The Working Holiday Australia Visa: All You Need To Know

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The Working Holiday Visa for Australia is a great option for young people wanting to travel around Australia while still earning a buck.

The WHV Australia program, is suitable for international visitors under the age of 30, to enjoy an extended stay in Australia – therefore it mostly attracts gap year students, backpackers and people on a career break looking for a means to keep traveling.

It’s not only a way to earn money, but an opportunity to gain new skills, to live locally, and really experience life down under. You can immerse yourself in the culture, meet locals and form life long friendships.

From a career standpoint, the ability to gain new skills by performing different and unusual jobs, or by volunteering on worthwhile projects, can enhance any CV.

But if you’re not sure what you need to do to get the visa, and how to plan your new life in Aus, then keep reading for everything you need to know about this visa…

The Working Holiday Australia Visa Requirements

people on a boat with turquoise water and nearby island
Dolphin watching on Kangaroo Island

The general requirements in obtaining a WHV for Australia include the following items. Please ensure you tick all these boxes before putting in your Australian Working Holiday Visa application:

  • You must have turned 18, but not turned 31, at the time of your visa application
  • You must apply for the WHV Australia visa when you are outside of the country.
  • Your country must have eligibility
  • You can’t have entered the country on a WHV program before.
  • You must apply no more than 12 months before you intend to travel to Oz.
  • You must hold a valid passport for the country or region participating in the working holiday schemes.
  • You may need to show a copy of your birth certificate with your parents’ names
  • A clean record. Anyone with previous convictions may need to go to your embassy for an interview.
  • Be of good health. If you have any health conditions, you may be asked to do an interview at your embassy.
  • Visa fee = $635 Australian Dollars

Some key benefits of this visa are you can leave and re-enter as much as you like within those 12 months and you can enter the country at any time within 3 months of your visas grant date.

This is a temporary visa and is valid for one year, but can be renewed. You cannot apply for this visa if you are in Australia on a tourist visa as it’s activated upon entering the country.

How To Apply For Australian Working Holiday Visas

Sunset drinks at Uluru, Northern Territory, Australia
Sunset at Uluru

Before you can apply for the visa, you need to know which subclass you belong to.

The are actually two categories, subclass 417 and subclass 462, and it depends on which country you come from.

Subclass 417

The Working Holiday Maker Visa (Subclass 417) is available to people from the following countries:

  • United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
  • Belgium
  • Canada
  • Republic of Cyprus
  • Denmark
  • Estonia
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China (including British National Overseas Passport Holders)
  • Republic of Ireland
  • Italy
  • Japan
  • South Korea / Republic of Korea
  • Malta
  • Netherlands
  • Norway
  • Sweden
  • Taiwan

The benefits of this visa is that is allows you a bonus 2nd year.

Due to the high demand for workers in Australia’s harvest industry (farm work), anyone who works three months or more in an agricultural position can qualify to renew their visa for a 2nd Year.

The second working holiday visa costs $635 and allows you to stay for an additional year.

After 6 months on your second Australian working holiday visa, you can apply for a third year.

Subclass 462

a city skyline along the water
The iconic Sydney Opera House

The Work and Holiday Visa (Subclass 462) is for people from:

  • Argentina
  • Austria
  • Bangladesh
  • Ecuador
  • Chile
  • China
  • Czech Republic
  • Greece
  • Hungary
  • Indonesia
  • Israel
  • Luxembourg
  • Malaysia
  • Peru
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • San Marino
  • Singapore
  • Spain
  • Slovak Republic
  • Slovenia
  • Switzerland
  • Thailand
  • Turkey
  • Uruguay
  • USA
  • Vietnam

Where to Submit Your Application

Now you know which subclass to look for, you can apply for your visa online by filling in the simple online application form.

Be sure to have copies of the documents mentioned above to show immigration on arrival if you need to.

Click here to apply for subclass 417 and click here to apply for subclass 462.

How To Get Your Working Holiday Visa: Global Work and Travel in Australia

two people enjoying a Jacob's Creek Cooking Class, Barossa Valley, South Australia
Cooking class at Jacob’s Creek

Want to work and travel the easy way in Australia?

Since 2013, Global Work and Travel have been helping travelers work and fund their travels through cultural exchange programs both paid and unpaid.

One of the elements of a successful working holiday is to find local, seasonal employment to use as a means to fund your travels around the country. This is not easy. But, Global Work and Travel makes it so as they have spent years with hundreds of local businesses that do hire travellers.

We are enthusiastic partners of theirs as we believe in what they do, avid lovers of working abroad, and know they can help you!

They offer the complete package and, most importantly, help score you job interviews with awesome local businesses so you can stay longer and fund all your Australian adventures!

Their in-country team will help get you set up with all the essentials you need including working holiday visa application advice, transfers & accommodation, local experiences, an Aussie local bank account and mobile number, plus so much more.

Read our full post on Global Work and Travel here.

EXCLUSIVE DEAL: Just for our readers: $100 off your trip (whatever your currency) You must use the code: YTRAVEL
Click here to learn more and use your discount code!

Moving to Australia Tips

people siting on golden sand of Palm Beach
Palm Beach

Deciding to move to Australia is the easy part, and once you have submitted your application, now you’ve got to organize the actual move to Australia.

Here are some things to consider after the application process…

  • Open a Bank Account Pre-Arrival – Sorting out your finances before you leave can make life easier. There a three banks with international services that can help you. Try the HSBC, the Commonwealth Bank, or the ANZ.
  • Get a Tax File Number (TFN) – Before you start working in Australia, you need to get a tax file number. You can only complete this application once you are in Australia. Learn more by visiting the Australian Government Taxation website .
  • Do You Have to Lodge an Income Tax Return? – If you are working in Australia you need to determine whether you are an Australian resident for tax purposes. Non-residents pay tax differently from residents. Learn more here.
  • Healthcare Agreement – The Australian Government has signed Reciprocal Health Care Agreements (RHCA) with: United Kingdom, Sweden, Finland, Norway, the Netherlands, Belgium, Malta and Italy.

To enroll in the Australian Medicare System you will need the following items:

  • your diplomatic passport with a valid visa.
  • to provide, in some cases, identification showing you are enrolled in your country’s national health scheme.

If your application is approved, you will receive an Australian reciprocal health care card in the mail. Learn more here.

Note: If you have been living in Australia, intend leaving Australia soon, or have recently left Australia, there are things you need to do to get your tax affairs in order. Learn more here.

Finding a Place to Stay in Australia

Finding hostels, a flat-mate, a budget hotel, or other cheap accommodation is an important part of your working holiday Australia trip.

Depending on your budget, your comfort zone, your travel style, and your relationship status, there are many options for finding the right accommodation to suit your short term and long term needs.

1. Stay in a Hostel

a beach
Byron Bay main beach

When you first arrive in Australia and you need budget accommodation, a Hostel is a great place to start. They are cheap, everywhere, and a great place to meet other travellers and locals.

Use these sites to search:

2. Find a Flat or a Flat-Mate

Sharing a flat is another great budget option:

  • Gum Tree – a fantastic site for finding flats, units, apartments, and houses to rent.
  • Flatmate Finder – is a great resource to advertise yourself if you are looking for a room, or to find rooms that are already being advertised. Membership and advertising on Flatmate Finder is FREE!

3. Find a Cheap Hotel

people sitting on tables outside
View from YHA The Rocks, Sydney

There are several Hotel booking sites to compare hotel prices and facilities in Australia. Check out these sites:

4. VRBO (Vacation Rentals By Owner)

Vacation Rentals By Owner, or VRBO, is a great resource to find a vacation property, which can sometimes be cheaper than a hotel. Vacation rentals can also offer more space and privacy.

VRBO provide an online space for homeowners to advertise their vacation properties and make it easy for travelers to search 150,000+ rentals in over 100 countries worldwide.

5. Mind My House

Mind My House is a global house sitting matching service. They provide all the online tools for home owners and house sitters to find each other from around the globe (or around the corner).

Trusted Housesitters is one of the best platforms. We used it to find a pet sitter for our house on our European summer trip.

Finding Work in Australia

couple sitting on edge of cliff with views of kuri bay
Our work experience at Kuri Bay

Travel Jobs and backpacker jobs come in all shapes and sizes. Job agencies in Australia are plentiful and travel jobs for backpackers is a large industry.

Whether you want farm jobs, retail, hospitality, construction, nursing, engineering, childcare, or you want to go fruit picking Australia, chances are the opportunity is there for you.

Check these two posts: 20 ways to work and travel Australia and 5 of the best job opportunities in Australia

Below is a list of websites, job agencies, and jobs boards:

  • GumTree – Great job site for travelers. There is a Gum Tree site for every city.
  • Alseasons – Hospitalty Recruitment
  • Helpx – Listing of host organic farms, non-organic farms, farmstays, homestays, ranches, lodges, B&Bs, backpackers hostels and even sailing boats who invite volunteer helpers to stay with them short-term in exchange for food and accommodation.
  • Fruit Picking – find fruit picking work around Australia.
  • Harvest Trail – links job seekers with harvest jobs plus has seasonal info.
  • Jobs 4 Travelers – One of Australia’s Premier Backpackers jobs board!
  • Aussie Jobs – For a REAL Australian work experience based in Perth.
  • Mumbrella – Jobs for travelers around Australia
  • Travellers at Work – Job search club for working holiday visa holders and backpackers!
  • TNT Downunder
  • WWOOF – Willing Workers On Organic Farms. Work in exchange for your meals and accommodation!
  • Work Stay Australia – for working holiday makers in Oz!
  • Extra Man – For Mining, Marine, Engineering, Automotive, Construction & Hospitality Jobs they can help!
  • Hays Trades and Labour jobs – Construction jobs Australia wide.
  • Hays recruiting professionals. – If your a professional check out Hays!
  • The Largest Online Classified Job Sites are – Gum Tree, Job Search, Seek, MyCareer
  • Anywork Anywhere – jobs and resources for work around the world.
  • Conservation Volunteers – a diversity of important projects to protect and enhance our environment.

Nursing Jobs

Nurses with overseas qualifications first have to register with the Nurses Registration Board in the state you want to work in.

Visit the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia for info.

There are loads of nursing agencies to help you find a nursing job, such as Medistaff, Nursing Australia, and Healthcare Australia.

Teaching Jobs

Teachers are required to register with the Teacher Registration Board in each state they hope to work in. Once you have registered and verified your credentials, you can find job opportunities through their platforms.

Here are the dedicated websites for Teacher Registration for each territory: NSW, Victoria, Queensland, South Australia, Northern Territory.

Getting to Australia

woman surfboarding
Learning to surf at Bondi Beach in Sydney

There are several websites to start searching for cheap flights to Australia.

Once you arrive, all of Australia’s international airports have regular public transport such as bus, train and taxi connections to the CBD’s. For detailed information on all the airports see the Australian Airports Guide.

Flight Sites for Australia

Here is a list of websites to start searching for flights to Australia and within Australia:

Getting Around Australia

car driving on Emu Bay i
Emu Bay, Kangaroo Island

Australia is big, and how you get around depends on factors like your budget, the amount of time you have, and your traveling style.

Thankfully, there are options to satisfy all situations

Cars and Campervans for Sale & Rent:

Backpacker Bus Companies:


Australian Rail Passes offer unlimited train travel over certain periods of time. A great value in exploring Australia. With eight different passes available check out your options here.

More Australia Travel Tips

Here are some tips you’ll want to know before arriving in Australia

For insider travel tips on things to see and do, check out our city guide’s for:

We road tripped around Australia for 18 months and have in-depth articles on Australian destinations and travel tips. You can find all of them here. 

Have you experienced life on the Working Holiday Australia Visa? Let us know in the comments.

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