19 important things to know about Australia before going
Australia is an extremely beautiful country with vast beaches and cool people and you probably wish to visit someday. If that day is soon, here are 19 things about Australia you should know before going over because things are definitely a little different "Down Under."
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Their English is much abbreviated
Though people in Australia actually speak English, they also have a lot of slang words you simply can't find anywhere else. They shorten words and add letter O or Y at the end and some of their words (like thong, swimmers and tea mean completely different things from what you expect). It would be wise to research on this before landing on the continent.
Standard of living is high in Australia
Australians enjoy the finer things in life and this is evident in the kind of food they eat, the restaurants you will find there and the cars they drive. However, if you are a tourist you can use budget airlines, cook your own food, camp or stay in hostels and keep your drinking on the down low.
It’s a Beautiful sunny country
Australia looks and feels a lot like Miami because it's a beautiful sunny country except it rains more often. For most of the year, you will see people in light clothing and it's not taboo at all to walk around in bikinis. If you want to enjoy some time in the vast beaches and really enjoy Australia, be sure to pack on sun shades, sunscreen and a hat. However, around June, July and August, it does get chilly.
Small is best
The best beaches in Australia are those small and secluded areas in the eastern suburbs and if you want good drinks and amazing views, get away from the busy city and go to local bars.
There is more fun in those unknown and far out areas
All the magic in this country is not found in the big cities. You will find it more fun and breathtaking if you go a little further inside the beaten paths. Things like Wet 'n' Wild, indoor skydiving, Blue Mountains and Beare Park are all away from the city.
You can cook in public parks for free
Most public parks in Australia have barbecues that can be used by anyone. If you just buy some sausages and meat, you can go to the park and cook and no one will even turn their head. Western Sydney Parklands for example has over sixty barbecues, none of which can be reserved, but all are free to use.
You don’t have to tip
No one actually expects you to give them a tip in Australia unless you really want to. Service providers in the country get paid very well and don't expect to be given extras for doing their jobs.
You can ride in the front seat in a cab
If you are alone in a taxi, you can just sit in the front with the driver and have a chat. There is no rule or expectation that you have to sit at the back.
You will see a lot of bugs and reptiles
Don't be surprised to meet some lizards, snakes, lots of spiders and bats, possums and other bugs. There are also a lot of beautiful birds around, like the Rainbow Lorikeet, to balance all the freaking out the bugs will give you.
Australia is really big
Many people are surprised by the fact that Australia is the 6th largest country in the world so it's not a place you can go and see during one trip. Going from one side of that country to the other will take half a day by air, so just choose the one place you want to go to and focus on enjoying that. Or, make several trips?
Cars use the left side of the road
Whenever you are crossing the road, look on the right side first and then left instead of the way you are used to doing it. This will also take some getting used to if you will be driving so keep that in mind.
There are no animals in the streets
Though movies make it seem like you can find kangaroos running around the city, it's actually not true. You have to go to the zoo or take a trip to the outback to see an animal.
Road safety rules are strictly obeyed
Unlike in other countries where folks disregard road rules, if you get caught even holding a phone while driving in Australia you go to jail. When accidents happen, flowers are placed at that scene to act as reminders for everyone else. Besides the numerous 'don't drink and drive' campaigns, you will find traffic police and speed cameras literally everywhere you look so you always have to be at your best behavior. Their emergency number is 000 and not 911 just in case you encounter any problem.
Don’t pay attention to weather forecasts
The weather in Australia changes within minutes and it can change five times a day. Always be ready for sun or rain because anything is possible in the Land Down Under.
There are sharks in the ocean
The stories you see on TV about people getting eaten by sharks are actually true though it doesn't happen that often. The ocean does have sharks, but there are safe areas. Always swim with company and follow the rules.
You will be well accepted
Apart from two old tribes who are native in the country, most people who reside there are immigrants and this means you will never feel out of place. The people are friendly, laid-back and even have television channels broadcasting in foreign languages like German and Turkish.
Australia has Unbelievable Minimum Wage
If you are planning to stay a while in this beautiful country, it will be a good idea to get a part-time job especially if you are a student. Casuals get paid really well and the working and studying hours are very flexible.
Australians love to hit the casino
If you are one for the tables and chips, then you will be right at home in Australia. According to studies, the people of Australia are the biggest gamblers in the world, they spend more money per capita gambling than any other people. Besides casinos, pokie machines are a favourite of the locals.
You will not want to leave
As hot as the sun is and as scary as the snakes are, you will get over them in two days or so. What you will not get over however, is your love for Australia. The coffee here is out-of-this world delicious, they have things called Tim Tams that you can't get enough of and the place is just breathtaking.
You will also find that pies here are made with meat instead of fruits and rugby is a really fun game to watch and they have some of the most breathtaking coastlines in the world, including the Twelve Apostles, which is a popular tourist attraction.