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The UK Working Holiday Visa Rules Have Changed in Australia

Along with some rule changes for Aussies heading the other way. Here’s what it means for you.

Changes that came into effect on July 1 mean that UK passport holders now have five extra years to apply for a working holiday visa in Australia. This means that if you’re travelling from the UK, you can apply for a working holiday visa between the ages of 18 to 35. The previous cut-off was 30. The changes apply to those using a UK or Northern Ireland passport. And there are further changes coming next year.

From July 1 2024, UK passport holders can acquire up to three visas without having to relocate to do work on a farm or in a regional town. This is a significant change from the current arrangement, where workers must complete 88 days of rural or farm work to be eligible for a second working visa. This covers work types such as mining, fruit picking, construction and fishing, and was recently adapted to include tourism or hospitality roles in northern Australia or other remote locations.

The changes are part of a new, broader free trade agreement between Australia and the UK. There are also some rule relaxations for Australian’s heading to the UK as a result. From January 31 2024, the maximum age to apply for a Youth Mobility Scheme visa will rise from 30 to 35, and holders of this visa will be able to stay in the UK for three years instead of two. If you’re planning that working holiday in London, you’ll need one of these.

Another small but significant change affects New Zealanders. Those on Special Category visas who have lived in Australia for four years can now apply for citizenship without becoming permanent residents first.

Photography: Holly Engelhard

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