Sydney Expat Interview Series Question 9: What Do People At Home Think About Australia?

expat issues, Sydney Expat Interviews

Last month, I shared some of the the things that Sydney expats have been asked about their home countries. This month, I’ve flipped it and asked the expats to share the funniest or strangest things they’ve been asked about Australia by people from home. 

Australia … I’m not sure the world feels safe around you, mate!

This is the 9th in an 18 part interview series with expats living in Sydney. Please make sure to visit the fantastic websites of the participants, and follow me on Facebook for much more on expat life in Sydney. Sydney Expat Interview Series Question 9 - What is the funniest thing people from home have asked about Australia

Question 9: What is the funniest or strangest thing that people from your home think about Australia?

Name: Dido
Country of origin: India
Lived in Sydney: 1.5 years 

That Foster’s is the best Australian Beer

File under: Things I’ve Never Seen in Australia (Source)

Name: Julia
Country of origin: UK
Lived in Sydney: 6 years

That everyone just wears thongs and board shorts all year round!!

Name: Ashley
Country of origin: United States
Lived in Sydney: 2 years (in Newcastle)
Visit Ashley on Instagram

This has to be all the deadly animals. They assume that every single deadly animal is crawling around my backyard and hanging from my house! In truth, I’ve only seen maybe 10 redbacks (all in unlived rentals), no snakes, and nothing deadly in the water. Yes, they are here but I think it’s rare to come across them. My husband did say there was a brown snake in his work parking lot though. *shudder* And I think because Australia has so many unique animals, people think they are EVERYWHERE. Sure I’ve seen kangaroos, koalas, and wombats but pretty rarely and only kangaroos in the wild, not the others. And no, the kids don’t ride kangaroos to school!

Name: Debbie
Country of origin: England
Lived in Sydney: 10 years

I think people in the UK think we have ‘roos bouncing down our streets all the time – either that or we’re constantly battling poisonous spiders and snakes.

Name: Victoria
Country of origin: England
Lived in Sydney: 5 years
Victoria blogs at The Freedom Travellers

Probably that people think there are deadly animals and insects at every turn in Australia, something I thought too before I moved here!


Name: Caitlin
Country of origin: England
Lived in Sydney: 1 year
Caitlin blogs at Where’s Wallis 

That you can’t leave your house without being confronted by a spider or a snake!

World’s deadliest snake … at the zoo.

Name: Rachel
Country of origin: England
Lived in Sydney: 3 years, 11 months

That it’s not safe to live here you in Australia, it’s full of potential dangers and deadly insects and you will immediately die from either a snake bite, spider bite or extreme temperatures.




Name: Melissa
Country of origin: USA
Lived in Sydney: 11 months
Melissa blogs at Leche Love

The bugs! I have gotten so many posts on my Facebook about spiders and insects.




Name: Kirstie
Country of origin: United States
Lived in Sydney: Since September 2013
Kirstie blogs at Venga Vale Vamos

Hey, Australians, we don’t really think you all have pet kangaroos and koalas, as great as that would be. I think the biggest misconception Americans have about Australia is the size – it’s definitely not easy to see the entire country in one trip!

Name: Erin
Country of origin: Texas, USA
Lived in Sydney: 6 1/2 years
Erin blogs at TexErin-in-Sydneyland

Just this May my cousin was asking me about the climate and scenery. He thought it was basically beaches and red dirt. He didn’t believe me when I told him that there are some rolling hills and thick trees. Then again, many Australians have assumed Texas is dirt and tumbleweed, so I think we’re even. Ha!

Name: Shane
Country of origin: USA
Lived in Sydney: 1 year
Shane blogs at Sea Salt Secrets

That there are kangaroos hopping down the roads and koalas hanging from trees. And that every animal here can and will kill you. Bogus. Queensland is where all the dangerous creatures reside 😉

Welcome to Queensland!

Welcome to Queensland!



Expats – what’s the funniest thing that people from your home country have said to you about Australia?

Read Part 1: Expectations vs Reality
Read Part 2: The Most Memorable Sydney Day
Read Part 3: Your First Day in Sydney
Read Part 4: Drinking Like an Aussie
Read Part 5: The Birds of Sydney
Read Part 6: Australian Christmas
Read Part 7: Off the Beaten Path
Read Part 8: Questions About Home