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The Department of Immigration and Border Protection allows young people to come to Australia for a holiday and to work to support themselves during their stay through the grant of a Working Holiday Visa (WHV) (Subclass 417). This temporary visa is granted for up to one year and allows people (who are at least 18 but not yet 31 years of age) to holiday, work and study in Australia as long as the main purpose of their stay is the holiday. We will discuss the eligibility, application and obligations of the working holiday maker below.


There are some requirements which must be met to be eligible for a WHV which include:

  • You must not have previously entered Australia on a Work and Holiday (Temporary) Visa (Subclass 462);
  • You must hold a passport valid for a country involved in the Australia Working Holiday Program;
  • You must have enough money to support yourself on a working holiday and to buy a return ticket;
  • You must not be accompanied by dependent children at any time during your stay; and
  • You must satisfy health and character requirements.

Application for Working Holiday Visa

There are a number of steps in the application process for the grant of a WHV which includes:

  • Prepare the documents necessary to prove the claims you make in the application including evidence of employment, personal identification and evidence of sufficient funds;
  • Lodge your application online, by post or in person;
  • Receive confirmation that your application and documents have been received;
  • Track and manage your application;
  • Wait for a decision which is usually six days for your first Working Holiday Visa application;
  • Provide more information if required;
  • Report changes in your circumstances including, for example, your address, relationship status or death;
  • Withdraw your application if required;
  • Receive a decision as to whether your visa was granted or refused; and
  • Use the visa or exercise your review rights if you have any within the time limit for lodging an appeal.

Obligations of the WHV Holder

You are obligated to comply with Australian law and all of the conditions set out in your visa. These include but are not limited to:

  • Holidaying in Australia for up to twelve months;
  • Studying for a maximum period of four months; and
  • Working for a maximum period of six months with one employer.

It is possible to extend this period beyond six months with the permission of the Department of Immigration and Border Protection. This will only be given in limited circumstances except in certain industries such as Aged and Disability Care, Agriculture, Construction, Mining, Tourism, Hospitality in northern Australia.

Second Working Holiday Visa

If you have complied with the conditions of your first WHV, you will be eligible to apply for a second WHV if you have not previously held more than one WHV and have completed three months of specified work in regional Australia. This work includes plant and animal cultivation, fishing and pearling, tree farming and felling, mining as well as construction. This has the added benefit of addressing regional labour shortages.


Are you interested in coming to Australia for a holiday and working to support yourself while you are here? Get in touch by filling out the form or calling 1300 544 755.


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