by Nicole Porras
Melbourne, Australia was named the world’s most livable city in the world and I can see why. I have already become so comfortable and familiar with this city and it has truly become my second home. But if you want to live in Melbourne there are some things you should know.
Melbourne main form of public transportation is a tram system. What’s important to know is that you need something called a “Myki” (similar to a Metrocard) to ride the tram if you are not in the free tram zone.
Unfortunately, RMIT Village is located one stop out of the free tram zone, so we villagers need a Myki to get into the city where our school is located, that is, if we don't feel like walking.
A Myki can be purchases at a local 7/11 store and, trust me, there is a 7/11 on almost every corner. However, even better advice is to wait until orientation when students are given transporation forms. Then, just pick up your concession (discounted) Myki from Melbourne's Central Station.
With a concession (discounted) Myki, not only does the card itself cost less, but each tram ride is also discounted. Melbourne also offers concession (discounted) prices at various places like zoos, museums and movie theaters.
Another important thing to know is that unless you have an international phone plan, you're going to have to buy a SIM card, or purchase a phone while you are here. I decided to get a SIM card to put into my iPhone. I simply popped into a Vodaphone shop, bought a SIM card, chose the amount of gigs that I wanted and just like that I had an Australian number. There are other carriers that my friends use such as Telstra or Yes, Optus.
I haven’t had any problems with my data or carrier so I think I made a good choice with Vodaphone. Another good thing to know is that if you choose to stay at RMIT Village and purchase the “Exchange Package” when choosing your room then you are given a certain amount of Wi-Fi that you can use each month. There is also free Wi-Fi in the study lounge here at RMIT Village. Oh, the glory of Free Wi-Fi!