How to Get from Eh to Oz: Travel
Whether you consider yourself a travelling expert or not, the majority of your anxiety likely comes from picking up your life, packing it in a suitcase, and moving it across the world.
We’re here to help! In this “How to Get from Eh to Oz” blog, we’re going to discuss tips, tricks, and things to remember about travelling to Australia.
Tip #1: Flight Rewards
Time to investigate flight rewards programs and Air Miles options (especially if you’ll be making the Canada-Australia trip a few times… you might as well snag a deal or some free stuff along the way).
The following flight rewards programs will allow you to collect points you can redeem for discounts on future flights or in exchange for other great perks like cash back, flight upgrades, skipping the line…. We’re pretty sure most of you will be familiar with these babies!
- Air Miles & Aeroplan Miles, also check with your bank to see what travel rewards credit cards are available. Though many have a yearly fee, they often include access to lounges and travel insurance!
- For frequent-flyer programs are generally free to sign up. Word on the street: Air Canada will be launching an individual frequent-flyer program in 2020.
- Canadian Frequent Flyer Programs
- Star Alliance
- Quantas Frequent Flyer
You’ll also want to look into airlines that cross the Pacific and are based in Australia, as each airline will have their own rewards program (or one that’s linked to a group of airlines). And when you’re in Australia, take advantage of their budget airlines Jetstar and Scoot.
If you’re willing to do some searching, you’re bound to find the perfect rewards program for you and your lifestyle!
Tip #2: Pick a Route, Pick a Seat, Pack a Suitcase
Air Canada offers a direct flights to Brisbane, Sydney, and Melbourne from both Vancouver and Toronto, and you no longer have to fly via the U.S. (a big bonus, when you have a year’s worth of luggage and avoid US immigration!). Try to pre-select your seat for the long-haul flight portion and opt for a window or aisle seat. If you are travelling alone to Oz and don’t pre-select a seat, you will often get allocated a middle seat, which is not ideal for a 14- to 15-hour plane trek. Ick.
Pack a set of summer clothes to wear when you disembark, and change in the airport in Oz when you arrive, so that once your luggage comes out and you clear customs, you’re already dressed in shorts and flip-flops, ready to enjoy some lovely Aussie weather. Keep in mind, our seasons are reversed!
For your carry-on luggage, designate a specific compartment of your bag where all important documents will be placed, such as your boarding passes, passport and wallet, Confirmation of Enrolment/Letter of Offer so they are handy and easy to access and won’t get lost in the shuffle of your luggage.
Tip #3: Download Netflix Series/Movies
This is a great opportunity to catch up on all those series your friends are talking about. Download the episodes in advance on Wi-Fi and delete them as you watch them; this will help make room for all those amazing pics you’re going to take.
Tip #4: Stay hydrated
May seem like a no-brainer, but you’d be suprised at how many people “forget” to drink enough water when flying/travelling. If a flight attendant goes by with water, you should probably fill up.
Tip #5: Travel Register
It’s important to think about safety when travelling and while you might be lost in the thrill of it, it’s crucial to take the right precautions. A great idea is your national travel register.
Even if you don’t register and you need emergency consular assistance while in Australia/travelling, the Government of Canada will still help you. You do not need to register for Registration of Canadians Abroad to receive consular services. The Canadian Consular Services Charter outlines the assistance the Government of Canada can provide in an emergency situation.
The Government of Canada strongly recommends that all Canadian citizens travelling or living abroad sign up for Registration of Canadians Abroad. It allows the government to contact you to provide important information in advance of an emergency abroad and to send you information on how to stay safe and secure as you travel.
The decision to travel is your responsibility, so remember to
- find the location and contact information for the Canadian embassy or consulate closest to your travel destination. Always keep this information close at hand while travelling in case you need emergency assistance. P.S. They’re on Facebook, too.
- alert your university and your family in Canada of your address in Australia as soon as possible.
Tip #6: Enjoy yourself!
This is going to be an experience you will remember for a lifetime. Don’t stress about the little details because when you’re sitting on the pier looking at the Sydney Opera House, the cankles will have been well worth it!