Packing for Perth as an international student

Man standing over suitcase filled with clothes holding a phone, passport, and adaptor

On your way to Murdoch? From your passport to clothing, electrical goods and more, here's everything you need to pack as an international student moving to Perth.

Important documents

When you move to Perth to study, it's essential that you bring copies of all your important documents with you. This will help with the transition to life in Perth and studying at Murdoch University.  

Below is a list of documents that Murdoch recommends bringing with you to Australia:

  • Passport, and additional copies just in case
  • Your Confirmation of Offer letter and Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE) from Murdoch
  • Original transcripts of previous studies
  • A printout of your electronic visa
  • A certified copy of your birth certificate
  • A recent bank statement
  • Your driver’s license and other official identification (ID)
  • Prescriptions or a letter from your doctor for any ongoing medical needs
  • Vaccination records relevant to your course (for example, if you're studying nursing)

If you're bringing school-age children with you, make sure you also have their:

  • Birth certificates
  • Passports
  • Immunisation records
  • Education records

Tip: Murdoch recommends you get English translations of any important documents before you leave for Australia.


Murdoch recommends you come with AUD $500 in cash, and AUD $3,000 in a bank account that you can easily access in Australia. This is to ensure you have access to enough funds for initial set up costs, including accommodation, transport, basic handhold items, and food.

While there are money exchange points available at Australian airports and in cities, having Australian currency prior to leaving your home country in your pocket will make your arrival in Perth a lot easier.


The dress code at Murdoch and around Perth is generally casual and informal. We recommend bringing lighter clothing such as t-shirts, singlets, shorts/skirts, dresses, sandals and sneakers for our warmer months, which span September through to April, as well as swimwear and of course, a hat.

For our cooler months (May through to August), Murdoch recommends bringing warm clothes such as light sweaters/pullovers/jumpers, a raincoat, normal coat, boots or sneakers. While Perth is known for its sunny weather and warm Mediterranean climate, it can get cold in the winter months, with temperatures even dropping down to 0°C, meaning packing warmer clothes is extremely important. It's also worth packing semi-formal wear for outings and business functions, especially if you'll be networking as part of your course.

The cost of clothing and footwear in Perth is similar to other western countries and can range significantly depending on where you purchase your items. Jeans and shoes can range from AUD $20 for home brand labels to over AUD $200 for designer labels. There are a range of discount outlets and affordable clothing chain options all in close proximity to Murdoch, including Westfield Booragoon (previously known as Garden City) and Kardinya Park Shopping Centre.

Electrical goods

All electrical goods are available in Australia and are reasonably priced. If you'd prefer to bring your own electrical appliances, be aware of excess baggage charges at the airport for large items. Depending on your home country, it's also highly likely that you'll need an adaptor to use your electrical appliances. Australia uses standard 240 volts and type 1 plugs, which have flat metal pins shaped like a ‘V’.

Murdoch also recommends you consider having a personal laptop to use during your studies, in addition to the free computers you're able to access at the University. If you don't already have a laptop, you should budget at least AUD $500 to buy one when you arrive.

Customs and Quarantine in Australia

Australia, and in particular Western Australia, has very strict rules about what you can and can't bring in from overseas. This is due to live animals and plants, plant material, animal products (including meat and dairy) and other foods having the ability to bring deadly and damaging pests and diseases into Australia.

On your journey to Perth, you'll be given an Incoming Passenger Card. Here you must declare all food, plant material and animal products for inspection on arrival to ensure they are free of pests and diseases. Harsh penalties apply for false or misleading declarations, so it is important to take this process seriously. For more information about what you can and can't bring into Australia, the Australian Government website.

Need help preparing for your trip to Perth? Here's everything you need to know.

Posted on:

29 Jan 2020

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