The thing I stressed about the most and wished I knew more about before departing to Australia was the housing options. So if you’re thinking about studying abroad (in Australia or elsewhere), I hope this post will help you decide what kind of housing is right for you!
Up until just recently, many Australian universities did not offer university/on-campus housing for undergraduates because many students just commuted from home. This was the situation for the University of Melbourne. When I arrived they had just barely opened up new university housing near campus.
If you dont want to stress about housing I would recomend this option. However the convenience of university housing is not going to come cheap; I’m not sure about other countries but in Australia it’s the priciest housing option, and most student housing here require year-long or 6 month contracts. Longer contracts can be problematic if you are only going to be studying abroad for a semester, so be sure to look into this option carefully. You dont want to be stuck in a contract when it’s time to go back home!
“Semester in Australia” Program
Australia has this neat program where accommodation is all settled for you before you arrive. This program arranges off-campus housing close to your host university with other study abroad students. They try their best to pair you with people that are a good match with you by looking at the information you give them. I think is is a really good option. It is is less expensive than university housing and there are no contracts. They know you are only there for the semester. Check them out here.
Sharehouse or Apartment
If you’re looking for the most cost effective option and you’re willing to put in some extra work in order to save money then this option may be for you! In order to find a sharehouse or apartment you’re going to have to search out these places on your own. I recommend even coming over to Australia a bit early to go apartment/ house hunting. Thats what I did and I was able to find a sharehouse that has allowed me to save money to do more traveling!
Just be aware that finding accommodations on your own involves more risk as well. Since you’re seeking out housing on your own, you are more susceptible to scams. So while you can search for housing online before you arrive in the country, the most important thing to remember is this: NEVER agree or pay a bond (deposit) for housing online without having an in person meeting/ seeing the place first!
I’m sure many countries have similar accomodation options so I’m hoping this helps more than just people looking to study abroad in the land down under. Make sure you look into each option carefully and determine what the right fit is for you and your budget!