Working Holiday in Australia

Australia in your gap year

Going to Australia for your gap year and working abroad is extremely popular with backpackers from many countries including the UK, Canada, Italy, Denmark, Netherlands, German, France and Sweden. Taking a 1 year Working holiday in Australia is an amazing way to experience living in Australia with its incredible beaches, amazing outback scenery, vibrant cities – such as Sydney and Melbourne, and a super laid back lifestyle.

There is a never ending stream of questions about getting an Australia Working holiday visa in our inbox every day so we have collected all the main questions we get asked here.

U. works with amazing local partners to offer you the following gap year programs:

Become a jackaroo/jillaroo. Everything you need including bank account, tax number, and training to get a job in rural Australia.


Start your Working Holiday in Australia’s biggest city, and get everything you need to not only get a job but get settled and earn some good travel money

Get bank account, tax number, job hunting assistance and an amazing time getting settled in one of funkiest cities anywhere in the world.

What is an Australian Working Holiday visa?

Is there a difference between an Australia Working Holiday visa and an Australia 417 visa?

It might seem a bit confusing as there are many types of visas. The one you will be needing is called the “Working Holiday Visa”, subclass 417. They are the same thing.


Do you also need an Australian work permit?

No, a Working Holiday visa is your right to work – it is an Australian work permit. However, a Working Holiday visa has certain rules around it. In particular, it only allows you to do short-term work in Australia to help pay for your holiday. The maximum you can work for one employer is 6 months consecutively.

Applying for an Australian Working Holiday visa

How do I apply for a Working Holiday visa for Australia?
Applying for an Australian Working Holiday visa is super easy. Everything is done online. You can find all the details and process here.

How far in advance should I apply for my Australian Working Holiday visa?
The application process can take anything from a few days to six weeks. You should apply easily as the one-year visa does not start until you arrive in Australia. When writing this guide the Australian immigration site says that 25% of visas are processed within 24 hours.

How much is a Working Holiday visa for Australia?
Applying for your Working Holiday visa will cost you AUD$510

Can I apply for a Working Holiday visa in Australia?
No, you must apply for your visa online from outside Australia.

What are the Australian working visa requirements?

  • You must be between 18-30 years old
  • You must have a passport from an eligible country
  • You must not be accompanied by dependent children
  • You need to show you have $5,000 AUD in your bank account to prove you can provide for yourself during your stay (you might need to show this at the airport when you arrive)

Can I study in Australia on my Working Holiday visa?
You can also study for up to 4 months, so it’s perfect to do some short classes if you want.

Who can apply for a Working Holiday visa for Australia? 
You must be a citizen of and hold a valid passport from one of these countries/jurisdictions:

  • 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
  • Republic of Korea
  • Malta
  • Netherlands
  • Norway
  • Sweden
  • Taiwan (other than an official or diplomatic passport)
  • The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

Second and more Working Holiday visas

Can I extend my Australia Working Holiday visa?
Once there everyone loves Australia. In fact, it has to be one of the most asked questions we get from travellers on their first-year visa: “Can I get a second working holiday visa?” The great news is the answer is yes! BUT getting this visa requires that during your first 12 months, you work in “specified work”.


Specified work is any type of work described below which must be the primary role, function or activity performed during your employment. Supporting work, such as bookkeeping, in any industry described in the list below, does not meet the definition of specified work:

  • Tourism and hospitality in northern or remote and very remote Australia
  • Plant and animal cultivation in regional Australia
  • Fishing and pearling in regional Australia
  • Tree farming and felling in regional Australia
  • Mining in regional Australia
  • Construction in regional Australia
  • Disaster recovery work such as after the bushfires, recent floods and of course during COVID-19


The Australian Government will occasionally add jobs and volunteer work like the above which you can contribute to which will count toward your three months’ specified work. The U. Farm work experience program helps you get jobs that qualify you for your second and third Working Holiday visas.


How many Working Holiday visas can I get for Australia?
The maximum number of Working Holiday visas you can get is 3. Thereafter, you will need to apply for an Australian work permit which means you have a sponsored job or can apply based on skills shortage categories.


How do I apply for my second Working Holiday visa?
Like the first visa it can take up to 40 days to approve – so plan in advance. The second and third Working Holiday visa applications also both cost AUD$ 510 each. You can apply for these visas while in Australia.

Farm work in Australia

Working on a farm in Australia can be a truly amazing adventure for anyone not scared of a little hard work and wanting to get close and personal with real Aussie culture.


Does farm work include accommodation?
Many employers will provide food and accommodation, superannuation and work medical cover – plus the legal minimum wage. You can save as much as $10,000 every 3 months if you choose the right job. That is €6.000!!!

Tax and your Working Holiday visa

Can I claim my tax back from my Australia Working Holiday visa?
For some reason, there is this rumour that there is a different backpacker tax in Australia. This is not really true. The tax rate for a Working Holiday maker is 15% for the first AUD$37,000 you make in a tax year (from July 1st to June 30th). When you have passed AUD$37,000 the tax rate will increase. You are also eligible for superannuation, which is the Australian pension fund scheme. Your employer is legally required to make contributions also.

Working Holiday in New Zealand

Can I work in New Zealand with an Australia Working Holiday visa?
No, even though Australians and New Zealanders are free to work in each other’s countries, as a Working Holiday maker you need a separate Working Holiday visa for each country. There is no restriction however stopping you from first working in Australia for a year and then applying for a Working Holiday visa for New Zealand. It is a great way to work and travel around the world. For some countries, there is also the option for Working Holiday visas in Canada.

U. offers the following Working Holiday programmes in New Zealand:

Get bank account, tax number, job hunting assistance and an amazing time getting settled in Christchurch, the city of the future, or base yourself in the adrenalin-party capital of world, Queenstown!


New Zealand is on nearly everyone’s bucket list and what better way to experience the Kiwi super chilled out adventure lifestyle than by getting a job and living like a local. Sailing, mountain biking or surfing in the weekend, BBQs with friends in the evening and a cafe scene second to none anywhere in the world.


Australia travel

Can I also travel around Australia with my Working Holiday visa?
The Australian Working Holiday visa is intended to be used to earn money for going on backpacking trips in Australia. You are expected to work in short-term jobs and then travel around Australia either in between your jobs or after working for some months. Remember, you can only work for one employer for a maximum of six months.


Can I go back to Australia after having a Working Holiday visa?
Yes, of course. You can always travel on a visitor visa or apply for a second Working Holiday visa in the future.


Can I leave Australia during my Working Holiday?
Yes, you can come and go as much as you want during your 1 year Working Holiday visa. Maybe, you want to go on a group trip to New Zealand or travel by yourself to Fiji and then return to Australia and work some more. This is very normal for those doing their gap years.


How long can I stay in Australia after a Working Holiday visa?
You can not overstay the length specified on your Working Holiday visa. Staying longer than you are allowed may lead to you being not allowed to visit Australia in the future.


Should I travel to the East Coast of Australia?
The East Coast of Australia is everyone’s favourite Australia backpacking route. It has everything Australia is famous for – amazing white sand beaches; endless islands to explore by kayak or sailing; beautiful reefs for snorkelling and diving; great party towns like Byron Bay and Airlie Beach; and so much amazing indigenous culture to immerse yourself in. Most backpackers working on their gap year will choose either an east coast group tour, hire a car or camper van, or travel with their new friends (met in Australia) on an independent itinerary. It is also very popular to do an East Coast tour before starting work as a way to find out where you might want to work. While it might be argued that there are more backpacker jobs in Sydney and Melbourne, once you get out of the main cities, there are so many cool beach jobs or jobs working in bars in smaller tourist towns.


Are their trips for group travel in Australia?
Australia has been one of the world’s most popular backpacker destinations for a very long time, and as such, has many different types of group tours. From a basic group trip where you pay for everything as you go to the U. style trips which include more unique experiences. Consider not only travelling up the East Coast of Australia. Group travel in the Northern Territory and Western Australia is amazing.


Is it safe to solo travel in Australia?
Australia is very much like the main cities in Europe and North America. If you are sensible it is a very safe destination. Of course, we advise you to take the same precautions you would at home: don’t wander around late at night by yourself in low-light areas; don’t leave your personal belongings unattended; be discrete with your wallet – but generally, Australians are very friendly and very laid back people.


Are there travel jobs in Australia if you have a Working Holiday visa?
The travel industry is one of the most popular places for backpackers to work on their gap year in Australia. So many travel companies are always looking for great people to work in hotels and hotels, tourist bars and restaurants, or the experiences like sailing boats in the Whitsundays. If you love travelling and are looking to combine this with your Working Holiday finding a job somewhere on the East Coast is a really good option.


How much does it cost to fly to Australia?
It will cost you between €1,100 and €2,500 for a return flight to Australia. The cost will depend on when you fly – the high season is between November and March, if you choose to add on a stopover in South East Asia or if you want to also have your flight going to New Zealand. A lot of backpackers will buy a flight that goes around the world with stops in Thailand or Bali and New Zealand.

Explore our amazing U.Trips to Australia here: 

The incredible trip includes Surf Camp, amazing scenery, gourmet delights, and pristine beaches in NSW. Then its wildlife encounters, laid-back vibes, 4WD adventures, lush forests, vibrant coral reefs and the rich traditions of the First Nations people in Queensland.


Master your surfing skills in just three days then, explore Sydney, the Blue Mountains, Hunter Valley, a Koala Sanctuary, and scenic landscapes on this beachy, quick Aussie escapade.


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Australia Working Holiday