Top reasons to study in Melbourne
Visit the Student Welcome Desk at Melbourne Airport when you arrive. The friendly staff can answer questions and help you make your way to your destination.
International student welcome desk
The Student Welcome Desk is at the Travellers Information Service, International Arrivals Hall, Ground Floor, Terminal 2, Melbourne Airport. The desk is open every day from 7am to midnight.
Study Melbourne Student Centre
The Study Melbourne Student Centre (SMSC) in Melbourne provides access to free support, information and contacts to help you enjoy living and studying in Victoria. Find out more about the SMSC, including where we are and how to contact us.
Melbourne is the world’s most liveable city
Again and again, Melbourne is named as the world’s most liveable city. The title is awarded to the city with the highest score for stability, healthcare, culture and environment, education and infrastructure. When you study in Melbourne, you’ll be living in a safe and vibrant city that offers world-class study options, services and the widest range of things to do.
Australia’s best student city
In 2017, QS Best Student Cities awarded Melbourne as Australia’s best student city and the fifth best in the world. Key features such as Victoria’s high standard and quality of living, vibrant multicultural society and social inclusion attracted 175,000 international students to Victoria in 2016.
Often called Australia’s cultural capital, Melbourne is home to the attractions that make the Australian lifestyle so appealing.
Where to live
Some of Melbourne’s inner suburbs are funky and hip, with great coffee culture, cool shops and restaurants with high density apartment living or quirky terrace houses. Other suburbs offer leafy peace and quiet, with wide streets, shady trees, gardens, parks and houses on larger blocks.
What to consider
When choosing which part of Melbourne to live in, research the things that are important to you.
Many students like to live near to where they study. Check a map of Melbourne to see which suburbs are near ITHEA.
If you are looking for accommodation in a lower price range, try searching further away from the centre of Melbourne.
Remember to check if there is regular transport to ITHEA. If you don’t have your own car, also consider whether there are shops and other services nearby that you could walk to or ride your bike.
There is a network of trams, trains and buses in Melbourne that extends beyond the central business district (CBD) and into the suburbs.
Find out about public transport in your preferred suburb on the Melbourne local areas page on the Public Transport Victoria (PTV) website.
Melbourne regularly appears in lists of the safest cities in the world. Laws in Victoria protect your rights. It is against the law for anyone to bully or harass you. There are many places to go for help, including the Study Melbourne Student Centre and student services at your university, college or school.
Things to do
All of Melbourne’s suburbs have a unique flavour. If you live in the centre of Melbourne, or in the inner suburbs surrounding the city centre, a quick trip by public transport brings you into the heart of Melbourne so it will be easy to enjoy festivals, free events and a wide range of live music and theatre.
Suburbs further out have their own events and fun things to do – with Melbourne CBD still easy to access by train, tram or bus.
Talk to friends and family
We have asked many students where they found out about the best places to live. Students often tell us that they asked friends or family who already lived here. If you have friends or family living in Melbourne, or if you know someone who does, they may be able to give you some tips about choosing the best suburb to live in while you study.
Melbourne offers high quality, safe student accommodation from the cosmopolitan inner city living to leafy garden suburbs.
When you first arrive in Australia, temporary or short term accommodation gives you time to explore permanent living options. Book short term accommodation before you arrive.
Budget accommodation – hostels
Hostels in Melbourne offer cheap, short term accommodation. Most have a mix of private rooms and dormitory accommodation.
Tip: To find out more about hostels and budget accommodation, do a search using words like ’hostels melbourne’.
Discounted online rates – hotels
For lower cost hotels, try booking online on discount accommodation sites. Some sites have discounts for booking well in advance. Some websites offer last-minute discounts.
Tip: To find out more about lower hotel rates and discounted accommodation sites, do a search using words like ‘discount hotels melbourne’.
Luxury hotels and accommodation
Book high-end hotels and accommodation through many sites on the web.
Tip: Search using words like ’luxury hotels melbourne’.
Renting a home means you choose the location, people and furniture. You are also responsible for arranging and paying for utilities – electricity, gas, telephone and internet.
Expect to pay from $150 a week for rent, depending on how many people you share with and where you live.
If you are renting from an agent or direct from a landlord, you sign a lease with them. You also give a security deposit – called a bond – to the agent or landlord. They must lodge it with the Residential Tenancies Bond Authority (RTBA).
The agent or landlord cannot access the bond and you cannot use it for rent. If you cause any damage to the property while you are renting it, the landlord can request the RTBA to compensate them at the end of the lease.
Help for renters
The RentRight app is a free resource with information and tools to help renters in Victoria.
Furniture and facilities
Most apartments offer a private or twin room with a shared kitchen and bathroom.
Rooms are often fully furnished with a bed, mattress, wardrobe, study desk and chair. Generally you also have access to common rooms, laundry facilities and internet.
Some provide a regular cleaning service, on-site staff and social activities.
Costs vary and you can expect to pay from $200 a week including utilities and sometimes internet.
Accommodation availability and cost
Find student accommodation and learn more about costs and facilities on the internet.
Living with a family
When an international student living with a family in their home it’s called a homestay. A homestay gives you a family support network ready to introduce you to Australian society.
When you stay with a family on homestay you will have your own furnished bedroom. The family provides most meals. They will also have internet and other utilities. You will not have to clean the home but you will have to keep your room tidy.
Homestay costs from $250 a week. The cost depends on facilities, location and the number of meals the family provides.
Your responsibilities and independence depend on the family you stay with. The homestay may also be further away from campus than other types of accommodation.
How to find a part-time job
Internet searches are a good way to check the kinds of jobs that might be available but remember that not all jobs are listed on the internet. Sometimes you can find a great job by being in the right place at the right time.
Many students find work through connections their fellow students, friends and family. Tell people that you are looking for work and the kind of work you are looking for.
Understand the industry
The best way to find part-time work is to understand the industry you want to work in. Each industry uses different ways to recruit part-time workers.
Searching for work on the internet
There are a number of online job websites that you can use to search for work in Victoria.
The cost of living in Victoria
When you calculate the cost of living in Melbourne or regional Victoria you may find that the expenses are different to what you have to pay in your own country.
The Living costs in Australia page on the Study in Australia website lists some common expenses and approximate costs.
What to include in the cost of living
Rent (or other accommodation), utilities, groceries, restaurants and transport are good places to start.
Rent and other accommodation
Tenants pay rent and also need to pay for electricity, gas, internet and cable services.
If you are sharing the rental of a property, you and the other tenants will probably split these expenses between you.
If you are living in a homestay, student accommodation or in a residential college on campus you may find that these expenses are included in your rental.
In Australia you may hear people talking about ‘utilities’. Utilities include electricity, gas, telephone an internet.
To check the cost of electricity and gas in Melbourne or other Victorian cities, search the internet for energy price comparison melbourne (or the name of another city in Victoria where you want to study)
For best results, view the organic search results. The sponsored results may not give an unbiased answer.
Groceries and restaurants
If you plan to enjoy Melbourne’s wonderful restaurants, include the cost of eating out in your calculations. You can keep costs low by cooking your own meals.