The Hon Alex Hawke MP has announced that Australia will open its doors to more working holiday makers under new measures introduced to support the post-pandemic recovery of Australia’s tourism and trade sectors.
From 1 July 2022, the age limit for Italian and Danish citizens wanting to work and travel in Australia will increase from 30 to 35 years of age. Italy and Denmark join Canada, France and Ireland who, through reciprocal arrangements, have already been enjoying the increase in the age limit.
On 31 March 2022, two new reciprocal Work and Holiday arrangements, were signed, with Mongolia and Brazil increasing the number of countries and regions participating in the Working Holiday Program to 47.
Commencing from 1 July 2022, Brazil’s new arrangement will see 500 places whilst Mongolia will have 100 places.
There will be cap increases for Hungary and Austria to increase from 220 to 500 places and Slovak Republic to increase from 200 to 1000 places.
To further entice working holiday makers, for 2022-2023 only, a one-off 30 per cent cap increase in places available to nationals from those countries with which Australia has a capped Work and Holiday (Subclass 462) visa arrangement, will be introduced. This is to address workforce shortages currently experienced across Australia particularly in regional areas.
Since the re-opening of Australia’s borders, there have been more than 51,000 WHM visas been granted and more than 14,000 working holiday makers have arrived in Australia since 22 November 2021.
As previously announced by the Australian government from 5 March 2022 to 31 December 2022 eligible current and former Working Holiday Makers (WHM) in Australia can apply for a WHM visa with nil Visa Application Charge (VAC).
The Government also announced that WHMs who arrive in Australia from 19 January 2022 to 19 April 2022 can apply for a refund of their VAC for the WHM visa.
Any WHMs working in any sector anywhere in Australia may continue to work for the same employer or organisation for longer than six months without requesting permission. This arrangement will be in place until 31 December 2022 when it will be reviewed by the Government.