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Working Holiday Maker (WHM) program - LATEST UPDATES

Updated: Sep 20, 2022




A 30% cap increase for the 2022-23 program year

From 1 July 2022:

For 2022-23 only, there will be a 30% cap increase to the number of places available to working holiday makers from countries which Australia has a capped Work and Holiday visa arrangement (subclass 462).


Increase in age limit for Italian and Danish Working Holiday Makers

From 1 July 2022:

The age limit will increase by five years - from 30 to 35 years of age, for Italian and Danish citizens wanting to work and travel in Australia.

Additionally, Australian citizens (up to the age of 35) will also benefit from reciprocal arrangements with Italy and Denmark.


 

NEW: Cap increases for Work and Holiday visa arrangements for the following countries: Hungary, Austria and the Slovak Republic (commencing 1 July 2022)


NEW: Changes to the process for People's Republic of China (PRC) nationals to apply for a first Work and Holiday (subclass 462) visa


 

Australia opens Work and Holiday program to Brazil

Brazil has now become the 47th country to have access to Australia's Working Holiday Maker visa program.

From 1 July 2022:

Up to 500 young Brazilians aged between 18 and 30 can stay in Australia each year. This can be done for a 12-month holiday in which short-term work and study can be undertaken.


India to access Work and Holiday (subclass 462) visa

Australia has agreed to extend access to the subclass 462 visa to up to 1,000 Indian citizens each year.

Within two years, these arrangements will allow eligible Indian citizens (between the ages of 18 and 30) to apply for a Work and Holiday visa for one year to undertake short-term work and study while holidaying.

There is no implementation date at the moment, but more information will be revealed once date is announced.


 

NEW: Mongolia has become the 46th country to have access to Australia's Working Holiday visa program (commencing 1 July 2022)


NEW: Switzerland to access Work and Holiday (subclass 462) visa (commencing 1 January 2022)


 

Onshore nil Visa Application Charge (VAC) WHM applications

From 5 March 2022 to 31 December 2022:

Eligible current and former WHMs in Australia can apply for a WHM visa with nil VAC. This means that WHMs can stay longer in Australia. This is for the WHMs that experienced disruptions to domestic travel and employment opportunities during COVID-19.

These arrangements build upon concessions that commenced on 1 July 2021 for WHM visa holders outside Australia, who were unable to enter during the pandemic, or had to leave early.

However, there is no VAC refund available for WHMs who are not eligible to apply for an onshore nil VAC due to no longer meeting the age requirement.


Offshore nil Visa Application Charge (VAC) WHM applications

From 1 July 2021 to 30 December 2022:

Eligible holders and former holders of a COVID-19 affected WHM visa who are outside Australia can make an offshore nil VAC WHM application online. This includes those who were unable to come to Australia or had to leave early because of COVID-19.

If you no longer meet the age requirement, you can request a VAC refund (until 31 December 2022).


Further Flexibility for Working Holiday Makers

From 19 January 2022:

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 will be in place until 31 December 2022. Following this date, the government will review this arrangement.

Travel to Australia for fully vaccinated eligible visa holders

From 15 December 2021:

Fully vaccinated eligible visa holders, including WHMs (subclass 417 and 462 visa holders) can come to Australia without needing to apply for a travel exemption.


Working Holiday Maker visa changes helping COVID-19 recovery

From 8 May 2021:

WHMs working in the tourism and hospitality sectors anywhere in Australia can now work for up to 12 months with the same employer or organisation, without requesting permission.

From 22 June 2021:

Work undertaken in the tourism and hospitality sectors in northern, remote or very remote Australia can also be counted as specified work towards eligibility for a second or third WHM visa (available for WHM applications lodged from 5 May 2022).


Australia and UK Free Trade Agreement

The Australian-UK Free Trade Agreement (FTA) was 'virtually' signed (17 December 2021), but has not entered into force.

Once the FTA is entered into force, within two years, Working Holiday Makers would have access to new implementations.

The new arrangements for WHMs would allow UK citizens to:

  • Apply for a Working Holiday (subclass 417) visa up to the age of 35 years

  • Be granted up to three Working Holiday visas with no requirement to undertake any 'specified work' (not including any "COVID-19 affected visas")

Australia has previously negotiated arrangements on a reciprocal basis with Italy, Canada, France and Ireland, to expand the eligible age range to 35 years.



***For information on the WHM program, assistance applying for a visa or for further assistance with any other migration matters, please contact our office.***






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