5 Most Common Visas to live in Australia

Let me guess, you are here because you are exploring options for moving abroad. Australia is one of the most popular places for immigrants who are looking for a safe and happy life in Oceania. There are plenty of benefits of living in Australia such as a safe environment, government sponsored healthcare, high quality education, beautiful scenic beaches and the many opportunities whether you are a professional or an entrepreneur. However, most immigrants find it hard to figure out how to move to Australia and what documents they will need. Luckily, the Australian government has made it incredibly simple for people from all over the world to decide what works best for them. Here are the 5 most common ways to live in Australia.

1. Work Visa

The Work Visa is one of the most chosen pathways that people use to enter Australia. This type of visa usually suits people who have specific occupations which are in high demand in Australia and it brings skilled resources to the country that improve the Australian economy. There are a number of work visa subclasses that give skilled people from all around the world, the option to move to Australia and work here.
There are a number of work visas that allow foreign citizens to come to Australia for work. Here's a list of all the current work visas subclasses

A key eligibility criteria for most of these visas is that your occupation should be in high demand in Australia. The Australian government has created a combined skill occupation list for this purpose.

The combined list specifies:

  • the Australian and New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations (ANZSCO) code for each occupation. The ANZSCO provides information on the skill level of jobs, qualifications and/or experience needed to work in occupations
  • caveats which exclude the use of the occupation in certain circumstances (applies to the subclass 186 and Temporary Skill Shortage visa only)
  • whether the occupation is included on the Medium and Long-term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL), the Short-term Skilled Occupation List (STSOL), the Regional Occupation List (ROL) or the Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (RSMS) ROL List.
  • the assessing authority for skills assessments

If you belong to any of the occupations on these lists then you have a good chance of qualifying for a work visa.

2. Student Visa

The Student Visa is best for people who want to receive education in Australia. Not only does it help the student receive a qualification in a prestigious Australian university but it also helps the country’s demographics as well. Education is the third biggest export of Australia. In fact, most recent data shows that Australia generated $32.4 billion thanks to nearly 400,000 students from over 130 countries.

Although in the past, the biggest advantage of the Student Visa was that gave a pathway to permanent residency, things have changed recently. There are 3 main types of student visas:

Under the new migration regulations, in order to be granted a student visa, applicants must:

If you have any doubts about it, feel free to book a consultation with one of our team members.

3. Family/Partner Visa

If you have a family member or partner that is an Australian citizen or permanent resident, then you can come here on a family visa. There are a number of temporary and permanent family visa options to choose from.

An interesting thing to note about partner visas is that you do not need to be married in order to qualify for this visa. Even de-facto partners (those in a genuine relationship for 2 or more years) also qualify for this visa. Australia is also a very liberal country and hence same-sex couples too can apply for these visas.

It is, however, very important to make sure that the relationship is real and not fraud, as that could lead to serious penalties. The authorities are very strict about this because of several marriage visa scams that have been caught in the past and have a variety of ways to check so make sure that everything about your relationship. If you are not in a relationship and don’t have a family member in Australia, you can easily try one of the other Visas such as the Visitor Visa, Student Visa or Work Visa.

4. Business / Investor Visa

This Visa option is perfect for entrepreneurs and investors that are looking to grow and expand their businesses in Australia. People who are looking for business opportunities have plenty to choose from in Australia. Many businessmen have used their capitals to either start their own businesses or expand their existing ones in Australia.

Australia is one of the most the most startup friendly countries in the world. There is a rich ecosystem of co-working spaces, meetups, investor networks and accelerator programs to choose from, especially in the big Australian cities such as Melbourne, Sidney, Brisbane and Perth. In fact, yours truly himself has worked out of the oldest co-working space in Australia, Fishburners, created the largest EdTech meetup in Australia and has been a part of the Muru-d accelerator program. So if you have a great startup idea and a burning desire to get it off the ground, then think about applying for one of the business visas to launch your business in Australia.

5. Tourist Visa

The Tourist Visa is a great way to explore the country and find out if it will be a part of your future. It is available for everyone who wants to spend up to 12 months in Australia. There are many different types of Tourist Visas such as:

The Visitor Visa (Subclass 600) is available for people of all age groups. However, the only disadvantage of this visa is that you cannot work in Australia during your stay, however, you do have the right to study for up to 3 months on this visa. On the other hand, the Work and Holiday Visa, is very interesting because it allows people from certain countries to come to Australia and work up to 6 months for one employer and you can use that opportunity to find an employer to sponsor you on a Work Visa.


Besides these 5 ways to live in Australia, there are some other options as well. If you are in the process of exploring life in the Land Down Under, find out how we can help.

Atul Pandey

Atul has spent half his life migrating from one country to another. He moved from India to the US on a student visa to pursue his Master of Science from Penn State University. After spending a decade in the US, Atul migrated to Australia as a Permanent Resident. He is an entrepreneur and is the founder of Wisekangaroo.com. Atul is a Registered Migration Agent (MARN:2016128). Reach him via email: atul@wisekangaroo.com