Living in Sydney


The University of Sydney will book temporary accommodation for all Australia Awards students. To use this service you must make a booking through the Australia Awards Post in your home country. If you are making your own arrangements and do not require temporary accommodation please ensure that you advise the University at least five days before arrival.

Most Australia Awards students find permanent accommodation within their first two weeks of arrival. Australia Awards students have many advantages in their search for accommodation in Sydney.

You will arrive two weeks before your Orientation, allowing you plenty of time to find accommodation. Your pre-departure pack will be full of information on preparing to find accommodation in Sydney. New students are able to join the Australia Awards Unit’s online Facebook group prior to departure and discuss accommodation opportunities with current students.

Australia Awards students are eligible for transport concession. There are less expensive and less crowded suburbs 10 to 20 minutes away from the University on public transport. Many AusAID students and their families live in these suburbs.

There is an Accommodation Service at the University, a dedicated International Student Housing Officer is employed during peak times (January to mid- March and mid June to August) to assist newly arrived international students seeking accommodation.


The University offers all Australia Awards students a personal airport reception service. To use this service you must make a booking through the Australia Awards Post in your home country. If you are making your own arrangements and do not require personal airport reception service please ensure that you confirm this with the Post at least one week prior to arrival in Sydney.

Sydney has an excellent public transport network of buses, trains, ferries and light rail. The University of Sydney is close to train stations and bus stops. All Australia Awards students receive a half-price discount on public transport. Even further discounts can be gained by purchasing weekly or multi-journey travel passes.


Sydney is one of the most multicultural cities in the world. As a result, a wide range of food and produce from all over the world is available in shops, markets and restaurants.

There are many stores, butchers and restaurants in the Sydney area which cater for those students requiring halal, kosher and vegetarian food and products. The University of Sydney Union also ensures that a wide range of halal and vegetarian food is available on campus.

The University is within walking distance of Chinatown, which has many Asian grocery stores and restaurants. Paddy’s Market, which is also located in Chinatown, sells fresh food and produce including a wide variety of Asian fruits and vegetables. In addition, the vibrant and eclectic districts of Newtown and Glebe are only a few minutes walk from the University. Here students will find over one hundred restaurants catering to a variety of cultures including Vietnamese, Thai, Indian, Greek, Indonesian, Korean, Japanese, Lebanese, Malaysian, Chinese, African and Italian. Given the close proximity to the University, many restaurants in this area cater to students on a budget. In suburbs such as Leichhardt, Ashfield, Auburn, Campsie, Hurstville, Marrickville and Cabramatta, you will find many shops selling food from Asia and other parts of the world.


As a capital city, Sydney has a huge range of industries and companies offering a variety of employment opportunities and one of the lowest unemployment rates in Australia. In 2008, 71% of employed students reported that their employment was connected to their studies. Dependants of postgraduate Australia Awards Students are permitted to work full time, and Australia Awards Students are also granted limited work rights by the Department of Immigration and Citizenship.