Changes Affecting Working Holiday Makers

Many people are confused by the recent changes to tax and work that is eligible for second working holiday visa.  This is a simple explanation of what it will mean for you if you are currently working in Australia.

Firstly, the new changes in tax will only come into effect after July 2016. So if your working holiday visa will expire before July 2016. Don’t worry about it.

If you do plan to be on a working holiday visa after July 2016, then you will be taxed at 32.5% for any dollar earned up to $80,000.

At the moment, working holiday makers don’t need to pay any tax on income under $18,500. And then on 19% of income earned on income from $18,500 – $80,000.

So if I earn $18,500 per year:

Now I would pay $0 in tax.

After July 2016, I would pay $6,012.50 in tax.


If I earn up $30,000 per year:

Now, I would pay $2,185 in tax

After July 2016, I would pay $9,750 in tax

 Second Working Holiday Visa – Changes to eligible regional Work

The increase in tax on working holiday makers has certainly drawn the most attention however there is another huge change, which I feel will affect working holiday makers even more.

Basically the government is currently making changes to not allow volunteer work such as WWOOF to count as eligible specified work that would allow working holiday makers to obtain the second working holiday visa. Working holiday makers will soon have to show payslips for proof of work.

Even though this announcement has yet to be finalized, many working holiday makers who have worked for WWOOF have found that they have had their second working holiday visa refused as the work “was not specified work as defined by the Minister in the Federal Register of Legislative Instruments (FRLI) F2008L02264, 24 June 2008, IMMI 08/048.”

 The below is a typical email that we receive weekly from an unlucky working holiday maker who had her second working holiday visa refused:

 “I have sent an online application for the second working holiday visa after working almost 100 days in specified regional works in Australia.

I have chosen to do wwoofing instead of doing the more common fruit picking and the employers assured me that they were eligible for the 2nd WHV application.

Today I have received the answer from the Immigration Department and unfortunately the have refused my visa as some of the work done “was not specified work as defined by the Minister in the Federal Register of Legislative Instruments (FRLI) F2008L02264, 24 June 2008, IMMI 08/048″

So be careful if you are WWOOFING. The Department of Immigration and Border Protection has increasing refused second working holiday visa applications of WWOOFers who have not had their regional work counted.

If you have had any experience WWOOFING (good or bad), we would love to hear from you.  Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.

For information about applying for the second working holiday visa click here.

For info on fruit picking click here.

If you are interested in extending your stay in Australia after your working holiday visa click here to find out some visa options