What are the key differences between Australia and the UK?
I get asked this question quite often as you can imagine. The list of differences is so great it is hard to know where to begin, from the wildlife to the lack of a Victorian style class system in Australia, which is so widely accepted in the UK, designed to holds people back unless they went to the right school or married a royal! Australia, on the other hand, is very different and people's expectations are a little higher, they are far more laid back about things and would never accept a label such as working or middle class. The UK economy in recent years seems to thrive on peoples stress, debt and retail sales of the latest fashions, while Australians prefer a work life balance, they love the beach and accept each other regardless of where their shorts are made or their family name.
Let's me take a moment to look at some of the stands out differences I have noticed and you will see a clear pattern forming in how Australia offers a better way of life, in my humble opinion and based on the data I discovered from independent sources:
Make More Money & Living Longer
While the UK is proud of its hard, hard work, work, work culture at the expense of all else, including family life and health, the average worker is still not earning as much as their equivalent in Australia. In fact, the gap currently stands at 15.26%. This means more bang for Buck for ever hour worked. So if you want a pay rise without the stress of more hours Australia may have the answer.
This is a staggering amount when you consider Australian work fewer hours per annum than people in the UK. While the difference in hours worked is not massive, it does add up over a person's lifetime. This may account for the fact Australian also live longer or that could be due to the amount Australia spends on their health care per person. An Australian will have 68.33% more spent on their health per year in medical treatments than those in the UK, that is a large amount of extra funding when you will need it the most. Now, that has to make for a healthier population! Currently an Australian would expect to live 1.65 years.
These figures are from the CIA world fact book who take the UK and Australian figures per capita and convert them into US dollar amounts to even out any exchange rate differences.
Australian Weather is the same as in the UK
As most Brits are obsessed with the weather and let's face it why not if you are constantly looking to the sky praying for some blue sky, even in the summer months. I thought it would be a good idea to take a look at today's weather forecast and compare.
The idea Australia has the same weather as the UK sounds like a typo or simply amazing, doesn't it? Either Australia has entered an ice age or the UK is really benefiting from global warming. The statement may be a little miss leading until I mention right now is summer time in the UK and so deep winter in Australia but both have the same weather forecast as I type and yes, they really do put in an artificial ice rink on Bondi beach in July, even though the temperature is the on par with British summertime - I thought I would mention it just in case you thought your eyes were playing tricks on you when you looked at the photo from Sydney below.
This is something many Brits forget when thinking about life in Australia. The daylight hours in the UK fluctuates a great deal between winter and summer while in Australia there is only 30 mins difference between the time the sun rises and sets throughout the year. This is a real issue in the UK for fitness, outdoor activities and consistency in a persons ability to maintain a routine. In the UK even walking your dog or going for a run without street lights in the winter after work is impossible as it will be dark on your return from work in most cases, not forgetting to mention it is often freezing cold and wet. This leads to people having to adapt their health programmes continually as the seasons change or remain in doors which can not be good for you long term. Australia does not have long summer evenings which is a drawback as the sunset is always between 5.30 pm and 6 pm but if you want to establish a routine which requires daylight and dry weather you can be sure Australia will deliver and you will not need to keep checking the sky or carry a brolly everywhere you go, allowing you to plan your life and how you want to live.
To ensure people get the most out of their evenings and have a couple of hours downtime to hit the beach, jump in the pool or play sports outdoors they plan their day to start work at 7 am and finish at 3 pm. This early to bed and early to rise culture leads to a healthier way of life and maximises family time.
Let's Talk about Food In Australia
Does Australia have its own cuisine?
The Aboriginal peoples of Australia, Australia’s first inhabitants, have for thousands and thousands of years hunted and gathered their food in the Australian bush. This food is known as ‘Bush tucker’ and is still eaten today by Aboriginal peoples in remote areas of Australia. Bush tucker includes kangaroo, emu, crocodile, witchetty grubs, Quandong, bush tomato, yams and macadamia nuts. Many of these native foods have been incorporated into contemporary cuisines and you will occasionally find these ingredients on the menu of restaurants and cafés in Australian cities.
Iconic Australian foods
You are likely to come across these iconic Australian foods when you move to Australia:
- Vegemite – sadly not an Australian owned company anymore, this thick dark brown yeast spread is a great source of vitamin B and is adored by many Australians. Australian children have it ‘for breakfast, lunch and tea’ according to the ‘Happy Little Vegemites’ jingle of 1954.
- Chiko roll – these spring roll like deep fried snacks can be found in convenience stores and fish & chip shops across Australia
- Tim Tams – made by Arnotts the Tim Tam is probably Australia’s favourite chocolate biscuit, it’s impossible to have just one!
- Lamingtons - invented in Australia they are essentially squares of sponge which have been dipped in chocolate and coconut.
- ANZAC biscuits - crunchy cookies made of rolled oats, golden syrup and desiccated coconut named after the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps.
- Pavlova - An Aussie BBQ for some is not complete without a Pavlova for dessert. Although the origins of the Pavlova are unclear Australians like to claim it as their own. It was created for the ballerina Anna Pavlova who toured Australia in the 1920s.
- Weetbix – you can’t really get more Australian than these wheat biscuits eaten for breakfast which is endorsed by the Australian Cricket Team (Cricket being Australia’s national sport)
- Meat pies & sausage rolls – an Aussie staple sold at football matches and bakeries across the nation
- Damper – you may hear of this traditional bread but it is rarely eaten by most Aussies
- Fish & Chips – a popular food to eat on the beach
- Hamburger with ‘the lot’ – despite the invasion of American Hamburger food chains you can still get a traditional Aussie hamburger with the lot – it’s a massive mouthful of meat, tomato, bacon, pineapple, beetroot, egg and lettuce
- Shrimp on the barbie – referred to in a famous television ad by the Australian Tourism Commission in the mid-80s to appeal to the American market, however, the word ‘shrimp’ is not commonly used in Australia. Instead, Aussies like to cook ‘prawns’ on the BBQ or ‘Surf & Turf’ which is a fish and meat combination dish
- The sausage or ‘snag’ – is a nod to our British heritage and a constant BBQ favourite. Snags are often put into a piece of bread with onions and tomato sauce. The ‘sausage sizzle’ stall is a typical fixture at markets, hardware stores, sporting events, or any other public events on weekends.
- Barramundi – is a popular Australian fish variety. Australia’s clean waters produce an abundance of seafood. Seafood restaurants are common and popular as the vast majority of Australia’s population lives near the coast.
Australian Eating Habits
Australians tend to eat three meals a day:
- Breakfast – eaten in the morning is either light and cold (cereal, toast, coffee) or heavy and hot (bacon, eggs, sausages, fried tomato)
- Lunch – eaten around 12 – 2 pm is usually a light meal such as a sandwich, or salad. However, with the vast array of choices available now Australians are just as likely to have curry, noodles, sushi or pizza for lunch
- Dinner – the main meal of the day is eaten in the evening
Australians love to eat outdoors. A BBQ or picnic is a typical ‘Aussie’ way to enjoy a weekend meal. Most homes have a BBQ and BBQs are readily available in parks and beaches.
While meat is a core part of the Australian diet due to Australia’s strong agricultural economy, more and more vegetarian eating habits are becoming common in Australia. You will almost always find a vegetarian option on any restaurant or café menu in Australia.
Australia Compared to the UK
Name: When Moving to Australia from the UK
Description: Australia is a fantastic place to invest, live and work. To move from the UK to Australia is like going back to the 1970's in terms of family values and sense of community. Outdoor living at its very best, We highly recommend Australia as an emigration destination.