Working Holiday Visas

Is a working holiday visa right for me? How do I get one? What do I do once I have one?

These are all questions I asked myself before I started my first working holiday in Australia. What I discovered during the process, was that a working holiday visa was exactly what I needed and getting one was a very easy process to go through.

I have never been good at saving money. Thats just me. I’m spontaneous, and I like to treat myself and others. So when I decided that I wanted to go to Australia and visit all the friends I made while living in Whistler, I buckled down. I gave myself a budget and tried to limit my spending as much as I could in order to save the money I needed. My goal was to spend an extended period of time in Australia and have as much fun as possible.

Over 2 months I managed to save about $50. Haha. Not a chance. I spoke with my Aussie friends, and after laughing at me, they reassured me that I am not alone. A working holiday visa was perfect for people just like me. It would give me the chance to still visit Australia for up to a year, and allow me to work while there to earn my income so I would not have to save nearly as much money before heading out.

A working holiday visa is simple. It is like any other visa to enter a country, with a simple exception. It allows you to work in that particular country for a year, sometimes two with a few restrictions attached. All countries that offer this kind of visa have an age limit on eligibility. Usually between 30 and 35. Also some countries will only allow you to work for a year but if in that year, if you spend 3 months working in the agriculture industry, you can be entitled to extend your visa for another year. You will also be required to fulfill a certain financial obligation by showing that you have access to a minimum ammount of money (specific to each country) in order to support yourself should you not be able to find work. It can vary between $1000 and $5000.

I have held Working holiday Visa’s in both Australia and New Zealand and am hoping to get myself on one in France before this October when I turn 36, and am no longer eligible. If you are looking for a working holiday visa, the process is very easy, but varies depending on the country you are applying to work in. This may seem a little weak, but my best recommendation is to simply google it. Search Working Holiday visa and the name of the country you wish to visit. Any link connected to your countries consulate or the consulate of your destination country should give to the information you need. Important questions to look for are:

What are the age restrictions of the visa?

How long can you stay and work in the country for? Can you extend that stay in any way?

What is the cost of the visa?

What financial obligations do you need to meet  in order to show that you can support yourself when entering the country?

Once you have found all the information you need, the next step is to apply. The Embassy website that you may have found the necessary eligibility information, should also be able to link you to the appropriate application. From my experience with Australia and New Zealand, the application process doesn’t take long, but I would give yourself a few months before you plan to travel, in case there are any extra requirements you need to take care of in order for your application to be approved.

Here are some links to a few visa applications.

New Zealand:




If you have any questions or have anything to add from your own experience travelling on a working holiday, please put them in the comment section below. I would love to hear about the process in other countries that I may not have visited myself.