While Sydney has a reputation for being one of the safest and friendliest cities in the world, it’s important to understand what you can do to stay as safe as possible.

Personal Safety

  • At night walk in areas where there is a lot of light.
  • If you are coming out of class in the dark on your own, advise security or walk with a friend.
  • When you go out, try to travel with a friend or in a group.
  • If going out alone, let one of your friends, house mates or your home stay know where you are going and when you will be coming back home.
  • Always plan your trip home, especially at night. You may want to pre-book a taxi, ride-share, or arrange transport with a friend. Always make sure you have enough money to get home.
  • Carry a mobile phone or local telephone card, a map, your address and telephone number.
  • Save UTS’s Security number in your mobile 1800 249 559 (24 hours a day, seven days a week).
  • Always carry your bag and wallet with you and don’t carry a lot of cash with you.
  • Always keep your passport and other important documents in a safe place and have back up documents saved on your laptop or to a cloud based server.
  • Always keep your room/apartment/house locked.
  • In an emergency call 000 (triple zero).

Stay Safe Card

Beach Safety

Australia has an abundance of beautiful beaches, but we must always remember to stay safe and swim between the flags!

Here are a few tips to help keep you safe at the beach:

  • Always swim at a beach patrolled by lifesavers
  • Swim between the red and yellow flags. They mark the safest areas to swim
  • Always swim with a friend
  • Read and obey the safety signs
  • If you are unsure of conditions, ask a lifesaver
  • Don't swim under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Don't run and dive in the water
  • If you get caught in a riptide at a patrolled beach, do not panic. Float with the rip and raise one arm for assistance.

Get more information and download the Beachsafe App from www.beachsafe.org.au

Here’s a helpful guide you should save.

Sun Safety

The Australian sun can be very intense. It is important to take precautions when you are outside at any time of the year. Remember to Slip, Slap, Slop!

  • Slip on a long sleeve shirt
  • Slop on at least 30+ sunscreen
  • Slap on a hat

Visit the sun smart website for more info about being sun smart.

Public Transport

Public transport is reliable and widely used in Sydney, particularly in metro and urban areas. Several security measures have been implemented to maximise the safety of public transport users including security officers, guards, help points, good lighting and security cameras. However, you should still use caution when travelling on public transport:

  • Avoid isolated bus, train and light rail stops
  • Check transport timetables to avoid long waits, particularly at night
  • Train carriages nearest to the driver or guards are lit and safest at night
  • If you find yourself left in a train carriage on your own or with only one other person you may feel more comfortable moving to another carriage.

Road Safety and Driving

The roads in Australia are generally well maintained, and within Sydney and urban areas they have good lighting and signage. However, roads are often shared between large and small vehicles, heavy and light rail, bicycles and even pedestrians.

For this reason, road safety awareness is very important for international students who may not be familiar with Australian rules of the road.

As road users, international Students in Australia should be aware:

  • Australians drive on the left side of the road
  • Wearing seat belts is mandatory in private vehicles (including taxis and ride-share)
  • There are strict controls on alcohol limits for drivers (0.05). It is best to avoid drinking if you are planning to drive
  • Mobile (cell) phone use while driving is strictly prohibited in all Australian states and territories with harsh fines and penalties for offenders
  • Wearing of bicycle helmets is also mandatory for cyclists
  • It is safest to exit a vehicle from the kerb-side - always watch for cyclists and pedestrians before you open your door.

Bicycle and scooter use in Australia (including e-bikes and e-scooters) has increased greatly, especially in inner city areas where many students live, work and hang out. It is important to use bicycle lanes, observe road rules and make sure that bikes are well-lit at night when riding home.

More driving and road safety information is available on the Transport for NSW website.

Using the internet

International students often spend many hours online, on their computers and/or mobile phone. While they are essential tools for staying connected with family and new friends in Australia, their use carries risks - and it is important for all students to protect themselves.

Australia is a world leader in identifying online abuse, with its eSafety Commissioner website established to protect students and children online.

When using the internet, like anywhere in the world, you should protect yourself against spam, online scams like 'phishing', online bullying and identity theft.

You can find resources and more information about protecting yourself online and reporting abuse at Australia.gov.au and www.esafety.gov.au. Many Australian internet service providers also offer guidance so check their website as well.

Know your rights

There are certain rights you are guaranteed in Australia, regardless of whether you’re an international student or born and raised in Australia. Learn more below about protections while studying and living here.

Consumer protections

Have you ever bought an unreliable appliance or got overcharged for a service? Well, the government can help you. Australian Consumer Law includes legal protection guaranteeing consumer rights when buying goods and services, even to international students. If you have a problem with goods or services that you have bought or are considering buying, visit the NSW Fair Trading website. There, you can also lodge a complaint about a business and learn more about your rights as a consumer.

Fair Work

Like many international students, you may get a part time or casual job to help pay your living expenses while you study in Australia. However, it is important that you know your rights in the workplace whether you’re a domestic or international student at UTS College.

Overseas Students Ombudsman

The Overseas Students Ombudsman (OSO) investigates issues that overseas students have with universities, schools and training institutions in Australia. To lodge a complaint or learn the details of what the Ombudsman can investigate, visit ombo.nsw.gov.au.

Tuition Protection Service

The Tuition Protection Service (TPS) can help you if your school is unable to fully deliver your program of study. The TPS may also aid you if you have withdrawn from, or not started, your program and are eligible for a refund of tuition fees and the institution has not paid them. Find out more about the TPS at the service’s website.

Your Privacy

Australia has strict privacy laws that differ from some other countries. The Privacy Act gives greater control and regulation to the way individuals' personal information is handled.

UTS College is committed to maintaining the privacy of all individuals who we deal with.

That’s why in most cases, UTS College is unable to provide personal information about students or their general wellbeing, except to parents of students who are under the age of 18.

Our Privacy Policy sets out how we collect, secure, use, handle and disclose your personal information.