Moving to Melbourne - What to Know Before You Move
Set your sights on Melbourne, where every corner promises a blend of culture, coffee, and charisma. Before you embark on this exciting chapter, we've got the essential insights to make your move as smooth as Melbourne's famous espressos. Let's get you prepped for a seamless transition to the most liveable city in the world!
27 min read
- Moving to Melbourne offers cultural diversity, a bustling city life, unique lifestyle with numerous opportunities.
- Melbourne has a median house price of $934,000 while the Melbourne rental median is $530 per week to rent a three-bedroom house.
- Roxburgh Park, Point Cook, Tarneit, Craigieburn, Epping, and Officer still offer affordable rent.
- Melbourne is renowned for its healthcare, educational institutions, and easy transport, making it one of the most livable cities globally.
- A good time to move to Melbourne would be Spring and Autumn where the temperature is still relatively mild.
- You can easily move to Melbourne with a range of domestic airlines, coach services or even trains connecting interstate.
- If you have school-age children who need to be enrolled into schools, do your research schools and enrol as soon as possible as some may require interviews, while others have specific zone restrictions.
So, you've got Melbourne on your mind. Not just a fleeting thought, but a full-blown, "I might actually move there" kind of idea. Melbourne—the city of arts, coffee aficionados, and those iconic trams zipping around. But why Melbourne? Out of all the places in the world, what's so magnetic about this Australian gem?
Hang tight as we dive deep into the heart of Melbourne. By the time we're done, you'll have a mental suitcase packed with all the essentials: what to expect, where to go, and maybe even how to dodge a cheeky seagull or two at St. Kilda beach. Ready? Let's begin our Melbourne journey.
A snapshot of Victoria
|Number of people living in Victoria||6,503,491|
|Number of families||1,718,771|
|Number of private dwellings||2,805,661|
|Average number of people per household||2.5|
|Median weekly household income||$1,759|
|Number of people attending an education institution||1,484,536|
|People who travel to work by car||54.5%|
|People who travel to work by public transport||4.4%|
Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics Census 2021
Is Melbourne a good place to live?
Melbourne, a city of allure, captivates with its iconic laneways adorned by vibrant street art, lively festivals, and a plethora of aromatic cafes brewing delightful coffee. Beyond its surface charm, Melbourne shines as a beacon of education and innovation, attracting students and professionals from around the globe. Its multicultural embrace weaves a rich tapestry of diverse cultures, from European to Asian, African to Pacific Islander. Here, traditions find a cherished home, and every face holds a unique story.
Economically diverse, living in Melbourne offers boundless opportunities for tech gurus, finance whizzes, and artists seeking inspiration. Sports enthusiasts revel in Melbourne's well-deserved title as the 'Sporting Capital of the World', hosting prestigious events like the Australian Open, the Melbourne Cup, and the Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix.
Consistently ranked as one of the world's most liveable cities, living in Melbourne is great and has so much to offer that it might just be calling your name.
Overview of Melbourne
With its enchanting alleyways, buzzing cafés, well-known street art on Hosier Lane and ever-exciting nightlife, it's no wonder that over 5 million people have chosen to call Melbourne home. Nestled on the southeastern coast of Australia, Melbourne is the capital of the state of Victoria and stands as the country's second-most populated city, just behind Sydney.
But it's not just about size or population; Melbourne's essence is in its diversity. Here, over 200 languages are spoken, and nearly 40% of its residents were born overseas is why it's often referred to as the 'Cultural Capital of Australia'.
Economically, Melbourne is a powerhouse. With a Gross Regional Product of over $317 billion in 2021, it's an epicentre for both local and international businesses. The city is a hub for multiple industries including finance, IT, education, and manufacturing, and has shown robust economic growth over the past decade.
On the educational front, Melbourne boasts a high literacy rate of 98%, with numerous world-class universities, including the University of Melbourne and RMIT, that attract students who specifically move to Melbourne from all corners of the globe just to study.
Getting to know Melbourne's regions, cities, and towns
Melbourne is divided into distinct regions, each pulsating with its own character. Let's uncover the vibrant cities and towns:
Inner Melbourne - This is where the city comes alive! From the quirky lanes of Fitzroy and terrace houses of Carlton to the vibrant streets of Richmond, this central hub is bursting with art, music, and that unmistakable Melbourne buzz. But also central to many great schools are the suburbs of West Melbourne, North Melbourne and East Melbourne.
Eastern Melbourne - Think tree-lined streets, manicured gardens, and some of Melbourne’s most affluent suburbs like Toorak, Box Hill and Hawthorn offer a tranquil suburban life, while the nearby Dandenong Ranges serve as an emerald escape for nature enthusiasts.
Western Melbourne - Transforming from its industrial past, the West is now a mix of vibrant cultures. Footscray and Werribee are bursting with diversity and community spirit. And if you've ever wanted to experience a safari Down Under, you don't want to miss the incredible experience at the Werribee Open Range Zoo. It's the place to be!
Northern Melbourne - Places like Brunswick and Coburg are buzzing with art galleries, music venues, and awesome places to eat. And, if you love nature, the Merri Creek Trail is a perfect escape to enjoy stunning surroundings.
Southern Melbourne - Beaches, lifestyle, and chic shopping districts define the south. Brighton Beach captivates with its iconic bathing boxes, while the bustling Chapel Street in South Yarra is a shopper's paradise.
Outer Melbourne - As you explore beyond the city, serene towns and stunning landscapes await. The Yarra Valley vineyards showcase Australia's finest wines, while the Mornington Peninsula displays nature's magnificence.
Melbourne's iconic landscape
The iconic Yarra River flows at the heart of the city, providing a tranquil backdrop to bustling precincts. Just a short drive away, the Yarra Valley stretches out like nature's own vineyard. It’s not just about the world-class wines, though they are a significant draw. The rolling hills, dotted with orchards and farms, offer a pastoral landscape that whispers tales of the region's rich agricultural history. Here, amidst the vineyards, you can catch a balloon ride at dawn and witness the valley bathed in the golden hue of the morning sun.
Not too distant from the wine haven of Yarra Valley, the Dandenong Ranges rise majestically. These are the green lungs of Melbourne's outskirts, offering respite from urban life. You'll find towering Mountain Ash trees, fern-filled gullies, and the distant call of the lyrebirds that create a mystical atmosphere. The historic Puffing Billy Railway chugs through this region, providing a nostalgic journey through its heart.
But for those craving a more alpine experience, Mount Buller awaits. In winter, you'll find good snow cover on the slopes and it becomes a playground for skiers and snowboarders, while in summer, it transforms into a hiker's and mountain biker's paradise with trails offering panoramic views of the Victorian landscape.
What's the weather like in Melbourne?
You've probably heard before that you can experience all four seasons in a single day. That's living in Melbourne for you! Melbourne is famous (or infamous, depending on how you look at it) for its unpredictable weather.
Moving to Melbourne in Spring (September - November)
Spring in Melbourne is a delightful affair. The city awakens from its winter slumber as cherry blossoms paint the streets pink and locals flock to parks to bask in the sunshine. Temperatures range from 9°C to 20°C, making it ideal for outdoor activities and the perfect time to move. However, always carry an umbrella, as spring showers can surprise you and remember to pack a few more T-shirts and lighter clothing for those unexpectedly warm days.
Moving to Melbourne in Summer (December - February)
Living in Melbourne during summer is vibrant and dynamic. The city buzzs with festivals, open-air markets, and beachgoers. Temperatures can soar up to 40°C on the hottest days and can make moving this time very sweaty, but the average hovers around 25°C. Evening breezes from Port Phillip Bay often provide relief from the daytime heat. We suggest to pack light clothing, sunscreen, and a hat when moving. And while it might sound counterintuitive, don’t forget a light sweater or jacket. Those summer evenings can be cooler than you expect, especially by the bay.
Moving to Melbourne in Autumn (March - May)
Autumn is arguably Melbourne's most picturesque season. The city turns into a canvas of russet, gold, and amber hues. It's a perfect time for a stroll in the Royal Botanic Gardens or a drive through the Dandenong Ranges. Temperatures are mild, averaging between 10°C and 20°C which makes moving easy around this time but pack some warm sweaters and scarves.
Moving to Melbourne in Winter (June - August)
Winter in this Australian city is crisp and often cloudy, with temperatures ranging from 6°C to 14°C. While snowfall in the city is a rarity, rainfall is more frequent during this period making moving a little more challenging. But the perfect time to visit a cozy cafe when having a break from your move. Packing a good quality coat, gloves, and a warm hat are essential.
Best places to escape weather extremes
Melbourne, with its "four seasons in a day" reputation, can be both enchanting and a tad erratic. For those moments when you wish to seek shelter or simply revel in the best of what each season offers, we have a few suggestions. Federation Square stands as an iconic meeting place, providing a cool retreat in summer and hosting vibrant installations in winter. The city's laneways offer shelter and are home to charming cafes, perfect for warming up with a hot drink or enjoying a refreshing iced latte. Escape to The Royal Botanic Gardens to provide a lush haven in summer, while the greenhouses offer a tropical escape in winter. Queen Victoria Market also provides a delightful escape from the unpredictable weather, allowing visitors to explore, shop, and indulge in delicious food regardless of the weather.
Indoors in Melbourne, you have the Melbourne Museum with famous exhibits year-round, the Art Gallery with some of the most impressive performances and Crown Casino where you can indulge in spectacular food, shop for luxury brands and try your luck at the tables, there's always a place to go no matter the weather. It's just about knowing where to look!
Housing affordability in Melbourne
Melbourne, with its vibrant culture and dynamic spirit, attracts a lot of people who are looking to move. When it comes to housing and living in Melbourne, you have plenty of options to choose from. Sure, properties near the city centre and CBD can be a bit pricey, but don't worry! There are more affordable options just a little further out that still offer a fantastic lifestyle and all the amenities you need.
What's the median house price in Melbourne?
As of September 2023, the median house price in Melbourne was $934,000 according to REIV. Now, that's not exactly pocket change, is it? But with the city's vibrant culture and buzzing economy, you can see why it's such a hotspot.
Now, let's take a little virtual road trip around Victoria and check out some other suburbs. Buckle up!
Fitzroy, right in inner Melbourne. This hipster haven has a median house price of $1,490,000. If we head east, we find Blackburn at $1,530,000 and Box Hill at $1,460,000. But if we look in the opposite direction and venture out west, we find more affordable options in Footscray with a median of $955,000 and Werribee's even easier on the wallet, with a median house price of $610,000.
In the north, Airport West and Bundoora come in at $991,000 and $848,000 respectively. While down south, Frankston offers more bang for your buck at $720,000.
But if you're looking to move to regional Victoria and outside of Melbourne, you can find Geelong property at $840,000, Bendigo at $628,000 and Ballarat Central at $614,000.
Well, location plays a big role in house prices. The closer you move to the city centre, the higher the price tag. But remember, these are just median prices. There are still bargains to be found if you're willing to do a little digging! And let's not forget about factors like local market conditions and Australian government policy which can all impact house prices.
What's the median rental price in Melbourne?
As of September 2023, you're looking at a median rent of $530 per week and for those of you dreaming of a spacious four-bedroom abode, you should factor in around $550 per week.
You can rent a two-bedroom place in Coburg will set you back $520 per week, while a three-bedroom house goes for $650.
In the east Blackburn, a three-bedroom house rents for a median of $563 per week. Moving west though, you can find Newport, a three-bedroom goes for $605 per week. But in West Footscray, moving into a two-bedroom will set you back $455, while a three-bedroom goes for $545 per week.
Up north in Niddrie, a three-bedroom house with a bigger yard will rent for $490 per week, while over in Bundoora, a two-bedroom place costs $420 and you can move into a three-bedroom house for a reasonable $475 per week.
Down south, however, rent in McKinnon increases to $670 per week for a three-bedroom house.
Should you buy or rent in Melbourne?
Alright, my friend, let's tackle one of the most pressing questions in the world of property: to rent or to buy? It's an age-old conundrum with passionate debates. So, let's dive in and find an answer that suits your lifestyle and finances. Ready? Let's go!
First, let's talk about buying. In September 2023, the median house price in Melbourne is $934,000. It's not pocket change, but with a decent deposit, steady income, and readiness for commitment, it could be a smart move. Owning a property isn't just about having a place to call home; it's also about building equity. As you pay down your mortgage and your property (hopefully) appreciates in value, you're building a nest egg as a solid financial foundation.
However, buying a property has additional costs like stamp duty, legal fees, inspections, council rates, and maintenance. Fluctuating interest rates can affect mortgage repayments, and there's always the risk of property prices declining.
Now, let's talk about renting. Melbourne's median rent is $530 per week, which is significantly lower than a mortgage repayment on a median-priced house, especially when considering all associated buying costs. Renting offers flexibility, allowing you to move easily if circumstances change and it allows you to live in areas that may be unaffordable to buy in.
However, the downside is your money goes towards someone else's mortgage, rather than building equity of your own. You are also subject to rental increases and the decisions of landlords there is no guarantee of long-term tenure, impacting your sense of security and stability.
Ultimately, the decision comes down to your financial situation, long-term goals, and lifestyle preferences. If stability and homeownership responsibilities align with your needs, and you are financially capable, buying may be a good move. However, if flexibility, affordability, and the inability to buy in your desired area are important factors, renting may be your best option.
Which areas are high in demand in Melbourne?
Being the second most populated city in Australia, Melbourne is a city that keeps on growing in demand and some of the most in-demand suburbs are Fitzroy, and Brunswick with its vintage shops, artisanal coffee, and eclectic mix of residents, it's no wonder this inner-city suburb is hot property.
Over in the east, you can find Blackburn and Box Hill with their convenient location, excellent schools, and vibrant communities, it's no surprise that these suburbs are in high demand. As of September 2023, the average house price in Blackburn was $1.53 million, while Box Hill came in at $1.46 million.
Now, if you take a look at the west, you'll find Kingsville and Footscray, two suburbs that are quickly becoming hotspots for young professionals and young families. With good proximity to the city, diverse dining options, and affordable housing (well, by Melbourne standards anyway), these suburbs are definitely ones to keep an eye on.
Which areas offer affordable rents in Melbourne?
If you are looking to rent affordably in this Australian city, there are plenty of options too! Footscray, a suburb that's as fun to say as it is to live in! Less than half an hour from the city, Footscray offers median house rents of $545 per week and unit rents of $455 per week. It's close to Victoria University, a newly built Footscray hospital underway and a fantastic food scene (the pho is ridiculously delicious here!), it's a hit with young families and student renters.
If you're willing to travel a bit further out, suburbs within 20 km of the CBD like Oak Park, Kingsbury, and Airport West offer even more affordable rent options, with median house rents ranging from $460-$520 per week. These suburbs will give you a mix of convenience and tranquillity, with easy access to train lines, freeways, and plenty of green space.
But if you don't mind an even longer commute, suburbs like Roxburgh Park, Point Cook, Tarneit, Craigieburn, Epping, and Officer offer median house rents from $430-$465 per week. These areas are a bit further out, but the houses are spacious, family-friendly and offer a slower pace of life – perfect for those looking to escape the hustle and bustle of the city.
Melbourne's cost of living
Living in Melbourne isn't the cheapest when compared to its other Australian major cities. But, as anyone who's fallen head over heels for this city will tell you, the lifestyle benefits outweigh the costs. Whether you're catching a tram to work or taking a Sunday drive along the Great Ocean Road, or simply trying to understand the costs of everyday essentials to help you budget your Melbourne living costs before moving to this most liveable city. Here's a list of the more common everyday essentials:
|Everyday Item||Price (AUD)|
|Milk (1 litre)||$2.37|
|Bread (1 loaf)||$3.87|
|Chicken breast (1kg)||$13.44|
|Eggs (a dozen)||$5.67|
|Lettuce (1 head)||$4.23|
|Coffee (standard cappuccino in a cafe)||$5.28|
|Daily supply charge||$1.18 per day|
|General usage charge||28.05 - 30.47cents per kilowatt-hour (kwh)|
|Average cost 2-3 people||$102 per month|
|Fixed daily charge||79.28 cents per day|
|Usage charge||3.83 cents per megajoule(MJ)|
|Fixed water charges||From $206.40 annually|
|Fixed sewerage charges||From $269.56 annually|
|Sewage disposal charge||78.98 cents per kilolitre|
|Variable water charges||$2.95 per kilolitre First 440 Litres|
|Variable water charges||$3.47 per kilolitre Above 440 Litres|
|25 Mbps or more, unlimited data)||From $65.00 per month|
|50 Mbps or more, unlimited data)||From $75.00 per month|
|100 Mbps or more, unlimited data)||From $85.00 per month|
|Transportation Expense||Price (AUD)|
|Unleaded petrol (1 Litre)||$1.85|
|Diesel petrol (1 Litre)||$2.17|
|Daily Transport fare Zones 1 & 2(public transport - full fare)||$6.00|
|myki Pass Weekly 7 day pass(Full fare)||$50.00|
|Taxi (Day tariff for 1km 9 - 5pm)||$1.87|
|Taxi (Overnight tariff for 1km 5pm - 9am)||$2.08|
|Taxi (Peak Fri & Sat nights tariff for 1km 10pm - 4am)||$2.29|
Finding work in Melbourne
If you're looking for work in Melbourne, you'll find it's a city that is brimming with job prospects across a multitude of sectors. Data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics 2021 suggests some thriving sectors and potential career options that are shaping Melbourne's employment landscape are:
- Healthcare: Hospitals, is currently the biggest employer in Victoria. With an ageing population and an ongoing global health crisis, the demand for healthcare professionals is on the rise. Potential roles in this sector include Registered Nurses, General Practitioners, Medical Technicians, and Health Services Managers.
- IT and Technology: The technology sector, specifically Computer System Design and Related Services, has seen significant growth. As Melbourne continues to position itself as a tech hub, opportunities for Software Engineers, IT Consultants, Data Analysts, and Cybersecurity Specialists are plentiful.
- Finance: Melbourne's robust financial sector consistently demands skilled professionals. Roles such as Financial Analysts, Accountants, Investment Advisors, and Risk Managers are often sought after.
- Education: Home to some of Australia's leading educational institutions, Melbourne offers numerous opportunities for Teachers, Lecturers, Educational Administrators, and Support Staff.
- Hospitality and Culinary: Melbourne's rich culinary scene, with its vibrant cafes and restaurants, provides ample employment opportunities. Chefs, Baristas, Restaurant Managers, and Hospitality Workers are in high demand.
- Sports: Known as Australia's sporting capital, Melbourne hosts major events like the Australian Open, providing various roles from Athletes, Coaches, Sports Marketers, to Event Managers.
- Construction: With Melbourne's skyline continuously evolving, the construction industry offers a range of roles for Architects, Engineers, Project Managers, and Skilled Tradespeople.
- Retail and E-commerce: The retail industry, particularly e-commerce, is experiencing significant growth. Roles such as Retail Managers, Sales Assistants, and E-commerce Specialists are increasingly important.
From healthcare to construction, there's a wide array of career paths for you to continue or pursue after moving to Melbourne. So whether you're a seasoned professional or just starting out, Melbourne's thriving job market has something for everyone.
What is the lifestyle and culture of Melbourne?
You'll slowly discover Melburnians are a diverse and inclusive bunch. Thanks to the city's rich history of immigration, you'll find people from all corners of the globe, and this mosaic of cultures is what gives Melbourne its unique character. This rich tapestry of backgrounds is celebrated in various festivals, eateries, and neighbourhoods. From the Italian vibes of Carlton to the vibrant Vietnamese community in Footscray, its culinary scene is diverse, offering everything from high-end restaurants to quirky food trucks reflecting this multicultural city.
People here are generally friendly, open-minded, and passionate about their city. They're known for their coffee culture and chats, spirited discussions about footy (Australian Rules Football), and their pride in the city's arts and music scenes.
A typical day for a Melburnian might involve grabbing a morning cuppa from a tucked-away laneway cafe, commuting via the city's iconic trams, catching an evening gig at a local venue, and perhaps a late-night souvlaki wrap in the bustling streets of suburbs like Brunswick or St Kilda. Now that's a lifestyle!
Must-see key events, festivals, and places:
Now if you're making the move to Melbourne, you need to get in tune with all the must-see key events, festivals and places every Melburnian knows.
Melbourne International Film Festival (MIFF) is where you can immerse yourself in a cinematic journey, where some of the best national and international films come to life. And if you find thrill in sports, don't miss the excitement of the Australian Open. Picture the world's top tennis players battling it out as you're right there, cheering amidst the electric atmosphere.
Speaking of events that take your breath away, the Melbourne Cup Carnival is a spectacle that truly embodies the spirit of Melbourne. It's not just a horse race; it's 'the race that stops the nation', replete with fashion, fanfare, and fervor. And for those who relish a good laugh, the Melbourne International Comedy Festival promises a month filled with chuckles, guffaws, and everything in between.
But Melbourne isn't just about events. It's also about those enchanting places that capture your heart. The beating heart of the city, Federation Square, is a cultural melange, where art, architecture, and al fresco dining come together in a delightful dance.
No move to Melbourne would be complete without a stroll down its iconic laneways after you've settled. They whisper stories of the city's past, with street art as their voice and boutique shops as their soul. And when you want to just relax, let the waves of St Kilda Beach caress your feet as you watch the sun set on another beautiful Melbourne day.
Education and Healthcare in Melbourne
Melbourne takes immense pride in providing world-class education and healthcare. It's a city that truly values knowledge and well-being. Melbourne continuously invests in its institutions, making sure they're on par with the best in the world. So, whether you're looking for top-tier educational opportunities or unparalleled medical care, this city is the place to be. Its commitment to excellence in both sectors makes it a preferred destination for students and healthcare seekers from all around the globe.
School life in Melbourne
When it comes to education, Melbourne truly shines. The city boasts an educational ecosystem that's diverse, inclusive, and geared towards fostering academic excellence. From the early years to tertiary levels, Melbourne offers a wealth of learning experiences.
Primary and secondary schools in Melbourne are a blend of public, private, and religious institutions. Each offers a unique pedagogical approach, yet all are unified by a shared goal: to cultivate critical thinkers, compassionate citizens, and lifelong learners. Many of these schools consistently rank among the best in the country, so if you're a family that prioritises education, Melbourne is a great move for academic excellence.
Melbourne is also home to several world-renowned universities. The University of Melbourne, Monash University, and RMIT University are just a few of the prestigious institutions that make international students and scholars alike move to Melbourne. These universities, along with several other tertiary institutions in the city, are renowned for their cutting-edge research, innovative programs, and student-centric approach to learning.
But beyond the classroom, Melbourne's educational experience is enriched by its cultural institutions. Libraries, museums, and art galleries often collaborate with schools and universities, offering students experiential learning opportunities that are both immersive and inspiring.
If you're wondering what extracurricular activities Melbourne offers. Melbourne is a city that warmly embraces diversity in all its forms, and this is wonderfully reflected in its wide array of extracurricular activities for both children and adults. The literary-minded can find solace in writing workshops, book clubs, and poetry readings hosted across various cafes and libraries in the city. For the technology-minded, Melbourne has a growing community of maker spaces and tech workshops, where you can indulge in robotics, coding, or even 3D printing. But if sports is what gets you going, with Melbourne being the sporting capital, Melbourne's sports scene boasts a multitude of clubs across disciplines - cricket, Aussie Rules football, rugby, netball, soccer, tennis, swimming or even something more niche like rock climbing or rowing, the city's infrastructure and clubs ensure that there's something for everyone.
Healthcare in Melbourne
Melbourne's healthcare system is emblematic of its commitment to the well-being of its residents. Rooted in a rich tradition of medical excellence, the city boasts an array of top-tier hospitals, clinics, and specialised medical centres, ensuring that citizens receive world-class care regardless of their needs.
One of Melbourne's most iconic medical establishments is the Royal Children's Hospital (RCH). Internationally renowned for its pediatric care, RCH has been at the forefront of child health for over 140 years. Each year, the hospital is significantly supported by the Good Friday Appeal, a community-driven fundraising initiative. This event not only underscores the importance of RCH to the Melbourne community but also ensures that the hospital can continue its vital work and research in pediatric care. You can rest knowing that if you're children ever need the care, the best doctors, nurses and pediatricians are on hand.
Alongside RCH, Melbourne is home to several other leading hospitals like the Royal Melbourne Hospital, known for its comprehensive care and specialised departments in neurology, cardiology, and trauma. The Alfred Hospital, another landmark, is celebrated for its expertise in heart and lung transplantations, among other specialties.
Melbourne's dedication to medical excellence extends to research. The city hosts several world-renowned medical research institutions, contributing to global advancements in various fields of medicine, making Melbourne a hub of medical excellence in the region.
How to get around
Getting around Melbourne is a breeze and a lot of fun, thanks to the city's wide range of transportation options. Whether you fancy driving, hopping on the extensive public transport system, or simply strolling or cycling around, Melbourne caters to all preferences.
Driving in Melbourne
If you have a valid driving license from any Australian state or New Zealand, you can legally drive in Melbourne for up to 6 months. Remember to always have your physical license on hand while driving. If you're planning to settle in Melbourne for the long term and will be driving beyond 6 months, it's recommended to switch to a Victorian license. You can handle this conversion at VicRoads.
Major roads and freeways in Melbourne:
- Monash freeway (M1): A major arterial connecting Melbourne's city centre to the south-eastern suburbs and Gippsland.
- Citylink: This tollway is essential for those moving between the airport, the CBD, and the southern or eastern suburbs.
- Western ring road (M80): A significant freeway looping around Melbourne's northern and western suburbs. It connects major arterials such as the Hume Freeway (to Sydney), Calder Freeway (to Bendigo), and the West Gate Freeway (to the CBD and western Victoria).
- Great Ocean Road: Though technically outside Melbourne, this scenic coastal route is a must-drive for anyone living in or visiting the city.
Buses, trams, and public transport
Melbourne's public transport system, with its trams, buses, and trains, is pretty efficient. You just need to grab yourself a myki card, and you're good to go for all your travel needs. This nifty reusable smart card makes it a breeze to pay for your train, tram, and bus rides - just tap on and tap off!
Key public transport services:
- Yarra Tram's Network: One of the world's largest tram networks, it covers the entire city and many suburbs. Notable lines include the City Circle tram, a free service that loops around the city's main attractions.
- Metro Trains Melbourne: This service operates in the greater Melbourne area, with the Flinders Street Station being a central hub.
- V/Line is Victoria's regional public transport provider, operating train and coach services that connect Melbourne with regional towns and cities throughout the state. Originating from Melbourne's Southern Cross Station, V/Line trains cover vast areas, connecting major regional hubs like Geelong, Ballarat, Bendigo, Shepparton, and Traralgon, among others, providing essential links between the metropolitan area and regional Victoria.
- Bus services: Melbourne's extensive bus network complements the tram and train services, ensuring you are connected wherever you go.
Walking and cycling in Melbourne
You'll also love walking and cycling in Melbourne. The streets are so pedestrian-friendly, and there are dedicated cycling paths everywhere. The city centre's grid layout, along with all the parks and riverside paths, makes it super easy and enjoyable to get around on foot or by bike. Oh, and don't forget, it's the law to wear a helmet while cycling!
Popular bike paths:
- Capital City Trail: Encircling the Melbourne central business district, this 30km loop connects many of the city's famous landmarks and parks.
- Yarra River Trail: This serene route traces the Yarra River and is perfect for both casual rides and daily commutes.
How to move to Melbourne:
Melbourne, being one of Australia's major cities, is like a hub for flights, both from within the country and around the world. So, no matter where you're coming from, it's pretty easy to get here. And once you're in the city, you'll find a super convenient transportation network that'll make your travel a breeze. Whether you're just visiting or thinking about making Melbourne your new home, getting around won't be a problem at all!
Melbourne Airport (MEL): Located about 23 km northwest of the vibrant city centre, Melbourne Tullamarine Airport is the main international and domestic gateway to Melbourne. It connects the city with major destinations across the world and other Australian cities such as Sydney, Brisbane, and Adelaide.
Avalon Airport (AVV): Situated to the southwest of Melbourne, near Geelong, Avalon mainly serves domestic flights with airlines like Jetstar. It's a smaller alternative to Tullamarine and is often favored by travellers heading to the southwestern regions of Victoria.
Melbourne Essendon Airport (MEB): Once the main airport before Tullamarine was built, Essendon now caters to regional flights, air freight, and some charter services.
Airlines that fly to Melbourne
Melbourne is connected by numerous airlines, including:
- Virgin Australia
- Regional Express (Rex)
- International airlines like Emirates, Singapore Airlines, Air New Zealand, and many more.
When to book a flight?
While Melbourne is a year-round destination, it's essential to consider events like the Australian Open, Melbourne Cup, and various international conferences that might increase flight demand. So factor this in when organising a good time for your move to Melbourne. It's always recommended to book flights well in advance, especially if planning to arrive during peak periods. Several online platforms offer price and schedule comparisons to ensure the best deals.
Given Melbourne's central location in Australia, it's relatively quick to reach from other major cities. Here's an approximate guide:
|Flying from||Flight Duration (approximately)|
|Sydney to Melbourne||1 hour 35 minutes|
|Brisbane to Melbourne||2 hours 20 minutes|
|Adelaide to Melbourne||1 hour 20 minutes|
|Perth to Melbourne||3 hours 35 minutes|
Using the Train
Melbourne is also accessible by train. The Southern Cross Station in Melbourne's CBD connects the city to other parts of Victoria and interstate locations, including Sydney and Adelaide. The Overland provides service between Melbourne and Adelaide, while the Express Passenger Train (XPT) connects Melbourne and Sydney. For those wanting a scenic route, the Great Southern links Adelaide, Melbourne, and Brisbane with a luxurious train journey.
Driving to Melbourne
If you're considering a road trip, Melbourne has a network of well-maintained highways connecting it to other parts of Australia. Major highways include the Hume Highway to Sydney and the Princes Highway, which runs along the eastern coast. For those coming from the west, the Western Highway connects Melbourne to Adelaide.
Whether arriving by air, road, or rail, Melbourne's extensive infrastructure ensures a smooth and convenient journey for all.
Travelling to Melbourne by Coach
If you prefer a cost-effective and scenic mode of travel, coach services offer a practical choice. Several companies operate long-distance coach services connecting Melbourne with other Australian states and key destinations:
- Greyhound Australia: This well-known coach company offers services between Melbourne and various destinations, including Sydney, Brisbane, and Adelaide.
- Firefly Express: Specialising in inter-capital and regional city travel, Firefly Express has daily services that connect Melbourne with Adelaide and Sydney.
- V/Line: While it's predominantly a train service, V/Line also operates coach services that link Melbourne to regional Victoria and even some interstate locations. It's a popular choice for those heading to destinations not directly served by rail.
Coaches depart from the Southern Cross Station's coach terminal, conveniently located in the city's CBD. Remember to check timetables and book in advance, especially during peak holiday seasons, to secure your preferred travel date and time.
Benefits of living in Melbourne
Melbourne, often hailed as Australia's cultural capital, offers a cosmopolitan lifestyle blended with a touch of old-world charm. Here are some of the compelling reasons to consider living in this dynamic city:
- Cultural diversity: Melbourne's culture and multicultural heritage is evident in its festivals, culinary scenes, and neighbourhoods. This diversity fosters a sense of inclusivity and offers residents a global perspective right at their doorstep.
- Arts and entertainment: From world-class museums, galleries, and theatres to its renowned live music scene, Melbourne pulsates with artistic energy. The city's rich arts culture ensures there's always something happening.
- Educational excellence: Home to several top-tier universities and institutions, Melbourne is a hub for education, attracting domestic and international students and academics from all over the world.
- Economic vibrancy: With its strong economy anchored in sectors like finance, IT, education, and healthcare, Melbourne presents a myriad of career opportunities for professionals in diverse fields.
Unique experiences only in Melbourne
Melbourne is more than just a city - it's a place packed with unforgettable experiences. From its iconic laneways to world-renowned sporting events, here are some truly Melbourne moments you won't want to miss:
- Melbourne's Colonial Tramcar Restaurant: Elevate your culinary expectations with a meal on a vintage tram. Enjoy exquisite dishes while Melbourne's iconic sites pass by, offering a feast for both the palate and the eyes.
- Racing fever with the Grand Prix and MotoGP: Feel the adrenaline rush as high-speed machines dominate the Albert Park circuit for the Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix. Nearby, Phillip Island hosts the exhilarating MotoGP, with stunning ocean views.
- Melbourne Puffing Billy: Step back in time with a ride on the Puffing Billy, a historic steam train through the picturesque Dandenong Ranges. It's a nostalgic journey through lush forests and fern gullies.
- AFL Grand Final at the MCG: Melbourne takes sports seriously, and nothing exemplifies this more than the AFL Grand Final. Hosted at the iconic Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG), this event brings the city together in a celebration of athleticism, rivalry, and passion.
Tips for a smooth move to Melbourne
- Move during off-peak seasons: While Melbourne is bustling throughout the year, consider relocating to Melbourne during off-peak seasons. Spring (September to November) or Autumn (March to May) can be ideal, with pleasant weather and fewer tourists.
- Avoiding public holidays: Melbourne hosts numerous events and festivals. While these are fantastic to attend, they can make relocating tricky due to increased traffic and accommodation bookings. It's wise to avoid moving during major events like the Australian Open or Melbourne Cup.
- Important Documentation: Ensure you have essential documents like birth certificates, passports, medical records, and school transcripts easily accessible.
- Research the local job market: If you're looking for a job in Melbourne, it's beneficial to understand the local job market, major industries, and potentially even network before your move.
- School Enrollment: If you have school-age children, research schools in advance. Melbourne boasts a range of quality educational institutions, but enrollment processes can differ. Some might require interviews, while others might have specific zone restrictions.
- Relocation Services: There are many agencies and services in Melbourne designed to help with Melbourne moves, from finding homes to settling in. Consider using their expertise to make your move hassle-free.
Melbourne, often considered one of the best cities to live in, has so much to offer! With its diverse mix of cultures, top-notch education and healthcare, and thriving economy, there are endless opportunities to kickstart or advance your career here. The best part? The city's vibrant cultural scene, with its delicious food, exciting festivals, and rich traditions, makes every day an adventure. Moving to Melbourne may seem overwhelming at first, but it's a city that will grow on you and one that you'll miss.
In this ever-evolving city, every street tells a story and every neighbourhood has its own charm. From the lively laneways in the CBD to the peaceful coastal areas, Melbourne truly comes alive when the sun sets. You'll love the buzzing nightlife and the relaxed lifestyle that offers a perfect balance for both thrill-seekers and peace-seekers.
Moving to Melbourne is a big decision, but with a little preparation, research, and a touch of adventure, you'll be all set. Once you take the leap, you'll find yourself in a city that celebrates diversity, encourages innovation, and welcomes newcomers with open arms. Whether you're here for the job opportunities, the world-class education, or simply the vibrant atmosphere, Melbourne will leave an unforgettable impression on your heart. So, pack your bags, say goodbye to your old stomping grounds, and get ready for an exciting new chapter in the captivating city of Melbourne.
Helpful Melbourne resources
When moving to Melbourne, several government authority websites can be immensely helpful in providing essential information and services. Remember to check out:
- Visit Victoria - The official tourism website for Melbourne and Victoria. It's a must-visit if you're new here and want to explore all the cool local attractions, events, great places to eat and stay, and tonnes of fun activities across the state.
- Victorian Government's Official Website - This is the official website for the State of Victoria. It provides a comprehensive range of information on living, working, and studying in Victoria, as well as resources on public services, health, transport, and more.
- Public Transport Victoria (PTV) - For information on public transportation, including information on trains, trams, and buses in Melbourne and across Victoria. It provides timetables, network maps, and fare details.
- Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) – Victoria - For information on health services available in Victoria, public health advice, housing services, and more.
- Study Melbourne - For students considering studying in Melbourne, you can find information on courses, living costs, and student support services provided by the Victorian Government.
All values, prices, and related financial information provided on this platform or in our communications are for informational purposes only. While we strive to maintain accurate and up-to-date information, errors or discrepancies may occur. Furthermore, values and prices can fluctuate based on various factors, including market dynamics, time, geographic region, and external influences.
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