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Corporate Updates

AN INTERNATIONAL STUDENT’S GUIDE TO LIVING IN AUSTRALIA

So you’ve been accepted to a university in Australia — what’s next? As you prepare for the next chapter of your life, there’s probably loads on your mind, from where to stay to what it’s like living down under.

To help you get ready for university life, we’ve put together a useful guide of things you’ll need to know to make transitioning to student living a breeze!

Before Your Arrival

Organising Health Insurance

Having healthcare coverage while you’re living independently overseas is vital not just for peace of mind but also for your subsequent visa application. The health insurance for international students in Australia is called the Overseas Student Health Cover (OHSC) and is required by the Department of Home Affairs. It helps you cover any medical and hospital treatment costs, including GP visits.

As for choosing your OSHC provider, your university can usually help you arrange a visa-length policy with their selected partner. Alternatively, you can opt to purchase OSHC directly from any approved Australian health insurance provider.

Applying For a Student Visa

Once you’ve organised your OSHC and received your Certificate of Eligibility (CoE), the next step is to apply for your student visa. It allows you to enter, exit and stay in Australia during your course of study. One of the key eligibility criteria is to hold an OSHC, so it’s essential to get that settled beforehand.

Getting your visa application approved can take several months, so remember not to leave it till the last minute to apply! Be sure to fill in your information accurately and attach all relevant documents to speed up the process as well.

Settling Your Accommodation

 

Y Suites On Waymouth 2 Bedroom Apartment

Next, you’ll need to find a place to stay in Australia, preferably one that is safe, convenient, and comfortable. Many options are available for international students — university residential colleges, student apartments, private rentals and more. Learn about the key things to consider when choosing the right student accommodation for you in our blog here.

For student housing that feels like home, check out Y Suites today! With exceptional student apartments in Adelaide, and another on the way in Melbourne, you’ll experience the best of city living with fantastic convenience, comfort, value services and more.

After You’ve Settled Down

Adjusting to the Lifestyle

 

Rundle Mall. Adelaide

Generally, you’ll find Aussies to be rather laid back — where else will you find shops and businesses closing by 5pm? Once you’re there, it’s clear that personal time to relax with family and friends is an important part of life, with barbecues, weekend brunch, beach outings, and park gatherings all being part of the Australian way of life.

Learning the Lingo

You’ve most likely heard of “g’day mate,” and “shrimp on the barbie.” But once you start living in Australia, you’re going to experience a whole new world of Australian slang.

Here are a few to get you started:

  • Arvo = Afternoon (Not to be confused with avo = avocado)
  • Brolly = Umbrella
  • Maccas = McDonalds
  • Doona = Blanket/Duvet
  • And our personal favourite: Choccy Biccy = Chocolate biscuit!

Navigating Your Way Around

 

Adelaide Public Transport

Mastering the public transport of your new city is vital to get where you need to be on time and explore new destinations. Many states will usually have a combination of buses, trams, and trains. You can find out more about various public transport systems and routes at respective state websites like Adelaide Metro or Public Transport Victoria. Depending on where you live, you might be eligible for international student concession rates to help you save money.

With so much to learn and so many fun things to do, we know you’re going to love living and studying in Australia. Wishing all international students the very best!

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Corporate Updates

8 DÉCOR IDEAS TO MAKE YOUR STUDENT APARTMENT FEEL LIKE HOME

Your student housing isn’t just a place to sleep at night, it’s also a safe space for you to relax, cram for exams, chill out with friends and escape from the world. However, as an international student in Australia, living away from home for months on end can be a daunting experience.

Don’t worry though — with a few personal touches and decorations, you can make your room feel as comfortable as can be. Here are a few ideas to spruce up your university accommodation and transform it into your new home away from home!

1. Two Words: Fairy Lights

8 Ways to Decorate Your Student Apartment

Come on, is it really a student bedroom if it doesn’t have fairy lights? This quintessential décor item instantly ups the cosy factor of your room and illuminates it in an Instagram-worthy aesthetic glow. Drape them around your bed frame or desk by securing them using removable adhesive decorating clips. Or, here’s an idea — you could DIY an ambient night light by placing a bundle of fairy lights into a mason jar.

2. Put Up a Pinboard For Photos

Missing your family and friends? Corkboards are a great way to put up a collage of photos to remind you of home. Grab any polaroids and print out your favourite photos with loved ones to help stave off any homesickness. Plus, the board can even double up as a way to help you stay organised by pinning your class schedule, calendar, and reminders.

3. Create a Botanical Oasis

8 Ways to Decorate Your Student Apartment

Student by day, plant parent by night. Adding a few potted plants around your apartment can really brighten up the whole space. Studies have also shown that plants have a positive effect on mental health, helping to improve concentration and lower anxiety.

Don’t have a green thumb? You could always go for low-maintenance plants like cacti and succulents or simply get artificial plants instead.

4.  Curl Up in Cosy Bed Sheets

After working hard at university, you deserve a comfortable bed to get your beauty sleep. Getting yourself quality bed sheets in your favourite colours and designs can bring your room to life and let you feel nice and snug at night.

If you’re studying in the southern cities of Australia like Melbourne, remember that it can get pretty cold during winter. Top tip: get a set of soft flannel or fleece sheets to stay warm in winter, but be warned — they’ll make getting out of bed for those 9am lectures a real struggle.

5. Hang Posters & Art On Your Walls

The plain white walls of a student apartment can feel a little dull. Jazz things up by decorating the walls with pictures, posters, postcards and more! Of course, as a rented space, you’ll need to be careful about not damaging any of the surfaces, lest you lose your deposit. The solutions are simple — use blu tac, removable hooks, hanging strips or washi tape!

6. Go Wild With Desk Accessories

8 Ways to Decorate Your Student Apartment

You’ll probably end up spending lots of time at your desk, be it studying, eating, or relaxing. Make it a vibrant and conducive space by decorating it with useful desk accessories — table lamps, pen holders, organisers, folder racks, small potted plants, coasters, the works.

7. Lay a Vibrant Rug

A trendy, vibrant rug is a great way to make your student apartment in Australia feel more homely. It’s definitely a welcome sight atop the plain tiled flooring, and you can get big or small rugs depending on your room size.

8. Bring Along Your Favourite Stuffed Toy

Yes, you’re living independently! You’re an adult now! But age aside, it’s common to still have stuffed toys, cushions, or even childhood mementos that can be a genuine source of comfort.  They don’t weigh much and, as long as they aren’t massive, shouldn’t take up much luggage space, so bring them with you to Australia to help you feel more at home.

Looking for a place in Australia you can call home? With Y Suites, all you need to handle is the décor — leave the furnishings and top-notch amenities to us. Find out more about our university housing and student accommodation at our website.

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China Insights

7 THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN CHOOSING STUDENT ACCOMMODATION IN AUSTRALIA

Planning to study in Australia? Excellent choice! It’s always a good idea to prepare ahead of time, especially when it comes to finding an ideal place to stay. It might be your first time living overseas (or even going overseas!), so the best place to start is with safe and comfortable student accommodation. If you’re new to looking for university student housing, don’t worry — we’re here to help. Here are a few core factors to consider when finding a student apartment that is perfect for you!

1. Location

Adelaide, Australia – August 01, 2014: Historical buildings, University of South Australia along North Terrace and busy traffic at this area in daytime.

 

The last thing you’d want is to have to spend hours travelling to class each day. Sure, housing further out in the suburbs might be more affordable, but in the long run, living closer to your university will provide unbeatable convenience and save your precious time. Walking home for a nap in between lectures, anyone?

You’ll also want to factor in the apartment’s proximity to supermarkets, eateries, places to chill on weekends and, perhaps most importantly — bubble tea shops to get your boba fix!

2. Your Budget

It helps if you have a budget range in mind to narrow down your search results. Here in Australia, rental prices are commonly listed as the amount per week, not per month, so take note not to misinterpret figures.

If you’re working with a smaller budget, you can consider finding a roommate to split the costs of a twin room or a shared apartment. On the other hand, if you can afford to invest in your student housing, you can go for more spacious options like a Studio Deluxe to enjoy more privacy and space.

3. Room Furnishings

If you have to buy furniture and appliances for your home in Australia, you might end up going over budget. After all, you’re only going to be using these items for a few years. Your best bet is to look for student apartments that are fully furnished with everything you need. We’re talking about a comfy bed, study table and chair, ample storage, as well as a fridge, microwave, and toilet.

While it would be nice to view the place in person before deciding, you might need to secure accommodation even before flying over to Australia. In that case, you could see if there are any videos or virtual room tours to get a better idea of what you’ll be getting.

 4. Utilities & Internet Connectivity

Costs such as utilities (electricity, water and gas) and internet subscription plans can rack up over time. As a student with a tighter budget, these may be tough to manage, not to mention dealing with the hassle of monthly bill payments. Look out for student accommodations that include free utilities and high-speed Wi-Fi in their rent to save money!

5. Lease Agreement

Your lease agreement is a legally binding contract, so it is important to read carefully and understand all of its terms before signing. Here are a few key things to double-check:

  • Term of the tenancy (fixed or flexible lease terms)
  • Rent amount, including payment methods and due dates
  • Bond and other fees (utilities, internet etc.)
  • Tenant & landlord’s responsibilities for repairs and maintenance

6. Amenities & Facilities

A student accommodation that goes above and beyond in the realm of amenities can make your student life in Australia more comfortable than ever. For instance, apart from the basics like laundry or a communal kitchen, Y Suites on Waymouth in Adelaide offers a whole host of facilities such as an indoor study hub, 24/7 gym, games area, BBQ pits, cinema rooms, and a community garden — just to name a few!

7. Community Activities

As you’re living independently in a new country, making new friends is probably one of the top things on your mind. Your university isn’t the only place where you’ll find social activities — you can also meet new people who live in the same building as you. At Y Suites, you’ll gain access to career and networking programs, group fitness sessions and tons of other fun community events!

Discover Your New Home Away From Home

On the hunt for university accommodation in Adelaide or Melbourne? Add Y Suites to your shortlist today! With fully furnished apartments, all-inclusive rent and great locations, you can bet we want nothing more than to make your student life as suite as can be. Visit our website or contact us to find out more.

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China Insights

5 FUN THINGS TO DO IN ADELAIDE ON A STUDENT BUDGET

Looking for something different to do on the weekends? Lucky for you, Adelaide is positively brimming with fun things for students to do — without breaking the bank, of course. Whether you’re a big foodie or a nature lover, Y Suites has curated a list of budget-friendly activities just for you. So get your head out of the books and out of your student apartment, because it’s time for an Adelaide adventure!

1. Immerse yourself in culture & history

Adelaide is a city that is proud of its heritage, with a thriving arts scene to boot. If Adelaide is your new home away from home, it can’t hurt to learn a little more about the city through its array of state-of-the-art museums and galleries. From art and history to science and technology, there’s something for everyone to learn. And the best part? Entry to all these museums is totally free!

Journey to the past with a visit to the South Australian Museum, a natural history museum home to the largest collection of Australian Aboriginal artefacts in the world. Hop on over next door to the Art Gallery of South Australia, where you’ll find over 38,000 works of art, both historical and contemporary. Then, glimpse into the future and provoke new ideas over at MOD. — Australia’s leading museum of discovery packed with dynamic, future-focused exhibitions. Hey, maybe you’ll even find inspiration for your assignments here!

2. Discover how chocolate gets made

ysuites fun things in adelaide museums-
Adelaide, Australia – November 11, 2016: The Art Gallery of South Australia located on North Terrace in Adelaide CBD

 

Step aside, Willy Wonka. Here in Adelaide, it’s all about Haigh’s Chocolates. Founded in 1915, Haigh’s is Australia’s oldest family-owned chocolate maker. Go behind the scenes of the chocolate-making process with their free guided factory tours. During the tour, you’ll get to see for yourself how artisanal chocolate goes from bean to bar and even indulge in special chocolate tastings. Don’t forget to grab some factory-fresh chocolates on your way out!

3. Embark on a food adventure

ysuites fun things in adelaide markets
Adelaide, Australia – January 13, 2017: People shopping at Adelaide Central Market on a weekend. It is a popular tourist attraction in the CBD area and the most visited place in South Australia.

 

Speaking of food, no time in Adelaide is complete without a visit to the Adelaide Central Market! Take in the vibrant atmosphere as you stroll aisle after aisle of fresh produce, mouthwatering food and gourmet delights.

Apart from being home to a myriad of cuisines, South Australia is also renowned for its wine. At just $15 per person, the National Wine Centre of Australia offers guided tours that will take you on a journey through the history, culture, and science of Australian wine. Celebrating a special occasion? You can consider splurging on a wine tasting experience to sample from a range of 120 different wines across 55 regions in Australia.

4. Feel at one with nature

ysuites fun things in adelaide nature
Autumn landscape under the rain in Adelaide Hills

 

Nothing like fresh air and the beauty of nature to clear your mind after a long week of lectures and tutes. Right next to the National Wine Centre is the Adelaide Botanic Garden — a 50-hectare oasis with beautifully landscaped gardens.

If you’re looking to escape the hustle and bustle of city life, there are countless national parks not far from the city for you to stretch your legs and immerse yourself in nature and wildlife. Our top picks include the Morialta Conservation Park and Mount Lofty Botanic Garden, both of which are free of charge and easily accessible by public transport.

5. Catch a film in an old-timey cinema

Think about watching a movie and we’ll most likely picture the modern theatre chains of today, with their standard, sleek designs. But what if you could be transported back in time to catch the latest blockbusters amidst 1920s art deco architecture? That’s exactly what Adelaide has to offer.

There are numerous family-owned theatres with elegant, retro decor that ooze an old-world charm unlike any other. Check out the Regal Theatre in Kensington Park, Capri Theatre in Goodwood, or Odeon Star in Semaphore for a unique big screen experience. With tickets ranging from $9 to $12, it’s a fantastic way to de-stress or simply escape from the weather!

Needless to say, student adventures in Adelaide begin with having a comfortable place to call home. Visit Y Suites to learn more about our modern, fully furnished student housing and accommodation located in the heart of Adelaide today.