Recently there has been a lot of changes to the Australian Working Holiday Visa. This includes the Subclass 417 and 472 visas.
The biggest of which is that applicants may be eligible extend for a 3rd year Working Holiday Visa AND applicants from certain countries can now apply for the Australian Working Holiday Visa up to the age of 35. Although these were the biggest changes, However, there were numerous other changes recently as well such as: additional regional areas, an increase in countries eligible for the WHV and an increased specification of what is classified as regional work.
3rd Year Working Holiday Visa
Starting from 1 July 2019, applicants will be able to extend their second working holiday visa by one more year. But wait, as opposed to the second year, the third working holiday visa will require 6 MONTHS of regional specified work. 6 months! That’s a really long time to be regional. The main reason for the introduction of the 3rd working holiday visa was to help farmers find employees to work.
Currently, to apply for the second working holiday visa, applicants are required to do 88 days of regional work. If you wanted to apply for the 3rd year WHV, you would then need to do an additional 6 months of regional work whilst on your second working holiday visa. The availability of a third-year visa will attract working holiday makers to work for longer in regional Australia.
The types of work which will allow you to extend for your third-year visa can be found here. But an overview of the suitable work can be found below:
- the harvesting and/or packing of fruit and vegetable crops
- pruning and trimming vines and trees
- general maintenance crop work
- cultivating or propagating plants, fungi or their products or parts
- immediate processing of plant products
- maintaining animals for the purpose of selling them or their bodily produce
- immediate processing of animal products including shearing, butchery, packing and tanning
- manufacturing dairy products from raw material.
Increase in Age to 35
Immigration now also allows applicants from Ireland and Canada to apply for the working holiday visa up to the age of 35! Applicants from all other eligible countries can still only apply from 18 – 30. However, the age is expected to increase for a lot of other countries in the future too.
Currently, the government has given no indication about which countries will also increase the age to 35. However, the program is reciprocal, so if your home country currently allows Australians a WHV up to the age of 35, then there is a good chance the Aus Government will increase the age for your country too.
New Areas Classified as Regional
The Australian Government has increased the regional areas where you can work in order to extend your visa. Additional areas of Australia represented by their postcodes for New South Wales, Norfolk Island, Queensland, South Australia, Victoria, Western Australia and Tasmania have been included as of November and applicants are strongly encouraged to visit the Home Affairs website to familiarise with the new arrangements. Work carried out in these additional areas must only be for the additional kinds of work. The additional kinds of work are for plant and animal cultivation including:
- harvesting and/or packing of fruit and vegetable crops;
- pruning and trimming vines and trees;
- general maintenance crop work;
- cultivating or propagating plants, fungi or their products or parts;
- immediate processing of plant products;
- maintaining animals for the purpose of selling them or their bodily produce, including natural increase;
- immediate processing of animal products including shearing, butchery, packing and tanning;
- manufacturing dairy products from raw material.
Immigration now stricter on what documentation must be provided for the second year working holiday visa
There is no doubt that over the last 12 months Immigration has been a lot more specific about which documentation must be provided to demonstrate the regional work. From what we see, a lot more Australian working holiday visas.
- Be sure specified work that you do meets the requirements
- Also, ensure you provide the correct evidence for this work
- Ensure you calculate your days correctly
Acceptable evidence of specified work is:
- original or certified copies of pay slips and
- a completed employment verification form (form 1263) signed by the employer
Easier to apply
Immigration has streamlined the visa process for many applicants. Previously, numerous countries have to provide paper applications to their closest Immigration Office. This now allows for online lodgment for countries such as Austria, Chile, Czech Republic, Hungary, the State of Israel, Luxembourg, Peru, Poland, Portugal, San Marino and Slovenia. When applying for their first Work and Holiday visa (Subclass 462) , applicants from these countries must now apply online using Form 1208(Internet).
All Working Holiday Visa (Subclass 417) applications must be made by using Internet Form 1150
- Applicants may work with the same agricultural employer from six to 12 months.
- The Visa Application Charge for a Working Holiday Visa is $450 (*price correct as of 11 Dec 2018). Like anything, this cost is only expected to increase into the future.