Sydney: Cost of living, property, taxi, trains and shopping

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From 1st June to 17th June, the total articles per day on average will drop to 1. I am really busy vacationing in Australia. Haha. Anyway, I am in Sydney now. I took a taxi from 13 CABs instead of UBER in Sydney. The trip from Sydney Airport to my hotel in Redfern costs me AUD61. If I took UberXL, it would only be around AUD45. Why did I not use UBER? Well, the app did not work… Too bad for them and me then. Anyway, as usual, I always chat with taxi drivers. Remember my chat with a HongKong taxi driver much earlier? Read here.  I also spoke to GRAB drivers before. Read here . They know a lot by the way because they speak to people everyday, perhaps even every half an hour! The driver told me that life’s not easy these days because the taxi drivers are facing lots of competition from UBER, Ola Taxi and Taxify. The drivers for all these apps are however earning much lower than even the minimum wage! The minimum wage for Sydney is AUD17.70 (RM53) per hour. Note, I have no idea what the other drivers are earning, I am just sharing what he shared.

He then shared that actually, the cost of living in Sydney is pretty okay. He could get by quite well except if one were to think about buying properties. That’s very expensive he said. Oh yeah, when he said it’s expensive, he meant this. The median price for Sydney homes as at AUD980,000 as at latest report here.  At AUD980,000, someone has to be earning anything like AUD15,000 per month in order to afford it comfortably. When we really think about it, it’s pretty true. Even for Singapore or Hong Kong, if we look at just the food versus the income, it’s very cheap. However, putting in property prices into the equation and suddenly it does not appear to be affordable anymore. If we look at all these as advanced property markets, perhaps it’s time to also know that that’s the typical direction of the property prices. Oh yeah, many of these Australians are staying the equivalent of our Semenyih (Greater KL) or even Batu Kawan (Penang) and even these homes are still not that affordable. Probably bigger since land is an advantage that Australia has.

I took trains this time instead of driving because the car rental is not expensive but the parking is pretty expensive. Here’s one of those articles telling you about car parking spaces which is a premium and that’s why it’s going to be expensive.  As for trains, as my hotel was really near the CBD and practically to all the places I intend to visit, it’s quite convenient. My hotel is one straight line (6mins) walking away from the Redfern Station. Yes, I am walking by far more than when I drove in my previous two trips to Perth. For people travelling here in the near future, booking a hotel near any major station will be a huge advantage. This is one major reason why public transport will be successful in the future. It’s only a matter of time that parking becomes so expensive that even renting a car no longer make sense. That’s the reason why taxi companies can still survive today despite all the ride-hailing competition.

It’s winter now and there’s quite a lot of shops having clearance sales etc. My wife bought some branded t-shirts and pants and I even managed to net a new leather shoe. From AUD159.90, it’s the last pair and the price is only AUD39 (RM120). Please note, LEATHER shoe yeah. Okay, it should be my 15th pair after my last cleanup two months ago but I do not have this colour before! Look at the image yeah. I even managed to buy a hoodie. You know, those with the Australian word emblazoned in front? AUD16 (RM48) which to me is pretty good price! My kids and my wife bought theirs in our Perth trip and it cost me (yes, I paid) AUD23 (RM69) on average. Yes, shopping must continue to happen because good deals do not happen all the time and when it happens, grab it. As for shopping, as a shopaholic, I can safely tell you that places like Hong Kong or Singapore would have to sell everything fast because of space limitation. For Sydney, perhaps this applies too. They must clear the space for new stocks arrival… Happy following. Yes, a few more articles to come from the land Down Under.

written on 5 June 2018

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