Australia, the 6th largest country in the world is a popular place for vacations. Millions of tourists visit every year hoping to catch a glimpse of the beautiful wildlife. The kangaroos and koalas, the exquisite islands, oceans and so much more. However, there are a number of things you should know before embarking on a journey to Australia.
While in Australia, you might decide to travel between cities and try to see everything. Depending on how long you are spending in Australia, this might not be wise. Australia is extremely big, and you have to remember that it consumes the majority of the continent.
It can be quite a distance between major cities and you don’t want to spend all your vacation time on the road. You might be thinking a road trip would be fun, and you are exactly right! There is tons to see while on the road. But sometimes not so much, open deserts and dehydrated kangaroos can be common when travelling between cities. Based on this, if you really want to take a road trip then you need to plan properly. Pick your routes and stop points carefully to maximize the adventure.
One of the great road trips in Australia is the drive from Melbourne to Sydney. If you’re driving directly via the highway, it’s 9+ hours and there is very little to see. The more favourable route is the coastal route which would take you past beaches and small towns where you can stop for the night. This can take you anytime between 2 to 6 days to complete, depending on how many hours you drive per day. Plan to spend your time in 2 or 3 major cities so you don’t spend too much time traveling.
Australia is widely known for its Kangaroos, Koalas and so much more. While in Australia, it’s a real treat to see some of these animals. One of the best places to visit is the Kangaroo Island just off the coast of Adelaide.
Brisbane and the surrounding region is another place full of wildlife, Kangaroos and Koalas can easily be spotted in the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary. This Sanctuary is one of the few where Koala holding is permitted in Australia, so while you’re there, you can get to cuddle a Koala which can be quite an experience. There are also quite a number of zoos and wildlife parks in cities like Melbourne and Sydney where you can visit and see beautiful animals.
Internet usage and VPNs
If you are one of those that need to keep connected on the go, then an Australian SIM card with a data subscription is what you need. Two popular mobile phone networks in Australia are Optus and Telstra, there are other networks available, but these are the best if you want to have coverage in remote areas. They both have good coverage, and you can get a solid plan for as low as $10 AUD per month.
Finding a free wifi connection in Australia is so easy, especially in the major cities. Accessing the internet via open wifi networks at restaurants, cafes, hotels, and even Libraries is always possible. But there is something that many aren’t aware of.
Free wifi is clearly a money saver, but it can also be troublesome and present security risks. An unsecured connection, free networks along with paid networks you use, put you at risk immediately. Traffic interception is sent in plain text, and can be read by anyone. In other words anyone can see what you are doing. Whether you are booking your next flight to Perth, or you are sending a payment back home. Your usernames, passwords, and basically your identity can easily be stolen and used against you, which is a common occurrence in Australia. To mitigate the risks, you need to use a Virtual Private Network (VPN) to encrypt your data. Nowadays VPNs are a popular way to protect yourself and your identity, so which type of VPN should you choose?
Using a VPN in Australia does not only keep you secure, but it actually helps you access important portals and services such as online banking and emails through the server you choose to have as your VPN. Many of these platforms are programmed to detect fraudulent login attempts from unknown IP addresses and locations. So you’ll most likely be asked security questions or straight up barred from accessing your accounts using random IP addresses you use as you travel (which does happen a lot). To get around this you can connect to a server location in your home country to change your IP address, which makes it appear as if you’re logging in from home. These are only a couple of reasons on why you should choose a VPN. VPNs so popular nowadays as it reduces the risk of anything going wrong on your leisure/business holiday.
A final tip
Australia is nice and warm throughout the year, while many other places around the globe freeze over in the colder months. If you’re planning on not burning, pack ample sun protection such as sunscreens, zinc, and shades. Keeping hydrated and a conscious effort on the amount of sun and heat you’re exposing yourself to can be lifesaving. Heatstroke is the most common cause of heatwaves in Australia and can in extreme cases kill. These are a few tips that will help you plan your trip to the Down Under a little easier.