A Gay Couples Guide to Moving and Living in Australia

Australia is a huge country (6th largest in the world) but very scarcely populated (only 21 million people). This makes this country a perfect place to live if you want to enjoy a perfect mix of urban living and natural environment all around you. The country is very diverse when it comes to everything, from wildlife, climate and landscape to religions, cultures, races and lifestyles—you and your gay partner will fit right in.

Australia is full of ex-pats of all sorts, meaning it’s a very attractive place to move, live and work. If you and your partner want to start your lives anew and reap many new opportunities on all fronts, here’s a little guide on moving and living in Australia:

Know the laws

Australians might have waited a bit too long to legalize marriage, but since December 2017, same-sex marriage has been legal. Since then, same-sex married couples can apply for a marriage visa if one of them is an Australian citizen. Otherwise, you can apply for a work visa (if you have certain desirable skills or a job lined up), and after you’ve stayed in the country for a certain period of time, you can ask for citizenship. When it comes to gay travellers and ex-pats, Australia is a very LGBTQ-friendly country, with tolerant people, and you shouldn’t expect to come across any issues in that department. Of course, there are always exceptions, but in general, it’s a great choice to make a home in if you’re gay.

Choose your home

Australia is rich in small coastal villages as well as inland towns, but most gay people opt to move to one of the bigger urban centers. Sydney is definitely the most popular destination for gay ex-pats because it’s very LGBTQ+ friendly and has a variety of job, housing and lifestyle opportunities. However, other cities like lesser-known Perth are blowing up today, due to its suburban feel and plenty of space (very desirable today in this social-distancing age). All couples interested in moving to this laid-back city can easily find a buyers agent in Perth and get all the necessary information on accommodation options. The market can be tricky to navigate, so having a pro on your side can save you money, time and stress. All in all, cities like Perth, Sydney and Melbourne are a great choice of living for first-time movers to Australia.

Cost of living

Australia is not a cheap country for living in, but it’s more than worth every cent you’re going to spend. Pay is generally fair and can cover all living expenses, even the high taxes. When it comes to purchasing power, expect similar numbers to those in Japan and better than those in the UK, USA or Singapore. If you’re coming to Australia with jobs waiting for you, the transition should be smooth for both you and your partner. If you need to get a job after you move, there are great career advisors ready to help all new residents.

Australian climate

Probably the biggest shock for all people coming to Australia is the climate. Temperatures are scorching hot in the summer and very mild in the winter. However, since the country is so big, you can enjoy both summer and winter activities throughout the year. Gay couples are usually quite adventurous and want to go exploring, but make sure to always bring a local guide when doing expeditions to the Outback and rainforests because the climate, terrain and wildlife there are not a joke.

Pastime

Living in Australia allows for a perfect balance of work and play, especially for gay couples. In January, Melbourne hosts a Midsumma Festival of LGBTQ+ arts and culture. In February, you can hit Mardi Gras in Sydney, the biggest LGBTQ+ celebration in Australia that has parades, festivals, movies, parties and family events. In September, go to Brisbane Pride Festival or enjoy the PrideFest in Perth in October and November. In between, there are many clubs, bars, beaches, hikes and adventures to enjoy all year round.

No matter what kind of gay couple you are, Australia will welcome you with both arms open. Expect a comfortable life full of fun, excitement and love.

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