Alliance Abroad

Program Reviews

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Alex
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I didn't feel like going on the other side of the planet on my own, that's why I have chosen Alliance Abroad Group.

This experience was unique and amazing ! I really appreciated that AAG helps you with the administrative procedures. And it's a real security to have already signed a work contract before I landed in Oz. I really want to thanks Lisa & Carolyn for everything. I will be grateful my whole life for all of this!

To be honest, at first, I was like : I'm gonna stay 6 months then travel a little bit and go back to Europe. But now that my 6 months program is finished I plan to stay 6 more months and why not another year ?
The work experience was fantastic, and living in Sydney is great ! I fell in love with this city. There's so many things to explore in Australia though! That's why now I'm going to travel and go with the flow..! It's a miracle ! I wasn't kind of a self confident person but this program impacts my life in a way I didn't expect. It made me strong person! I think this kind of experience is unique, opens your eyes on so many things.

I grew up both on the professional and personal aspects here. I think I found the meaning of "happiness" in Oz. I mean the rhythm of life is great, the weather, the landscapes, the food, people are so nice. I can't explain it, you need to live it!

I 100% recommend AAG for your future program guys !
If you are still hesitating about what to do just think about a quote that I've learnt here :
"If you don't get out of the box you've been raised in, you won't understand how much bigger the world is."

Read my full story
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sabrina
2/10
No, I don't recommend this program

It was a very nice placement in a Yacht Club in Sydney.... but I was just working on Sundays.... The amount of working hours was to small..... ( 5 - 10 hours by week). I tried to contact Alliance Abroad and the employer for more hours but nothing was done... Fortunately, I found an another job in Sydney. So with my 2 Casual job, I was a very good experience. But it did not worth paying so much and working so little.....

Nick
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Awesome experience

I am working in 5 star hotel
in Sydney cbd
I start as a porter now I am working as Doorman
so I already step up
it was an honor to met Lisa deLuca and Carolyn Mclean
they very nice and always helpful

I can't wait for my second job placement !!!
where it could be?? Sydney gain? Melbourne, Gold Coast, Perth??
who knows

I arrive on the 7th of September,
so by the 12th I was already working
so there is not the ansia to look for a job, go around with your cv,
etc etc
and I got a few days to look for accommodation

What would you improve about this program?
housing
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Riccardo
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I've just gotten back from my 6 months program in Sydney; it has been such an amazing and unforgettable experience! Thanks to AAG, I worked at the Sheraton On The Park and I couldn't ask for anything better. I was part of an international team, so I had the chance to make friends from all over the world and practise and improve my english skills. If you like being in contact with different cultures and people, this is the right place for you. During my time off, I explored the area around Sydney -its beaches and amazing national parks, especially Blue Mountains, will leave you breathless- and I've been to Cairns, Queensland for a little holiday. Snorkeling in the Great Barrier Reef is a once in a lifetime experience! I saved money during my time in Australia, so I could backpacking New Zealand as well.

AAG did a terrific job. From the first time I contacted the office, they've always been very nice and detailed. They were ESSENTIAL during my job research, providing tips, interviews and plenty of support. They helped for tax refound, accomodation and bank issues. I really want to thank my team leaders Lisa and Lexi for her wonderful job. If you are looking for a safe, guided and high quality support, don't hesitate!

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Hayley
1/10
No, I don't recommend this program

Initially, I was overjoyed when I received news about finding a placement in Melbourne, Australia. What could possibly be better than a Visa that permits both a stable source of income and a holiday in Australia?! Unfortunately, that hasn't been the case, in a sad turn of events, I've yet to receive anytime off in the three months I've worked, to explore Oz. My hotel is short-staffed, which as permitted me from experiencing the "holiday" in my "Work/Holiday Visa". I was hired as a part-time employee, but I typically work full-time, without receiving any of the benefits. When I inquired about taking annual leave (seeing as I did not move to the other side of the world to spend all my time working) I was denied and was told that my annual leave would come to me in the form of a pay check at the end of my contract. If you could only imagine my frustration. I'm very disappointed. If I had known that this would be my experience, I would not have participated in AAG. However, I say this baring in mind, that I am one participant. This is my story. It's not to say this will be your experience. On a positive note, I work with people from all over the world. It has brought me immense joy meeting people from all walks of life. I think overall, if I had been afforded time to travel, I would have been satisfied with my experience.

Response from Alliance Abroad

Dear Hayley,
We're sorry that this experience has not been what you've hoped. That's disappointing for us as well. Our goal is to make the experience a great match with your needs and goals and the work experience. I have sent an inquiry to our Australia office and we'll get back to you as soon as possible.

The Team at AAG.

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Whitney
8/10
No, I don't recommend this program

Going to Australia was one of the best decisions I have made. I have never traveled much around the US and never overseas. I met the very best people and did some amazing things. However, I was extremely disappointed in Alliance Abroad Group. I had a few problems when I first got to Oz and got absolutely no help from the program. The locals were far more helpful and made my experience enjoyable. The only thing my program did for me is show me the steps to get there, and even with that, I had to do a lot of prompting.

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Katie
7/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I am from Canada and have been in Australia for about 4 months. Alliance Abroad has helped me find a great job, and assisted me on finding a place to live in a good area close to my work. They have also kept in contact with me through out my experience here and have supported me with any help that I have needed. They have also organized a number of social outings for anyone in the program to go to which is a nice touch. I am very thankful for the support of Alliance Abroad during my experience here in Australia.

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Rebecca
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

So I've been here 3 weeks. I love it! I'm almost all used to the job front desk at Cable Beach Club resort. Plus, the weather here is beautiful, really hot, but Broome is going into its dry season starting in May so it will be a little bit cooler, but will still be at 29-35 degrees instead of 35-40 like it has been for their summer. Everyone around the accommodation village is really friendly, welcoming and nice. I really like the resort I work at. It is like a little paradise because of its gardens and lily ponds and unique guest rooms. And, is directly across from Cable beach- which is an awesome beach with white sand that goes on forever and clear blue water. I am so happy to be here, and am excited for my stay

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Mitch
7/10
Yes, I recommend this program

At home, I felt stuck. Never having been outside the comfort of family support and familiarity in life, I started feeling a bit insecure and developed a pessimistic attitude. Upset with myself and always having yearned to experience travel and life abroad, I decided to apply to Alliance and start an adventure. After a 6-month program in Melbourne, Australia, I felt rejuvenated! I gained a ton of confidence in many aspects of my life - both personally and socially. Most importantly, I feel inspired and ambitious about my next steps in life.
I thank Alliance for the opportunity, having assisted greatly with the application process and ultimate transitions that at first seemed a bit overwhelming. It was a great experience and I recommend this program to anyone looking for adventure, growth, and self-improvement. Thanks again

What would you improve about this program?
Reduce the application fee. $1500 for the 6-months program is quite expensive.
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Adam
2/10
No, I don't recommend this program

Gosh where do I even begin? Three of my close friends and I decided to make this venture for OZ--with the "help" of AAG. We interviewed with our first coordinator together, stating we wanted to do the 6 month program, and do it all together--we wanted to go at the same time (around November for 6 months) and we all planned on living together--all requirements AAG were fully aware of in order for us to give them the enrollment fee from EACH of us. We ended up being placed in Sydney because "it was the easiest place for them to place all four of us"--per AAG.

First mistake AAG made was the fact they didn't get all of us jobs simultaneously, then also were trying to send us at all different times--some months apart (Myself in September, two friends in October, and one in November). We made due with the timing, negotiated with the different jobs and made it work-- three of us arrived Mid October and our one friend came out to OZ three weeks later since they couldn't get her a job immediately like us--even though we all have a lot of Hospitality work experiences, and applied at the same time. In the whole process of getting the job, AAG makes it seem like they're assisting you by providing you 'To Do Lists' and links and tasks you need to complete--all things you're essentially capable of doing yourself with the assistance of Google. Obtaining a Working Holiday Visa for Australia as an American is as easy as filling out a shopping survey online. Any 20-something-year-old can figure this out on their own, it's not difficult. AAG made it seemed like you NEEDED them in order to pull of something like this--without them you'd be overwhelmed--not the case at all.

Another big mistake that AAG made was the fact that they made it seem like you'll find housing super easy as soon as you arrive to OZ. NO! IT’S VERY DIFFICULT. AAG suggests you to stay in the hostel they provide info for for 3-5 nights while you search for housing--we met some people that had lived in the hostel for weeks when we had arrived, some even months, while still searching for housing! Housing is also not cheap at all. Given our situation, AAG was fully aware that 4 of us were planning on living together--we had zero stipulations, as long as it was safe, a 6 month lease, and a furnished property that could comfortably house 4 of us. This was like looking for a needle in a haystack! The worst part was that AAG made it seemed like we would find something almost immediately--not the case one bit. After over 30 viewings of properties, extreme exhaustion from jet lag and time constraints with our work contracts nearly beginning, and fear of being homeless in another country, we found a place in Glebe--a two bedroom, 1.5 bathroom and paid over $1,200 per week to live there. The ideal living situation came crashing to a halt as we had no other choice but to take this option. What I find the biggest problem with this situation was that AAG didn't help ONE BIT, even when we called them and begged them to help us find something--and all they ever came back was with different website links to look for housing. Like, uhhhhh HELLO WE'RE ALREADY DOING THAT! AAG didn't forewarn us about where we should look for appropriate housing for 4 people, how to go about finding places and perhaps looking at different companies that assist with finding housing (which is what we ended up finding through another Study Abroad Program--a program that didn't ask for a dime from us and just voluntarily helped us.), how much certain areas would cost us, etc. Nothing! AAG literally did NOTHING.

Another problem, my company I worked for was told the wrong start date by AAG--and called me when I hadn't shown up. I explained that they had the wrong date, and apparently AAG told them the wrong date--not the day that I was supposed to work as per my contract I signed. Like could AAG get ANYTHING right during this process?

A few months into our experience here, the AAG contact I was working with apparently left the company--no one ever informed us this was happening and we were assigned a new director that we've never even communicated with prior. Honestly, not one person at this company was helpful--except the initial person you speak with upon signing up. Even then, they makes this experience seem like it's going to be the most amazing thing in the whole world, and AAG will be there if you need them, or feel lost, or have questions, etc. They have not done one thing to assist us--and upon asking for a refund of our money, or a partial refund they basically scoffed and said that we signed ourselves away after that contract is signed for our job. My lawyer said the same thing after presenting it to her. I even told AAG that I was getting my lawyer involved, and the director said in a condescending demeanor, and I quote, "Good, I love when this happens..."

Listen, my goal here isn't to just bash AAG and that's it. Australia was an awesome time, I learned a lot in so many different aspects--but going through AAG was not the way to go AT ALL. If you want to feel used, waste money, and basically waste countless hours dealing with useless people--then by all means, AAG would be perfect for you. If you want to move across the world and work in Australia--go on Google and look up what you need to get a visa, save your money, plus some, so when you come here you can enjoy time while finding a job (which is super easy to do by the way--hospitality has heaps of open positions over here) and finding housing, meet as many Aussies as you can and they'll direct you where to live, where to eat, where to avoid, etc. It's jaunting at first but totally doable on your own. AAG provides this false veil of security because you gave them a lot of money and time--but I felt quite alone in the beginning even being here with three friends. We all felt stranded and used once we arrived in OZ. My friends also had horrible experiences, one wasn't even guaranteed his job when he went to meet with them upon arrival--the other was bounced around through many venues all over the place--commuting up to 4hrs per day, everyday, to get to one venue, the other friend was forced to work ridiculous overnight hours, then work the next afternoon, multiple times, even after presenting this issue to HR-- it completely screwed with her body's normal schedule and she either had to do it or quit. I could go on, and on and on--but my main goal with this review is to tell you, yes you, the skeptical person not sure if signing up for this is a good idea or not, STOP. DON'T DO IT! You have been warned now--it is a complete waste of money! All of this has been expressed to AAG and they have done NOTHING to fix the situation--they've offered apologies and that's about it. Thanks for nothing!

Response from Alliance Abroad

Hi Adam,
It’s disheartening to read these comments because we care very much about our program and participants and this is the first we have heard of some of these issues. The whole purpose and our company and our personal passion is to create opportunities for amazing and meaningful experiences working abroad.

AAG is a company of global travelers and we know how enriching and rewarding the experience can be, which is why we created a business to offer the chance for people to experience the world with the comfort of having support and a guaranteed job. Many of us ventured out on our own without support or jobs waiting, and we wanted to offer more to others.

Some of the issues you mention are beyond our control, but we do our best to match employer openings with participant preferences. It is difficult to find placements for large groups with one employer, which is why we recommended Sydney as being the best chance for finding work for 5 people. Employers generally do not like placing friends in the same department.

We were thrilled to find a 6-month placement for you as an Assistant Restaurant Manager– and were delighted that you agreed to start ahead of the group for this amazing opportunity. We had a unique opportunity to offer you an excellent salary for a short-term visa. The employer was very excited to have someone of your experience and skills. We have since placed another participant in the same role, and he is an enthusiastic referral and testimonial for this program. We were happy to find all your friends work and delighted to pay the referral fee to Frank because participant endorsement and referral is our greatest testimony of success. We’d love to have their feedback in person, so we can course correct and provide employer feedback. We’re sorry that one of your group cancelled, but we worked it out with the employer and refunded the fee to despite the fact that she cancelled after being offered the position.

Housing can be tricky as not all employers offer assistance and certain locations are easier than others to secure housing. We know that Tim on our staff worked very hard to help and when it became an issue, we enlisted an AAG partner (not a study abroad provider) to help us find furnished housing. We are making sure that we provide participants with a realistic view of the cost of living including housing in certain areas so that they can plan accordingly.

When you mentioned contacting a lawyer we could NEVER say we are pleased that you would need to resort to that or that we “love” or “welcome” the opportunity. In fact, our program director wanted to do everything he could to ensure that did not happen. In fact, he was deeply upset that you could have misunderstood that he said just the opposite! We don’t want negative feedback, but more importantly, we prefer that you are happy and satisfied with the experience as most of our participants are, including those still working and participating in our meetups and social groups. We’re sorry that you and your friends did not chose to participate in our regular meet ups because it’s a great way to connect and make friends and create a local network, so no one has to feel alone or lonely.

We’re troubled that in recent communication with one of our Program Coordinators for tax advice, you did not mention these complaints so we could have discussed them and straightened out any misunderstanding.

We do appreciate any chance to improve our services and we hope you chose to communicate with us directly.

We’re pleased that Australia was an amazing adventure and only wish you had a more favorable impression of AAG. We take your comments to heart and hope you return our calls and connect with us in person.