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7 tips for moving to Brisbane: What you need to know

What you need to know before arriving in Brisbane

Two young women laughing as they drive on a sunny day
Two young women laughing as they drive on a sunny day

Brisbane, the capital city of Queensland, is popular with international students and home to several reputable universities, including Queensland University of Technology, the University of Queensland and Griffith University. Here’s what you need to know before you arrive.

1. Brisbane weather is amazing

Queensland is known as the sunshine state, and Brisbane is lucky enough to have an average of seven hours of sun per day. The average temperature in summer is around 30 degrees Celsius, and with winter temperatures around 21 degrees Celsius, you’ll barely feel the cold.

2. There are plenty of great beaches near Brisbane

Make the most of the year-round warm weather by visiting one of the world-renowned beaches close to Brisbane. Two hours to the south, you’ll find famous Byron Bay, while Kings Beach is 90 minutes to the north. Head to the nearby Gold Coast for Burleigh and Coolangatta beaches, or less confident swimmers can visit Streets Beach - Australia’s only inner-city man-made beach.

3. You’ll be close to the world’s best rainforests

Brisbane is only an hour away from the Scenic Rim, home to the largest stretch of subtropical rainforest in the world. You can drive through it, walk through it or sign up for a guided tour. If you fancy making a weekend of it, there are a variety of budget accommodation options available – though it’s best to book ahead.

A young woman runs along a sidewalk with the city in the background

4. Fresh food is cheap and plentiful in Brisbane

If you enjoy fresh, local produce, you’ll enjoy the many farmers markets popping up in Brisbane. Visiting your local farmers market is a great way to meet local people and shop for quality food directly from the growers. The Jan Powers Markets can be found in New Farm and the CBD, while the Saturday Fresh Markets in Rocklea is Brisbane’s biggest fresh food market.

5. Brisbane has an excellent public transport system

The integrated go card ticketing system makes public transport easy to use. You can reload your card online, and use it on all TransLink services including the bus, train (including Airtrain), ferry and tram in the greater Brisbane, Ipswich, Sunshine Coast and Gold Coast regions. All timetables and a handy journey planner are available at Translink.

6. It’s easy to stay fit in Brisbane

Beaches and bushwalking aside, those who like to stay fit will enjoy the Active Parks program, which is run by Brisbane City Council. The program provides free activities across more than 50 local parks, including boxing, tai chi, kayaking and more.

7. The best Brisbane suburbs for students are close to public transport

According to real estate experts Domain, the top suburbs for students based in Brisbane are:

  • Woolloongabba – offering plenty of transport links to QUT and the University of Queensland, it’s also home to student-friendly dining and entertainment options.

  • Highgate Hill - Located near South Bank, Highgate Hill is the go-to for inexpensive share accommodation with transport, shops and lifestyle options nearby.

  • New Farm - Nice shared accommodation is available at New Farm or nearby Fortitude Valley. Both suburbs are close to major universities and home to many entertainment and lifestyle options in addition to student rental accommodation.

Thinking about making the move to Australia? Get health cover that meets your visa requirements in less than five minutes. Learn more about our international student cover at OSHC.

Are you going to be working while in Australia? Find out more about our working visitor cover options here.

For more information about all things Australia, visit the dedicated Life in Australia section of The Check Up.

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