Pre-departure Checklist for Australia


Special Instructions for International Students:

Pre-departure Checklist:

Before you leave home there are some important things you will need to do. We’ve prepared this checklist to help you make sure you don’t overlook anything.

  • Visa: Organise your student visa. See visa requirements to learn more.
  • Passport: Ensure your passport is valid for the intended length of your study period in Australia.
  • Medical care: Have medical, optical and dental check-ups and organise any prescribed medication you may require including a letter from your doctor (in English) detailing any prescribed medicines.
  • Airport pickup: Find out about our free on-arrival reception service and complete the online booking form to be greeted at the airport.
  • Accommodation: Book temporary accommodation before you leave your home country. Accommodation services can point you in the right direction. Start looking for long-term accommodation as early as possible.
  • Enrol online: Take a closer look at what you need to do to prepare to enrol. If you have any difficulties enrolling online, you can complete your enrolment during orientation.
  • Money: Organise to have at least A$2,000 available to you on arrival in Sydney (approximately A$500 in cash and A$1,500 in travellers’ cheques or accessible by ATM).
  • Consular assistance: Make a note of the contact details of your country’s embassy in Australia.
  • Documentation: Pack a document folder containing your offer letter, Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE), academic transcripts from previous study, identification documents, important contact numbers, a written character reference (translated into English) to help in securing accommodation, details of pre-arranged accommodation and important medical records.
  • Customs and quarantine: Check customs and quarantine regulations and pack any items you wish to declare separately.
  • Orientation: Note the dates for University’s Welcome week and orientation program.
  • Insurance: Organise insurance for your personal belongings.

Things to bring

  • Documentation of previous studies (if applying for status or credit).
  • Certified academic transcripts.
  • A character reference from a teacher or other official (to help you apply for long-term accommodation).
  • Identification such as a driving licence or credit card (to help you open a bank account).
  • Home country driving licence if you want to drive in South Australia. You will have to provide a translation of your licence into English, either in the form of an International Driving Permit or by arranging for a translation once you are here.
  • Important medical records (for example, if you have an ongoing medical condition).
  • Medication: If you take medication for an illness or condition you may need to bring a supply with you as it may not be readily available, or available at the same price, in Australia. You may need a certificate (in English or translated into English) from your doctor stating that the drugs have been prescribed. Check with immigration authorities: you must declare any drugs or medicines you bring into the country. Note that any prescription medication obtained in Australia must be prescribed by an Australian doctor.
  • Bilingual print dictionary (only print dictionaries are allowed in exams).
  • Spare spectacles/contact lenses.
  • Optional: Radio/MP3 player, camera, calculator, USB/thumb drive.
  • Optional: computer (as accompanied luggage). Prices for new laptops in Australia range from approximately A$1000 to A$5000. You are allowed to bring a laptop into Australia, provided Customs officials are satisfied it is for personal use and that you intend to take it with you when you return home. You are advised to get specified items insurance for your laptop in case it gets stolen or damaged.
  • Contact details for home and Australia in case of an emergency.
  • Your passport!

Things not to bring

Australia has strict Quarantine laws. Visit the Biosecurity Australia website for information on what you are not allowed to bring into Australia. For example:

  • Items made from wood, plant and animal material must be declared upon arrival.
  • You are not allowed to bring in fresh food or egg products even in powder form into Australia, including dried or packet food.
  • You MUST declare ALL food items in your possession or risk an on-the-spot fine.

Adelaide has a diverse population, so products from most regions in the world are readily available. You can probably buy most of your favorite foods here instead of bringing them with you.


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