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Australia’s Working Holiday Visas: Your Questions Answered


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AustraliaOnlineVisa
AustraliaOnlineVisa
[ January 22, 2020 ]
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Taking a working holiday in Australia is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. There’s so much to see, so many new people to meet and it could lead to a whole host of wonderful opportunities. If you’re considering a working holiday in Australia, NOW is the time to find out more about Australia’s working holiday visa options. 

Australia’s working holiday visas are designed to enable young people to take an extended holiday in Oz and work here to fund their trip - they’re perfect for a Gap Year.But, of course, there are some practical matters to consider first. Here we outline all the essential info you need.

Perhaps you’ve wondered how much a working holiday visa costs? How long does it last for? Are you eligible for a working holiday visa? Don’t worry - we answer all these questions and more in this blog post.

Let’s get started…

How much is an Australian Working Holiday Visa?

Right, let’s get down to business. How much will an Australian Working Holiday Visa cost you? There are two working holiday visas currently available for Australia: the Working Holiday Visa (subclass 417) and Work and Holiday Visa (subclass 462).

Both the Working Holiday 417 Visa and the Work and Holiday 462 Visa are currently $485 AUD

How long is a working holiday visa valid for?

Australia’s Working Holiday 417 Visa and Work and Holiday 462 Visa both last for 12 months. And during your stay in Australia on these visas you are allowed to do short term work to help pay for your trip.

These visas allow you to enter Australia no later than 12 months from the date they are granted. Both visas allow you to stay in Australia for 12 months from the date that you first enter Australia and you have the option to leave and return to Australia as many times as you like during your 12 month stay. 

How long does an Australian Working Holiday Visa take to process?

Visa processing times can vary and it’s best to apply at least six weeks before your trip if possible. However, the Department of Home Affairs currently states that 75% of applications for the Working Holiday 417 Visa are processed in 12 days and 90% of applications for this visa are processed in 35 days. 

75% of Work and Holiday 462 Visas are currently processed in 28 days and 90% of applications for this visa are processed in 48 days.

What is the difference between the Working Holiday 417 Visa and the Work and Holiday 462 Visa?

There are three main differences between Australia’s two working holiday visas:

Country of origin

To be eligible for a Working Holiday 417 Visa you must hold a passport from one of these countries:

  • 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.

Passports from the following countries are eligible for a Work and Holiday 462 Visa:

  • Argentina
  • Austria
  • Chile
  • China, People's Republic
  • Czech Republic
  • Ecuador
  • Greece
  • Hungary
  • Indonesia
  • Israel
  • Luxembourg
  • Malaysia
  • Peru
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • San Marino
  • Singapore
  • Slovak Republic
  • Slovenia
  • Spain
  • Thailand
  • Turkey
  • Uruguay
  • United States of America
  • Vietnam

Educational requirement

Australia’s Work and Holiday 462 Visa has educational requirements for applicants.

Applicants from the majority of countries eligible for this visa are required to have completed a tertiary qualification (including degrees, graduate certificates or diplomas) or 2 years of undergraduate university study.

Applicants from Chile are required to have tertiary qualifications or have completed or been approved to do a third year of undergraduate university study. Israeli applicants must hold a Senior Secondary Certificate of Education and have either completed military service or be legally exempt from military service. Applicants from Thailand must have either a Diploma or a Degree.

Applicants from the United States of America must have a Senior Secondary Certificate of Education or equivalent.

The Working Holiday 417 Visa does not have educational requirements.

English language level

To be eligible for a Work and Holiday 462 Visa you must have at least Functional English language skills.

This means you must meet one of the following criteria:

  • you are a citizen of and hold a valid passport issued by the United Kingdom, the United States of America, Canada, New Zealand or the Republic of Ireland, or;
  • you have completed a relevant approved English language test or assessment, or;
  • you have completed relevant education.

Further details on accepted English language tests and assessments and relevant education levels are available on the Australian Department of Home Affairs website.

How much money do I need to enter Australia?

To be eligible for the Working Holiday 417 Visa or a Work and Holiday 462 Visa you must have enough money to support yourself during your time in Australia and to enable you to leave Australia at the end of your visit. This is usually around $5,000 AUD for your initial stay, plus your onward fare to your destination when you leave Australia.

Can I get a Working Holiday Visa to Australia if I’m over 30 years old?

This depends largely on your country of origin. You must be aged 18 to 30 when you apply for a Working Holiday 417 Visa or Work and Holiday 462 Visa. If you apply for either of these visas while you are 30, but turn 31 before the Department of Home Affairs have made a decision, you can still be granted the visa.

However, applicants for the Working Holiday 417 Visa with passports from Canada, France or the Republic of Ireland can be aged 18 to 35 years old.

If you’re a Canadian, French or Irish citizen and you apply for this visa when you’re 35, but turn 36 before the Department have made a decision, you can still be granted the visa.

Can I travel to Australia on a one-way ticket?

You don’t need to have a return ticket when you arrive in Australia, but immigration officers need to feel confident that working holiday visa holders intend to leave Australia and have the financial means to do so before their visa expires. 

You must be able to show sufficient funds for a return or onward fare and enough money to support you during the first part of your holiday - usually a minimum of $5,000 AUD.

Can I enter Australia whilst waiting for a Working Holiday 417 Visa?

We recommend that you don’t book flights to Australia until you receive your working holiday visa. The Department of Home Affairs won’t reimburse people whose visa applications were unsuccessful or finalised later than expected.

You must apply for, and be granted, your Working Holiday 417 Visa (and Work and Holiday 462 Visa) from outside Australia. It is possible to travel to Australia on a temporary tourist visa whilst you are waiting for your working holiday visa to be finalised, but you must be outside Australia when the visa is granted or your visa may be refused. So, we highly recommend that you wait outside Australia until your working holiday visa is approved.

Can an Indian citizen apply for a Working Holiday Visa to Australia?

Unfortunately Indian citizens are currently ineligible for both the Working Holiday 417 Visa and the Work and Holiday 462 Visa. However, it’s worth keeping an eye on this situation as the Australian Government announced last year that it’s negotiating a Work and Holiday visa arrangement with India. 

Can I get a second Working Holiday Visa for Australia?

Yes, it’s possible to apply for a second (and third) working holiday visa to Australia. There are second and third visa options for both the Working Holiday 417 Visa and the Work and Holiday 462 Visa. 

The Second Working Holiday 417 Visa and Second Work and Holiday 462 Visa enable people aged 18 to 30 years old (and Canadian, French and Irish citizens aged 18 to 35 years old under the 417 Visa) who currently hold, or who have held, a Working Holiday 417 Visa or Work and Holiday 462 Visa, to have a second working holiday in Australia.

You must have a passport from an eligible country or jurisdiction to be eligible for a second working holiday visa. You can do any kind of work whilst in Australia under a second working holiday visa. However, you must have completed 3 months of specified work whilst holding your first Working Holiday 417 Visa or Work and Holiday 462 Visa.

The same criteria apply for the third working holiday visa options. But, you must have completed 6 months of specified work while holding your second 417 Visa or 462 Visa.

Second and third visas for both the 417 Visa and 462 Visa cost $385 AUD.

Specified work is work that is carried out in a specified field or industry in a designated area of northern or regional Australia. It includes plant and animal cultivation, fishing and pearling and tree farming and felling. Tourism and hospitality are also included as specified work for the 462 Visa and mining and construction are included as specialised work for the 417 Visa.

Voluntary work won’t be accepted for the purpose of applying for a second or third Working Holiday 417 Visa or Work and Holiday 462 Visa.


Interested in applying for a working holiday visa to Australia? 

If you’d like to apply for one of Australia’s working holiday visas, or have any further questions please get in touch with our expert global migration team today. We can advise you on the most suitable visa for your needs and help you to quickly and easily lodge your application.

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