A Guide to Australian Expat Life in London

London is a popular destination for Australian expats, thanks to its vibrant culture, diverse population, and strong economy. This guide is designed to help you make the most of your time in the city, from finding a place to live to getting involved in the local community.

This article is for any Australian expat who is thinking about moving to London, or who is already living in the city and wants to learn more about the expat experience. 

This will cover a wide range of topics, including:

  • Finding a place to live
  • Getting a job
  • Making friends
  • Learning about British culture
  • Exploring London

Australian Expat in London: Where to Live in London

London is a great city for Australian expats, and there are many popular neighbourhoods to choose from. Here are some factors to consider when making your decision:

  • Cost of living: London is one of the most expensive cities in the world, so it’s important to factor in the cost of living when choosing a neighbourhood.
  • Proximity to work: If you have a job in central London, you’ll want to choose a neighbourhood that is well-connected to public transportation.
  • Cultural amenities: If you’re looking for a neighbourhood with a vibrant cultural scene, you’ll want to choose an area with a lot of bars, restaurants, and shops.

Here are some of the most popular neighbourhoods for Australian expats in London, along with some average rent prices:

  • Clapham: Vibrant atmosphere, excellent transport links, and a wide range of bars, restaurants, and shops. 
    • Average rent for a one-bedroom flat: £1,500 per month.
  • Brixton: Multicultural community, lively music scene, and proximity to central London. 
    • Average rent for a one-bedroom flat: £1,400 per month.
  • Hammersmith: Close to central London but also has a more relaxed atmosphere. Home to a number of parks and green spaces, as well as the famous Hammersmith Apollo music venue. 
    • Average rent for a one-bedroom flat: £1,600 per month.
  • Fulham: Close to Chelsea and the River Thames. Home to a number of beautiful Georgian and Victorian houses, as well as a number of popular bars and restaurants. 
    • Average rent for a one-bedroom flat: £1,700 per month.
  • Shoreditch: Trendy neighbourhood that is popular with young professionals and creative types. Home to a number of independent shops, bars, and restaurants, as well as the famous Old Street roundabout. 
    • Average rent for a one-bedroom flat: £1,800 per month.

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How to Find a Job in London

The job market in London is very competitive, but there are many opportunities available for Australian expats. The city is a major financial centre, and there are also a number of creative and tech industries that are thriving.

Here are some tips on how to find a job in London:

  • Network: One of the best ways to find a job in London is to network with people who are already living and working in the city. Attend industry events, connect with people on LinkedIn, and reach out to friends and family who may know of any openings.
  • Use online job boards: There are a number of online job boards that list vacancies in London. Some of the most popular include Indeed, LinkedIn, and Monster.
  • Attend job fairs: Job fairs are a great way to meet with potential employers and learn about different job opportunities. There are a number of job fairs held in London throughout the year.
  • Tailor your CV and cover letter: Your CV and cover letter should be tailored to the specific jobs you are applying for. Make sure to highlight your skills and experience that are relevant to the role.
  • Practise your interview skills: Once you start getting interviews, it’s important to practise your interview skills. This will help you feel more confident and prepared when you’re in front of the interviewer.

Making Friends in London

Moving to London as an Australian expat can be an exciting adventure, but it can also be a bit challenging to make friends in a new city. However, with some effort and the right approach, you can build a social circle and connect with fellow Australians in London. 

Consider joining online forums and social media groups specifically designed for Australian expats in London. These platforms provide a great opportunity to ask questions, seek advice, and connect with like-minded individuals who are also new to the city. Participating in discussions and engaging with the community can help you make new friends and find support.

Attending social events and meetups is another effective way to meet people in London. Look for Australian-themed events, expat meetups, or international gatherings that align with your interests. Websites such as Meetup and Eventbrite list a wide range of activities and social gatherings in London, allowing you to connect with people who share similar hobbies and passions.

Volunteering is not only a great way to give back to the community but also provides an opportunity to meet new people. Look for volunteering opportunities in local charities, community organisations, or even Australian-focused groups. Websites like Do-It and VolunteerMatch can help you find volunteer opportunities that suit your interests and schedule.

To further connect with the Australian expat community, be sure to attend Australian events and expat gatherings in London. Keep an eye out for celebrations of Australian holidays like Australia Day or events organised by Australian expat associations. These events often attract Australians living in the city and provide a platform for you to meet people who share your background and experiences.

Consider joining sports clubs or hobby groups that align with your interests. Engaging in activities you enjoy not only allows you to pursue your passions but also presents an opportunity to meet like-minded individuals. Look for Australian sports clubs or groups in London, such as cricket or rugby teams. Websites like AussieRulesUK and Sports in England can help you find relevant sports clubs and organisations.

Lastly, exploring expat-friendly neighbourhoods can be beneficial in connecting with fellow Australians. Some areas in London, like Kensington, Notting Hill, or Clapham, have a higher concentration of Australian expats. By spending time in these neighbourhoods, you may have more chances to encounter and interact with fellow Australians.

Here are a few additional resources that can assist you in your quest to make friends in London as an Australian expat:

  • Australians in London Facebook Group: This group provides a platform for Australian expats to connect, share information, and organise social events.
  • Aussies in London Meetup Group: Joining this meetup group allows you to attend social gatherings and meet fellow Australians living in London.
  • Time Out London: Time Out is a comprehensive guide to events, activities, and social happenings in London. It can be a valuable resource for finding interesting events to attend and meet new people.

Remember, building friendships takes time and effort, so don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone, be open to new experiences, and initiate conversations. 

Exploring London

London is a city with something for everyone, so there are endless possibilities when it comes to exploring the city. Here are a few ideas for Australian expats:

  • Visit historical landmarks: London is home to some of the most iconic historical landmarks in the world, such as Buckingham Palace, the Tower of London, and the Houses of Parliament. These landmarks are popular with tourists and expats alike, and they offer a fascinating glimpse into London’s rich history.
  • Explore museums: London is also home to some of the world’s best museums, such as the British Museum, the National Gallery, and the Natural History Museum. These museums offer a wide range of exhibits, from ancient artefacts to modern art, and they’re a great way to learn about London’s culture and history.
  • Attend sporting events: London is a major sporting city, and there are always plenty of sporting events to choose from. Whether you’re interested in football (soccer), rugby, cricket, or tennis, you’re sure to find a game to watch.
  • Enjoy the nightlife: London has a vibrant nightlife scene, and there are bars and clubs to suit all tastes. Whether you’re looking for a quiet pint or a wild night out, you’re sure to find something to your liking.
  • Go shopping: London is a shopper’s paradise, and there are shops to suit all budgets. From high-end boutiques to vintage markets, you’re sure to find something to your liking.
  • Explore the parks: London is home to some of the most beautiful parks in the world, such as Hyde Park, Regent’s Park, and Battersea Park. These parks are great places to relax, go for a walk, or have a picnic.

Wrapping Up

As an Australian expat planning to live in London, you can expect to encounter a dynamic and diverse city with abundant work opportunities and a vibrant social scene. You will need to budget carefully due to the high cost of living, but the city’s excellent public transport system and proximity to travel opportunities will allow for exploration and adventure. 

The mild yet unpredictable weather and access to healthcare services through the NHS will be a part of your experience. While moments of homesickness may arise, staying connected with loved ones and engaging with the expat community will help create a fulfilling expat life in London.

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Frequently asked questions

There are many reasons why Australians move to London. Some of the most common reasons include:

  • Job opportunities: London is a major financial and business hub, so there are plenty of job opportunities for Australians with skills in a variety of fields.
  • Culture: London is a vibrant and cosmopolitan city with a rich history and culture. Australians who enjoy exploring new cultures and meeting new people often find London to be a great place to live.
  • Quality of life: London has a high standard of living, with good healthcare, education, and public transportation.
  • Ease of transition: Australia and the UK are both English-speaking countries, so it’s relatively easy for Australians to transition to life in London.

Yes, you can live in London as an Australian. 

You will need to apply for a visa, but there are a number of different visas available to Australian citizens. The type of visa you need will depend on your circumstances, such as your reasons for moving to London and your length of stay.

Here are some specific areas of London where you’ll find a lot of Australians:

  • Kensington and Chelsea: This affluent borough is home to a number of Australian expats, many of whom work in the financial sector.
  • Hackney: This trendy borough is home to a number of creative businesses and a vibrant nightlife scene.
  • Islington: This leafy borough is home to a number of families and young professionals.
  • Camden: This eclectic borough is home to a number of bars, clubs, and markets.
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