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337 - Cost of Living

Australia is a high cost of living country -- costs seem very similar to the Washington DC area. Clothes, shoes, and paper products (everything from school paper to toilet paper, gift wrap, and diapers) are expensive (Check the current rate exchange for details). Arriving families would be well-advised to stock up on these items. Clothes and shoes do not equal American standards and wear out quickly. Also Australian styles are different than American styles. Note, a pair of Levi jeans cost over $100.00 Australian Dollars. Grocery shopping is done on the local economy at Woolworth's ("Woolies") or Coles and very few American products are available. Those American products which can be acquired in Australia are nearly three to four times their US price. Australian stores lack the variety of their US equivalents and store hours tend to be limited. Many stores close by 1800 hours on week days, are only open half days on Saturday mornings, and are closed on Sundays. Shopping malls are usually open all day on Saturdays and Sundays.