How to Migrate to Australia

There are several steps involved when migrating to Australia and each one can take some time. Here’s a comprehensive list of the steps you’ll need to get the process started:

1. Do Your Research

Being fully prepared will help to streamline the process. Those wanting to start the migration process are advised to begin planning at least 18 months before intending to relocate.

The avenues for migration to Australia depend on a number of factors including which country you are currently living in and your occupational skill set.


Ensuring you research your options to find the most appropriate visa type for your situation is a good first step.

2. Identify & Apply for a Visa

If you are a skilled worker and your occupation is listed as being in demand in Australia, you may be eligible for a skilled migrant visa. Skilled Independent visa and Skilled Nominated visas both entitle you to permanent residency within Australia if you meet basic requirements as set out by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP). These requirements include restrictions around age, health and character, English language, and nominated occupations. A migration agent can assist with finding the right visa options for you.

3. Identify Where You’ll Be Living

Another important step when considering migration to Australia is where to live. Australia is a large and diverse country with options for living in the mountains or near the ocean, in a busy city or a small country town.

You may have to factor in necessary supports for children or other family members, or have specific lifestyle requirements. The cost of living in different areas can vary, for example housing in Sydney and Melbourne tends to be considerably more expensive than other capital cities but may have more public transport options.

Information and statistics on housing, education, health, transport, and medical facilities can be obtained from each state and / or territory government.

4. Consider Applying for Nomination (If Applicable) or Getting Visa Sponsorship

Once you have determined where in Australia you would like to live you can apply for nomination or obtain sponsorship if eligible under the skilled visa or business visa schemes. Alternatively you may choose to skip this step and migrate independently. Applications for visas are made to the Department of Immigration and Border Protection. At this stage you should also ensure you, and those of any family members emigrating with you, have valid passports.

5. Prepare to Relocate to Australia

Next follows the steps typically undertaken with any relocation such as notifying schools and current workplaces, preparing your home for sale or rent, ensuring medical checks are up to date, and organising finances.

Booking temporary accommodation for your arrival and organising childcare or school enrolments also need to be done a few months prior to leaving.

Bringing pets into Australia is possible, but due to Australia’s strict quarantine laws it is a lengthy process and should be researched thoroughly to determine if this is a suitable option.

6. Settle into Your New Home in Australia

The final step of migration to Australia is settling in to a new country. Both not-for-profit organisations and local government councils provide support to help migrants settle in Australia. This may involve providing information about services as well as networking with other migrants.