Name: Holly Galt
Originally From: North London
Moved To: Sydney, New South Wales
Visa Type: Partner Visa
As far as doing things for love go, moving to Australia would surely rank quite highly as being one of the more pleasant ways of pleasing your partner.
Yet that’s just what Londoner Holly Galt did in a show of affection for her Australian husband, Steve. “Having lived in the UK for over 11 years, he wanted to spend a few years back in Sydney,” Holly explains. “We decided to move out here after we got married at the beginning of 2012.”
While emigrating as the spouse of an Aussie citizen is one of the more straightforward ways of obtaining an Australian residence visa, Holly says that she did
find the process a little laborious at times – you have to prove to immigration officials that you are in a bona-fide relationship. “At the time, I found the process long and extremely time consuming, but ultimately my visa was granted after only six months. We were impatient though, and I originally came out here on a tourist visa and had to leave the country for four days when my partner visa was ready to be granted. I can’t fault my case officer at the Department of Immigration, though, as she kept me up-to-date at all times.”
Although the couple’s Australian adventure is still in its fledgling stages – especially for Holly – she has found much to like about her new life.
“It’s really great to be close to my husband’s family and friends who we haven’t spent much time with over the years,” she says. “The weather is also an important part of life here – I love being able to eat outside most evenings. I’m also enjoying living near the water; if you’ve had a bad day, the best way to chill out is to have a glass of wine overlooking the harbour!” However, Holly is still coming to terms with being away from the UK (a normal reaction in the early stages of starting a new life so far away from familiar surroundings). “I miss family and friends the most, and at times I miss the life we had in London. Sydney is pretty slow in comparison. Christmas is hard; I will never get used to cold meat and salad for lunch!” So does she see herself staying in Oz for good?
“Time will tell,” she answers. “We’ve only been here seven months and we have set ourselves a deadline of two years (July 2014) to make the decision whether to remain here permanently or head back to the UK. I think moving to Sydney has been right for us at this stage of our lives, but whether we stay here for good remains to be seen.”