Work and Holiday Visas to Australia

WORK AND HOLIDAY VISAS IN AUSTRALIA

Similar to a Working Holiday visa (subclass 417), the Work and Holiday visa (subclass 462), which is part of the Australian Working Holiday Maker (WHM) program, also enables a person to work while they are travelling in Australia. The working holiday maker program was introduced in 2003, and today a sizeable number of applicants acquire a Work and Holiday (subclass 462) visa each year.

The Work and Holiday Visa (subclass 462)

For young individuals from nations that had not yet signed Working Holiday (subclass 417) partner agreements, the Government started the Work and Holiday (subclass 462) visa category in 2003. This category has extra criteria that needs to be satisfied by the applicants (compared to the subclass 417).

From 2006 onwards, this category has been used to negotiate all new partner agreements. Thailand, Chile, Turkey, the United States of America (USA), Indonesia, and Malaysia were among the first signatories. China, Spain and Slovenia are more recent program additions and  Papua New Guinea (PNG) the most recent additions, in 2011.

There are other conditions as well for the Work and Holiday visa (subclass 462). For instance, applicants must demonstrate Functional English (excluding those coming from USA), tertiary qualifications, and a letter of support from their home government (for some countries). Individuals from the below list of countries do not need to provide a letter of support:

  1. Argentina
  2. Austria
  3. Chile
  4. Czech Republic
  5. Hungary
  6. Israel
  7. China
  8. Portugal
  9. Slovak Republic
  10. Spain
  11. Singapore
  12. United States of America
  13. Vietnam

It must also be noted that the total number of visas available under this scheme each year is capped across all nations (apart from the US). Click here for more information about the status of the country-wise visa caps.

Eligibility for Work and Holiday Visa (subclass 462)

Work and Holiday Visa (subclass 462) applications are accepted if:

  1. You are between 18 to 30 years old.
  2. You have the necessary education (Click here for the educational requirements for each country).
  3. You accepted Australia’s values statement.
  4. You haven’t previously held a 462 visa.
  5. You are a citizen of one of the following nations:
  • Argentina
  • Austria
  • Chile
  • China
  • 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

Click here to read more about the current eligibility criteria for a 462 visa.

More about Work and Holiday Visa (subclass 462)

From 2016, all holders of Work and Holiday (subclass 462) visas are able to apply for a second 462 visa. If you have had a first-year working holiday Working Holiday visa (subclass 417) or Work and Holiday visa (subclass 462), then you are eligible to apply for a second year Work and Holiday Visa under the Australian WHM program.

This visa, and the first-year working holiday visa, are extremely similar in that they both enable you to work while on vacation in Australia, but they also differ in a few critical ways. You must fulfil a few requirements and start the process from scratch if you want to apply for your Work and Holiday visa (subclass 462) a second time; you cannot merely extend your first visa.

Eligibility for Second Work and Holiday Visa (subclass 462)

According to the criteria specified here, you must work in one of a few predetermined sectors to be eligible for a second year working holiday visa.  Tree farming and felling in Northern Australia, construction in Northern Australia and a few other designated regional locations, fishing and pearling in Northern Australia, cultivation of plants and animals in Northern Australia, tourism and hospitality in Northern Australia, work to recover after declared bushfires limited to those affected regions (after 31 July 2019), and  lastly, work connected to COVID-19 in the medical and healthcare sectors anywhere in Australia (after 31 January 2020).

It’s important to keep in mind that you can undertake any sort of employment while on your first 462 visa, but if you intend to apply for a second-year visa, you must have worked in one of the specified occupations.

To be eligible for this second 462 visa, you must have completed a minimum of 3 months or 88 days (including weekends and other “equivalent rest days”) of work in the above-mentioned sectors as well. This second 462 visa, if granted, will essentially grant an additional 12 months after the expiry of the first 462 visa. All the other details including application fees, processing times, etc. will be the same as the process for the first 462 visa.

Eligibility for Third Work and Holiday Visa (subclass 462)

You can also apply for a third year 462 visa if you wish to work and visit in Australia for a longer period. In other words, if you previously had a first-year 462 visa, followed by a second-year 462 visa, you can now apply for a third-year visa under the same subclass.

The same requirements that you fulfilled to obtain your first year and second year visas must be satisfied again. The only difference is that this time, rather than only 3, you must provide evidence that you spent 6 months or 179 days working at a specific job under the same parameters as the second-year visa.

Things to Remember

The cost applying for a 462 visa is AUD510. You must pay this fee in order to apply. Most applications for a work and vacation visa (462) will Be processed in under 2 weeks. Please remember that the study limitation on the 462 visa is 4 months.

If you are from a country where you may apply for a visa 462 online, please be aware that paper applications will not be accepted. However, the Department also provides this paper application form if you are unable to submit your application online. Note that you must submit a paper application in person at an Australian visa office if you are a citizen of the People’s Republic of China and seeking a visa under subclass 462.

Additionally, if you participated in bushfire recovery as a volunteer at any time during the duration of the 462 visa, applicants for second-year and third-year 462 visas must include a letter from the host organisation or your volunteer supervisor,  an outline of the voluntary effort that you undertook, postal codes and the location where you performed the work, and the number of volunteer days you put in, along with the other documents.

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