Working holiday has been a trending topic for a long time now, an opportunity for one to work and fund their travel along the way seems like a fantastic idea. Among all the countries that offer this chance, Australian Working Holiday Visa has been the most popular one!
Why? First of all, it doesn’t have a quota. In most of the cases, you’ll have the visa as long as you fit the criteria. Second, Australia has the highest wage in the world! Sounds fantastic right? For me, it is.
Now, let me tell you about the jobs I’ve done during my working holiday!
Location: Chinese Restaurant
Working Hours: Between 11-12 hours a day.
Wage: AU$100 per day so about AU$8 or $9 per hour. (Minimum wage in Australia was $16 at the time)
How to find a similar job: DON’T
The first 2 weeks I landed in Sydney, I had done nothing but sightseeing, shopping, eating, drinking and partying. And it turned out that Sydney is wayyyyyyyy more expensive than I thought so I was running out of money FAST!
So I signed up on Gumtree and sent out my resume, within a day I had someone contacted me. He told me that he was looking for a Mandarin speaker, therefore, I am the perfect candidate for the job!
I stopped by his office the second day to discuss more details about the job. He told me that the location is out of the town so the employer provided food and accommodation. The salary is AU$100 per day. I would work from lunch time all the way to dinner. I was desperate for the job so I took it.
Long story short, the job was miserable. I was miserable. I quitted after one week and returned to Sydney with my AU$600. All I can tell you is that don’t EVER work in a Chinese restaurant. I honestly haven’t heard any good stories coming from this kind of job. Avoid it by all means!
Note: Just because you pay to a job agency, it doesn’t mean they are legit. Be careful when discussing job details with agents and understand the basic right for a labor!
Catering Staff, Temporary Staff
Location: I went to wherever I was needed!
Working Hours: Around 3-5 hours per gig. Jobs depending on the season.
Wage: Usually AU$25-30 per hour plus great tips!
How to find a similar job: Try to submit your CV to Pinnacle
Some people may wonder what a catering staff is. I did.
So… Imagine this. You’re planning to have a big party. You got the food and drinks ready and you need someone to cook or serve. You don’t know where to find those people! That’s when you contact a catering agency and tell them what kind of people you are looking for, once the details are set. Agency contacted the catering staff to see if anyone can work at the party!
This was one of the coolest jobs I have done! I worked at all kinds of parties, weddings, and special occasions. Also, I made good money while had lots of free time. The only downside of the job was that I wasn’t guaranteed to have hours.
Note: It always finished much later than I was told. Usually, the hosts were nice and they were fine with staff left on time. But I prefer to stay a bit longer to at least finished the dishes and left only glasses. And I always got a great tip for doing this!
Second, if you want to save money fast, this job is probably the best for a second job. Short hours with high wages help you save up quickly!
Food and Beverage Staff in a National Park
Location: Blue Mountain, NSW
Working hours: 35 hours per week for slow season. 60 hours for holiday time.
Wage: AU$22/hour on a normal day. Extra bonus for overtime and holiday.
How to find a similar job: Specify job search with the place you want to go. For instance, “Job on Fraser Island.”
Working in a national park means there was literally nothing but wildlife around. Wild kangaroo, fantastic hiking trail, and looking point. It’s not only great for a nature-lover, it is also good for saving money since you got nowhere to spend it. And the employer offered food and accommodation for AU$50 per week right next to the hotel.
The money was great but this is not an easy work. National park means student trip, it is not easy to serve 100 kids. It means when somewhere needed an extra hand, I had to go. I worked as a barista in the day and bartender at night. Sometimes I need to help to make sandwiches or to bring out some food.
Also, because of the rural location, there was almost no cell service. I spent a lot of time talking to people and it was the best memory I have for this job.
Note: Make sure your cell service work before you leave. Or you won’t be able to keep in touch with the family.
Bartender in a Country Club
Location: Cue, WA
Working hours: 35 hours per week for slow season. 50 hours for holiday time.
Wage: AU$20 per hour
How to find a similar job: On Gumtree
The location of this club was so rural, it was unbelievable. The nearest town was 100km away. There were only 250 people lived in the town when I was there. Aboriginals, miners, teachers, and police. These pretty much sum up all the people there.
Cue was literally in a desert. The weather was extreme and the resources were limited. It was a great experience for me to work in there. It was funny when all the town knew who I was!
Note: Again, cell service. If you decide to go to the countryside. I suggest have enough supply for the necessary things, such as medications, skin care products, and your favorite snacks. Also, invest a good pair of sunglasses because you are gonna be wearing it a lot!
Here are some of the jobs I have done on my Australia Working Holiday. Besides these jobs, I worked as a bartender at few different places but they were all similar so I did not include the information here.
And nope, I had never worked a day in the farm. I went to the rural area but the job didn’t fit the requirement for a second working holiday visa. I regret it a bit since I had so much fun in Australia, but this is also the reason I don’t regret it!
Having a job in a different country feels very different from just traveling through. I hope this article will help you to understand how it is like to work in Australia!