To apply for a second Working Holiday visa, you must have already completed three months of specified work in regional Australia. This specified work must have been completed while on your first Working Holiday visa.
Specified work is work that is undertaken in a ‘specified’ field or industry in a designated regional area. Please see the section on Regional Areas below to check the postcode list of designated regional areas.
Approved industries for specified work include:
- plant and animal cultivation
- fishing and pearling
- tree farming and felling
Specified work is any type of work described in the list below:
- plant and animal cultivation
- the harvesting and/or packing of fruit and vegetable crops
- pruning and trimming vines and trees
Note: This must be the applicants primary employment task and directly associated with the cultivation and commercial sale of plant produce, such as fruit and nut crops (commercial horticultural activities). General garden maintenance is not eligible.
- general maintenance crop work
- cultivating or propagating plants, fungi or their products or parts
- immediate processing of plant products
- maintaining animals for the purpose of selling them or their bodily produce, including natural increase
Note: Maintaining animals for tourism or recreational purposes is not eligible.
- immediate processing of animal products including shearing, butchery, packing and tanning
Note: Secondary processing of animal products, such as small goods processing and retail butchery is not eligible.
- manufacturing dairy produce from raw material.
- fishing and pearling
- conducting operations relating directly to taking or catching fish and other aquatic species
- conducting operations relating directly to taking or culturing pearls or pearl shell.
- tree farming and felling
- planting or tending trees in a plantation or forest that are intended to be felled
- felling trees in a plantation or forest
- transporting trees or parts of trees that were felled in a plantation or forest to the place where they are first to be milled or processed or from which they are to be transported to the place where they are to be milled or processed.
- coal mining
- oil and gas extraction
- metal ore mining
- construction material mining
- non-metallic mineral mining and quarrying
- mining support services
- residential building construction
- non-residential building construction
- heavy and civil engineering construction
- land development and site preparation services
- building structure services
- building installation services
- building completion services
- other construction services.
Work undertaken in the areas of plant and animal cultivation, fishing and pearling, and tree farming and felling must be described in the list above to meet the specified work requirement.
The Australian New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC) provides further detail about eligible work in mining and construction. Work undertaken in the mining and construction sectors must appear in the ANZSIC division for these sectors to meet the specified work requirement
Supporting work, such as book-keeping, in any industry described in the list above does not meet the definition of specified work.
- must be an activity listed above
- must be the primary role, function or activity performed during the applicants employment.
Examples of eligible specified work:
- picking fruits on an orchard
- feeding and herding cattle on a farm
- horse breeding and stud farming
- landscaping the grounds of a construction/house site
- painting the interior/exterior of new buildings
- conservation and environmental reforestation work
- zoo work involving plant or animal cultivation
- erecting fences on a construction site
Examples of ineligible specified work:
- ship/boat building
- performing specialised social science services (such as anthropological and archaeological assessments) for mining companies
- town planning or architecture
- working as a nanny on a farm
- working at a cellar door providing wine tastings
- manufacturing materials used on a construction site (such as concrete or steel)
- cooking/catering on a mine site
- cleaning the interior of mine complexes or buildings.
Specified work in disaster affected areas
Construction work can be vital in helping regional disaster zones, such as those affected by flood or bushfire, to rebuild and recover from disaster.
Working Holiday visa holders who conduct construction work in eligible regional areas of Australia following disasters can count the work as specified work.
Examples of construction work that qualify as specified work include:
- demolition of buildings, trench digging, land clearing and earth moving
- residential and non-residential construction or renovation/repair, including of roads, footpaths, bridges, parking lots, fencing, railways, dams, irrigation systems, sewage and storm water drainage systems.
A full list of eligible construction activities is available from the Australia Bureau of Statistics website.
How to find specified work
Applicants can find specified work vacancies in the same way as they would find other job vacancies, such as through employment pages in newspapers, the Internet and job placement service providers. Vacancies specifically for plant and animal cultivation can be found on the Harvest Trail website.
Note: Not all vacancies advertised on the Harvest Trail website will qualify an applicant for a second Working Holiday visa.
Applicants should ensure that the vacancy meets the definition of specified work listed above and that the work will take place in an eligible postcode of regional Australia. See the section on Regional Areas below to check the postcode list of designated regional areas.
How to calculate specified work
‘Three months’ means three ‘calendar’ months or 88 days. Work can be either:
- in one block with one business
- in separate blocks with one business or a number of businesses. Blocks of work may be in different kinds of specified work.
One full day of work is defined as having worked the minimum number of hours considered to be a standard day by the particular industry in which the applicant is employed. Generally, the Australian working week is 35 to 40 hours, consisting of seven to eight hours of work each day. Individual employers can not set a smaller period of time than the industry standard to satisfy the specified work requirement.
In calculating the period of time for which the applicant has undertaken specified work, the type of employment relationship the applicant may have with their employer, including full/part time employment, casual employment or voluntary employment, is not as important as whether the relevant industry considers the period of work completed to be equivalent to full time work for that industry. For example, if the applicant’s paid employment involved two weeks on and then two weeks off, and this is standard practice in the industry, the applicant would be considered to have worked for four weeks (28 days). If the employer is satisfied that the applicant has undertaken the equivalent of full time work for that industry for the specified period, the visa decision maker may be satisfied that the applicant has undertaken full time work for the specified period.
Applicants whose work is equivalent to full time employment may count weekends in the 88 day period. However, if the applicant’s work is not equivalent to full time employment, for example, part time or casual, they may only count the full days actually worked.
In circumstances where the applicant is employed by more than one employer at the same time, they may only count each calendar day of work completed once towards their 88 day specified work requirement.
The shortest period that may be counted towards the specified work requirement is one day of full time work (for that industry). Applicants cannot count a long day of work as more than one day of specified work. For example, if the industry’s standard day is six hours long, working a 12 hour day does not count as two days of specified work.
Full time workers can count sick days only during periods where they were in paid employment and entitled to sick leave or covered by a workers compensation scheme. In these situations, supporting evidence must be provided by the employer.
Applicants who were prevented from obtaining employment because of injury or seasonal circumstances cannot count any time they were unable to work towards the three month period. For example, cyclones interrupting harvest activities.
Some possible examples to help clarify the definition of three months of specified work are outlined below.
Examples that meet the three month requirement
- Working week
Working on a farm for three months for five days each week, where the industry standard is five days a week of full time work.
- Shift work
Employed as a miner for three months and under the employment contract are only required to work every second week, which is the standard full time contract for the industry.
- Blocks of work
Completing 60 days of harvest work, followed by a period of travel for two months. Then completing another 28 days in construction, bringing the total days worked to 88 days.
- Sick days
Employed for a three month period but take several days of sick leave during the period.
Examples that do not meet the three month requirement
- Working week
When five days of work a week is the industry standard on a farm, but the applicant only works four days a week for three months.
- Work done on another visa type
Completing three months of specified work during the summer break while on a Student visa.
- Seasonal circumstances
Picking bananas for 80 days on a casual basis, but the applicant cannot find more work as there is a cyclone and their first Working Holiday visa ceases.
Evidence of specified work
- If the Working Holiday visa holder applies for a second Working Holiday visa, they will need to provide evidence that they have satisfied the specified work eligibility requirement. Acceptable evidence of specified work (completed while on their first Working Holiday visa) includes original or certified copies of the following:
- pay slips (must be supplied for all specified work performed from 31 August 2015)
- group certificates
- payment summaries
- tax returns
- employer references
- a completed employment verification form signed by the applicants employer
- original Australian bank statement covering the period of declared specified work, Form 1263 (Working Holiday visa: Employment verification (75 kB PDF file)
Note: Providing a completed Form 1263 and additional forms of evidence will allow a Working Holiday visa application to be assessed more quickly. Please ensure that all information provided is correct. Contacting third parties to verify the claims of applicants for second Working Holiday visas will now be a standard component of second Working Holiday visa application assessments.
Providing a false or misleading declaration or fraudulent evidence for any visa application can result in the application being refused or cancelled. If the applicant’s visa is cancelled they may be prevented from lodging further applications and be excluded from Australia for a period of three years.