Moving to AU was always on the cards as my brother lived here and I liked it when I visited him. Prior to moving, I visited AU three times and I saw Brisbane, Sydney and Perth. When I finally moved here, I was 30 and married for a year.
I'm a techie and I started my career in Bangalore, India. I am one of those guys who worked their ass off to get a head start. In the first five years, my salary grew ten times and then I nailed an interview with a global bank in Singapore. I moved to Singapore and worked there for a year, before moving back to Bangalore to make my relationship work. Finally when I made the move to AU, I thought life would become more stable and comfortable. I was wrong.
I got an interview shortlist my first week in Brisbane and I got the job offer in another week. It was not a dream job, but the pay was close to what I was expecting, so I took it. First month was marked by culture shock, but once I rode past that, I expected to be happy soon. It's been more than a year now and I'm not happy yet.
Some of the key negatives:
1. Friends - this may seem trivial, but you realize how important friends are when you don't have any. In Bangalore, my house was the party spot and weekends were fun. There was always someone over drinking and doing other fun things with us. We had no friends in Brisbane and a few people we did make friends with were either weird or scheming. Some were gay and wanted to get it on, some wanted to take advantage otherwise and left me wondering how do I need someone who just want to hang out and have a good time without an agenda. I have lost hope on this one, and this is the most depressing factor. So, socially, moving to AU was a mistake.
2. Job - I work in IT and IT in AU is very backward. There are fewer jobs and the stakeholders have no idea of how to operate. Census is a good example! I feel like I have messed up my career. I have been in the present job for more than a year and office politics sucks and I see no future for myself. I did appear for another interview and get the job offer, but the pay was not as good. To put things in perspective, i'm getting paid the same as I was paid 3 years ago in Singapore and that is in the top 90% as per salary survey. I fail to understand how some of my colleagues who get paid half of my salary manage to live here. I live paycheck to paycheck and no, I don't gamble or have a drinking problem. In India, I spent freely and I could still save more than a third of my salary. So, financially and career wise, moving to AU was a mistake.
3. Early shutdown: One of the things that hit you the first week in Brisbane is how life shuts down by sunset. This was a big surprise to me, I understand that everyone deserves to spend time with their families, but at the same time I find it depressing that shops close and roads go empty by dusk. This, however, is not a major concern and I'm used to it by now. Netflix and chill is lame, but that's how we spend evenings.
4. No hope - I try to tell myself it will get better. I'm an optimist, but I can't see how my life is going to magically get any better. I am considering a move to Melbourne. Partner was in Melbourne for a few months and loved it there. I'm still skeptical.
1. Fairness: One of the main reasons I moved out of India is that I'm an honest person and Indian society rebukes honesty. "Smart" people know how to fudge tax returns, bribe the right officials and bend the rules. I didn't do that and I wanted to live in a society where honesty and fairness was rewarded and was the norm. At this, AU wins hands down. Except for dirty office politics, which is everywhere, people and fair-minded, respectful and honest. AU rules in this aspect.
2. Quality of life: Quality of life is good. Beef tastes awesome, groceries are good quality. Roads are wonderful and attention to detail can be expected. Again, on this aspect, AU wins hands down. Singapore was as clean, but I couldn't help feeling like a robot when living there. But I still love SG.
There are many other positive factors about AU, but unfortunately none of them ranks as high as good times you have when kicking the night with friends and not having to worry about money.
Go back to where I came from: I am thinking of going back, but it's not going to be easy. I had to spend well over 20 grand to move my dog here and he barely got here alive.
https://au.news.yahoo.com/a/30706421/do … al-flight/
https://sqlroadie.wordpress.com/2016/02 … ay-street/
If I move him out of AU, it will be in a private jet. And I will probably have to save up for a year for that.
The purpose of my post is partly to rant, and partly as a heads up on what to expect for people considering the move. I'm sure there are others who would tell you a different story, but chances are that you may not live happily ever after. Or may be, happily ever after is only in fairy tales.