15 Things You Should Know When Applying For An Australian Working Holiday Visa
The Australian Working Holiday program is a great way to work and travel the length and breadth of this fabulous nation for one entire year. Here’s everything you need to know before applying for the Australian Working Holiday Visa.
1. Applying For A Working Holiday Visa
You can apply for your Working Holiday visa online or in person. You will need to fill out specific forms and provide documentary proof of education, age, financial status and so on. You will find all the forms you need on http://www.immi.gov.au/allforms/.
2. Understanding Eligibility
You must be between 18 to 30 years of age and your passport must be valid for at least a year until renewal. You must show sufficient funds to support yourself (AU$ 5,000). You must be clear of major health or character impediments (criminal records) and must speak English.
3. Understanding Visa Entitlements
You must enter Australia within 12 months of visa grant, and stay for a year. You can leave and re-enter Australia any number of times during the visa validity. You can work for a single employer for 6 months, and study or train for 4 months at a maximum.
4. Obtaining Professional Work License
If you are a construction worker, a health professional or a professional worker in any stream, please check with your Australian embassy if you need licensing and registration. You may need to submit to health and character checks for jobs that require you to work with children.
5. Understanding Job Entitlements
Even though you’ll be a temporary worker on a Working Holiday visa, you are entitled to the same pay, benefits and work conditions of Australian citizens. If you face a different situation, you can find with Fair Work Online or the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (DEEWR).
6. Undergoing Medical Tests
If you come from a country that has a high health risk of diseases, or if you have spent time in any high health risk country recently, you will have to undergo a medical examination. Again, if you plan to work in child care or health care, you will need to undergo HIV/Hepatitis B/Hepatitis C testing.
7. Labeling Your Passport With The Visa
By default, the visa label is not placed on your passport. However, it’s a good idea to ask for the visa label to be stamped on your passport to show to an employer. You can get the label stamped at the Visa Label desk at Sydney airport, or at any departmental office in Australia.
8. Demonstrating Your Visa’s Validity To Employers
Provide your prospective employer with your name, date of birth, passport number and country of issue. Your prospective employer can check your visa’s validity via the Entitlement Verification Online (EVO) service. Your employer needs your consent to check your visa validity.
9. Obtaining Health Insurance
Medical treatment can be very expensive in Australia. It is recommended that you obtain both health and travel insurance. Ask your visa bureau for a good insurance company and be sure to compare premiums and coverage before committing.
10. Carrying The Right Travel Documents
When you enter Australia, you must carry with you a document of identity (valid driver’s license, social security or identity card). You will also need a certificate of identity from your government, stating that you are who you are. Apart from this, you must keep your passport, your travel docs, letters of recommendations and other docs as advised.
11. Looking Out For Visa-Related Benefits
Based on the Working Holiday visa agreement, Australia provides facilities for people arriving from different countries. These may include travel passes, shelter, and discount coupons for food and so on. Check with the Australian immigration for the benefits you are eligible for, based on your country of origin.
12. Checking Out Allowed Entry Items
Australia is very specific about what people can bring into the country. Understand which items are prohibited and make sure you don’t take any of those by mistake. You might be denied entry and your visa might be revoked as well.
13. Extending Your Visa
You can apply for a second Working Holiday Visa if you work as a specified worker for 3 months in regional Australia. Specified work areas include animal cultivation, farming, tree farming and construction work. You can apply for the second visa while in Australia on your first visa.
14. Changing Your Visa Status
While on a Working Holiday visa, you can change your visa status to a Temporary Work Visa or any other visa if you are found eligible. If you plan on staying in Australia for a longer duration, you might want to explore these options before applying.
15. Retrieving Your Superannuation
Any employer you work with has to pay a certain amount of your salary towards your Superannuation account. You can access this savings when you leave Australia. For more information, check the Australian Taxation Office website.