How to avoid overseas student visa fees in Australia

Did you know Australia has the third highest number of international students in the world behind only the United Kingdom and the United States despite having a population of only 23 million? This isn’t surprising when you consider Australia has seven of the top 100 universities in the world! In fact, with over 22,000 courses across 1,100 institutions, Australia sits above the likes of Germany, the Netherlands and Japan, ranking eighth in the Universitas 2012 U21 Ranking of National Higher Education Systems.

These are strong academic credentials, but our institutions are just as highly rated as the cities that house them around the country. Australia has five of the 30 best cities in the world for students based on student mix, affordability, quality of life, and employer activity – all important elements for students when choosing the best study destination.

Study in Australia, the official Australian government website about studying in Australia gives you an indication of the range of course costs for different types of qualifications.

·         School - $7,800 to $30,000

·         English language studies - Around $300 per week depending on course length

·         Vocational Education and Training (Certificates I to IV, Diploma and Advanced                  Diploma) - $4,000 to $22,000

·         Undergraduate Bachelor Degree - $15,000 to $33,000*

·         Postgraduate Masters Degree - $20,000 to $37,000*

·         Doctoral Degree - $14,000 to $37,000*

* Note: This does not include high value courses such as veterinary and medical schools. Please visit institution websites directly to see costs for these courses.

Overseas students granted Australian student visas have an ability to work part time in Australia (usually up to 20 hours per week), but typically this only provides income to defray living expenses.

Parents or other sponsors of children and young adults who are planning to study in Australia in the future may care to consider their ability to obtain Australian permanent residence for themselves and their children to avoid paying expensive foreign student fees.

For example, high wealth individuals who have an ability to invest AUD 5 million per year over a four-year period in Australia, and reside in Australia for at least 160 days in that period, are eligible to apply for Australian permanent residence, and include their family members in that application. Similarly, persons with a successful business background or good employment qualifications may want to consider their ability to obtain permanent residence for themselves and family members who may be wishing to study in Australia in the future.

Malaysian or Singaporean nationals who wish to learn more are invited to attend a free immigration seminar to be given by experienced immigration lawyer and registered migration agent Alisdair Putt in Kuala Lumpur on Saturday 11 November.  Or you may wish to arrange a personal appointment in KL or Singapore in the period 11 to 14 November inclusive (fees apply for personal consultations).  Please email Alisdair on aputt@puttlegal.com.au for further details.

The Australian High Commission website for Malaysia has useful information here about student visas - http://malaysia.highcommission.gov.au/klpr/study.html; the similar website for Singaporeans is at http://singapore.embassy.gov.au/sing/study.html

Another excellent Australian government website that also contains details of overseas scholarships available and other aspects of living in Australia can be found at - http://www.australia.gov.au/information-and-services/education-and-training/international-students