I wouldn't list $600 each way as expensive, but that's just me. http://www.skyscanner.com.au/t... Yes, eating out is expensive in Melbourne. Travelling is quite expensive in Australia in general, as is property. But I find it difficult to believe that someone earning ~AUD$100K (USD$94K - what's generally on offer for a good developer with 5+ years experience) would find it difficult to save while renting a nice place within 10k of the city.