Just mention the idea of moving to Australia to a Canadian and you immediately conjure up visions of a beautiful beaches, fabulous surfing, exotic animals like kangaroos, Koala bears, and a general laid back lifestyle surrounded by fun loving people.

Add into the mix that English is the official language, their government is a federal parliamentary system and like Canada, Australia is a Commonwealth country. Australia is a country rich in natural resources with a high standard of living. Also like Canada, protection of the environment is high on the political agenda. These factors make it easy to see why the idea of moving to Australia is very appealing to Canadians.


If you are interested in moving to Australia, you should be aware that to do so requires obtaining a Visa from the Australian government. Generally it takes 6-8 months to have a visa processed so if you a planning to move to Australia you should begin the process well in advance of when you actually want to take up residence in the country. There are a number of categories of visas, each of which has its own specific requirements.


It is possible for a family member who is an Australia citizen or permanent resident to sponsor a spouse, common-law partner, child including adopted children, parent or other family member.  

Skilled Migration

There are several sub-categories of skilled migration visas but the two most common are the “Skilled Nominated” and the “Skilled Independent” visa. The nominated visa is the one that would be used if you are moving to Australia either as a transferred employee from Canada or a new hire for an Australian company. In both of these cases, the employer will have to prove to the Australian government that your skills are needed by the company. People who have skills or a profession that is in high demand and is on the official skilled occupation list use the “Skilled Independent” visa. In both cases you must also meet the basic requirements and pass the Australian points test.

Basic Requirements:

  • Age – you must be under the age of 50 when you apply
  • English Language – you must be proficient in English
  • Nominated Occupation – you must have the skills and qualifications that meet your occupation which must also be on the official skilled occupation list
  • Skills Assessment – before you apply you must have your skills assessed by the Australian Assessing Authority
  • Health Assessment – you must be in good health and have your health assessed by an official panel doctor and have a medical examination
  • Character Assessment – your character will also be assessed by a government official          

For complete information on visas visit the official government website: www.border.gov.au.

Shipping Household Goods to Australia

Obtaining your visa is the first order of business but once this process is underway, it will be time to contact a professional moving company like Premiere Van Lines to discuss moving your household goods to Australia. A professional moving consultant will work with you to plan your move. He/she will provide you with important information about customs regulations and assistance in completing the necessary paperwork to import your goods. The Premiere representative will prepare a customized cost quotation that will incorporate the services you need to complete your move to Australia. Options will be provided to best meet your budget and scheduling requirements.

Customs Inspections and Duty

All goods entering Australia are subject to Customs inspection and clearance. Your household goods and personal effects can be brought into the country duty-free providing they have been owned and used for a minimum of 12 months. One exception to this regulation is automobiles that attract duty of 5% and GST of 10% based on market value in Australia.

Motor Vehicles

A vehicle Import Approval is required before a road vehicle is to be shipped. The Australian Customs and Border Protection Service will not release vehicles unless the approval is in place. All costs involved are the responsibility of the owner/shipper. For complete information go to: www.infrastructure.gov.au.


Australia has very strict laws regarding the importation of pets including a period of quarantine after entry into the country. Regulations vary by species and there is a fairly complicated procedure required in order to have the animal imported into the country. For complete information go to: www.agriculture.gov.au.

For more information about moving to Australia contact your local Premiere Van Lines office.