Australian Working Visas

"Getting an Australian working visa is
easy if you haven't turned 31 yet."

Getting an Australian working visa is easy if you haven't turned 31 yet.

Even if you think of moving to Australia permanently, the easiest way to do so is to get a working holiday visa for Australia first.

(Provided you are from an country eligible for that visa. See the main Australia work visa page if you don't know whether you are.)

The Working Holiday Visa (WHV) gives you 12 months or even two years to make sure this is the right decision.

It also gives you time to determine the best way to obtain a permanent working visa for Australia.

But what if you are over 30? (Or if you are not from one of the listed countries?) How do you get an Australian working visa then?

I get countless enquiries from older people wanting to work in Australia.

I emigrated to Australia myself in 1998, after already living here for four years. I mention that on several pages of this website. As a result I get regular emails where people ask me to help them to immigrate.

People, unfortunately it's not that simple...

There are many different Australian working visa classes and subclasses.

Some are temporary visas, some are permanent. Some visas you can apply for from inside Australia, some only from outside Australia. There are working visas for spouses and fiances, sponsorship visas, skilled visas...

And all have several sub classes.

I myself never managed to get a skilled visa. No matter which way I looked at it, I could not fulfil the requirements. (I was highly skilled but had never stuck to any one job for long enough...)

I considered a spouse visa for a while, but didn't like the idea of being totally dependent on another person. I was correct, too, as my Australian partner and I broke up not long after.

Eventually I immigrated under the regional sponsored migration scheme.

It is a sponsorship visa solution specifically for people who want to settle in remote areas of Australia. The requirements are nowhere near as difficult to meet as for other sponsorship visas, because the Australian government wants to encourage skilled people to settle outside the big cities.

From inside Australia I could only apply for a temporary work visa, and there was no regional option for the temporary visa.

So in the end I went through two applications. First I got a temporary work visa. Once I had that I could apply for a permanent work visa from within Australia.

And I can't even begin to tell you how many headaches the process caused me at the time.

There is a LOT of paperwork to complete.

You have to check many details to see if you are eligible for a particular visa and you have to provide documented proof for each of them.

It's a LOT of work. Just to determine whether you can get a certain visa is a lot of work and requires a lot of detailed knowledge of your particular circumstances.

Is it worth it if you only want to come over on a working holiday? It depends on your situation. If there is a visa available that fits your situation, why not?

Emigrating to Australia - Working Visa Application

If you are serious about emigrating to Australia you have two options for getting an Australian working visa.

  • You can dig through the government website yourself, find an Australian working visa that fits your circumstances and go through the same process and headaches I did. Only you know your situation in enough detail to determine if you fulfil the requirements or not.

    The government website has all the info you need, the instructions, the application forms... It's all there. Good luck and I hope you have a good supply of headache pills!
  • The other option, and for most people this would be the most sensible option, is to get professional help.

    Whether it's a skilled visa, a spouse visa or a sponsorship visa you're after, a visa agent knows what questions to ask to find out if you are eligible. If you are, they can tell you exactly what you need to provide, and they can put it all together and lodge an application for you that is sure to be approved.

Please don't email me for assistance with your Australia working visa. I can't help you with this. Do ask a visa agent. Many of them offer eligibility checks for free and only charge once you decide to go ahead with your application.

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