All you Need to Know about the 2nd Year Working Holiday Visa Australia

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You may receive the 2nd year Working Holiday Visa for Australia under certain conditions. Working holiday makers who have performed a certain job, for at least 3 months (88 days) and in a qualified place in Australia can extend their visas for one extra year. This option is very popular among backpackers, but some conditions have to be fulfilled. We will show you how to extend your stay in Australia for another year.

Where do I have to work to qualify for a second Working Holiday year?

With the 2nd Working Holiday year, the Australian government wants to lure workers into rural areas, which depend on an additional work force. Therefore, not all regions are eligible for this program. Areas that already have a sufficient number of workers are excluded from this program.

The work for the 2nd year Working Holiday has to be done in “regional Australia”. According the scheme you must work in a place with a post code that qualifies for the program.

Almost all areas of Australia qualify for the Second Year Working Holiday, except in:

  • New South Wales: the Sydney metropolitan area, Newcastle, Central Coast and Wollongong
  • Queensland: the Greater Brisbane area and the Gold Coast
  • Victoria: the Melbourne metropolitan area
  • Western Australia: Perth and surrounding areas

Which post codes count for the 2nd Working Holiday year?

Here you can find a complete list of postal codes which qualify for the 2nd Working Holiday Visa:

  • New South Wales (most areas are qualified except the greater Sydney area, Newcastle, Central Coast and Wollongong): 2311 to 2312, 2328 to 2411, 2420 to 2490, 2536 to 2551, 2575 to 2594, 2618 to 2739, 2787 to 2899
  • Northern Territory: The entire Northern Territory is qualified for the 2nd year WHV
  • Queensland (most areas are qualified, except the greater Brisbane area and the Gold Coast): 4124 to 4125, 4133 to 4211, 4270 to 4272, 4275, 4280, 4285, 4287, 4307 to 4499, 4510, 4512, 4515 to 4519, 4522 to 4899
  • South Australia: The entire state is qualified for the 2nd year WHV
  • Tasmania: The entire state is qualified for the 2nd year WHV
  • Victoria (most areas except the Melbourne metropolitan area): 3139, 3211 to 3334, 3340 to 3424, 3430 to 3649, 3658 to 3749, 3753, 3756, 3758, 3762, 3764, 3778 to 3781, 3783, 3797, 3799, 3810 to 3909, 3921 to 3925, 3945 to 3974, 3979, 3981 to 3996
  • Western Australia (most areas except Perth and its surrounding areas): 6041 to 6044, 6076, 6083 to 6084, 6111, 6121 to 6126, 6200 to 6799

How long do I have to work for the 2nd year visa?

To extend your working holiday visa for a second year, you have to work for at least 3 months in a specified job. Here you have to pay attention not to make a mistake.

Under this regulation, 3 months correspond exactly to 88 days, if you are working full-time according to industry standards. This means that if you work 5 days a week on a farm (which is the standard for farm work), this corresponds to a full week and therefore counts as 7 days. On the other hand, if you only work 4 days a week, you are only allowed to count 4 days.

What jobs qualify for the second Working Holiday year?

With this program, the Australian government tries not only to lure workers into rural areas, but also into industries that receive too few workers. These are generally industries, where only few Australian workers are employed. The following sectors and activities apply to the 2nd year visa:

  • Plant and animal cultivation: harvesting, processing of animals, production of milk products of raw material, processing of herbal products, keeping of animals for food purposes, pruning of plants (gardening is not included), packaging of fruit and vegetables
  • Fishing and Pearling: catching fish and other aquatic species, culturing pearls and pearl shell
  • Tree farming and felling: Planting or trending trees, felling trees in plantations or forests, transporting trees
  • Mining: Coal mining, oil and gas extraction, metal ore mining, mineral mining, exploration and mining support services
  • Construction: all kind of construction tasks, including those necessary after a thunderstorm or flood disaster

When can you apply for the 2nd year?

You have two options to apply for the 2nd year: You can do it while you are still in Australia or at a later time.

Visa application while in Australia

If you apply in Australia for the 2nd year, you must send the application before the due date of the 1st Working Holiday Visa. The approval of the 2nd WHV usually takes more time than the first visa. You should therefore plan to send the visa at least 2-3 weeks in advance.

You must also be in Australia when the visa is approved. This means that it is not possible to apply for the second visa from Australian ground and then go to New Zealand for a few weeks.

Apply for the visa at a later date

You can also apply for the second year at a later date. You are free, e.g. to return to your home for several years and then decide to go for the second year in Down Under. Just make sure to fulfill the criteria as for the 1st Working Holiday. In this respect, you have to follow the age limits and the 12-month period to activate the visa.

More tips and information for the 2nd Working Holiday Visa

Also consider the following tips and information about the second year Working Holiday. If any questions are still open, you can leave a comment and we will help you.

Can I work for several employers to get the 2nd Work and Travel year?

Yes! You do not have to stay the 88 days for the same employer. The days of all specified work are accumulated. So you can interrupt your job at any time and start another later.

How can I prove I have done specified work?

When applying for the 2nd year, you must prove that you qualify for it. For this you should keep the following documents and send them along:

  • Form 1263 Working Holiday Visa – Employment: The employer must confirm with their signature the period in which you performed the work. Submitting this form will speed up your application. You can download it here.
  • Pay Slips: You should also send these with your application. Always keep these documents, as you can use them later.

Additional documents that will help your application:

  • Payment summaries – PAYGs (issued by the employer at the end of the financial year at the end of June)
  • Salary transfers to an Australian bank account
  • Tax-back statements

Send your application with as many documents as possible, to confirm your qualified work and to get the visa as soon as possible.

New regulation on volunteering and WWOOFing

Your work must be paid in order to qualify for the 2nd Work and Travel year. Before December 1st 2015 you could also get the second year by volunteering and WWOOFing. However, many backpackers and Australians abused this legislation. For instance, backpackers paid farmers to issue the confirmation for the second year. The work, however, has never taken place.

To counteract this practice, this new legislation of paid work has been introduced. However, if you have done unpaid work before December 1st 2015, it still counts for the 2nd year and you can apply with it.

Apply for the second Working Holiday Visa without qualified work

Many backpackers have applied for the second year, although they have not worked 88 days and yet the 2nd year has been approved. This is because it is almost impossible to check every single application. However, it has been better controlled in the past years.

The worst thing that can happen with this attempt is that a visa application is refused, you have paid the visa fee for nothing, and you are not allowed to enter Australia for a max. of 3 years.

Change passport details after the visa application has been submitted

The visa for the 2nd year is also linked to your passport details. Therefore, you must make sure that all the details are exactly the same as shown on your passport. If you need to make changes afterwards, for example because you have lost the passport, you can do so via the following e-mail address: 2ndWHM.Helpdesk@border.gov.au.

Where and how can I apply for the 2nd year visa?

You can apply for the 2nd year online or by mail. We strongly recommend, as with the first working holiday visa, to file the application online. Here you can find links to all possibilities. Here you find the links to all application options.

How to get the second year Working Holiday Visa Australia
How to get the second year Working Holiday Visa Australia

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  • Clare Bayley
    19/07/2019 at 03:55

    If I apply while I am still in Australia, then leave the country after the VISA is approved but before my 1st year VISA is up, does this delay when my 2nd yr VISA starts? i.e. if I leave Australia in October before my 1st yr is up, then return in January, will my 2nd year officially start in January?

  • Travelgott
    06/11/2018 at 15:54

    as far as we know it needs to be submitted before that. however, usually the approval takes very little time.

  • liane
    01/08/2018 at 12:42

    hey, I turn 31 dec 4th of 2018. do I have to submit before my 31st birthday or does it have to be reviewed and approved before my 31st birthday? I haven’t started yet so I’m on a serious time crunch

  • Tristan Helmes
    15/03/2017 at 04:09

    Two questions :
    1. If I worked for almost 2 mounth at a company a full week from Monday to Friday, do I get 5 or 7 days?
    2. if I worked 2 weeks for every single day but did just 40 hours , how many days do I get then?

    • Amen @ Travelgott
      02/04/2017 at 10:30

      Tristan, you get 7 days, if you do 100% of the hours, you get the full week. So not 5 days but 7 days for the first question.
      For the second, they will most probably add up the hours, but you don’t get the two free days as you would get if you work 100%.

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