When No One Wants to Hire Working Holiday Makers

When it comes to a Working Holiday, the most important part is simply finding a job.

Without it, you may not be able to stay as long as you want, or have the additional money necessary to see the places you had hoped.

The problem here is that some employers don't like to hire Working Holiday Makers.  Besides the restrictions on how long you can stay with them, there is also the fact that many a traveler and backpacker before you has given the working holiday maker a bad name.  How?  By providing extremely short-lived service.

So, what to do if you hit a roadblock when it comes to finding a job on a working holiday?  Have a look at my list of tips below to help you solve your problem.

1. Lower Your Expectations

Your idea of working abroad might involve an office environment that is far, far away from customer service.  Yes, this is a possibility, but for the most part you will simply need to lower your expectations and resort to jobs that you may have thought were a thing of the past.  For example, restaurants, cafes and call centers are always in need of extra hands and tend to be more flexible when it comes to short-term workers.

2. Seek Out Jobs Targeted at Working Holidays

Since working holiday visas are a popular option for young adults, there are often several companies and job types that have been targeted towards individuals choosing this option.  As an example, the fruit picking industry has become the perfect opportunity for those wanting short-term work in Australia.  It may not be glamorous, but the qualifications for it are very low meaning you can work if you show up.

3. Put Yourself Out There

Rejections aside, there are plenty of job opportunities for Working Holiday Makers, you just have to look in the right places and put yourself out there.  In other words, read again points one and two and reassess your situation.  If you're finding that your CVs aren't getting the response you're looking for, then take a different approach.  Did you think about asking for the cafe owners themselves so you can have a face-to-face chat?  Have you asked fellow Working Holiday Makers for recommendations and advice?

4. Assess Your Needs In Relation to Time

I have met people that took months to find a job, while others found one in the first week or two.  What was the difference?  When I asked them about their approach, the ones that found the jobs quickest were the ones that put themselves out there without too much discretion to the type of work it involved.  Sure, it may have gotten them a job that wouldn't have been their first choice, but they were on their way to getting a paycheck way before the others.

5. Ask Yourself These Questions

  • You have to think about time when looking for a job on a working holiday.  How much time are you willing to wait while hunting for your ideal job?  Can you afford it?
  • You have to think about your goals for being abroad.  Are you there to mainly travel, thus meaning any job will do as long as you get more money?  Or, are you hoping to explore the culture and maybe get career-building work experience there in the process.
  • You have to think about where you want to be versus where you should be.  There are probably other parts of the country you can attempt to live and work in, so would it be better to forgo the city you're in for another with more job prospects?

Finding a job on a working holiday shouldn't be too difficult as long as you are prepared and understand where what you need and what you can get intersect.  Happy job hunting!

About the Author

Brooke Schoenman is a world traveler turned Australia expat.  She's done the whole work and holiday thing herself and can definitely tell you a thing or two about traveling down under.  For some travel inspiration, be sure to check out more of her work at Brooke vs. the World and WhyGo Australia.

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