So, you’ve decided to take the leap and swap the Southern Hemisphere for the bustling streets of London?

Congratulations on embarking on this exciting journey! You may have heard about how expensive the cost of living can be in London and if the figure at the bottom of your bank statement does not fill you with confidence, you may be wondering… How much money do I actually need to make it to the UK and get settled in? 

Everyone has their own preferences as to how much money they personally need to live and set up in London. As a rule of thumb, we recommend having around $10,000 when moving to London – that’s Aussie/New Zealand dollars, not British pounds. If you can save more than $10,000 even better! So unless you’re partying like Leo after winning an oscar, you won’t hit the end of your $10k before then. 

You will also need to consider when you will be starting work! If you are keen to hit the ground running and working with anzuk as a teacher or Teaching Assistant, you will start getting paid shortly after arriving, as its weekly pay through anzuk. If you are doing some travel beforehand or wanting to take some time off before you get back into working, that is also something else you will need to factor in.  

Let’s break down the essentials when it comes to moving to London!* 

 * per month

Accommodation: 

The most expensive up-front cost you’ll have to pay for when you arrive, is accommodation. We recommend booking some temporary accommodation for a few weeks when you first touchdown (AirBnB, Hotel, Hostel, Sublet etc) whilst you start your search for a more permanent long-term rental. Again, it will depend on where you are wanting that short term accommodation and what type of accom but a rough figure would be around $1000-$2000AUD for 2-4 weeks.  

When it comes to a long-term rental, generally you will have to pay a bond (4-6 weeks of rent) and the first month of rent upfront. If you’re wanting to live in a popular area of London such as Clapham, Islington or Hackney, where a room may cost around £800 per month for the room, you’ll be paying an upfront cost of £1600 – £1900 to secure the lease – that’s around $3500AUD straight away. 

Total for accom: $5000AUD (approx) 

 

Food & Drink:
 

We’d budget for around $40AUD (£20) a day for food and drink. This covers groceries, some eating out and going for a drink every other night when you first arrive. You can keep costs down by buying some breakfast supplies, cooking your own dinners and packing your own lunches. The UK are notorious for a meal-deal which typically cost around £4 and include a main (sandwich, salad or pasta salad), a snack (crisps or chocolate) and a drink – which is an absolute steal! 

A coffee will also set you back around £3-£7 depending on what your order is. So, if you are a coffee lover, ensure this is built into your budget.

Total: $1200AUD 

Be sure to top this amount up, if you are planning on going out for meals to catch up with friends or have a few pub nights in your first month!

Transport:
Getting to work and around London can be expensive and add up quickly! So, if you don’t like the idea of walking everywhere make sure you factor about £10 ($19AUD a day) on public transport. You can buy weekly or monthly passes for your Oyster card which can make the daily travel cheaper too.
Zones 1-3 7-day pass: £47.90 ($91AUD)
Zones 1-3 Monthly pass: £184 ($350AUD) 

 

OTHER: 

  • Essentials for setting up your new flat such as linen, towels, household items – around $400AUD  
  • Play tourist – Visiting all the cheesy landmarks when you first arrive – approx $200AUD 
  • Going out – this could include going to a pub, a club, a nice restaurant, going to a movie etc – approx $150-$200AUD a week 
  • SIM card: Order your sim before you head off through Giff Gaff and get up to £15 bonus credit which will start you off well.  

Total: $1200AUD for the month 

GRAND TOTAL FOR 4 WEEKS: $7800AUD 

There you go! $7800 will last you around 4 weeks without scrimping too hard on budgets. Anything more than $8000 just gives you a longer buffer and a bigger safety net. However, for those struggling to save, then you can feel confident travelling to England with around $8000 in your bank account. This does not account for flights, other travel or visas so do keep that in mind too. 

 

If you are interested in making the move to the UK, click here for more information and to get in touch! 

Note: This blog was last updated with the latest prices in 2023, make sure to do your own research on prices as we cannot guarantee these figures are correct.