This month, we speak to Linda Gustini, a scrub nurse originally from Italy, about her experience nursing and travelling in Australia. Now on her second Working Holiday Visa, she reveals all about the amazing destinations she’s visited and how she plans to make her move to nurse in Australia more permanent.
How did you plan where you were going to work and travel?
In my first year, I set myself a goal to see the whole country in the first 12 months just in case I didn’t get my second year Visa. I planned my travels around Australia and then I got in touch with HCA every time I was in a new place so that I could start nursing.
Has working for HCA made it easier for you to see Australia?
It’s been very flexible because I could decide when I wanted to work and when I wanted to take time off. You don’t miss out on cool things like you would in a permanent job and need to ask for time off months in advance!
How have you found adjusting to nursing in Australia?
I found the system very similar to when I was working in the UK so it didn’t take me any time to adjust! Theatre seems to be quite standardised wherever you go and a lot of the policies are similar. Everyone has been so helpful and welcoming in Australia – the nurses here are well trained so it’s been smooth sailing all the way!
How has agency work helped you fund your travels?
I’ve made enough money in Australia to be able to support myself and save a lot as well. I’ve seen pretty much the whole country in one year and I’ve done all the things I wanted with the earnings I’ve made during my stay. It’s flexible so you can work to save or take longer holidays – it just depends what you want to do!
What have been the highlights of your Australian adventure so far?
The West Coast was great to experience rural Australia – it’s so nice and wild there, and they have the whitest sand I have ever seen (except for in the Whitsundays!). The East Coast is lovely too! I went to all the national parks, crocodile watching in the Northern Territory, and then I went to the desert. The desert was so cool; I’d never seen anything that vast, empty and beautiful before – it’s stunning!
What advice would you give to other nurses who are thinking of nursing in Australia?
Do it! I haven’t worked a day in my life because I love my job so much and I’m getting to do it in such a beautiful country. It can be a little daunting at first because you don’t know how different it will be but you know what you are doing – you’re a nurse no matter what! Just enjoy travelling, meeting people and have fun – I love it!
Do you plan to stay here in Australia?
Yes! I have applied for a permanent visa – a skilled work visa. As nurses, we have the best job ever if you want to travel – and they need nurses in Australia!
See more from Linda in Healthcare Australia’s latest video ‘What’s it like nursing in Australia?’ below or visit www.healthcareaustralia.com.au/nursing-in-australia and find out how you could get a FREE FLIGHT* to Australia when you work for HCA! *Terms & conditions apply, see the HCA website for details.