City life isn’t always what it’s cracked up to be, and the past few years has shone a light on this notion with the pandemic fuelled boom in people moving to regional areas.
The quarterly flow of people from capital cities to regional areas during 2020 and 2021 was 15 per cent higher, on average, than the previous two years, says data from the Regional Australia Institute (RAI).
This regional migration is a trend that seems to show no signs of slowing down.
The Australian Government and Regional Australia Institute launched the Moved To More campaign in 2019 to help people navigate moving from big cities to regional towns.
It helps everyday Australians find the regional town that’s right for their needs.
The campaign’s primary goal is to encourage people to move to regional areas by highlighting the benefits of living outside our major cities.
These regional benefits include many values New England residents hold dear, such as a more affordable cost of living, access to high-quality education and healthcare, a better work-life balance, and a stronger sense of community.
To highlight real-life experiences, Move To More has launched a podcast where host Bec Bignell interviews people who have relocated from the big city to regional Australia, called ‘You Moved Where?’.
Each episode features interviews with people who discuss why they made the move, the setbacks involved and the upsides of living in the slow lane.
These conversations have offered some interesting insights, suggests Move To More Campaign Manager Ms Laureta Wallace.
“Our podcast guests overwhelmingly say they have a greater sense of well-being, have more time and enjoy being in the landscape,” said Wallace.
“To most people’s surprise, they very quickly find their community, which is often very different to those they would have hung out with in the bigger cities.
This welcoming nature is often because regional Australia tends to accept everyone for who they are.”
There’s no denying that there is an adjustment period because you do give up certain things when moving from a capital city.
“Some podcast guests have mentioned they miss the ocean and coffee but soon find their community has at least one great place to get coffee,” said Wallace.
The Move To More campaign goals are to help a wide range of people, including families, young professionals, and retirees, make these life-changing decisions.
The campaign site is where people can find information about different regional areas in Australia, including job opportunities, housing options, and lifestyle factors.
So far, it has been particularly successful in attracting interest from young professionals looking to escape the high cost of living in major cities like Sydney and Melbourne.
“People are initially concerned about jobs, but there are now more regional jobs on offer that offer competitive salaries and the career progression that they wouldn’t have received in the major cities.”
Overall, the Move To More campaign continues to be a highly successful initiative that’s helped promote the benefits of living in regional and rural areas of Australia.
These results have unexpected benefits for all of Australia.
“Research shows that by 2032 we’re on track to have 9.6 million people living in regional Australia, but we’re aiming to elevate that to 11 million, which will add $13.8 billion to our GDP.”
By showcasing the many benefits of living in regional areas, the campaign has helped support economic growth and development, boosting local businesses and communities.