The Festive Season as an International Student

Megan is a Brand Ambassador for The Student Housing Company and a third year international student at the University of Melbourne. She is currently pursuing a degree in commerce majoring in Accounting and Finance. She is a Filipino Chinese who hails from Singapore and has lived in Hong Kong and China too. A fun and driven individual, she knows how to work hard and play harder. She #livesforthegram and is a meme lord. If you see her around campus, don’t forget to say hi!

It’s the most wonderful time of the year… Yes! Christmas is almost here! As an international student in Melbourne, sometimes we aren’t be able to return to our home countries because of school obligations. I remember having to spend New Years in Melbourne because of summer school. There were hardly any friends remaining in Melbourne and I didn’t know what to do. It can get kind of lonely when you’re alone in a foreign country by yourself, especially during the festive periods which were once spent with friends and family.

Or maybe you just don’t feel like heading back to your home country this holiday. Either way, you’re in luck! You may not have experienced Christmas Festive Cheer like here in Australia as an international student, so this is a great opportunity for you to expose yourself to celebrating Christmas the Aussie way! You can still have a wonderful time in Melbourne over Christmas and the New Years. Here are some activities you and your friends can enjoy over this Christmas season!

1. Christmas shopping

Bourke Street Mall at Christmas

Late on your Christmas shopping? Head down to Bourke Street to pick up some presents for friends and family. Treat yourself to a present too, while you’re at it! Nothing like a little retail therapy. Not to mention, there are always crazy sales going on along Bourke Street on Boxing day, make sure you don’t miss out on those great deals!

Also be sure to drop by Myer’s Christmas Window at Bourke Street Mall for some pictures with the Christmas decorations. Myer’s Christmas windows are a must-go if you’re in Melbourne. Every year the displays are different and they just seem to get more beautiful. For more information, you can visit their Christmas Window Website.

Bourke Street is only a short tram ride from The Student Housing Company’s student accommodation in Melbourne, University Square – check it out over the holidays for 2019 accommodation!

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Melbourne’s Best International Cuisine Locations on a Budget

Megan is a Brand Ambassador for The Student Housing Company and a third year international student at the University of Melbourne. She is currently pursuing a degree in commerce majoring in Accounting and Finance. She is a Filipino Chinese who hails from Singapore and has lived in Hong Kong and China too. A fun and driven individual, she knows how to work hard and play harder. She #livesforthegram and is a meme lord. If you see her around campus, don’t forget to say hi!

TSHC Brand Ambassador, Megan

Missing home? Or simply hungry for a taste of food from your home country? I’m here to help. As an international student, being in a foreign country alone can be daunting. Not only are the comforts of home gone, you won’t be able to savour a family home-cooked meal or head to your regular food establishment in your home country.

I remember my first few months in Melbourne and having to get accustomed to the food here. Surprisingly it wasn’t hard to adjust to what Melbourne had to offer. I learnt that Melbourne is a multicultural city that was home to people from all over the world. So it was only natural that Melbourne’s food-offerings were very diverse. Food from every continent and city could be found!

There is also a large, growing population of international students here in Melbourne which means more international food options just around the corner. This has definitely made my stay in Melbourne feel more like home. Here are my top recommendations for international cuisines and I am sure you will enjoy it as much as I have!

Japanese – Sushi Hotaru

Midcity Arcade, 118/200 Bourke St, Melbourne VIC 3000

Sushi Hotaru packed with customers and sky-high sushi plates

Menu Favourite: Flamed Salmon Nigiri

Feeling Adventurous? Try this: Unagi Nigiri (Eel Sushi)

Love sushi trains? Check out Sushi Hotaru for a wide range of sushi for very affordable prices! Besides sushi, they also offer other Japanese food such as Udon and Ramen. Sushi Hotaru is very popular, so I suggest you head over when they are just about to open or during non-peak periods to avoid the long waiting time. Another thing to watch out for are their regular seasonal promotions. This winter, there were lucky draws held if you dined in on weekdays. Visit Sushi Hotaru and without knowing it, your sushi plates will be stacking high!

Check out their menu here.

Korean- Gukbab

535 Little Lonsdale St, Melbourne VIC 3000

Local Korean favourites like Bimbimbap and Korean fried chicken

Menu Favourite: Kimchi Chigae

Feeling Adventurous? Try this: Naeng Myeon (Cold Noodles)

Looking for all the Korean essentials? Look no more, Gukbab is your place. Menu items include Bimbimbap, Japchae, Korean fried chicken, and many more! Warm yourself up this winter with a hot bowl of Kimchi Chigae (Kimchi Stew) with some Corn Cheese. In summer, you can look forward to their Naeng Myeon (Cold Noodles). If you are eating with a group of friends, I suggest ordering the Budae Chigae (Army Stew) to share. Prices range from $10 to $25 per person, depending on what you order. One thing is for sure, you’ll keep wanting more!

Check out their menu here. Continue Reading

My Experience as an International Student in Melbourne

Megan is a Brand Ambassador for The Student Housing Company and a third year international student at the University of Melbourne. She is currently pursuing a degree in commerce majoring in Accounting and Finance. She is a Filipino Chinese who hails from Singapore and has lived in Hong Kong and China too. A fun and driven individual, she knows how to work hard and play harder. She #livesforthegram and is a meme lord. If you see her around campus, don’t forget to say hi!

TSHC Brand Ambassador, Megan
TSHC Brand Ambassador, Megan

My first days

I moved to Melbourne from Singapore in mid 2016 and it was my first time in Australia, so it was pretty mind-blowing for me being introduced to a new culture on top of navigating my way through independent student life.

Moving to a new country is no easy feat, especially when you are an international student. For the majority of international students, it is our first time leaving the nest. We no longer are able to turn to the comforts of our home and family like we used to, so I understand that for many of you, starting a new chapter in a different country can be daunting. However, do not fret! Here are some tips to get you through adjusting to your new life in Melbourne:

Tip 1: Finding your new nest

For all you students planning to study in Melbourne, accommodation will be the most important order of business. When finding your new nest, there are many factors to consider such as location, community and amenities, amongst other things.

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