Courses at JCU Brisbane Before you arrive

Before you arrive

Pre-departure information

Explore everything you need to know about international university study with JCU Brisbane's International Student Orientation & Pre-departure Guide. You'll have access to detailed information about life at JCU Brisbane, as well as guidance on the required steps for moving overseas.

Pre-departure arrangement

To ensure you have a smooth transition into studying at JCU Brisbane, you will need to do some pre-departure preparation. We’ve put together some key information to help you get started.

Once you have confirmation of your acceptance to JCU, you will need to arrange an international student visa. Understand the requirements and additional rules about working in Australia while studying will assist you in preparing your living  expenses budget and other arrangements.

It is a condition of your student via that your hold Overseas Student Health Cover(OSHC). You should have received details of this on your CoE. Ensure you have finalised this before arriving in Australia.

OSHC is insurance to assist international students in meeting the costs of medical and hospital care that they may need while in Australia. International students in Australia must hold OSHC for the duration of their stay in Australia, as a condition of their student visa.

An estimated OSHC premium is provided to students in their JCU Letter of Offer, along with further details about how to make any adjustments to cover as required, including adding family members to your policy.

Most students are required to pay the OSHC premium upon acceptance of the JCU offer. If you are applying through a partner institution, or have an official sponsorship recognised by JCU, payment will be arranged in accordance with the relevant agreement.

There are some exceptions where the Department of Home Affairs recognises a suitable alternative health cover arrangement, including:

  • Belgian students not required to purchase OSHC as they meet the health insurance requirement on the basis of the Reciprocal Health Care Agreement between Belgium and Australia
  • Norwegian students who have health cover with the approved home government insurer
  • Swedish students covered by Kammarkollegiet are exempt from the requirement for OSHC

Further information: Contact the Department of Home Affairs

Your Allianz Care Australia policy

If JCU is arranging your OSHC, we will use our preferred partner for OSHC which is Allianz Care Australia.

In most cases, your policy will not be established until your enrolment is finalised and you are admitted into your program at JCU. When you are able to access your JCU email account, you should find that you have received an email from Allianz Care Australia containing welcome information and a copy of your Certificate of Insurance. It will also include instructions for how to apply for a membership card and make changes to your policy information. If you do not receive this email, please advise your Admissions Officer or Student Services.

The policy commencement date will be approximately 14 days prior to the expected commencement of your program, and is stated on your eCOE. If you plan to arrive in Australia before the policy start date, you should arrange additional cover directly with Allianz using this unique weblink.

Allianz Care Australia provides a comprehensive service for JCU students, including:

  • A smartphone app for claims, and finding medical providers
  • A 24/7 helpline
  • Renewals if you are staying in Australia longer than originally planned

Further information, policy documents and members guides visit:  Allianz Care Australia

Consider the different accommodation options available. We recommend that you start looking at your accommodation options as early as possible, Study in Australia has some useful information about accommodation and the costs you might expect to pay for the various options.

Budget for your studies and life in Australia

Studying at university is an investment in your future. Ensure that you are fully prepared for your arrival by understanding all the associated costs of international study. A well-planned budget enables you to focus wholly on your studies and enjoy a stress-free experience.

Tuition fee information can be found here.

A minimum of $A400 per trimester is required for textbooks. Students will also need to budget for other academic expenses such as stationery and course-related resources or materials. Students should also be aware there are charges for replacement ID and access cards, official academic records/testamurs and replacements, overdue, lost or damaged library items, official university letters, late tuition fee payments and other enrolment scenarios as per the JCU Policies and Procedures.

This is an Australian Government fee charged to all students at Australian universities. The funds are used to provide a range of student support services and facilities both on- and off-campus.

To find the specific rate for your period of study, and for more information, visit the  Student Services and Amenities Fee (SSA Fee) page.

All international students are required to take out health cover for the duration of their stay. You should have received details of this with your acceptance letter. For additional information visit Allianz Care Australia.

Set yourself up for success by understanding the living costs and other expenses you will face, including food, power bills, phone/internet, transport and entertainment. Use the Study Australia website and Insider Guides Cost of Living Calculator sites to help estimate your cost of living in Australia and build a realistic budget for the duration of your studies.

You should also consider opening a bank account before you arrive. This ensures that you will have immediate access to your funds and can handle any last minute expenses during your travel or upon arrival in Australia.

The cost of living in Australia varies depending on your lifestyle and personal requirements. The cost of living in Brisbane is relatively low compared to other Australian capital cities such as Melbourne and Sydney.

Your cost of studying in Australia includes:

  • Tuition fees for your program of study, as well as textbooks and other items
  • Overseas Student Health Cover for the duration of your student visa
  • Flights for travel between your home country and Australia, plus travel insurance
  • Accommodation, transport, groceries, and other day to day expenses
Weekly expensesEstimated costs
Rent / accommodation$240 - $600
Groceries and eating out$140 - $290
Phone / internet$15 - $35
Utilities (gas, electricity etc)$30 - $55
Public transport / travel$20 - $220
Personal (toiletries, clothes etc)$35 - $80
Entertainment$80 - $150
Total estimated weekly costs$560 – $1430 (AUD)

All prices are to be used as a guide and can vary based on individual circumstances. For more information regarding living in Australia visit the Study Australia.

Check the Department of Home Affairs website for the financial requirements for your visa application.

Organise your arrival

Confirming your travel details in advance will ensure that your arrival in Australia is smooth and stress-free.

Book your flight as early as possible to ensure you will arrive at JCU in time to attend your compulsory On-Campus Registration Session. Information about this session is provided in your Welcome Email.

Deciding what to pack and bring with you is an important part of the planning process. While you will be able to find most things you need once you arrive, it is important to ensure that you don't leave any necessary items behind in your home country.

The table below provides a list of essential items that you should bring with you for your time in Australia. You should also check with your airline to confirm how much baggage you are allowed to bring.

Essential ItemsTravel tips for the items
Important documents

Photocopy all important documents before you leave home. Leave a copy with someone at home and keep another copy with you, separate from the originals. This includes but is not limited to:

  • Valid passport
  • Current student visa/visa grant letter
  • Letter of Offer
  • Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE)
  • Receipts of payments (e.g. tuition fees, OSHC, bank statements)
  • Original or certified copies of academic documentation

Other personal identification documents (driver’s license, ID card, birth certificate)

Prescriptions (including

Bring prescriptions for any medications that you need to take regularly. If you need to organise additional medication while in Australia, take any previous prescriptions with you when seeing a doctor.

When travelling to Australia, you must declare any drugs and medicines (including prescription medications).
It is advisable that you obtain a letter from your doctor describing your medication and medical condition, and carry this letter with you.

Visit the Therapeutic Goods Administration website for more information.

You should obtain a letter from your doctor regarding any pre-existing conditions you may have as this will assist your doctor in Australia to provide any treatment you may need. There may be claim restrictions on your Overseas Student Health Cover if you have any pre- existing conditions. For further information contact
Allianz Care. You should also bring a copy of your immunisation record.

Australian currencyExchange money before you leave home. It is recommended that you have access to at least AU$1500 when you first arrive.
Electrical items

Your mobile phone should be compatible with an Australian SIM card and bring a laptop in working order.

All electrical equipment and appliances that you bring to Australia will need to be used with an adaptor/converter (unless the item has a multi-voltage option). The standard voltage for electrical items in Australia is 240V.

Care should especially be taken with expensive items to ensure that the correct adaptor/converter is used. Power outlets in Australia will only accept certain two or three-pinned plugs.

Further information is available here.

Appropriate items for
Sunscreen, sunglasses, sandals, good walking shoes, hat, umbrella, swimwear, camera and insect repellent. You should bring some loose, comfortable clothes for the warmer months, and light winter clothing for the cooler months. All of these items are widely available in Australia to purchase. You may have some formal occasions
throughout your stay so bring along formal attire. For festive occasions, you may want to bring traditional dress and accessories.

The Studying in Australia guide provides details on Australia's biosecurity requirements and lists products that cannot be brought into the country. You will also benefit from some tips to ease the border clearance process.

Other information

The Australian Government wants overseas students in Australia to have a safe, enjoyable and rewarding place to study. Australia’s laws promote quality education and consumer protection for overseas students. These laws are known as the ESOS framework and they include the Education Services for Overseas (ESOS) Act2000 and the National Code 2018. Check the JCU Guidelines, Policies and Regulations relevant to international students studying on a student visa.

An emergency is the actual or imminent occurrence of an event which end angers or threatens the safety or health of any person in the area; and/or destroys, or threatens to destroy or damage any property.

In any life threatening emergency call 000 (112 from Mobile) and request Police, Fire or Ambulance.