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Moving to Melbourne

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If you're moving to Melbourne from New Zealand, there are a few things you need to know. Melbourne is a great city with plenty of opportunities for work and recreation. However, the process of moving can be tricky if you're not prepared so we'll provide you with all the information you need to make your move as smooth as possible!


Melbourne CBD and Yarra River


Melbourne overview

Melbourne is the capital of Victoria and is Australia's second largest city, with a population of over five million people.

Melbourne is also the cultural capital of Australia and has taken the top spot as the World's most liveable city in The Economist Intelligence Unit's Global Liveability index seven times. It's known for its diverse culture and history – The city is a beautiful urban setting well known for its rich history from a mining city to one of the most popular cities in the world. It also has a temperate oceanic climate, which you might find to be very accommodating. And of course, it's a popular tourist destination as well courtesy of its imposing landmarks such as the Melbourne Cricket Ground, the Shrine of Remembrance, the Eureka Skydeck 88, St. Patrick's Cathedral, and the Flinders Street Station. In a nutshell, living in Melbourne is never dull or boring.


People sitting in a park with the Melbourne CBD in the background

Do I need a work visa to move to Melbourne?

New Zealand citizens do not need a visa to live and work in Melbourne. 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 Sydney. 

There are a number of different visas options, depending on your situation. Information on these can be found on the Department of Home Affairs website.

Melbourne Economy

Melbourne's economy is diverse, with manufacturing and retail being major contributors as well as tourism and education services for international students. In recent years there has also been strong growth in technology startups moving into Melbourne's central business district which was previously dominated by large financial institutions like Commonwealth Bank or National Australia Bank (NAB) - both have headquarters located here too! Melbourne's unemployment rate is around 4% with a strong job market.

Melbourne Culture & Lifestyle

Melbourne is a cosmopolitan city with all the benefits of big-city living. The vibrant nightlife, great shopping and dining options make it an attractive place for people moving from New Zealand to live in Australia.

The city is also a major cultural centre, with world-class art galleries, theatres and museums. Melbourne became one of UNESCO's Cities of Literature in 2008. The National Gallery of Victoria is Australia's oldest and most-visited art museum exhibiting over 5,000 artists.

Melbourne’s parks are another drawcard, especially in the spring when the Jacarandas are in bloom.

There are plenty of things to do in Melbourne and it’s easy to feel at home here with a strong sense of community spirit.


A barista in Melbourne making a coffee

Melbourne Climate

Melbourne has a temperate climate with changeable weather. Average summer temperatures

An average summer day in Melbourne averages 14 – 26 degrees.  Winters are cool with average winter temperatures between 8 and 16 degrees in July. 

Melbourne experiences moderate rainfall approximately 600mm on average per year; less than both Auckland and Wellington.

Sports in Melbourne

Aussies are well-known for their love of sports and Melbourne is arguably the sporting capital of Australia. AFL (Australian Football League) the most popular sport with Rugby League and Union quite a long way behind.

The biggest sporting event in Melbourne is the Australian Open tennis tournament, which takes place in January every year. The event attracts hundreds of thousands of fans from all over the world. Other major sporting events are the Melbourne Cup and the Australian Grand Prix.

Transportation in Melbourne

Melbourne has an excellent public transportation system that will make getting around town a breeze. The city has an extensive bus network that covers all parts of Melbourne. Buses generally run every few minutes during peak hours and every 15-20 minutes at other times.

Melbourne has the world’s largest tram network with over 250km of track and 1,700 stops.

Melbourne also has a great train system, which runs frequently and reaches many areas of the city. 


People crossing the near a tram in Melbourne

Accommodation and housing in Melbourne

House prices can be a bit of a shock when moving to Melbourne. Median sale prices are above $1.1 million.

The Melbourne rental market is also very expensive, but good public transport can make living further from the CBD possible without needing a car.

Popular Melbourne Suburbs

Melbourne has a lot of suburbs that have their own distinct character and feel, so it’s really worth spending some time exploring them before moving in permanently. Some of the most liveable suburbs in Melbourne include Fitzroy, Northcote, Carlton, East & North Melbourne, Collingwood, Richmond, Princes Hill, Coburg & St Kilda.

Melbourne Schools and Universities

Melbourne has some of the top schools in Australia and there are eight universities in Melbourne including the University of Melbourne, Australia's top university. Monash University, the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT) and Deakin University are all ranked within the top 500 universities in the world.

Banking and Foreign Exchange

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

If you're moving to Melbourne 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 Melbourne?

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

  • 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 Melbourne, 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 Melbourne 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 Melbourne

Many people moving to Melbourne ship their cars 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.

Moving pets to Melbourne from NZ

If your pets are moving to Melbourne, 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

The Australian government prohibits or restricts a number of items from being imported into the country. Some 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 Melbourne 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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