Have you been saving up for months to travel to Australia? Wait no longer! The Australia Working Holiday Visa will allow you to get a job in Australia to pay for your living and travel expenses while you explore the country! Working holiday visas allow young Canadians to work in foreign countries for up to a year. For Australia, the working holiday visa is available to you only once in your life between the ages of 18 and 35. Don’t miss out on this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, your dream to trade a long Canadian winter for sunny Australia is possible sooner than you think!
In this post, we break down the process for Canadians applying for the Australia Working Holiday Visa.
There are two different subclasses (or versions) of the Australian Working Holiday visa. These are the subclass 417 and subclass 462. They are essentially the same visa, the only difference being which country you are applying from. Canadians can apply for the subclass 417 visa.
The Australian government charges a fee for this visa, which as of November 2019 is $485 AUD, or about $440 CAD. You will be required to pay this fee in the final stage of your visa application. Once you have paid the fee, your visa application then be sent in for processing.
To be eligible for the Australian Working Holiday Visa (subclass 417), Canadians must meet the following requirements:
Interested in receiving one-on-one support with your application? As a recognized organization of the Government of Canada, Stepabroad is able to provide Canadians with support through their visa application. Stepabroad’s Australia Working Holiday Send Off Package provides one-on-one assistance throughout the entire visa application process no matter where you are in the world. We schedule a video call and together go over each step of the application. Closer to your departure, we also provide you with resource guides on finding a job, a place to live, opening a bank account, getting your Tax File Number, travel insurance and much more. We provide Canadians with a solid set of resources to help you get start your working holiday off on the right foot!
Below is a five-step process on how to apply for the Australia Working Holiday Visa as a Canadian passport holder. Scroll down for the step-by-step process, or click the links below to skip through the steps!
While filling out the application form you will need to upload personal documents. Before beginning your application, it is a good idea to have these documents saved on your computer so your application doesn’t time out while you are looking for them. You will be asked to submit the following:
You can submit scanned copies or photographs of these documents. They must be clear and in colour. If a document is more than one page, save it as one file.
Any documents in French must be translated to English. This does not have to be conducted by an accredited translator, but on each translation the translator must include their full name, address, phone number, and qualifications and French language experience.
Note: Failure to provide your documents in the correct formats could result in your application being rejected. If your visa application is rejected, the visa fee is not refunded to you. You will have to re-submit your application and pay the $450 again.
To begin your application, the first step is to create an account called your ImmiAccount. Head to the Working Holiday Visa (subclass 417) online application site (link found at the bottom of this post). Click Apply to create your account and access the application form.
To create your ImmiAccount all you need is your personal contact information, including your email and phone number. You will also be asked to create security questions, so choose answers you will remember!
After creating your account, you will receive a confirmation email. Open this email and click the link provided to confirm your account. Head back to the login in page pictured above and log into your ImmiAccount. Once logged in, you will automatically be directed to the visa application form.
The application form has 12 steps. It is very important that you set aside enough time to carefully read and answer each section. If you make a mistake or falsely answer a question, you may get denied with a non-grant period of 10 years and lose your money. The last step of the application form is a review of all your answers. We highly recommend taking extra care to ensure all your answers here are correct.
Tip: You can always save your application and come back to where you left off. Take your time and be sure you fill out the information correctly!
Among tons of other helpful resources, Stepabroad’s Australia Working Holiday Send Off Package offers personal assistance with filling out the application form and ensuring you get your visa approved. Our participants receive a personal trip coordinator to walk you through each step from start to finish as well as a detailed application pdf guide.
The final step of the application form is uploading your documents. Identity documents can be up to 500KB, other documents can be up to 5MB in file size. Most file formats are accepted, including .jpg, .png, .pdf, .doc, etc. Give the files description names such as First name Last name Document Type. Be sure to hit the Attach button after uploading each document, otherwise the document will not be included in your visa application.
Submit your application by clicking Submit Now.
You must submit your application for it to be processed. You have the choice of submitting it later, but the sooner you submit it, the sooner you will receive your working holiday visa!
The visa costs $485 AUD which you can pay with credit or credit/debit cards. Your application will not be processed until your payment has been received.
The charge will show up on your statement in Australian dollars and includes a processing fee between 1 and 2% depending on the type of card you pay with. Your bank may also charge bank or currency conversion fees. In some cases, it may be worth notifying your bank you will be making this foreign currency payment so they do not decline your payment.
Processing time to review your application can take anywhere from 1 to 30 business days.
Log in to your ImmiAccount to track your application process during this time. Once your visa has been granted, the status in your ImmiAccount will say ‘GRANTED’ and your visa grant letter will be sitting in your account.
The visa grant letter will contain your visa grant number, the date your visa starts and the conditions of your visa. It looks like this:
The Australia Working Holiday Visa is an electronic visa, meaning it will automatically be attached to your passport number in the Australian government’s computer system. You will not receive a sticker or stamp in your passport. When you enter Australia and scan your passport, your visa will be activated.
Now that you have your Australia working holiday visa on the way, you can start planning the rest of your trip! What about getting a job, finding a place to live, setting up your bank account, and meeting new friends?
That’s where Stepabroad can help!
We have a few different programs to assist you with planning your working holiday in Australia. Don’t spend months searching for a job, or worrying about how to set up your taxes and banking. You’ll have a personal trip coordinator to ensure you are set up for success. Let our experts take care of the boring stuff while you kick-off your working holiday with an adventure-packed week. Imagine starting your trip learning to surf, hanging with kangaroos, dolphin watching, even going on a road trip – all with a group of travelers who just started their and more off your Aussie bucket list! Take a peek at our two Adventure Programs below:
The Australia Working Holiday visa is valid for one year starting from the day you first enter the country. It is a multi-entry visa meaning you are allowed to leave and re-enter Australia as many times as you like during that year. Yes, that means you can take a vacation to Fiji, Bali or maybe New Zealand during your working holiday! However, keep in mind that while you are outside of Australia your visa is still active. It does not go on hold while you are out of the country and will expire 365 days after you first entered.
You have one year from the date your visa was granted to enter Australia. If you do not enter Australia during that year, your visa expires and you can not apply for a new one.
Great news, yes you can! In 2018, Australia raised the age limit for the working holiday visa from 30 to 35. This increased age limit only applies to citizens of Canada, French and Ireland. It’s not too late to take that trip you always dreamed of in Australia!
There are a variety of methods for finding a job in Australia. These include local job boards, Facebook groups or simply getting out and asking around to see who’s hiring.
Stepabroad provides tons of job search support, helping you land a job faster so you can start making money sooner.
Our participants receive professional resume revisions to ensure your resume is Australia-ready, and an informative list of working holiday job boards and job search resources. In addition, we also offer access to exclusive job boards specifically for backpackers and weekly notifications of new job postings. We ensure our participants are well-equipped with all the right tools to successfully begin working holiday life in beautiful Australia!
Disclaimer: No Legal Advice Provided.
The material on our website and on this webpage is intended to provide only general information and comments to our clients and the public. Although we make our best efforts to ensure that the information found on our website is accurate and timely, you may not, under any circumstances, rely on information found on our website as legal or immigration advice. Nor do we guarantee the accuracy of any information contained on websites to which our website provides links. For assistance with your specific inquiry or problem, please contact an immigration consultant or call the nearest Australian consulate.
Alison is a Digital Marketing Specialist at Stepabroad and loves sharing her passion for adventure to inspire others to travel. While in university, she took a life-changing summer trip to Australia on a Working Holiday and since then traveled extensively across six continents throughout her student and professional career.