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Little Advice for Big Australia

Posted on Apr 7, 2010 in Travel |

Travelling does make you feel alive. Going places, meeting people and taking pictures is breath-taking, fulfilling and incomparable. Memories remain and make you feel nostalgic about the good times you once had. You don’t want to remember these times with regret. That is why you need to ensure the fun as much as possible. Planning the trip too much does not work out most of the times because it ruins the adventure. Knowing what’s coming up next just kills the excitement for some people. They prefer to hit the road with a small backpack–and improvise. It is truly great times–if you are lucky. A survey targeting backpackers from Ireland, who went to Australia,  showed that more than 35 per cent said they wished they had saved more money and hadn’t  spent it all in one place. Because they didn’t plan their budget, they missed the opportunity to visit all the places they originally intended to see. A common problem among backpackers on a working holiday visa is that they have had a hard time finding a job in Australia, and thus, they hated the whole travelling experience. Jobs are never guaranteed upfront, but one thing you can do is research where and what jobs are currently available. Try to contact some employers, send out resumes, contact with other travellers through forums and blogs for advice. Going with the flow also can get you trapped in one place, while the real action is still out there. It’ll be a shame to spend half of your trip in Sydney for example, as 8 per cent of the survey participants said. They all regretted that they didn’t leave the big city earlier, and that living there is really like living in any other big city. In short, planning without ruining the trip is possible–and smart. Researching the area you are going to, checking the weather and getting answers to your questions increases the satisfaction, and more importantly–it’s...

Gumtree

Posted on Apr 7, 2010 in Uncategorized |

The online classifieds and community site Gumtree.com has  gained  massive popularity among the travelling folks. According to our survey, 22 per cent of people found accommodations through Gumtree. Gumtree is the biggest Web site in UK for local community classifieds, and is mostly used in the UK, Ireland, Poland, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. The site advertises more than 25,000 new rooms a month, meaning at least 10,000 rooms are being rented through it. One can practically find anything there–flat share, flat rentals, cars, jobs, dates, pets, stuff for sale.  ...

Wear Sunscreen, Mate!

Posted on Apr 6, 2010 in Migration News |

It’s not the snakes, spiders, crocodiles, sharks or jellyfish that can ruin your holiday in Australia because you can easily avoid them–it’s the sun, mate! Lying on the beach, walking, camping–pretty much any outdoor activity has the danger of sunburn. Most backpackers simply underestimate it until they suffer through it. “You will see a lot of skin cancer clinics around Bondi Junction in Sydney – the sun above Australia (and even worse in New Zealand) shines through a big hole in ozone layer and will not only burn you badly – it’s much more likely to cause skin cancer than the sun in Northern Hemisphere,” says gondwananet.com. European and North American travelers are in love with the beautiful Australian beaches because many of them are just empty–locals stay away from the direct sun. In contrast, tourists literally fry themselves to death under the sun. Due to the hot weather, they automatically uncover themselves while outside–a huge DON’T! “The sun is dangerous. Wear a big hat, sunscreen, cover up and take a water bottle with you wherever you go. People have died or nearly died because they ignored that advice,” advises outback-australia-travel-secrets.com. Look at some of the tips below from fellow backpackers, who have learnt their lesson, and try not to repeat their mistakes. At last, enjoy the trip! “Lots of sun cream! Make sure to have enough money to last until you get a job and just have fun!” “Make sure you bring plenty of sunscreen, make sure you travel everywhere and go to all the adventure parks!” “Go…don’t think about it…live the dream and wear sunscreen…visit Ayres Rock!” “Put sun cream on during summer! I saw so many people burnt and had to lose a week due to this...

Applying for Visa Can Be Hassle-Free

Posted on Mar 22, 2010 in Working Holiday Visa |

Applying for a visa for a first time might be a little frustrating because it is time-consuming and related to tons of paperwork. At the end, if your visa gets denied due to incomplete or wrong documentation, or missed deadlines, your plans for travel and vacation crash dramatically before your eyes. And, you are to spend a couple of hundred dollars application fee at the embassy which would not guarantee your visa approval. Since accuracy and timing are the most important factors  determining the visa status, you can’t afford to make mistakes. By choosing a visa processing agent, one such as Visa First, prospective working holiday makers will certainly avoid a lot of problems simply because the agents are better prepared to get the situation sorted out in a timely fashion. The fee that applies over the embassy fee is usually less than what the client time is worth. Dealing with your visa might take several days at times, so you will probably earn more money in that time than what you will spend on the service. Working Holiday Visa Charges for Australia Service VisaFirst DIAC 48h Australia Working Holiday Visa (Subclass 417) 295 AUD 230 AUD 2 Weeks Australia Working Holiday Visa  (Subclass 417) 275 AUD 230 AUD So, you pay 45 AUD more to us–Visa First–to process your visa application for two weeks, and to guarantee complete accuracy. The VF rates are for those who apply for a first time for working holiday visa for...

(Un) Employment ?

Posted on Mar 18, 2010 in Living Abroad, Migration News, Working Holiday Visa |

Economic downturn, recession, crisis, stagnation, unemployment–we are all tired of hearing those as they bring fear and no desire for a little sweet vacation, or escape, or what have you… We got some news for you. Winter is coming to its end, and despite the economic situation that’s been ruling along with the cold for awhile, we see the sun, the beach and the fun at the end of the tunnel. Let’s take a look at some stats and see why Australia is still the place to be for working holiday for the European adventurous souls.   Unemployment Rates – January 2010 Netherlands – 4.2% Australia – 5.3% New Zealand – 7.3% Germany – 7.5% UK – 7.8% Canada – 8.3% US – 9.7% France – 10.1% Ireland – 13.8% Spain – 18.8%     Per stats at epp.eurostat.ec.europa.eu, Netherlands has the lowest unemployment rate from the countries in the EU–4.2%, while the average unemployment percent in the EU is 9.5%. Spain has  one of the highest rates of 18.8%, followed only by Latvia with 22.9%. Ireland, with its 13.8% unemployment, is not quite promising yet, either. So far, Australia’s 5.3% is a keeper. Those who want to go there on a working holiday visa and work while having all the fun from being away from home-in another continent-should consider the following: Overall, the employment increased 400 to 10,971,100. However, “Full-time employment increased 11,400 to 7,659,700 and part-time employment decreased 11,000 to 3,311,400,” according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics. As a visitor on a working holiday visa for one year, you are allowed to work practically anything for six months after which you need to change the employer. If you look at the statistics, you might want to try to find either a full-time or a part-time job–don’t concentrate on the part-time only as you may have a hard time getting one. The full-time job may give you less time for fun, but on the bright side you will be paid more, and you can still escape from the routine for awhile. References: http://www.tradingeconomics.com/Economics/Unemployment-Rate/ http://www.dol.govt.nz/ http://www.statistics.gov.uk/ http://epp.eurostat.ec.europa.eu/...

Illegal Workers Cost More Than What They Are Worth

Posted on Mar 16, 2010 in Australia Working Holiday |

Australian employers  are now encouraged to use the Visa Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO) service as part of a national campaign designed to educate employers about the importance of legal workers. The participating organizations in the campaign are the National Farmers Federation, Australian Workers Union, Horticulture Australia Council and the Australian Industry Group. Whether you are an employer illegally hiring foreign workers, or an employee illegally working in Australia, there will be serious consequences. For example, employers  will “face fines of up to $13 200 and two years’ imprisonment while companies face fines of up to $66 000 per illegal worker,” says newsroom.immi.gov.au. The Fair Work Ombudsman campaign  is to  spread light on the subject specifically in the horticulture industry because a huge number of the backpackers in Australia occupy this field, and ” it was crucial for the industry complies with immigration requirements in its employment practices,”  Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) spokesman said. In short, if you plan to go to Australia to work, make sure your visa status allows you to as your employer is highly likely to check your visa entitlement. VEVO, being an online system for organisations to check visa holder entitlements, appears to be of a great help to confirm workers’ eligibility. It is mostly used by labour supply companies and employers, education providers, or other organizations that need to check whether the person is permanently or temporarily in Australia. In addition, visa holders can also take advantage of the system as they can see details regarding their visas.   For more information on how to use VEVO, visit www.immi.gov.au...

Hit The Road, Jack!

Posted on Mar 12, 2010 in Working Holiday Visa |

Who said travelling is for the youngsters? Seniors now, more than ever,  have reasons to reach their dream destinations, and more importantly have lots of advantages as being older. So, why not hit the road? Nothing can stop the adventure-seeking folks– after all, age is just a number for them and cannot be an excuse to live in monotony and boredom. Interesting enough, the number of these folks is growing despite the economic downturn–“59 per cent of 55 to 64 year old will not let the current economic downturn hinder their plans to see more of the world,” a recent survey showed. They are also likely to wander around Europe, Australia and New Zealand as top destinations. Another survey from last October indicated that people over 65 don’t dream back on their past, but rather envy the young about their lifestyles: “Seventy per cent wished they had had more sex, 57 per cent would have liked to have travelled more, and 45 per cent wished they had quit their jobs and changed profession,” per www.independent.co.uk. For travelling, however, it is never too late, thus there is no need to envy the youngsters. Here’s why: Senior years are a great time to travel because age brings respect, which is particularly important for older women who want to travel alone. As a senior solo female, you will be far less disturbed by unwanted male attention. You will get the sympathy of local women too, which comes handy at times. Older travellers are more financially stable too, thus they have a high impact on the tourism industry. Those, who have difficulties funding their travel, however, can enjoy a variety of discounts and privileges. “Even if your college days are a distant memory, it’s possible to travel on a student discount over spring break this year,” says www.chron.com. “Student travel agencies are beginning to actively court non students and older travelers, extending their low prices to the not-so-youthful set. Though it has quietly offered discounts to non students for years, STA Travel began actively promoting “flights for everyone” on its home page late...

Backpackers Flooding NZ and Australia

Posted on Mar 11, 2010 in Working Holiday Visa |

Although the travel industry in Europe, North and South America, Middle East  and Asia Pacific is scoring fewer tourist visits recently due to the recession, Australia and New Zealand are blooming in the backpacking sector. Last year, the global travel decreased by four percent, according to the Tourism Research Australia International Visitor Survey. At the same time, the number of backpackers going to Australia increased by two percent, their expenses–by 10 percent, and the total number of visitors in the country, over 15 years of age, was up to 5.17 million. Per www.news.com.au, “Australia has done what it always does well – held up when the chips are down,” Matt Hingerty, managing director at the Australian Tourism Export Council, said. He added that such results bring optimism and enthusiasm amongst the members of the tourism council. New Zealand is not falling behind the Australia’s promising outcome in the tourism field, and specifically the backpacking. The reason is backpackers acquire less funds to travel compared to regular tourists. Thus, many traveller enthusiasts go on a trip as backpackers, find temporary jobs while in New Zealand or Australia, and still enjoy the adventure. “Today’s backpackers were tomorrow’s high-spending tourist families,” Hingerty said. In a previous post we gave our readers a rough idea of how much they could earn in different parts of Australia. Official figures for November 2009 are now available on www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/...

Female Backpackers Travelling Alone

Posted on Mar 11, 2010 in Working Holiday Visa |

As a female wishing to go on a trip abroad alone, lots of concerns pop up and discourage even the bravest sometimes. It’s the safety factor everyone has in mind. Is it really safe for a lonely female backpacker to travel in a foreign country, and will she enjoy the trip as much? At the end, isn’t it better to just pay loads of money for an organized tour? According to an article at www.news.com.au/travel, “solo female travellers attract far many more kindnesses, invitations and favors than solo male travellers or groups.” Although it could be true, however, solo females attract negative attention as well, and become an easy target for kidnappers, pickpockets, drug-dealers, etc. Truth is, safety is never guaranteed and it mainly depends on your behavior and look, as well as how well-informed you are. If you can’t find friends to come with you, however, there are several tips that will definitely minimize the risk and will ensure more relaxed and fun experience. Research well the desired destination, and learn about some of the main characteristics of the country and its nation through travel guides and the Internet. It is vital to know the region before you go there as “In many countries, clothes and comportment are perceived as mirrors of your moral values,” says www.news.com.au/travel. Also, travelling alone is not the best time to wear expensive accessories, jewelry and brand clothes:” The wealthier you appear, the more likely you are to be targeted by thieves,” adds www.helium.com. Here http://www.reasonpad.com/2009/06/the-safest-countries-in-the-world-to-visit-and-stay/, one can check some of the safest countries in the world to visit, some of which are New Zealand, Australia, Canada and Sweden. Being adventurous does not always mean “going with the flow.” Book a place to stay ahead of time, and choose carefully the location of the accommodation–call the reception desk; check online forums, blogs, opinions, etc. about the place. According to www.helium.com, “It is also worthwhile to avoid the cheapest areas (they are cheaper precisely because they are more dangerous).”  In addition, you are less likely to get in trouble in well-lighted and busy areas....

Call home for free

Posted on Sep 26, 2009 in Uncategorized |

There are probably many ways you can phone home, while you are abroad. Most of them are relevantly cheap, but over time it can become a considerable expense, especially if you like to hear from your friends and relatives often. Nowadays most people use Skype for text, voice and video chat. It’s a convenient and free way to communicate depending only on an active Internet connection from both sides. Sadly, not all of us can be in front of the computer all the time, or have restricted access to the Internet at work. Further more, making a landline call has its advantages. Many people can answer the phone, quality can be better and it is more likely to reach people. JustVoIP.com There are many VoIP services that charge close to nothing for international calls and most of the times mobile calls are at a pretty decent rate too. After researching the topic myself I came to understand that www.justvoip.com is probably the best offer one can get. It’s easy to start using their service. You simply download their software, create an account and purchase credit. You’ll now say “Hey, I thought it’s free”. Sadly, there ain’t no such thing as a free lunch. Not 100% free, but still the best offer around You can start with only 12.50 Euros (10 Euro in credits, 2 Euros in VAT and 0.50 processing fee). You can then check the rates yourself, but just to give you a quick example – 10 Euro equal 142 minutes to UK mobile phones (0.07 cents per minute) and unlimited calls to any landline number in the UK for 120 days. Once you top up your account you can call friends and family in Australia for free. If you like call Australian mobile numbers it will cost you only 0.055 Euro cents per minute, or 181 minutes with Australian mobile numbers for only 12.50 Euros. Use JustVoIP services without a computer It gets even better. If you don’t have a computer to place the call, you can dial your local access number from a landline or mobile...