Migrating to Australia

Migrating to Australia

Australia is a nation of migrants. For Australians, migrants are skilled workers, beloved family members, industrious students, wide-eyed tourists and refugees in dire need.

While work and family visas are the priority for the Australian Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP), students, tourist, humanitarian entrants, business people and many others are also welcomed, and deciding amongst the overlapping visa types can be difficult.

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The Institute encourages potential migrants to use a Registered Migration Agent to obtain migration advice to thoroughly understand their options and to prepare and submit visa applications.


استراليا ترحب بالمهاجرين

Moving to Australia Kit

To help people considering migrating to Australia, the Migration Institute of Australia has created a Moving to Australia booklet which outlines what the key steps in the process are. Download your free copy of the booklet here.

Do you need to set up an Australian bank account?
An essential part of your visa application to migrate to Australia includes setting up an Australia bank account, which can be done before you arrive in Australia.

The Migration Institute of Australia has a partnership with one of Australia’s largest banks, the Commonwealth Bank of Australia to assist people moving to work or study in Australia set up their bank account before they arrive in Australia.

Having your bank account with the Commonwealth Bank of Australia entitles you to the following services in Australia:
  • more than 1,100 branches nationally and 3,700 Australia Post agencies.
  • over 4,200 Automated Telling Machines (ATMs).
  • 249,000 Commonwealth Bank supported EFTPOS terminals across Australia.
  • 10 call centres, which handle over 120 million calls annually.
  • NetBank, Australia’s # 1 online bank with over five million customers.
  • our free CommBank app, a market-leading app for compatible iPhone, Android and Windows 8 smartphones^ to bank with us on the go.

Make sure you ask your Registered Migration Agent about setting up your Australian bank account with the Commonwealth Bank before you arrive in Australia.

^ You must be registered for NetBank with NetCode SMS to make payments using the CommBank app. Recipients of payments via mobile, email and Facebook need an Australian bank account to claim. Apple, the Apple logo and iPhone are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. App Store is a service mark of Apple Inc. Android is a trademark of Google Inc.


MoneySmart is an Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) developed resource centre for humanitarian entrants, featuring information sheets, video tutorials and "life event" kits in 26 languages.

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General Information

Different Australian visa classes are roughly divided amongst Workers, Migrants, Visitors, Students and Refugees.

While each visa application is different, many have overlapping requirements. People seeking entry in Australia may be required to submit to health and police checks in order to proceed with their visa applications.

Additional requirements may include health insurance, English language testing, evidence of funds and assessment of skills and trade qualifications. Migrants should also take into account the need to open an Australia bank account and registering for government services.

Much more information can be found on the DIBP website.

Pro bono Migration Advice

The following organisations are authorised to provide pro bono migration agents with Continuing Professional Development (CPD) points for their work and have thus had their professional services meet the burden of proof of the professional's regulator:








Legal Aid NSW

Visa Cancellation Kit

Designed for prospective migrants who have received a visa cancellation letter from the DIAC, this kit covers the basics and provides clients some instructions and examples of how to proceed and is available here.

Discrimination toolkit

This 200 page joint publication of Legal Aid NSW, Kingsford Legal Centre and Elizabeth Evatt Community Legal Centre is a comprehensive and helpful guide to making discrimination complaints, and is available here.

New Arrival Kits

Legal Aid NSW has developed a suite of videos comprising its New Arrivals Kits. These helpful induction tools for arrivals also include activity sheets and teacher answer sheets focused on the following topic areas:

Renting or leasing a property

The Real Estate Institute of Australia (REIA) has partnered with DIBP to translate its Consumer Fact Sheet – Renting a Property – Tenant for 10 community languages - Arabic, Hazaragi, Farsi , Mandarin, Karen, Hakha-Chin, Tamil, Kurdish, Nepali, Dinka - to help its real estate agent members with non-English speaking prospective renters. Click to access these Fact Sheets below:

My Language

With information accessible in 65 languages, the web portal My Language is a State and Territory Libraries project to promote access for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) Communities to news, search engines, Government websites and dictionaries, with a focus on equitable access to health, education, housing and the justice services.

Australian Tax Office (ATO)

The ATO video Your business and tax on its dedicated YouTube channel is available in English, Arabic, Cantonese, Korean, Mandarin and Vietnamese as part of its outreach to migrant communities.