Planning an Australian Vacation? Ten Things You Need to Know before You Go

Koala bear - Australia

Traveling to any new country can be an eye-opening experience. It’s an opportunity to learn about a new culture and a different way of life. While some of these experiences are more fulfilling to learn when you’re visiting, often it’s important to find things out before you go. Here are ten things you need to know before you visit Australia.

1. They drive on the left – Unlike most countries, the Aussies took a page out of the United Kingdom driving manual and they drive on the left-hand side of the road. If you’ve never driven on the left-hand side of the road it can take some getting used to and the journey can be quite harrowing.

2. Their summer Is Your Winter – Another important thing to know before you go is that if you live in the northern hemisphere, Australia’s seasons will be the opposite of yours. For example, January is winter in the northern hemisphere but it’s the middle of summer in Australia. This matters for several reasons. You want to make sure your weather fits your desired vacation. Additionally, Aussies take their summer vacation in January, making it a challenge to find hotels, campsites, and other accommodations.

3. Tipping It’s not customary to tip in Australia and service charges are not added to your bill. You can tip but it’s not required or expected.

4. They use the metric system If you’re not accustomed to distances and measurements using the metric system you may have a challenge. The good news is that many smart phones offer conversion applications.

5. Not all beaches are fun The beaches on the northern coast of Australia are riddled with stinging jellyfish. Don’t plan your surfing adventure here.

6. Don’t book a stay in a hotel Hotels in Australia are casinos. Look to stay in a motel and you’ll be sure to have a bed.

7. Know the road A driving vacation is an excellent way to see the country. However, be prepared for long distances between towns and gas stations. Don’t get stranded in the outback!

8. Melbourne and Sydney are great However, if you want to experience Australian city life, consider Brisbane or Perth. They’re both beautiful, growing cities with a lot to offer.

9. Wine lovers rejoice When you think of Australia you may think about beer; however, Australians have magnificent wine. If you love wine, consider visiting South Australia and all of the many wine regions.

10. Packing your appliances Hair dryers, electric razors and other devices require electricity. Many hotels provide 110-volt outlets for razors. However, you’ll want to pack a converter and travel adapter for your other appliances. You’ll want to know that Australian power outlets take three flat-prong plugs.

Australia is a beautiful, vast, and friendly country. You’ll have a great time during your stay. However, keeping these ten tips in mind will help you have the best experience possible.

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