When you arrive in Australia, you must get the Australian Tax File Number (TFN), which prevents you from having to pay taxes at the high rate of 46%. It is better to get the TFN immediately.
The Australian TFN is just like the UK’s National Insurance, the American Social Security Numbers and the Canadian Social Insurance. All these are issued for you only once and this one remains with you forever. Even if you go to other Australian states, change your job, or leave Australia and return after many years, you can always use this TFN.
The process of acquiring a TFN can take up to twenty-eight days, so you must apply for it as soon as possible to avoid paying the 46% tax for long.
TFN applications can be submitted online to the Australian Tax Office. The office is located in Sydney. If you are in Sydney, you can straight away go to the office and submit your application, though this might mean waiting in queues for your turn. In order to apply online, you required to be within Australia. For applying online, visit http://www.ato.gov.au/individuals/content.asp?doc=/content/38760.htm; this process takes up to 20 minutes and you have to provide your work visa and passport number.
If you are a new arrival to Australia, you might not have a permanent place to stay and might be staying in a hostel. The good news is that the hostel staff allows mails to be sent at their hostel address, since they themselves have gone through the procedure of getting a TFN. In Sydney, this would not at all be a problem.
The very first thing you should do on arriving in Australia is to get a TFN and get it over with. After all, you don’t want to pay high taxes and you have more important things like looking for a job to heed to!