Many international students decide to leave Australia after completing their studies.
As per the recent information by Education Minister, Jason Clare, only 16% of international students stay back after completing their studies in Australia.
So in this article we are going to discuss 10 important things to do before leaving Australia as an international student.
What's in this guide ?
- 1. File Your Tax Return 📄
- 2. Claim Superannuation 💰
- 3. Get Your Rental Deposit Back 🏡
- 4. Pick Up Your Certificates 📖
- 5. Close Your Bank Accounts 🏦
- 6. Transfer your money 💸
- 7. Ask For References 😀
- 8. Sell Your Unwanted Stuff 🛌
- 9. Shipping Things Back Home 🚢
- 10. Travel Around Australia 🛫
- 11. Say Goodbye To Friends 👋
1. File Your Tax Return 📄
The Australian financial year runs from the 1st of July to 30th of June, with the last day of filing the tax returns by the 31st of October each year.
There are chances that you might not be leaving Australia within this time frame.
We highly recommend that you do your tax return before leaving, even though it might not be within the timeframe for doing your tax return for the financial year.
2. Claim Superannuation 💰
While working in Australia, your employer would have most likely paid you superannuation, which is currently 10.5% of your gross salary or wages.
Over the years, you might have accumulated a significant amount of money in your superannuation fund account. Usually, you are not allowed to use this money until you retire or leave the country permanently.
If you are leaving Australia for good, then you can certainly claim this money back.
You can only claim this money after you have left Australia, so we highly recommend that you collect all the documents that you need to lodge this application when you are overseas.
You can use the services of tax agents like Taxback.com for getting your superannuation as well.
If you want to know more about how superannuation works, then check out our YouTube video.
3. Get Your Rental Deposit Back 🏡
When you rent a property in Australia, you are required to pay a rental deposit, also known as a bond, which is claimable once your lease is over.
It is important to let your landlord know nice and early before leaving.
Also, when leaving the property, make sure it’s nice and tidy and there are no damages to the property, as your landlord can take money out of your bond if the property is damaged.
However, if everything is good, you are entitled to get a full refund of your bond money.
It is also important that you cancel or transfer your lease and make sure you pay off all the bills, like your utility bills and card bills.
4. Pick Up Your Certificates 📖
After you’ve completed your degree, it’s important to pick up your certificate and other relevant documents from your university or institution.
There have been cases where some international students forgot to pick up their certificate before leaving Australia.
In those cases, students had to contact their university to send it to them in their home country, which obviously costs them money due to shipping costs.
So it’s important you pick up your certificates from your school before leaving Australia.
5. Close Your Bank Accounts 🏦
While living and working in Australia, there are chances that you have opened a bank account or perhaps multiple bank accounts.
If you have multiple bank accounts, we certainly suggest you close a few before leaving Australia and keep at least one open where you can get your money for your tax refund and superannuation as well.
We don’t suggest you close all your bank accounts at the time of leaving Australia, but we suggest you close them all after receiving your tax refund and superannuation.
It is much easier to get money directly into your bank account than to have a cheque sent to your overseas address.
It might be a good idea for you to drop by one of the bank branches or call your bank when you’re ready to close your account.
We also suggest you close your account because of the monthly fees you may have to pay after completing your studies.
If you’re no longer a student, the bank starts charging you a monthly fee to keep an account with them, so to avoid that sort of fee, we highly suggest you close the account, but wait until you get your tax refund and superannuation money back.
6. Transfer your money 💸
Before closing your bank accounts, you might like to transfer your money to overseas bank accounts.
We don’t recommend that you carry all the money in cash when travelling back home, but rather find a way to send it before you arrive.
Most of the countries might have limits on how much cash you can bring into the country without declaring and paying custom duties.
So find better alternative services for transferring your money to your overseas bank account.
Usually banks have pretty poor exchange rates, so many students like to use other transfer services like Wise, etc.
7. Ask For References 😀
If you are working in Australia, we recommend you get a letter of reference or recommendation from your current employer, which can certainly help you a lot in getting a job in your home country.
If you have a good reputation with your teachers or trainers, we highly recommend that you get a letter of reference from them as well, as this will be great for your career.
8. Sell Your Unwanted Stuff 🛌
Even if you study in Australia for a couple of years, chances are that you will collect a lot of unwanted items.
We highly recommend you find things you don’t really need and start selling them ahead of time. You can sell them or give away for free on websites such as Facebook’s marketplace or Gumtree.
We strongly advise you to sell any unwanted or heavy items that you cannot take with you. If you are in a rush to leave, then you can arrange with your local council for furniture disposal.
We don’t recommend you leave your furniture or other belongings in the property or on the nature strip outside your house, as you can get a fine from the council or the landlord can deduct money from the bond.
9. Shipping Things Back Home 🚢
After selling your unwanted items, it’s time for you to start thinking of how you can send the things you need or want to bring with you to your home country.
If you have many things that you have to take back to your home, then it’s a good idea to look for the cheapest freight company.
You can send those items by sea or air, but shipping by sea is usually much cheaper. It takes much longer for items to arrive in your home country if you are using the sea freight option.
So do your research and look for a freight company you can trust to deliver your items safely to your home country. We suggest you ask for recommendations in the facebook groups.
10. Travel Around Australia 🛫
Before you return home, make sure you visit the Australian destinations on your bucket list that you were unable to visit earlier.
Australia is a beautiful country and it has its own special landscape, so we highly recommend you travel around Australia and tick off items on your bucket list before leaving.
Most students drive around the east coast or west coast of Australia, and if you would like to explore both places, that would be great.
You can check our special article on Australia’s most popular pink lakes that you should visit.
11. Say Goodbye To Friends 👋
It is important to acknowledge the contributions that people have made to your life in Australia.
We know it’s very heartbreaking to leave your friends, but make sure you say a proper goodbye to your friends before leaving Australia.
You can organize a barbecue and have your friends come over to your place or eat out with them.
So these are the 10 things we suggest you do before leaving Australia. There are many other things that you need to do before leaving Australia, so we suggest you download this checklist. This checklist will help you check more things you need to do before leaving Australia.