Working Holiday Visa 417 for Civil Engineers and Surveyors

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Are you a Civil Engineer or Surveyor who is looking to do some travel and work in Australia? If so, you might be able to apply for the Working Holiday Visa 417.

To assist with Australia’s COVID-19 recovery, the Australian Government is providing an incentive for Student and Working Holiday Maker visa holders to return to Australia as soon as possible to help address current workforce shortages. Any Working Holiday Maker visa holder who is currently offshore and travels to Australia between 19 January and 19 April 2022 will be eligible for a refund of their visa application charge.

What is a 417 visa, who is eligible for one, and what are the benefits of getting one?

The 417 visa is a Working Holiday Visa. It is a temporary visa allowing you to work and holiday in Australia for up to 12 months. The working holiday visa will give you the opportunity to gain career and life experience while living and working in Australia. For Civil Engineers, Construction Professionals and Surveyors, it provides an opportunity to potentially work for top tier engineering companies on Australia’s largest infrastructure projects.

What are the costs and time frames associated with getting a Working Holiday Visa?

The 417 visa is one of the more cost-effective visa options for entering Australia. The cost of the visa can change from time to time however currently a 417 visa will costs AUD $495 and if your application is successful it should take no longer than a month to process.

IMPORTANT UPDATE: From 19 January 2022, Working Holiday Maker visa holders (subclasses 417 and 462) who arrive in Australia before 19 April 2022 can apply for a refund of the visa application charge (VAC). They can also work for more than 6 months with one employer, in any sector, anywhere in Australia. Read more here

Once you have your Working Holiday Visa (Subclass 417) you have 12 months to activate it. The visa activates once you land enter Australia. It is then valid for the following 12 months.

Am I guaranteed to get one? If I don’t get one after applying what costs are involved?

No, you are not guaranteed a 417 visa. To start you are required to meet the minimum eligibility requirements:

  • have not previously entered Australia on a Work and Holiday visa (417 or 462)
  • hold a valid passport from a country involved in the Working Holiday Program with Australia:
    • Belgium
    • Canada
    • Republic of Cyprus
    • Denmark
    • Estonia
    • Finland
    • France
    • Germany
    • Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China (including British National Overseas passport holders)
    • Republic of Ireland
    • Italy
    • Japan
    • Republic of Korea
    • Malta
    • Netherlands
    • Norway
    • Sweden
    • Taiwan (other than an official or diplomatic passport)
    • The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
  • have turned 18 years of age but have not yet turned 31 (except for Canadian, French and Irish citizens up to 35 inclusive);
  • have enough money to support yourself on a working holiday (about AUD 5000);
  • have enough money to buy a return or onward travel ticket at the end of your stay;
  • will not be accompanied by dependent children at any time during your stay;
  • meet health and character requirements;
  • not have had a visa cancelled or a previous application refused;

What are the chances of gaining work in the civil engineering field once I arrive in Australia?

Currently, the Australian civil infrastructure/construction market is booming. If you have relevant industry experience and have a reasonable degree of flexibility on location and project type, then the likelihood of obtaining work once you are in Australia is very high.

How can ConsultANZ assist with this process?

ConsultANZ is in the business of finding opportunities for engineers, surveyors and other construction professionals in across all of Australia. We have in-depth knowledge of the Australian civil engineering market and have relationships with many of the companies delivering major projects.

If you are interested in coming to Australia on a Working Holiday Visa 417, we can advise on potential opportunities that would be available to you. We can provide employment options relevant to your timelines, experience and preferences.

Once I arrive and gain my initial work placement, what happens if I want to stay long term?

Many companies are offering longer-term sponsorship to those whose Working Holiday Visas are expiring. If you impress during your initial employment on the 417 visa, then there are most certainly opportunities for sponsorship beyond the Working Holiday Visa period.

What are the other visa routes that I may be eligible for?

There are many different visa types for which you may qualify. Other options might include temporary visas, sponsored by an Australian company OR permanent visas that require state sponsorship. You may also be eligible to apply for the subclass 189 visa, which is an independent visa for skilled professionals coming to Australia.

How can I find out more information on this process and get in contact with ConsultANZ?

If you are a Civil Engineer, a Construction Professional or a Surveyor who would like to be part of the infrastructure boom in Australia or New Zealand, register your CV here or search our jobs.

ConsultANZ Recruitment  –  We consult our Clients on their hiring needs and our Candidates on their career prospects.


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While visa applicants do not have to use a migration agent to lodge a visa application with the Department of Immigration and Border Protection, many individuals applying for an Australian visa may prefer to enlist the services of a trusted professional.

The Office of the Migration Agents Registration Authority (MARA) keeps an up-to-date list of registered migration agents.

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