Coming to Australia many say is coming to a country where everything is the other way around. While I was aware of some things beforehand, just because everyone says the same things; Yes it is expensive here, Yes they drive on the left, Yes you have to be careful for pretty much every animal. However there are also a few things nobody told us about when I actually wish I knew these things before.
1. When Australians greet you (which they do!) they will always ask you how you are. Answer them!
In the beginning I assumed it was something like the British
“How do you do?”
-“How do you do.”
kind of thing, but it isn’t. Even on the phone Australians usually greet you with a “Hello" or “G’day" followed by “How are you?”. A simple “Good, yourself?” reply does the trick as to being polite & friendly.
2. Alcohol can’t be bought at the supermarket, neither will it be served on food markets.
To buy alcohol in Australia you have to go to a separate store like BWS, Liquorland, Thirsty Camel, Cellarbrations,.. It’s not as common here as it is in Europe where alcohol is sold pretty much everywhere. Going to a night market with friends? Bring your own booze.
3. 10,658 beaches in Australia, but tons of them aren't accessible or deadly
Spending some time at the beach for us means next to getting a tan, swimming in the sea. Unfortunately though on most of the beaches we've been there were either sharks, deadly jellyfish or crocodiles or everything together! Of course I'm not going to blame nature but it's just something to keep in mind when after a long day (or 5 minutes) in this severe heat you were looking forward to cool down with a dip. DON'T :) Luckily they're all beautiful and non-commercialized (yup, that means no ice-creams on the beach..) though!
4. The most scenic/photogenic places can only be seen by 4WD (4 wheel drive)
Thus it’s quite important to really overthink your decision as to what vehicle you will buy/hire if you plan on road trippin’ around Australia. With 14 degrees & rain in Perth we never would have considered buying a 4WD with a rooftop tent, however to see those really gorgeous spots (cause let’s be honest, the reason why we travel to Australia is to overwhelm our home front with jealousy-provoking pictures) your car must be able to handle the dirt roads.
5. People like to walk barefooted.
In supermarkets, shopping malls, on the streets, literally everywhere. I have no idea why and find it pretty weird & sometimes rather disgusting (in food stores?! Come on!) but yes you will see it in tons of places! Mostly Western Australia & Norther Territory is apparently a paradise for those that want to grow a thick layer of callus ;) Nice!
Extra. Bring an empty water bottle with you, everywhere.
Everywhere you go in the cities or beaches are drinking fountains with a bottle refill tap, thank you Australia for your generosity! :) Needless to say why it's very useful to carry a bottle around, our CamelBak Eddy Water Bottle, 0.6 L, Charcoal and bag always travels along with us.