There’s some things that will always annoy us about living in Sydney, just like there is anywhere in the world. But there are a few things about Sydney which do drive me a bit nuts from time to time, so I thought I’d share them with you.
Yes, every city has it’s good and bad points so here’s my light hearted view of the 11 things that drive me mental about living in Sydney which pretty much revolves around transport and people.
This is a light hearted post and not supposed to be taken literally. It’s meant to be a bit of fun!
Table of Contents
1. Taxi Drivers Don’t Know Where Anywhere Is
Every single time I get into a taxi in Sydney, the driver has no idea where anywhere is. After trying to explain where the street is, I’m then asked to get my phone out and direct them using my Google Maps. It honestly baffles me to no end. In that moment it takes me back to appreciating London cabs.
Praise the lord for UBER. Just saying…
2. Driving In Sydney
I often ask Steve whether you can pass your driving test with your eyes closed in Sydney because no one knows how to drive at all.
Every single day I drive to work, I’m in nearly 10 accidents that revolve around people not looking and walking out into the street as well as other cars undertaking me on the motorway. I don’t quite understand why undertaking isn’t illegal in Australia. This means everyone drives however fast they want to and the idea of the slow, middle and fast lanes don’t exist.
You can seriously sit at a junction for ages because everyone is in their own little bubble and has no concept for anyone else when it comes to driving. I also swear I’ve seen many people just ignore us and even speed up just to make sure we can’t pull into the road. It’s kinda weird to be honest.
I’ve since taught Steve how to manage these drivers. Wind your window down and put your hand out to say thank you before the driver has the opportunity to pretend you’re not there. Works every single time 😉
3. No One Having Spatial Awareness
OK, well this is more of a global thing because I have seen people like this in England too but, people have zero spatial awareness in Sydney. If I’m in a line in a shop, there always seems to be someone standing literally on top of me. I then stand to the side to get some space and they just follow me.
This is the same for people being on transport and getting onto transport. If the train is busy, everyone stands in this squashed space next to the doors. Why wouldn’t you move down the train and fill up all of the standing space? It’s something I’ve just never been able to get my head around as the claustrophobic within me often thinks.
Here’s another example – you’re so used to getting the train, you know where the exact spot is to wait at the station, where the doors will open. People tend to stand there even if their train isn’t the next one to come. Why are you blocking the entrance so no one can get onto the train? WHY WOULD YOU DO THAT???
People also tend to go in very slow motion when getting onto trains and more recently, my latest anger issue is with lifts. You’re waiting for a lift for a while and when it finally comes, you want to get into it asap. The amount of times people decide it’s a good idea to walk in slow-mo that the doors actually close when they are mid way in is unbelievable.
4. Sydney Cafes Closing By 4pm On weekends
One thing I find really annoying about living in Sydney is that you have to make sure you’ve gone out for food before 4pm because every cafe in Sydney seems to think no one will want to eat or get a coffee after that time.
There have been so many times we’ve wanted to eat out even after 3pm and struggled to find anywhere. Our go to cafe in this situation has always been Speedo’s in Bondi because it’s open until 5pm and has incredible views of Bondi beach.
5. Fashion & Hair In Sydney
Fashion is kinda questionable in Sydney. One of the downsides about living on the other side of the world is because Australia will always be behind the trends. People tend to dress the same in Sydney and unless you go out to areas like Newtown or Redfern, there’s not a huge amount of individuality.
This goes for haircuts too. I once went into a salon in Sydney to find every single girl walking out of with the exact same cut and colour. When I told my friends back home, they thought it was hilarious!
Good job I have since found an awesome British hair salon in Sydney called Stevie English Hair in Glebe. Go check them out and get 15% off your first appointment just by mentioning my blog.
Just an example of everyone getting the same hair style in Sydney!
6. TV Advertising & Scheduling
How many times have you seen this ad?
I don’t know why TV in Australia continues to be pretty terrible. Most people usually respond with the ‘I don’t watch TV ‘reaction when I talk about it to others over here.
I’m sure you’ll agree you’ve seen the same movies and ads being played all the time right?
Back when I had my first career as a TV ads buyer, I remember if the same ad played out more than once during a TV show, we’d get in so much trouble. But in Sydney, you’ll see the same ad during every single ad break. It’s bizarre.
7. The News In Australia
I took this photo recently as an example of the news stories in Sydney
This one needed a whole section dedicated to itself – the news in Australia.
I often wonder whether it’s a good thing or bad thing – do we really need to know what’s going on in the world? Australia is in it’s own little bubble that I honestly wouldn’t really be able to tell you what’s happening in the world because they report on topics like “Man steals chickens from a Primary School” (TRUE STORY!). This was also classified as breaking news.
I remember going back to England last year and I learnt more about what was happening in the world in a 20 minute news program than I had in 5 years in Australia.
There’s also lots of news shows and the questions journalists ask in interviews are absolutely terrible and embarrassing. I’ve never understood why is it so bad over here? But yes, I could just read the news online like everyone else does instead.
8. Australia Post
Obviously when you order stuff online, don’t bother to have it sent to your home address because the likely-hood of being able to pick it up from your local post office is slim to none.
My post office hours are usually between 9-5, you know, the exact times when we are all at work, which makes it incredibly difficult to pick up any parcels. If you’re lucky, some suburbs might open on a Saturday morning.
9. The Police
I actually never had a problem with the police until I moved to Sydney. Every single policeman I have come across has been so rude to me. I once drove down the road to pick Steve up (no more than 5 minute drive) and I got stopped by the police for an RBT (random breath testing). Why on earth they were there was beyond me.
Because I didn’t have my wallet on me, they made me leave my car, walk back home to get and they did loads of checks on me. The worst part was, they are so incredibly rude to me, and all I could think of, there’s just been bombings and stabbings in London this morning, and you think it’s appropriate to treat someone this badly over a drivers licence?
The funny part, is, I don’t even drink so there wouldn’t have been any point in making me do the RBT.
I also picked Steve up recently from work and within 1 minute of him being in the car, we got stopped as he hadn’t put his seat belt on yet. We were fined $340 for it.
I’d be alright with the police if they weren’t so incredibly rude. It makes me wonder why all of our tax money is going on 10 policemen doing an RBT in a quiet area rather than actually doing something more worthwhile?
10. Bugs & Mould In Homes
When you move to Sydney, you quickly realise that you’re going to need to spend a lot on housing to get something that’s half decent. Most houses are old, full of damp thanks to the climate and are freezing in winter thanks to the lack of insulation.
I’ve had plenty of shoes and clothes ruined due to damp. Just be careful when selecting the house you want to live in as you’ll be able to notice the damp smell instantly.
The bugs as well – this is a question I get asked a lot about, especially when it comes to spiders in Sydney. Funnily enough as someone who was an arachnophobe before I moved to Australia, my fear of spiders has pretty much gone. Although, I’ve only seen one spider in my house in 6 years in Sydney.
Cockroaches seemed to love one flat I lived in and in my current one, ants seem to appear in the kitchen a lot which I think is because it’s hardly rained for months. This is something I’ve just managed to deal with over time.
11. What’s The Actual Cost Of Things In Sydney?
One thing I’ve learnt about living in Sydney is that when it comes to electronics especially, every shop charges a completely different amount which can be quite a surprise.
You can always ask the retailer to match the price with another one and they always will. For example, I use a Philips Sonicare toothbrush which I know, yes, it’s quite pricey but I managed to get it from $300 to $175 in one store purely because I had seen it cheaper somewhere else.
You just need to make sure you can show the retailer the cost somewhere else on your phone that’s also an actual shop in Australia, and not just an online shop in somewhere like China.
If you shop at The Good Guys (it’s the equivalent to Curry’s in UK), you can always ask them what their best price is on anything you buy and they will always give you a discount. Never think of it being the final price because it’s insane how big the mark up can be over here.
So that’s me signing out of my top 11 things that drive me nuts about living in Sydney!
Obviously this entire blog is dedicated to the great things there is to do here, but I probably wouldn’t be human if there wasn’t some bad things about this city as well!