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Moving to Brisbane

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Brisbane overview

Brisbane is Queensland's capital city and the third largest city in Australia. The city has a population of approximately 2.6 million people and a metropolitan area population of more than 3 million. Brisbane is located on the Brisbane River and is surrounded by several mountain ranges, making it a picturesque city. Brisbane sits in the Moreton Bay region between the Sunshine Coast and the Gold Coast.

Brisbane CBD skyline under clear blue sky during daytime

Do I need a work visa to move to Brisbane?

New Zealand citizens do not need a visa to live and work in Brisbane. Technically speaking, a Special Category Visa is automatically granted to most New Zealand citizens upon arrival in Australia. While these are classified as a temporary visa under legislation, most New Zealand citizens are entitled to live in Australia indefinitely.

Permanent residents of New Zealand will need to obtain a visa in order to live and work in Brisbane. 

There are a number of different temporary and permanent visa options, depending on your situation. Information on these can be found on the Australian Department of Home Affairs website.

Brisbane sign on South Bank with CBD in background

Brisbane Economy

Brisbane is a major economic centre in Australia. The city's economy is based on a number of different sectors, including finance, professional services, information technology, tourism, and manufacturing. The Port of Brisbane is the 3rd busiest port in Australia.

Brisbane Culture & Lifestyle

Compared to other Australian cities, Brisbane is considered more laid-back and relaxed. The locals are friendly and welcoming. Brisbane is a vibrant and lively city with a range of excellent restaurants, bars, and nightclubs. There are also a number of museums, art galleries, entertainment venues and cultural centres to explore. Brisbane is well known for its sunny climate and beautiful natural surroundings, making it the perfect place to live. Being close to the Gold Coast there's even more sun, sand, and surf as well as some of Australia's best theme parks close by including Sea World, Movie World, and Wet'n'Wild.

Bird's-eye view photo of a Brisbane

Brisbane Climate

Brisbane has a subtropical climate, with hot, humid summers and mild winters. Brisbane receives around 1,200 mm of rainfall per year, most of which falls during the summer months.

The average temperature in Brisbane during the summer months is around 26 degrees and around 17 degrees in winter.

Sports in Brisbane

Brisbane is a great place to live if you love the outdoors and enjoy getting active. The city has plenty of green spaces and parks, as well as some world-class sporting facilities.

Rugby league is the most watched sport in Brisbane. The city is home to the Brisbane Broncos, who play in the NRL and the Queensland Maroons who play in the State of Origin series. In rugby union the city hosts the Queensland Reds who play in the Super Rugby competition.

Transportation in Brisbane

Public transport in Brisbane is simple with the tap-on, tap-off Go Card that works across the city's buses, trains and ferries. The train and bus network in Brisbane is extensive, servicing the city and surrounding areas. The ferry network operates across the Brisbane River, providing a scenic way to get around the city.

Bus station in Brisbane with CBD in background

Accommodation and housing in Brisbane

One of the first things you will need to do when moving to Brisbane is find somewhere to live. There are plenty of accommodation options in Brisbane, whether buying, renting a house or apartment, or living in a shared house or student accommodation depending on your needs.

If you're looking to buy, the median house price in Brisbane was just over $780,000 in December 2021, lower than NZ's main centres and similar to that of Waikato.

If you're looking for student accommodation or shared housing, there are plenty of options available in Brisbane too. For example, check out Unilodge or Campus Living Villages. These websites have a range of options, from single rooms to apartments.

Popular Brisbane Suburbs

There are a number of popular Brisbane suburbs for people moving to Brisbane, depending on what you are looking for. Some of the most popular Brisbane suburbs include:

Fortitude Valley: This vibrant inner-city suburb is home to a great nightlife and a lively arts scene.

West End: This suburb is known for its multicultural vibe, with a large number of restaurants and cafes.

Paddington: This historic suburb is full of character, with beautiful Victorian-era homes.

Kangaroo Point: This riverside suburb offers stunning views of the city and is a great place to live if you love being outdoors.

If you're not sure which Brisbane suburb is right for you, your real estate agent can help you find the best area to live in Brisbane. They will have a wealth of knowledge about the different suburbs and can help you find the perfect home for your needs.

Brisbane Schools and Universities

If you are moving to Brisbane with school-aged children, you will be pleased to know that the city has a number of excellent public and private schools to choose from.

The city has several universities, with Brisbane home to Queensland University of Technology and the University of Queensland, as well as satellite campuses for Griffith University, the Australian Catholic University, CQUniversity and others. Students can choose from a wide range of courses and programs, making Brisbane an ideal place to study.

Banking and Foreign Exchange

One of the first things you need to do when moving to Brisbane is organise your banking and foreign exchange.

The Australian dollar is stronger than the NZ dollar, but $1NZD has averaged around $0.94AUD over the last 5 years.

You can easily set up an Australian bank account online or in person in most of the major banks.

If you're moving to Brisbane you'll also need to get an Australian Tax File Number (TFN). This is required for all residents and can be done through the Australian Taxation Office website. You will also need this number if you want to work in Australia.

In order to help you transfer New Zealand to Australian Dollars, we have teamed up with the global payments provider Xe International Money Transfers. Xe makes sending money overseas fast, easy, trustworthy. Sign up and get a quote for free, with no obligation to transfer.

How much will it cost to move to Brisbane?

The cost of moving to Brisbane varies depending on your individual needs and budget. There are three main options for shipping your household goods to Brisbane:

  • Full Container Load (FCL)
  • Groupage
  • Air freight

1) FCL: for when you’re shipping a full household

If you are shipping a full household, you’ll probably need a sole-use container (FCL).

This is a faster way to ship as you’re not having to share the container with others. Once your container has been loaded, it will be sealed and delivered to the port for immediate shipping.

Transworld operates regular FCL shipping services to all ports in Australia.

Key benefits:

  • More capacity: a full container can typically accommodate a complete household
  • Faster shipping times: normally FCLs are loaded at clients' residence, delivered directly to the port and shipped on the first available vessel. 
  • Ship anywhere in Australia: our full container service covers all major Australian ports

2) Groupage: for when you're happy to share

If you've got a small household, or just wanting to ship a few household items, groupage shipping is the answer.

This way you share a container with other clients moving to the same destination. Groupage is an economical way of shipping, as you only pay for the space you use.  

Keep in mind, this service may take a little longer while we wait to fill the container for your destination but it is a very cost effective option.

Key benefits:

  • Lower cost: pricing is based on the actual size of your shipment, so you only pay for the space your effects occupy in the container.
  • Flexibility : giving you the freedom to decide how much you want to ship, from a couple of boxes to a small household
  • Ship all over Australia: we regularly ship groupage containers to Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth, and can deliver to all parts of Australia. 

 3) Air Freight: for when you want it extra fast

Air Freight is the fastest option, though the most expensive. Ideal if you’re not taking a lot, or for those extra items you’ll need soon after your arrival.

Key benefits:

  • Fastest option: air freight is the fastest way to get your effects to Australia
  • Perfect for a few essential items: when you need them urgently
  • Deliver anywhere in Australia: our air freight service covers all major cities in Australia

When shipping cargo in a 20ft/40ft container to Brisbane, Transworld will provide the necessary documentation to you for completion so that as your appointed international moving company we will be able to clear your goods through customs & quarantine on your behalf.

Regarding shipping to Brisbane from New Zealand, household goods that were in the possession of the owner for more than 12 months don't require any importing duty & tax fees. On the other hand, fees need to be paid when bringing alcoholic beverages and cigarettes to Australia for instance.

Shipping Cars to Brisbane

Many people ship cars to Brisbane from New Zealand as this can be quite viable option. You need to do your homework to make sure your car will be allowed to be driven on the Australian roads. To be able to import a car to Australia, the owner needs to show proof of current or future permanent residency, and the car must be owned and used for at least 12 months prior to the applicant's arrival to Australia. Before importing a road vehicle into Australia you must obtain an approval to import the vehicle from the Department of Infrastructure.

Moving pets to Brisbane from NZ

If your pets are moving to Brisbane, or any other Australian city with you, they must be vaccinated and have a veterinary clearance before being allowed into Australia via ship or plane. Certain breeds are not able to be brought into Australia.

Prohibited and Restricted Items

Certain goods are prohibited or restricted for import into Brisbane, Australia. Some interesting examples are: dangerous breed dogs, stem cells derived from human embryo clones, or suicide devices.

These goods are also restricted: antibiotics, cat and dog fur products, toxic material, cosmetics, chewing tobacco and oral snuff, cigarette lighters, counterfeit credit cards, drugs and narcotics, chemical weapons, asbestos, toxic material, pornography, toxic, toys, and more.

Shipping to Brisbane should be stress free and that is why Transworld is New Zealand’s preferred shipping agent to Australia - we will take the stress out of your removal as we only specialise in international removals. Get a free moving quote now.

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