Migrant Stories Victoria

Gday DUCers!

Here you can check out our migrant stories that cover all parts of the move, interviews from our DUC team and Relocation Agents, hear from employers, relocation partners and more!!

If you are a migrant going through the process or are already living in OZ, an employer, service provider or a tour company and want to be interviewed, please click the button below and complete the form.  Thanks! 

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Q and A with Sean Pasifull

Name and members in your family? Katherine, Finn (Son), Elsie (Daughter)

When did you move over? 11/01/2023

Where did you come from? UK 

Where do you live now? Melbourne, Victoria 

How would you describe Australia now you live here? Australia is absolutely amazing, its everything we hoped for. Work/family life is miles ahead of the UK. I’m spending far more time with my family. My kids are out most nights to parks and beaches and seem so much happier. Things to do are endless. My only gripe is we didn’t do it sooner.

Biggest question – why did you choose Australia? We have travelled to Australia a few times and just knew it was somewhere we wanted to bring our kids up.

Describe your process and visa route getting here. Our process was 10 years in the making, talking about it on and off for years. We then attended a Down Under Centre expo around 2017 which only made us want to go more.

We had a final recce in January 2020 and decided that Australia was for us. On landing in the UK covid hit. This put a spanner in the works but only convinced us even more that we had to do it.

We contacted The DUC again beginning of 2022 to start the process. They were amazing at explaining the entire process, and best route to go down. We ended up applying for a 190 PR visa under my wife who is a Nurse, as that worked out better than me applying as a Plumber.

My wife sat the skills assessment, although it seemed a lot and was daunting, she was helped through every stage.

The entire process did seem tedious, a lot of waiting not really knowing what’s going on but when the call finally comes that your visas been granted. Is such a relief unbelievably excited and happy.

What was the journey over like? Our journey was emotional with all the goodbyes, but everyone understood why we wanted to do it and where happy.

We got a flight to Dubai around 9 hrs and decided to have a little week holiday, took kids to Legoland, explored the sights.

Then onto Melbourne, this was around 14hrs, so we were really struggling on keeping our 2-year-old occupied as she doesn’t sit still, but our 4-year-old was fine just happily watched films and played on his tablet.

Only downside to whole trip was the kid in front vomited over the seat onto all of us and we had nowhere else to move to lol.

What was your first month or 2 like? First month was 100 miles an hour, we had a rental waiting for us, fully furnished, a new car and even a fridge full of food all thanks to our amazing relocation agent Jess.

Got kids in school and nursery and both my wife and I started our new jobs.

Anything that went well/did not go so well? For us everything went amazingly well. We were literally on top of everything to make settling in as smoothly as possible.

It 100% wouldn’t have been so smooth if we never used the DUC Relocation service.

Anything you would do different? We should of came here 10 years ago lol

What is your life like now compared to your old life? Chalk and cheese our lives are better in every way for coming here. Our life is full of fun, family time beaches, heat, and festivals.

What do you do in your free time? We take kids out most nights whether its BBQs at the parks or takeaways on the beach. Or even just in the garden for a swim in our pool.

Favourite food here? Don’t really have a favourite food here, we still eat what we did in Scotland…mince and tatties lol!

If you have kids, how are they doing? 2-year-old and 5-year-old absolutely loving life, both settled into school and nursery, made heaps of wee friends. Just seem so much happier.

Anything you miss about your old life? Only thing we miss is family and friends …

Any advice you would have given to yourself while going through the relocation process? To not stress so much and worry if it was the right decision, because it 100% is.

The McKean Family

Hey DUCcers!
My name is Jess, me and my family, husband Alex, Daughter Poppy (10), Son Vinnie (6) and Twins Freddie and Felix (4) have recently moved to Chelsea Heights, Vic.
My husband is a Chef/Food Technologist, and I am currently the kids entertainer!
Within 2 weeks of having the visa grant we were on that plane and in our rental… we had a lot of help over here and everything was stressfully last minute- I think at one point I was on facetime at 3am UK time being shown stuff in IKEA- but we did it. I seriously underestimated jet lag but thankfully within 3 days we were at some normal pattern and on that 3rd day, I had the kids enrolled in school! I needed them to have some normality and routine and most importantly friends! As much as I have struggled coming from winter to winter, its actually been a bit of blessing because we can focus on settling and building a home and come the summer we can enjoy it, saying that with 4 kids, staying in the house in not much of an option either and its not like its snowing but its very much early spring feeling- currently its pretty much spot the brit as we are walking around in tshirts and the aussies are dressed like they have stepped out on to The Alps

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So far my first impression of this area is that it is all about the kids, having 4 kids in the UK was not easy (and I never actually planned 3, I got one free :P) from the frowns of members of the public to no activities or areas to go to, moving to Australia was for them to give them the life we could only dream about, with 3 adventurous boys and a pre teen I needed something else… Chelsea Heights has offered that! The Parks are out of this world, if its not the one on the end of every road it’s the massive play areas in each suburb (these have been videoed and uploaded for you to see) The restaurants are orientated around the children, there is one here which I will upload for you that has a massive play centre in it! Neighbours offer to babysit, My husband and I went out on a date night for the first time in 5 years! Then there is the vast selection of beaches!! With clubs advertised on every post I know my children will never be bored!
It hasn’t all been plain sailing either, and I hope this relocation page and the group itself supports you in this massive upheaval. When I was in the UK and getting ready to leave my only thoughts were getting to Australia and now I am here and I can honestly put my hand on my heart and say I don’t miss it, I just miss the people, only able to talk to them at certain times of the day and catching up on facebook when you can. Meeting new friends is very mixed emotions too because you get excited to be making friends and then there is the thought of the friends from home- This will pass.
We also came out with nothing, just the clothes in our suitcase, so setting up a home from scratch has probably been the most exhausting and stressful thing ever!! You don’t realise what you need till you don’t have it. We also don’t have a car currently as we are waiting on Id and changing drivers licence, which I will do a step by step guide for for you so going shopping and relying on ubers right now has not helped but I hope my issues will stop you from having them or if your up the road from me I can help in anyway possible.

I am so excited that I can share my adventure with you from the start and if there is anything you wish to know please don’t hesitate to contact me!
The Mckeans

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Carrianne and Adam

Today marks one week since we landed in VIC! It’s gone so fast (9/10/22).

We luckily managed to secure a rental before we got here, I wrote a bio letter about us and a letter from the dog too, I also offered more rent although they didn’t want it and sent them things like job references and rental reference direct so they can get an idea about us as people.

We have managed with the help of friends and family here to kit a house out so anything we don’t have we can now get over time, Kmart has been our saviour for most things for the time being lol

Hubby yesterday secured a full time job in art and metal fabrication and they make some weird and wonderful things so he should enjoy it and he also purchased his first car too, the used car market is brutal, there are so many crappy cars around without rego or roadworthy, also we didn’t know but you need a client ID number from Vic roads to buy a car so we have to now get this before we pick it up Wednesday.

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All bills are sorted, internet modem is on the way, we have Medicare forms ready to send, tax file number forms are done and printed ready for the post office tomorrow and we now have the Vic roads form to convert Adams UK driving licence over.He also has his white card course booked Tuesday, online due to covid at the moment.

Seven seas move cube is on the way and a send my bag suitcase arrives tomorrow as we were way over on luggage allowance for flying!

My pooch went a couple of days before us and is coming home tomorrow!! Pets Abroad have been amazing always kept me updated and so have PEQ so really put my mind at ease. My boy is super anxious and apparently he hasn’t lost any weight or anything so must be eating ok bless him.

Also for those worrying about money we were those people that didn’t really have savings and paid as we went along in this process, we brought with us about $15000 aud to start from scratch and we have around $5000 aud left but with hubby working it should be manageable, whatever the budget if you want it bad enough you can make it work.

We might have only been here a week and it’s a huge change from our life in Burton in the UK but I feel like we are fitting in nicely, it is so quiet where we are and the view of the You Yang’s mountains is beautiful and we see literally hundreds of kangaroos a day!! We even get to wake up to a view of fields and horses now, I pinch myself every morning. We just need to fit some tourist days in now as spent the last week doing the boring stuff.

Thank you DUC we wouldn’t be here without you!!

8 weeks in…

8 weeks in, and what’s it like now we’ve been through this intense period of time?

It’s not just 8 weeks though, it’s more like a year to get to this point!
All I can say is that individuals must have layers of resilience that build over time, and mine is thick with layers.
I’ve been through it all. What a mad mix of emotions and heaven and hell!
8 weeks since landing to follow our dream and, well I just know Aussie life is for us. I feel at home here. I love it.
It’s simpler. It’s easier. It’s friendlier. Yes, in some respects you feel like you have stepped back in time, but I always hated how full on the U.K. was.
The kids get to be kids. In school and out. They climb trees at school.  They pet chickens.  They learn swimming in the sea. They don’t get bombarded with homework.
The food isn’t so expensive if you buy in season. It’s a different way of shopping here. Cucumbers can be 90c one day, $2 the next.
The outdoor lifestyle!  Cook most things on the bbq. Spend an hour at the beach at the drop of a hat. Pack a picnic or take some food to cook on the free public bbqs.
Every day I wake up excited for life. So many things to do.
Every weekend is a holiday and an adventure.
I won’t let life become mundane. I’ve made a decision that every weekend we will do something new.
If you come here with your eyes wide open and just allow yourself to experience things and work through your doubts, then another layer will build.

That layer is happiness.



This will be our fourth Christmas in Australia, and although still learning, feel more educated about what to expect this year.

A lot of people wind down over this time, and most take multiple weeks holidays.
Therefore, Christmas isn’t such a big deal here. It just kind of creeps up on you. There isn’t the build up like in the U.K.
In fact, if it wasn’t for the odd bit of tinsel in shops, the few hanging lights here and there, or the small section in the supermarket dedicated to roses, quality street etc and decorations you wouldn’t even notice it when food shopping!

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Christmas also comes around our longest day here. Meaning the lights on don’t have the same effect when the sun is blaring.
Rather than an opportunity to spend two weeks eating and watching tv, it’s an opportunity to have fun, relax, play on the beach and take holiday.
It’s quite a common thing for people to go on holiday from Boxing Day till New Years.
Christmas dinner can be whatever you want, wherever you want it. Some people do the whole U.K. thing at home, some bbq on the beach, others do a bit of both.
We eat lighter over Xmas here compared to the U.K.  I don’t feel the need to stuff the fridge full of heavy food. Instead we take it day by day as we get out a lot.
Our first Christmas, we tried being too U.K. and that didn’t work well.
Last year and the year before, we packed too much in. We tried having Xmas lunch at home, then rushed to the beach for the afternoon and eve.
This year will be a little more slow. We will bbq at lunch, but lots of seafood, and have a picky buffet type thing with pavlova of course.   Athough, quite tempted to pick up a KFC (yes it’s a think at Christmas here)…
Then, later we will probably head to a quiet beach and watch the sunset and have a swim.
The fact is, part of settling is finding your own rhythm.  The settling takes time, but year by year you build on experience.

4th Year

We are now in our fourth year in Australia and I can honestly say it took me about 3 years to ‘settle’.
The price is just in dollars now.
The weather is just in Australia now.
My mind has stopped comparing, thinking. That door back to to the U.K. is firmly closed in my mind.
I’m too ‘Australian’ now. I want the wide open spaces, the easy lifestyle, the friendliness I have found here.
No longer need to prove the reason for being here. No longer feel guilty about any of it.
Both pretty much always working from home, kids settled and growing the work life balance we craved is here. The stress of juggling everything feels non existent. Lunch time walks and time to talk without kids around is amazing.
Yeah, feel we have made it!

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