working holiday jobs in australia

Working Holiday Jobs in Australia | Jobs and Salary

Australia is a really accessible country especially job wise. There is a job for everyone and many fields are often short staffed. Finding a working holiday job in Australia is a breeze, you just have to decide what you want to spend your working holiday doing aside from laying on the beach. Here is an overview of the most popular working holiday jobs in Australia.

Specialized Work

What’s your specialization? What did you do back home?

If you are a skilled worker, like a media technician, yoga instructor, chef, painter, graphic designer, accountant, etc, you can easily find a job in your field just as you would back home. Applying online to the posting, sending a personal email to the owner telling them why you’re interested, and stopping by in person is a great way to show interest in the company and introduce yourself. For working holiday jobs in Australia, this is a great way to continue work in your field while experiencing a new country.

Specialized Work Salary in Australia – They may ask you how much you want to be paid (like my boyfriend who was really put on the spot with this one! Luckily he high-balled it and was given this pay!) Look up the countries minimum and average for your field to figure out something suitable.

Use a website like Indeed or Seek

Retail

If you can get a job in retail while you’re on your working-holiday in Australia, you can make a lot of money.

I worked in retail in Melbourne and Sydney and it was great. They trained me and even helped to transfer me to the same shop from Melbourne to Sydney. The tax refund from this job was huge and allowed me to travel and do it all again in New Zealand

Retail Salary in Australia – Retail pays around $23.50 p/h weekdays, Saturdays around $25 p/h, Sundays $35 + p/h, public holidays $50+ p/h (when I was on my working-holiday in 2014) 

Apply in person.

Hospitality

working holiday jobs in Australia
My French friend Jen found the perfect job making crepes in downtown Melbourne. If you are European use that to your advantage! Other Europeans will help you.

Hospitality is a fun way to make friends with locals and other young travelers while working.

Hospitality Salary in Australia – $14-$23.50 p/h  I know that is a huge gap! It’s because Australia has an abundance of “cash-in-hand” jobs. Cash jobs get paid $14-$16. Taxed, minimum wage is at $18-$23.50

Apply in person and use Gumtree. Ask for the hiring manager!

Kitchen Hands (and Dish Washers)

If you don’t have the best English (you might not be reading this) but kitchen hand work is the best bet for you!

Australia is infamous for “cash-in-hand” jobs. For some reason this just isn’t regulated so many hospitality jobs are paid much lower than the minimum wage of $18, often time at $14 (or even lower but stay away from these places!). If you work for a very tax compliant restaurant, you can then expect your minimum wage of $18 for the same work.

Kitchen Hand Salary in Australia – $14 – $18 (Usually on the lower end of the spectrum).

This is a casual job you can pick up anywhere. Walk in or use Gumtree.

Au Pair (Nanny)

There are a few different types of nanny set ups. Some people want a live-in nanny for free, just covering accomodation/food  and this is not a good deal! You want food/accomodation/weekends off/and $300 pay per week. This is commonplace.

Nanny Salary in Australia – Food, accomodation, weekends off, $200-$300 weekly pay

You can find these jobs on Gumtree, on facebook groups (Here are the FB Groups for the Au Pair communities in MelbourneSydney, Brisbane, Perth, Gold Coast), and other websites like Findababysitter

Fundraising 

This is the hardest in my opinion but it is nearly guaranteed because of their high turnaround rate so they are in a constant state of hiring and training.

Many travelers take on “face to face” and “door to door” fundraising, working holiday jobs in Australia. Sponsorship is available for great workers.

Fundraiser Salary in Australia – $18- $23

Check out Gumtree in Australia for this type of work.

Farm Work

working holiday jobs in australia
Grapevines could easily one of the best types of farm work. It isn’t hard on your back but that Australian sun is really strong!

Can be awesome or pretty dodgy working on a farm in Australia

There are “working-hostels” in Australia that can set you up with farm work in rural parts of Australia. But these places often scam you into staying at the hostel with the promise of work for two weeks or as long as they can keep you there! In addition, many farmers will promise to pay you at the end of the month and then will completely scam you and leave you penniless. It happens. I’ve hear the backpacker horror stories. Look to see your fellow backpacker coworkers are being treated fairly.

You usually need a car, or find a buddy with one, because the farms are remote and Australia is huge. It is a lot of fun to camp out in the middle of the country, stars are bright and the air clean. Cool experience to see where your food really comes from and what it takes to harvest it.

These are a few examples of different types of farm work in Australia that I’ve heard about first hand:

  • Grape picking and pruning is relatively easy farm work. Easy to find as well (just read the wine bottles as a starter)
  • Avoid pumpkins and watermelons
  • Apple picking is hard work
  • Mango picking and packing in Darwin is profitable but can leave you in scars from the acid!
  • Cherry picking in Tasmania

Farm Work Salary in Australia – $13 – $18

You can find farm work on Gumtree in Australia or often, word of mouth by other travelers.

working holiday jobs in australia
I heard it through the grapevine…Talk to your fellow travelers to find work opportunites
working holiday jobs in australia
The sun! My God. Wear sunblock!
working holiday jobs in australia
The air is clean and the stars bright. Mornings can be bliss

Labor

Labor is great for the guys and the ladies who like to work hands on!

The hours are pretty standard 7am – 4pm or so which is a plus. You will make a lot of friends. There are many labor jobs but you will need what is called a White Card which is a simple online course to do labor jobs.

Labour Salary in Australia – $20+ p/h

Dream Jobs

I had an Italian friend who got work in the movies in Sydney through a talent agency.

There are many agencies in Sydney that charge around $160 for registration fees. He never acted before and got commercial work and an extra role in Angelina Jolie’s movie. On set, he met a Swedish working-holidayer working as a production assistant who applied online through a couple different sites like Pedestrian.tv. Pretty cool if you ask me.

Job Search Engines and Sites

Here are some sites that will help you out in your search looking for working holiday jobs in Australia. Check out my guide How to Find Working Holiday Jobs in Australia | The Job Hunt

Gumtree – Helpful for finding hospitality, labour, farm work and those odd jobs like urgent photographer needed and crew needed this weekend!

Backpacker Board – Not the most popular

Indeed – Specialized work

Seek – Aus – Specialized work

Pedestrian.tv – Film, Television and Media Work

working holiday jobs in australia
Your time off should look something like this!

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