Accommodation Options for International Students Living in Australia

Accommodation Options for International Students Living in Australia


There are two important things that an international student has to do after he/she receives an acceptance letter from their desired Australian university. The first one is to apply for a visa, and the second one is to search for accommodation. Here, in this article, we are going to discuss some common accommodation options that international students can opt for during their stay in Australia.

What is the difference between on-campus and off-campus housing for international students?

Accommodation for international students is of two types: On-campus and Off-campus.


As universities own these types of accommodations, students can be under the safety and security of their respective institutes and can also save money on transportation. On-campus accommodation also has better cafeterias, libraries and provide daily meals, laundry services, and free wifi than off-campus housing.

International students who are freshmen, usually opt for this type of accommodation during their first year of study.


Off-campus accommodation is comparatively less expensive than on-campus housing. This is the most common option among senior university students, as they prefer to be more independent.

Unlike on-campus accommodation, which demands the students to pay the rent for a semester/year at once, off-campus housing only requires the rent to be paid weekly/monthly basis.

Temporary accommodation option

Hostels and guesthouses

This type of accommodation is recommended only for temporary housing. So, if you are new to Australia and don’t have a place to reside yet, then you can stay in either of these housing options. They are usually cheaper than on-campus accommodation and also come with all the basics facilities.

Long-term accommodation options

Residential college housings

This type of accommodation is more prevalent among international students than Australian students, as it is the easiest way to secure a place for living before you come to Australia. One can get facilities such as a fully furnished room, daily meals, library facilities, wifi, and room cleaning at such accommodations.

Halls of residence

This type of accommodation is either owned by or associated with universities. Which means you live under the security of the institute you are admitted too. The type of rooms provided depends on the institute; students either get a single bedroom with a shared kitchen and bathroom or get an apartment-style housing with private kitchens and bathrooms.

These accommodations are usually self-catered and come with facilities such as gas, water, electricity, and free wifi.

Student apartments

This type of accommodation is similar to residential college housing; here, an entire block is dedicated to the shelter around 100-400 students. Students usually have the option to choose between single/ twin sharing bedrooms and 4/5 sharing bedrooms with shared kitchen and bathrooms. These accommodations are typically accompanied by facilities such as fully furnished rooms, 24/7 security, and laundry services.


This type of accommodation is perfect for international students who want to enjoy the comforts of a home as well as be independent; here, you get to stay with an Australian host family. Homestay usually includes the following benefits like a pickup from the airport, a well-furnished room, daily meals, security, and cultural exchange. The government screens families that offer homestay for any security threats or unsafe environment for international students.

Private rental

International students who want to be independent and experience complete freedom can choose this type of accommodation. This type of accommodation can either be furnished or unfurnished. Students should have their passport, proof of identity, reference, cover letter, and, most importantly, their Australian student visa to rent an apartment/ property. Usually, rental agreements require payment of rent in advance and also a security payment called bonde. This is usually one month’s rent.

Comparison of different Australian housing for international students

Type of housing Location Estimated cost Type of payment
Hostels and guesthouses Off-campus 525-885 AUD/month Online/offline (depends on the owner)
University Owned Residential housing On-campus/ Off-campus 525-1640 AUD/month Offline (Pay by mail/ in-person), Online
Halls of residence On-campus/ near the campus 525-1640 AUD/month Offline/ Online
Student apartments On-campus/ near the campus 525-1640 AUD/month Offline/ Online
Boarding Schools On-campus 16000-33000 AUD/month Online
Homestay Off-campus (with an Australian family in their home) 720-1770 AUD/month Offline(cash, bank transfer)/Online
Independent Style Student Studios and Apartments Off-campus 250-2500 AUD/month Online
Private rental Off-campus 750 – 1,700 AUD/month Online/ offline(demands on the owner.

Assistance in finding accommodation

Many Australian universities have accommodation services that provide information and assistance to the students to find an accommodation suiting their needs. Sometimes, they also arrange for temporary accommodation when the students first arrive in Australia. Students can contact their respective university’s accommodation service before their arrival to avail this service.

Whom should international students contact if they face accommodation related issues?

International students can contact their university’s international student support staff regarding problems related to on-campus housing. On the other hand, students residing in off-campus can contact their landlord/ property owner for accommodation related issues.

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