I know it’s been like two months since I last updated my blog, but I didn’t really have anything going on and I didn’t want to blabber on about my daily life. Anyhoo, here’s what’s up.
It is happening! My friend and I went to see a travel agent back in April, we applied for our working holiday visas and got things DONE. We’re leaving Finland at the end of September, and we have to switch planes in Qatar before we finally land in Melbourne. I’m SO excited to go to Doha, but the layover is only like four hours so I doubt I’ll get to see much besides the airport itself.
Weird thing happened with my visa application: they wanted to know if I had spent more than three months abroad in the last three years. I answered yes, because I spent over a month in Australia, 3½ months in New Zealand and two months in the Cook Islands, US and Canada back in 2014-2015. Technically I only spent over three months in one country, but it all added up to 7 months, but they still didn’t require me to get a health check up! That check up would’ve cost me well over 300 euros, because there’s only one (1!!!) doctor in Finland who “has been appointed to perform Australian immigration health examinations outside Australia.” I don’t know why they didn’t need me to get the examination, but whooo boii am I glad.
So, we have the flights and we have the visas, but that’s not all. Our travel agent offered us a package deal, and here’s what the package includes:
- Airport transfer to the hostel in Melbourne
- Four nights at Base Backpackers
- 12 month membership to a job seeking site
- In depth orientation from a local guide about getting started
- Help with building a CV / opening a bank account / getting a SIM card / tax file number / superannuation / taxes and refunds / Medicare / etc.
- Discounts on travel products
- Three day trip to see the Great Ocean Road and Phillip Island
- 5000 km bus pass which allows us to travel anywhere in Australia
- Ten nights in any YHA Hostel in Australia
So basically we’ve already paid for 14 nights in a hostel, we get to ride the bus for 5000 km AND we get one on one help with the boring stuff like banking and taxes.
All of that, including the flights, cost us around 2800 euros each. That’s 3100 US dollars, 4200 Australian dollars, 2400 pounds or, like, 27 400 Swedish kronor. I know it’s a lot, and we could probably do most of that stuff by ourselves but I don’t want to make things too difficult. Besides, now I don’t have to worry about any of that stuff when I actually get there.
Just four more months to go! I’m working almost round the clock, I literally wake up, go to work, come home, shower, sleep, wake up and go to work. It’s exhausting and I think my knees and back are starting to give out on me, but it’ll be worth it! If my calculations are correct, I should have around 4500 euros (5000 USD / 6700 AUD / 3900 GBP etc) when I land in Melbourne, and that’s well over the suggested amount. Plus I have over a thousand euros in tax refunds coming my way in December, so I’d like to think I’ll be fine.