FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
ABOUT YWAM BRISBANE:
WHAT'S THE WEATHER LIKE?
Brisbane is a sub-tropical climate with warm, muggy summers and clear, sharp winters. Normal summer days are around 32°C (89°F) and nights are around 25°C (77°F) with frequent afternoon thundershowers. It is known to have even warmer temperatures throughout the summer as well.
December to February -- Summer: 21 - 29.8°C (69.8 - 85.6°F)
March to May -- Fall/Autumn: 15 - 25°C (59 - 77°F)
June to August -- Winter: 11 - 21°C (51.8 - 69.8°F)
September to November -- Spring: 15 - 25°C (59 - 77°F).
Normal winter temperatures often get cooler at night. Please note, however, that most people coming from the colder climates mistakenly assume they will feel quite pleasant during the winter months. Our buildings do not have central heating in them and are old and draughty. Please be sure to bring warm enough bedding and warm clothing.
We are located approximately 8 km north west of downtown Brisbane. It takes about 15 minutes to drive into the city by car. We are a short 7 minute walk walk to our nearest train station that can take you to the city and just about anywhere else in the region. It is about a 15 minute walk to our nearest shopping centre. There is a small shopping precinct just near the train station that has coffee shops, a convenience store, eateries, a bakery, and a pharmacy amongst other things.
AND THE BEACH?
Australia has some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. The beaches are easily accessible both up and down the coast with the Sunshine Coast, Redcliffe or Bribie Island to the north of us, and the Gold Coast and Byron Bay to the south of us. Most areas you can get to within an hour or so by car. If you take the train it will take about 2 hours to the Gold and Sunshine Coast.
PREPARING TO COME
How much luggage can I bring?
The general rule of thumb is that you should only bring as much as you can handle on your own. Airlines will limit how much luggage you can bring on the plane and your rooms here are very limited in space. You will need to be able to keep all of your things in just a couple of drawers, a shelf and a bit of hanging space. Also, if you go on outreach or away for any trips, we only have small storage facilities for your things. We recommend 1 large backpack or 1 medium sized suitcase.
How much spending money do I need and how will I bring it to Australia?
How much money you will need depends on your spending habits. You can check here for current exchange rates for your currency. You’ll need to think about phone calls, laundry, personal transport, social outings, coffees, snacks, etc. Here’s a few things to give you an idea of prices in Aussie dollars. Upon acceptance, participants will be sent information if there is any additional recommended items needed for their specific program or role.
1 Litre Shampoo and Conditioner $7-13 each
Make up: $15-30
Feminine Hygiene Products: $5-8
Laundry Detergent: $3-8
Mosquito repellent $5
Self-inflating sleeping mat $65-95
Sleeping bag $80-150
Snacks from Grocery Store:
McDonalds meal $7-$12
Meal at a casual restaurant: $10-20
Batteries $5-7 (per 4 pack)
Train fare to Brisbane $3 (student rate)
Train fare to the Coast $8 (student rate)
Washing machine (on base) $3; Dryer $2
Photo process 25- 50 cents per print
Photocopying/printing- 10 cents per page
Australia Zoo admission $49 (student rate)
Coffee at a café $4-7
Stamps for letters overseas $2.20 (depending on where you are sending the letters)
What immunisations do I need?
No immunisations are needed for entry into Australia. If you plan to go on overseas outreach, we do recommend some immunisations for some countries. Upon acceptance, applicants will be sent a pack of information which includes suggestions for immunisations. Not all countries will require them. Once outreach locations are set, our teams will go to see a travel doctor together to get the most up to date requirements. You can then have your vaccinations here in Australia. For some students, a portion of the costs may be covered by your Overseas Student Health Cover. More information will be given to students and staff upon arrival.
What type of visa do I need?
This will depend on your purpose for coming. Please communicate closely with the Registrar on this matter and proceed with your visa as per their advice. It’s important that you come in under the right type of visa to ensure you are able to do what you’ve come here to do. Some visas come with restrictions and conditions which limit your involvement. So please speak with us about this.
What airport should I fly into?
Brisbane has an international and domestic airport. If you’re using a travel agent, have them book you on a flight straight to Brisbane. Your ticket will tell you whether you’re coming in the domestic or international terminal. If you’re booking your own ticket online, there are a couple of ways you can do this:
1) Recommended: Book your ticket to Brisbane. Most international airlines fly to Brisbane (even if they include a lay-over elsewhere). This is more direct for you, less time in travel, and you won’t have to worry about your luggage.
2) If your international ticket takes you to Sydney, you will then need to book your own domestic ticket from Sydney to Brisbane. Australia has 3 airlines: Qantas, Jet Star and Virgin Australia which you can book online. Pay attention to your luggage restrictions, because international flights are often different from domestic flights. This will then take you to the Domestic Terminal.
Will my electrical appliances work in Australia?
Overseas participants: please note that voltage for electrical appliances is 240 AC current. Therefore, you may need an adaptor and/or a voltage converter. The Australian plug looks like this:
How can I pay my fees?
We can take payment via cash (in person only), online credit/bank card payment, over the phone card payments or bank transfer. Australians can also pay by Money Order. Feel free to visit our online payment gateway to pay by credit card or contact Accounts for bank transfer details.
Will my cell phone work on the Australian Network?
Yes, you can only use an unlocked GSM ready phone (for Americans, most sim cards are locked, Contact your provider to find out about your circumstance) as we only use sim cards in our network. You should try and get your phone unlocked by your service provider before you come.
Can I buy a cheap phone for a reasonable price?
You can buy phones for under $100 and then buy a pre-paid plan, however this depends on where you are from and what visa you are on. You can still just buy a pre-paid sim card depending on what mobile company you are with.
Can I bring my laptop?
Yes, laptops should be brought because all assessments and homework will be done on a laptop. If you do not have a laptop, please tell us so we can figure something out.
ABOUT THE SCHOOLS
What is the accommodation like while living on base?
Student housing is in separate male and female dormitories of up to 12 people. Each room consists of bunk beds and a storage area for each person. Bathrooms are down the hall.
What is the accommodation like for weeks off base?
Many of the DTS’s travel for some portions of the school. Sometimes we stay at another YWAM base, sometimes we stay on the floor of a church, and sometimes we go camping in tents. For these weeks you will need to provide your own sleeping mats, sleeping bags and pillows.
What is the accommodation like on outreach?
Outreach accommodation will vary a lot depending on the country and the region you visit. Some teams spend time in hostels, with beds and furniture. Sometimes we might stay at someone’s house. Sometimes we stay on church floors. Sometimes we stay in village houses on the floor or in the open. For most locations, we recommend bringing a sleeping mat.
What type of work duties will I be doing?
YWAM staff and students all pitch in to help out with the chores and running of the base. Also, part of any University of the Nations course is the work duties to learn team work, dedication, faithfulness and stewardship (just to name a few). Possible work duties include kitchen staff, housekeeping, mowing lawns, office work, construction, etc.
Do we have assignments and study?
Yes. The courses offered are accredited and part of the University of the Nations, which can lead to a degree program. Some of our courses are registered with YWAM Training in Australia and lead to a recognized qualification. Assessments differ depending on what course you’re doing, so feel free to ask us specifically about your course. DTSs can expect 2-4 hours of assignments and homework a week, where as 2nd level courses can expect 4-6 hours a week and more.
How many days do we have off for Christmas?
Typically we have about 3 days off for Christmas. It is our summer and we often have outreach during and lots of things happening that time of year, so we really do keep it going!
Can I work at another job during my DTS?
No, it is not possible to work during the DTS. DTS is a full time school.
How much free time do we get?
Expect to have around 50 hours of scheduled activities in the week. Usually weekends are free, but sometimes one day may be taken up with travelling or packing or something. And usually there will be one free afternoon and one free evening in the week. Again, second level schools often have weeks with even less free time.
What nationalities will be on the school?
We could possibly have any nation represented here on our centre. Common nations that students come from include: Australia, USA, Canada, New Zealand, England, Norway, Sweden, The Netherlands, Denmark, Germany, Switzerland, Ireland and South Africa.
Where will we go on outreach?
DTS outreach locations will be announced within the first couple of weeks of the DTS. Locations that we as a Ministry Centre are committed to or exploring: Japan, Malaysia, the Middle East, Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands, the USA, Central Europe, and Australia. We do also go on outreach to country towns within Australia.
What opportunities are available after the DTS?
There are many opportunities within YWAM after successful completion of the DTS. The University of the Nations offers courses and degree programs for those who want to be trained and equipped for their calling. Check out www.uofn.edu for available programs. At YWAM Brisbane, we run the Basic Leadership School, the Bible Core Course and a Cafe Internship. There are also many ministry opportunities available around the world within YWAM, from Nigeria to Mongolia to New York, from ministry to prostitutes, to street kids, to snow boarders. You can check out the rest of our website to see what we’re involved in. And you can check out the various opportunities YWAM worldwide has to offer at www.ywam.org.