey Suckles, Serial and Gunnamatta Beach. The Gunnamatta Beach it’s known for having good waves and stable surf conditions throughout the year.

pic 4Pic by Alex Wigan 

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The article is written by Paola Bianchi  Cover pic by @rhindaxu

You decided to stay in Melbourne for a while. Diversity, culture, music, food, opportunities. Great decision. Now, you have to decide where to live.

A quick explanation before choosing the location. In Australia, neighbourhoods are called suburbs and they represent urban areas close to the main city centre. This differs from other countries where suburbs mean the opposite. Victorian suburbs are under the management of a Municipality (Council). They are called ‘City of x’. To give an example; t the City of Melbourne municipality has 15 suburbs. There are at least 30 Councils and more than 300 suburbs. Check the full list.

How to choose where to live in? Which suburb would suit you better? Actually, the correct question is; in which neighbourhood would you fit better? Each of Melbourne’s suburbs has its own personality, mood and charisma.

I do not intend to make an exhaustive list here. Let’s just talk about some of the most popular ones near the CBD.

 

RICHMOND

Close to CBD, with difficult parking but excellent public connections to… everywhere. Residents are varied, from cool tattoo appearance to professional looking. Everyone is welcome. Plenty of cool bars and cafes, and the Vietnamese food rule. This friendly and hip suburb is hard to beat.

2 RichmondPic by Josh Calabrese

 

CARLTON

Pasta and gelato. This suburb holds the Italian precinct, the Melbourne Museum, the University of Melbourne, beautifully restored Victorian buildings, green gardens, and one of the best tram networks.

3 CarltonPic by @thethinblackframe

 

FITZROY

Bohemian, hipster and funky. A suburb that offers what is Melbourne known of. Bookshops, art galleries and boutique stores. Beards, barber shops, and where greatest baristas want to work. Pubs, remarkable cafés and trendy restaurants. Vintage biking is the way to move.
4 FitzroyPic by @louissamal

Note that Collingwood and Abbotsford are adjacent neighbourhoods with similar vibes. They have cheaper accommodation but not many good public transport connections.

 

BRUNSWICK & NORTHCOTE

Even though they are much far away from the business district centre, these suburbs are becoming the next cool place to live in. Alike Fitzroy, but less crowded and with a peaceful residential looking. Think of houses with garden, trees in the streets and organic stores. Unpretentious. Relax vibes and far cheaper accommodation options.

5 Northcote

Pic by Tom Rumble

DOCKLANDS

A suburb that has high expectations for its future. On the west side of the city, right on Victoria harbour, features an enormous development with shops, restaurants, a mall and the famous wheel of fortune. One of the newest suburbs in Melbourne. Its name comes from being a swamp that served as a dock in the previous century. Think of tall modern buildings and clean spaces. Certainly not cheap as it pretends to attract high-income professionals.

6 Docklands

Pic by  Oskars Sylwan 

 

SOUTH MELBOURNE

Historic buildings, Victorian houses, old-fashioned pubs and top-notch cafes scattered over the narrow streets. Hip and cool. This suburb has history and has an excellent public transport network. The South Melbourne market is one of the most well-known markets of the city, with gourmet options.

Note that closer suburbs like Port Melbourne and Southbank are also in high demand. Port Melbourne is a renovated suburb, a similar and smaller version of South Melbourne but with ocean views. Southbank, on the other hand, lacks the Victorian charm and character of others suburbs because of its tallest contemporary buildings. But this might be the urban style that you are looking for. Great location, though. Close to the Botanical Gardens, museums and the river.

7 South MelbPic  by Manki Kim

 

SOUTH YARRA & PRAHRAN

Posh and chic. High-end fashion labels, upscale restaurants, cocktail lounges and nightclubs. It can get crowded but never boring. The large Prahran Market is a popular option for local groceries.

ST KILDA

Beach vibes, spectacular sunsets and penguins in the pier. Busy in summer, chilled in winter. Gardens, festivals, the long Esplanade, markets and diverse eateries. Supposedly, named after a vessel with the insignia ‘Lady of St Kilda’, this bayside suburb embrace diversity to its fullest. Once known as the red district, now is slowly being gentrified. Great public transport options.

Close by, Elwood suburb enjoys same green spaces and beach views without the tourist and noise that St Kilda has during the high season. Bad tram network though. Peaceful and gorgeous neighbourhood.

8 St kildaPic by HealthyMond 

Which one do you like better? Do your research and pick the best.

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The article and the pictures by Rebecca Todesco

If you’re planning day trips around Victoria, then stop what you’re doing and immediately put Phillip Island at the top of your list. I’m talking about koalas, kangaroos, beaches and penguins all in one day!

Phillip Island is an Australian island that is a few hours’ drive southeasts of Melbourne. The island itself is less than 100 square kilometres so it is very easy to get from place to place once you’ve crossed onto the island. The island is extremely popular with tourists, especially in the warmer months and on the weekend. I would strongly advise making your visit on a weekday.

There are plenty of hotels and hostels on the island (or just across, on the mainland) if you decide to make your trip an overnight one. But if you leave early and have some people to share the driving with then it’s possible to do it all in one day.

Start your day with a visit to the Phillip Island Wildlife Park. This park is home to more than 100 species of Australian animals and is spread over a whopping 60 acres. You can see an array of famous Australian animals including dingoes, wombats, echidnas and bats.

The reptile house will bring you up close and personal with some of Australia’s scalier residents and you’ll be grateful for the wire that separates you from the birds of prey in the bird section. There’s even a raised platform that you can walk on which will allow you to get on the eye level of the koalas.

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For a small fee upon entry to the park, you can purchase a small bag of feed which you can use at my favourite area of the park: the free-range section. You’ll find yourself completely surrounded by kangaroos and wallabies with no fences to separate you. You can pat and feed them and it’s the perfect opportunity for you to get that snapshot for your Facebook.

If you’re brave enough you can even feed the emus but be warned: they’re big and they run fast!

After getting your fill of petting kangaroos and running from emus, head over to the western tip of the island to The Nobbies Centre. The headland cliffs are covered with a network of boardwalks which you can walk on, enjoying spectacular views of The Nobbies and Seal Rock.

At certain times of the year, if you’re lucky you can see some of the little penguins hiding in under the boardwalks or in their little burrows along the cliff’s edge.

If you choose to, there are boat tours that’ll take you offshore and closer to Seal Rocks for the chance to catch a glimpse of some seals. The Nobbies Centre boasts a gift shop chock-full of cute souvenirs as well as a café where you can sit and enjoy a coffee or snack in front of the floor to ceiling windows, overlooking the cliffs.

As the last activity of the day, head to the famous Penguin Parade. Phillip Island boasts the largest little penguin colony in all of Victoria. Decades worth of research effort has gone into the conservation of these little penguins at Phillip Island, making it one of the longest continuous seabird studies in the world.

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The research centre has plenty of information and exhibits about the little penguins, as well as a gift shop with an abundance of adorable penguin souvenirs. Visitors can learn all about what the penguins do at sea as well as why they make their way inland every night.

Just before sunset visitors make their way to Summerland Beach and fill the tiers of seating overlooking the water. Once the sun begins to set, keep your eyes peeled: that’s when the penguins make their way out of the water, up the beach and back to their burrows. You’ll be able to follow their journey from a safe distance as you make your way back up to the visitor centre.

If you get any time between activities head to the small town of Cowes. Like any quintessential beach town, the main strip of Cowes is crammed with fish and chips shops and coastal clothing and furniture stores. Spend some time having a wander or grab a serving of fish and chips and eat it on the beach.

(These are only a few of the activities available on Phillip Island. There is also a chocolate factory, Grand Prix circuit visitor centre and plenty of other wildlife parks)

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The article is written by Rebecca Todesco

For those of you studying in Melbourne, there’s plenty in the city to keep you occupied. But if you’re looking to leave the skyscrapers behind and escape to the coast for the weekend then here’s a couple of places you should consider.

Sorrento 

The limestone buildings that line the main street are a hat tip to Sorrento’s history. Sorrento beach offers white sand and shallow water, perfect for the littlies to get their feet wet and have a paddle.

Sorrento’s main road is lined with enough boutiques, restaurants and cafes to keep you entertained for the day. Be sure to make a stop at Just Fine Food and sample their famous vanilla slice. If vanilla isn’t really your taste, then there are plenty of other scrumptious desserts for you to try.

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Rye
Rye really comes alive during the summer holiday seasons. Rye beach offers a large stretch of fine, white sand and shallow water. The Rye pier is a popular nighttime fishing location. Even if you’re not much of a fisherman (or woman), hanging around the pier and watching other peoples’ fishing success is a lovely way to pass the time.

The main strip of Rye, running parallel to the beach, is home to shops, restaurants and ice cream and gelato stores. Speaking of gelato: an after-dinner trip to Vulcano Gelato is an absolute must! You can find it by following the line of people waiting their turn to be served. Don’t be put off by the line though: it is well worth the wait!

The annual summer Rye carnival happens in the beach car park and is usually around in the months of December and January. There is no better way to spend an evening than walking along the pier – gelato in hand – watching the carnival lights reflect off the water.

Arthurs Seat

The Arthurs Seat State Park rises above the Mornington Peninsula and provides fantastic views of the surrounding area. There are plenty of hiking and walking tracks through the park for the more adventurous to lose themselves on.

A popular spot is the Arthurs Seat Summit, where visitors can stop and enjoy a picnic or barbeque while being treated to spectacular views.

The Arthurs Seat Eagle is the perfect opportunity for braver souls to get their adrenaline pumping. This attraction is a state of the art gondola ride that flies you over the forest to the highest point of the peninsula. The ride takes about 14 minutes (one way).

Carnival

Mornington

There is plenty to see in Mornington. You can visit Victoria’s oldest courthouse and adjacent lockup or even take the steam train ride on the Mornington Railway.

The main street of Mornington boasts a large number of boutiques and shops to peruse and find the perfect beachy souvenir to take home. If, after a long morning of shopping, you want to give your weary feet a rest, there are plenty of fantastic places to satisfy your hunger pangs.

The Mornington Main Street Market is on every Wednesday. Stalls line the street, selling an array of items from handcrafted soaps to locally grown produce, homemade cakes to handmade jewellery and everything in between. The market has been up and running for over thirty years, making it the state’s longest running street market.

Hot Spring

Peninsula Hot Springs
The Peninsula Hot Springs is a hidden sanctuary tucked away on the peninsula. You can almost feel your stress and worries disappear as soon as you don the fluffy white robe and begin your bathing experience. I would recommend setting aside an entire day at the springs because once you’re there, the hours seem to fly.

The Peninsula Springs water carries a range of minerals including calcium, magnesium and potassium. The temperature of the pools ranges between 37 and 43 degrees Celsius and the water runs untouched from the source directly to the pools.

The springs have two facilities: the Bath House and the Spa Dreaming Centre.

The Bath House offers more than 20 bathing experiences, including a Turkish steam room, plunge pool, reflexology walk and a sauna. Be sure to make the journey to the very highest pool and you’ll be treated to 360-degree views of the surrounding area.

If you’ve got a bit of extra money to splurge, then head to the Spa Dreaming Centre for massages and beauty treatments.

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The article is written by Paola Bianchi  Title pic by Smith & daughters

 

Did you ever wonder where a plant-based lover would eat if given a chance to eat in the best spots in Melbourne for just one day?

Choosing where to eat in Melbourne can be exciting and painful at the same time. This city has gained the irrevocable reputation of foodie-obsession for a reason. The more amazing eateries options you have, the more confused you get. It is overwhelming. Needless to say, who has so much time and budget to try them all?

To help in this delicious endeavour, here is where to eat if you have just one day in the city:

For BREAKFAST head south to Elwood: Combi

2 Combi

A superfood- focused café offering organic treats and coffee, raw food, colourful smoothies in a small venue. Food and drinks presentation is ready for an Instagram post. I would recommend avoiding peak times if possible because seats are extremely limited. That said, is a vibrant and cosy place.

Top pick: Mango shack with Sweet sprouted bread or ice coffee deluxe with Dragon fruit bowl.

 

For LUNCH, take a walk through the Esplanade and go to St Kilda: Sister of Soul

A vegetarian café and restaurant with a menu that will make you fall in love with food, without overpricing! Such a delicate combination of flavours. The menu has a strong mixed influence from Asia to India. Huge windows, chic decoration and friendly service. Overall, great location. No booking accepted but you won’t need to wait too long because the place has lots of seats.

Top pick: Massaman curry or the Jack Black burger.

3 Sister of Soul

 

For DINNER head to Fitzroy North: Moroccan Soup Bar

Small restaurant that just opens for dinner. Good luck trying to get a spot to seat as they are always full, but that’s because their food is absolutely like eating in heaven. There is no written menu, but a verbal menu. The waitress will explain about the two banquet options you can choose from. Then the food will start coming in steps. Each one will blow your mind. Non-complicated delicious food. Finish with some special tea.

Top pick: eat everything!

4 Morrocan

 

For DESSERT stay around and proceed to: Smith & daughters

A vegan eatery that ticks all the trendy’s boxes. Seasonal menu, attractive visual atmosphere and women directing the orchestra. You can book, and please do so. The cocktails are to die for and better if accompanied with a Milanese Schnitzel. Nop, it’s not chicken!

Top pick: The Tiramisu. How on earth can this be vegan?

5 Smith

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The article is written by Bernadette Sanfilippo

Most have this general conception that Australia endures hot weather all…the…time. The truth of the matter is, that couldn’t be further from the truth. Let’s trek around to several Australian capitals and explore their accompanying weather conditions…

SYDNEY

Sydney is prone to experiencing four seasons in a single day. The summer days tend to endure periods of high temperatures, coupled with relatively high peaks in humidity however, in the late afternoon, the sky can quickly become overcast and, if so, a downpour is likely to ensue. The maximum temperatures can also differ greatly from one day to the next. A day of 38oC can easily be followed by a day of 26oC. Winters in Sydney do tend to be milder, with temperatures typically hovering between the high-teens and low-twenties.

MELBOURNE

Melbourne is a rather interesting one for weather. Winters are icy cold, with most days never reaching a temperature higher than 15oC. While that may seem warm compared to many other winters around the world, the humidity is usually extremely low, making the weather feel much icier than it may actually be. In more recent years, very little rainfall has been experienced throughout the season, and the absence of such has greatly contributed to the lower levels of humidity. Summers, on the other hand, tend to experience lower average temperatures, primarily due to the city’s close proximity to Antarctica, but periods of extremely high, uncomfortably dense humidity.

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BRISBANE

Brisbane experiences a humidity so high in the summer time, it is virtually impossible to be active outside. While the peak temperature may not necessarily be high, there is often little to no relief from the humidity, which remains consistently high all throughout the day and deep into the night. The capital experiences intense tropical weather conditions and, in the last few years, has endured a number of relatively serious cyclones and tropical storms. Brisbane does not tend to experience a formal winter, but rather a period of lowered humidity and heat between June and September.

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PERTH

Perth is situated between the sea and the land, literally. Situated on the coast of Western Australia, the Indian Ocean sits on one side of the city, while both the Gibson and Great Victoria Deserts sit on the other. With all this in such close proximity, Perth experiences very high temperatures in the summertime, typically enduring consecutive days of 40oC+ weather. Unlike other Australian cities however, the overall humidity tends to remain quite low. Perth’s winters tends to resemble Sydney’s, with temperatures typically floating between the high-teens and low-twenties, with strong, short bursts of rainfall occurring periodically.

CANBERRA

Canberra, our nation’s capital, experiences the lowest winter temperatures in the country. While the average daytime temperature tends to sit between 10oC – 15oC, much like Melbourne, the nightly average can frequently fall several degrees below zero. While the city can experience rainfall throughout the winter, it is not nearly as prone to strong downpour as other Australian capitals. While the summers in Canberra will often endure much higher peaking temperatures than those in neighbouring states, these, once again, tend to be followed by much cooler nightly conditions.

 

 

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