The Working Holiday Visa (Subclass 417 or 462) is a temporary visa allowing young people aged 18 to 30 (to 35 for Canadians, Irish and French) to travel and work in Australia for up to one year. You can renew this visa up to 2 times (conditions apply).
Update – Age limit to be increased to 35 for UK passport holders by 1st July 2022.
What is the WHV (Working Holiday Visa)?
The Working Holiday Visa (subclass 417) and (subclass 462) is a temporary visa for travellers who wish to work and study in Australia. It is limited for a period of one year and renewable over 2 years under certain conditions. This visa is available to travellers who are between 18 and 31 years old (35 for French, Irish and Canadian). The price of the visa is $495. Travellers under the WHV plan are subject to 15% tax if their income does not exceed $37,000 annually. The superannuation (retirement) is taxed at 65%.
Working Holiday Visa – Requirements (417 & 462)
1. Have not previously entered Australia on a Work and Holiday visa (subclass 462, 417)
2. Hold a valid passport from a country involved in the Working Holiday Program with Australia
3. Have turned 18 years of age but have not yet turned 31 (up to 35 years old for Canadian, Irish and French citizens soon 35 for UK passport holders)
4. Have enough funds to support yourself (about $5000)
5. Do not have dependent children at any time during your stay
6. Be outside Australia when making this application.
Depending on your nationality you might be eligible for a 417 (Working Holiday Visa) or 462 (Work and Holiday Visa).
To obtain or renew a working holiday visa you must pay the sum of $495.
You must also prove that you have sufficient financial resources to remain living in Australia for an extended period and to leave Australia at the end of your trip.
The sum required is $5,000. When applying for a visa online, you will need to prove that you have this amount in your account with a bank statement or a screenshot of your online account. You can also add a Word document where you certify that you have this amount in your account (letter in English).
You must not have previously travelled to Australia on the following visas:
- Working Holiday visa (subclass 417)
- Work and Holiday visa (subclass 462)
Australia has fairly strict health standards. Questions about your health will be asked when you apply for a visa. Depending on your answers and your country of origin, medical examinations may be required.
To be eligible you must:
- Not have and not have had tuberculosis
- Not having been in contact with a person with tuberculosis
- Not have taken an X-ray indicating an abnormality in the lungs
To be eligible, you must not plan treatment during your trip for:
- A blood disease
- Heart disease
- Hepatitis B, C or other disease of the faith
- HIV / AIDS
- Kidney disease
- Mental illness
- Respiratory disease
To find out if the validation of your visa is subject to obtaining a medical examination, you must:
- Log into your account ImmiAccount
- Go on your request
- Click on the “View health assessment” link in the “Applications Status” section
- If you need to take a medical examination you will find a link “Organize health examinations”
- Click on the link and complete your medical history
To be eligible for the WHV, you must meet legal and personality criteria. Thus, in certain very specific cases, your request could be considered as non-eligible. You could, therefore, be ineligible if:
- You have a criminal record
- You have been found guilty of ‘escape from an immigrant detention centre , or sentenced for an offence you have committed:
- While in immigration detention
- While escaping from immigration detention
- After an escape, but before being returned to immigration detention
- You are or have been a member of a group or organization, or were or have an association with a person, group or organization suspected of being involved in criminal conduct
- You have been involved in trafficking of persons, genocide, a war crime, a crime against humanity, a crime involving torture or slavery , or a crime considered to be of grave international concern, whether you have been convicted of such an offense
- Your past and present criminal or general conduct shows that you are not of good character, there is a risk that while you are in Australia:
- You are engaging in criminal conduct
- You harass, molest, intimidate or stalk another person
- You vilify a segment of the Australian community
- You incite discord in the Australian community or any part of it
- You represent a danger to the community Australian or any part of it
- You have been convicted, convicted or a charge has been proven for one or more child sexual offences
- You have been subjected to an adverse security assessment by the Australian Security Intelligence Organization
- You are subject to an interpol search which proves that you represent a direct or indirect risk to the Australian community or a segment of the Australian community
Documents to provide (option)
These elements can be verified by questions at the time of your visa application. Depending on your answers you may be asked to:
- Provide a police certificate
- Fill out the personal data form 80 for the assessment of your personality
- Complete a statutory declaration of character
- Provide a military certificate (if you have served more than one year)
- Provide a letter of good conduct from an employer.
In case of refusal for legal reasons
If your visa is refused for the reasons set out above you can appeal to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT).
Commitment to respect Australian values and laws
At the end of your visa application, you must certify that you have learned about Australian values and that you agree to respect them. These are the principles and values of Australian society.
Working Holiday Visa – Your rights
The WHV allows you to work in Australia freely, whether full-time, part-time or even as a freelancer. However, with the same employer, you are limited to a period of 6 months. If you want to extend with the same employer you will need to contact to the government. This 6-month limit applies for full-time, part-time, casual and volunteer employment. In addition, the 6 months are calculated from the start date of your contract. The working time that you have accumulated is not taken into account.
You can nevertheless work with the same employer for more than 6 months under certain conditions:
You can work:
- For hotels of the same chain in different premises
- For independent franchises in different locations
- For state schools and health establishments at different addresses
- In 2 different orchards belonging to the same company
- For a subsidiary of your company whose ABN is different
- For companies of the same employer who have different ABNs
- As a self-employed person if you provide your services to several companies during this period
- For independent franchises, even if they operate under the same trade name
You can work:
- In the harvesting and / or packaging of fruits and vegetables
- In the pruning of vines and trees (main task and directly associated with the cultivation and commercial sale of plant products)
- In crop maintenance work
- In the primary processing of plant products
- In the primary processing of products of animal origin (shearing, butchery, packaging and tanning)
- In the production of dairy products from raw materials
- Breeding of animals for the purpose of selling them
The areas of activity concerned are:
- Care for the elderly and disabled
- Fishing and pearling
- Arboriculture and felling
- The construction
There are certain exceptions for each area of activity. For more details inquire at government site.
- construction, farming, or any other work in association with recovery or restitution of land, property, farm animals or wildlife
- providing support services or assistance to people living, working or volunteering in the affected areas.
Examples of eligible specified work in bushfire recovery:
Your other rights
- Stay in Australia for a period of 12 months with the possibility of leaving and entering the territory as many times as you wish.
- You have the possibility to renew your visa twice under certain conditions.
Working Holiday Visa 417 – How to apply
You are under 31 years of age and want to travel and work in Australia? Here is how to apply for a Working Holiday Visa:
- Login to www.homeaffairs.gov.au/Trav/Visa/Appl/Working-holiday
- Go to “Start an application”
- Create an account on the site “Create an ImmiAccount”
- Click the first link of the table “First Working Holiday Visa”
- Complete the form (about 15 min).
- Pay online $495 non-refundable (price as at Oct 2021)
- Once payment is made, you will receive a TRN (Transaction Reference Number) that you need to keep – You can track and follow your application online through your immi account.
The timeframe for obtaining a visa is quite uncertain. Thus, it is sometimes granted in just 24 hours but can also take around 1 month. According to Australian immigration, 75% of Working Holiday visas are issued within 17 days. And in 90% of cases, in less than 42 days (for a first request).
Note that under certain conditions, you can obtain a 2nd and then a third working holiday visa for two additional years in Australia!
Renew your Working Holiday Visa in Australia
For those who wish, you can apply for a second year visa to extend your stay for another year.
1. Be between 18 and 31 at the time of application (before your 31st birthday)
Note : Canadians, Irish and French citizens can apply up to 35 years old
English citizens will be able to apply up to 35 yo by July 2022
2. Valid passport
3. Have completed three months or 88 days of specified work in regional Australia while on your first Working Holiday visa
4. Have complied with all the conditions on your first Working Holiday visa
Eligible regions and jobs
To find out the list of eligible regions, see our dedicated article: Eligible regions to renew your WHV. Certain regions are EXCLUDED from the list including the surroundings of large cities (Sydney, Melbourne, Perth, etc.). It is therefore important to check carefully before starting a job.
To find out which jobs are eligible for renewal, see our dedicated article: Eligible Jobs to renew your WHV.
The request for the second WHV, can be made from Australia or outside the country. If you are applying from Australia, you will need to stay in the country pending the immigration decision. If you are applying outside the country, you will have to wait for the decision before you can re-enter the country.
And if you get a second Working Holiday visa, don’t forget to extend your health insurance.
Do a third year WHV
As of July 1, 2019, Working holiday visa holders can do the third year in Australia. The condition is to complete 6 months of work in regional areas while they are on their second WHV visa (417 or 462). The types of jobs and eligible regional areas are the same as for obtaining a second visa. Finally, the price of the visa is the same as for a 1st and second WHV, namely $495.
Important: The 6 months of eligible work in rural areas must be completed after July 1, 2019.
Cancellation of your visa
Under Australian law your visa will be cancelled if:
- You are sentenced to death, life imprisonment or more than one year in prison
- You have been convicted of a sex crime involving a child by an Australian or foreign court
- A charge has been proven for a sex crime involving a child, even though you have been released without a conviction
- You have been convicted of a sex crime involving a child, even though you have been released without conviction
If your visa is cancelled for the legal reasons mentioned above, you have 28 days to appeal.