22 June 2009

Working holiday in Australia an opportunity for university leavers

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The 300,000 young people graduating from higher education this year are entering a difficult jobs market but there are options available including a working holiday in Australia or New Zealand, according to the Times Online.

Working holiday in Australia

A working holiday in Australia could look good on a resume.

Half of British companies are not planning to take on graduates this year, according to the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, so graduates are having to think more outside the square.

Leaving university can mean juggling a job hunt with work experience placements, as well as paid shifts to cover bills, but also it also offers a chance to travel, take a working holiday in Australia or New Zealand, or volunteer.

Staying on at university just because the job market is tough may not be wise, but taking a few months or even a year to travel or volunteer overseas can look great on a resume.

Grace Owen, a career consultant, said “it is about building up life experience. Employers know the reality of the jobs market and will understand if people put off the hunt for a bit and do something worthwhile. Career breaks can be done, but it’s much easier to do these things before you are tied down with kids and a mortgage.”

Tom Griffiths, founder of Gapyear.com, says that travel can be surprisingly affordable if you show initiative. He said the best destinations for paid work are Australia and New Zealand, where bar work is readily available for those with a working holiday visa.

He said a stint there can be combined with a break in South-East Asia, which remains cheap despite the weak pound.

The idea behind the Australian working holiday is that young travellers have the chance to sample Australian lifestyle and tourism.  They can enter Australia on an Australian working holiday visa, which allows them to holiday in Australia for up to twelve months, and work for any employer during that time, so long as they stay no longer than six months with any one employer.  If working holiday makers work in specific occupations in rural Australia for three months or more, they have the chance to apply for a second Australian working holiday visa (otherwise it is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity).

If you are interested in an Australian working holiday, take the free online assessment to see if you are eligible for a working holiday visa.


The Australian Visa Bureau is an independent consulting company specialising in helping people with their applications for Australian visas.


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