The Working Holiday Visa (subclass 417) is a popular option for those educators who want to make the move to Australia for 12 months as it allows you the opportunity and flexibility to both work and travel.
Once your 417 visa is approved, you will receive a visa grant letter and will have 12 months from the date of approval to enter Australia and activate your visa. Your visa expiry date will be stated on your visa grant letter.
The basic eligibility requirements are:
- You must be 18 to 30 years old (inclusive) – except for Canadian, French and Irish citizens up to 35 (inclusive)
- You must have a passport from an eligible country
- You cannot be accompanied by dependent children
You can read more about the eligibility on the Australian Home Affairs website.
How does COVID-19 affect me & travelling on the Working Holiday Visa (417)?
COVID-19 has resulted in Australian border closures for most people, including Working Holiday makers. Applications for the Working Holiday Visa remain open, however, given the uncertainty surrounding the border closures, it is hard to predict when you will be able to enter Australia and subsequently, activate your visa.
The Australian Department of Home Affairs are in the process of prioritising those who require urgent travel to Australia (including Australian permanent residents and immediate family members of Australian citizens) resulting in potential extended processing times for WHV applications.
If you are yet to activate your visa
If your 417 visa has been approved but you are yet to activate it, it will remain valid until the expiry date stated on your visa grant letter (accessible via your ImmiAccount).
If you are unable to enter Australia before this date, unfortunately you will need to apply for a new visa and pay the application fee & still fulfill the eligibility criteria.
This means that at the time of your second application, you will still need to meet the age requirements & have the available funds to support you.
At this point, there is no indication from the Australian government that any further exceptions will be made.
If you have activated your visa and departed Australia early due to COVID-19
If you had arrived in Australia & activated your visa but left the country early due the COVID-19 pandemic, unfortunately there are no options to extend your 417 visa.
You may only apply for a Second Working Holiday Visa (417) if you have completed 3 months of specified work (often referred to as “farm work”) while holding your first WHV (417) and continue to meet the eligibility requirements.
Only travellers who have a compassionate or compelling reason to travel to Australia may be considered for a travel exemption which must be granted before travelling to Australia – You will need to apply for your exemption, online. You can read more about the process and eligibility for applying for an exemption on the Travel Restrictions section of the Australian Home Affairs website.
Should I take migration advice from Facebook groups and forums?
Here at anzuk Education, we are not licensed migration agents and we do recommend that you source your information and advice from trusted sources such as Government websites & through registered migration agents.
Please be wary of the accuracy of information when using Facebook groups and forums. Do not post copies of your documents online such as skills assessments, as you leave yourself open to fraudulent activity.
For visa support and queries, we have partnered with a fantastic UK based company who specialise in Australian and New Zealand visas – Visa Go.
For more information about teaching abroad in Australia or New Zealand, you can contact our global opportunities team based in London. Direct your email to Kristy on firstname.lastname@example.org.