Working Holiday Visas – Which Countries Offer Working Holiday Visas?

Working Holiday Visas – Which Countries Offer Working Holiday Visas?

Traveling is one of life’s most rewarding experiences. But the downside is, most vacations are simply too short! Just when you feel like you’re getting a feel for a new place or culture, your entire journey is over, and you’re back on the plane heading home.

While you may never be able to travel indefinitely for the rest of your life, you can at least spend a year abroad in a foreign country. A working holiday visa is a great opportunity for young travelers to immerse themselves in a new culture while also being able to travel, work, and study.

woman standing behind Eiffel Tower during daytime

What is a Working Holiday?

A working holiday abroad is a once-in-a-lifetime experience that allows foreigners to live, travel, work, and study in another country for a certain amount of time. It can also be referred to as a youth mobility scheme or gap year.

Not only does a working holiday visa allow you to explore your surroundings during your free time, but you’ll also make a little extra cash on the side in order to support your travels.

Who is Eligible for a Working Holiday Visa?

The exact requirements of who can apply for a working holiday visa will vary from country to country. However, most working holiday visas are limited to young travelers of a certain age (usually under 30 or 35).

But even if you meet that age requirement, you’ll still need to choose a country that accepts citizens from your home country. Working holiday programs are reciprocal agreements between two countries that allow citizens from both places to travel, live and work for extended periods of time. That means you can only get a visa for countries that have a special agreement with your home country.

Keep in mind there may be other specific requirements you have to meet before applying for a working holiday visa. That includes having sufficient funds to support yourself, taking out a foreign health insurance policy, or passing certain criminal or health background checks.

What Can I Do on a Working Holiday Visa?

While the main goal of a working holiday is tourism, a working holiday visa allows you to work in order to earn extra money to help pay for part of your travels. For this reason, there may be some restrictions on where you can get a job or how many hours you can work. Depending on the country, you might also be restricted to how long you can work for each employer.

Although it’s possible for visa holders to work in a professional setting like in an office or company, most people on a working holiday take up jobs that are part-time or seasonal. That could be teaching English to children, giving snowboarding instructions in the mountains, or working in a restaurant in the city.

While working is encouraged (who doesn’t want to make extra money!), it’s usually not required to obtain a visa.

In many situations, you may also be allowed to study on a working holiday visa. This is a great opportunity to learn a new language, study for a new degree, or simply attend classes to help you grow in your career.

Which Countries Offer Working Holiday Visas?

Argentina

Home to some of the most diverse landscapes in South America, Argentina is a spectacular place to spend your working holiday. During your free time, you can trek through jungles, hike the snow-capped Patagonias, or unwind in the eclectic capital of Buenos Aires.

  • Age Limit: 18-30 (35 if you are from New Zealand)
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Countries Accepted: Australia, Denmark, France, Ireland, New Zealand
  • Other Things to Note: Depending on your nationality, you may only be able to work for a maximum of 6 months with one employer.
  • More Information: The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Argentina
Sidney Opera House, Australia

Australia

Spend a year in the land down under when you do your working holiday scheme in Australia. Hit the beaches, go snorkeling, and enjoy the bustling cities of Sydney, Melbourne, or Perth. Best of all, you won’t have to learn another language!

  • Age Limit: 18-30 (35 if you are from Canada, France, Ireland)
  • Duration: 12 months – 3 years
  • Countries Accepted: Taiwan, Estonia, Belgium, Italy, France, Cyprus, Finland, Hong Kong, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Malta, South Korea, Ireland, Japan, The Netherlands, Canada, United Kingdom
  • Other Things to Note: You can only work for a maximum of 6 months with one employer. Your first working holiday visa is only valid for 12 months. If you choose to stay longer, you must apply for a second or third visa.
  • More Information: Australia Work Holiday Visa – Travel and Work in Australia on Your Gap Year, Australian Department of Home Affairs

Austria

From the ski slopes of the Alps to the vibrant city center of Vienna, Austria is the perfect mix of city and nature. Not to mention you’re centrally located in the middle of Europe, so you can easily travel during your weekends.

  • Age Limit: 18-30
  • Duration: 6-12 months
  • Countries Accepted: New Zealand, South Korea, Chinese Taipei, Hong Kong, Japan, Israel, Canada, Chile, Australia and Argentina.
  • More Information: Austria International Affairs

Belgium

Home to mouthwatering waffles, beer, and chocolates, Belgium is a foodie’s paradise. And as one of the six countries that founded the EU, it’s also a great place to have a working holiday scheme in politics or international affairs.

  • Age Limit: 18-30
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Countries Accepted: Australia, Canada, New Zealand, South Korea, Taiwan
  • Other Things to Note: You can only work for a maximum of 6 months with one employer.
  • More Information: Belgium Foreign Affairs

Canada

With numerous cities and provinces to explore, Canada is one of the most diverse working holiday visa countries. Spend a year on the west coast in Vancouver, or work your way through the bustling city of Toronto on the east.

  • Age Limit: 18-30 (35 if you are from Australia, Chile, Costa Rica, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Countries Accepted: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Chile, Costa Rica, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Ireland, Italy, Japan, South Korea, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, San Marino, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, United Kingdom, USA
  • Other Things to Note: You can only work for a maximum of 6 months with one employer.
  • More Information: Canadian Working Holiday Visa – Everything You Need to Know, Government of Canada

The Czech Republic

Spend your working holiday exploring century-old castles and charming UNESCO World Heritage cities when you travel to the Czech Republic. While Prague is a popular choice for foreigners, Brno and Ostrava are also great places to live for a year.

Denmark

Denmark is a fun and easy city to live in, especially for travelers on a working holiday visa. That’s because they have one of the highest standards of living in the world, thanks to its thriving economy and multi-faceted culture.

  • Age Limit: 18-30 (35 if you are from Canada)
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Countries Accepted: Argentina, Australia, Canada, Chile, New Zealand, South Korea, Japan
  • More Information: New to Denmark

France

Not only is France the most popular destination for tourists, but it also happens to be one of the best places to spend a working holiday year abroad. There are plenty of jobs for all types of skillsets, whether you’re teaching ski lessons in the mountains or brewing coffee in a cafe in Nice.

  • Age Limit: 18-30 (35 if you are from Canada, Argentina, or Australia)
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Countries Accepted: Uruguay, Taiwan, Russia, Mexico, Hong Kong, New Zealand, Japan, South Korea, Colombia, Chile, Canada, Brazil, Argentina, Australia
  • More Information: Young Traveller Website
white and pink petaled flowers on metal fence near concrete houses and tower at daytime

Germany

Europe’s beer and car-loving capital is one of the best working holiday visa countries – even if you don’t know German. Most participants head to Berlin, where they high higher chances of landing a job at a start-up or tech company in English.

  • Age Limit: 18-30 (35 if you are from Canada)
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Countries Accepted: Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Japan, Hong Kong, South Korea, Taiwan, Brazil, Uruguay, Israel, Chile.
  • More Information: German Federal Foreign Office

Hong Kong

The working holiday scheme in Hong Kong is a great option for anyone who wants to spend time in Asia. This glamorous city is incredibly welcoming to foreigners, as it’s a multicultural mishmash of Western and Eastern life.

  • Age Limit: 18-30
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Countries Accepted: Australia, Austria, Canada, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Japan, Korea, Netherlands, New Zealand, Sweden, United Kingdom.
  • Other Things to Note: Each participating country has only a certain number of available visas, which are first come first serve.
  • More Information: Hong Kong Immigration Department

Ireland

Ireland is quickly becoming one of the hottest tech cities in Europe. While Dublin attracts people seeking jobs in the start-up or tech industry community, there are also plenty of hospitality jobs along the coast or in the country.

  • Age Limit: 18-30 (35 if you are from Canada)
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Countries Accepted: Argentina, Australia, Canada, Chile, Hong Kong, Japan, New Zealand, South Korea, USA, Taiwan (Taiwan applicants have a separate application)
  • More Information: Department of Foreign Affairs

Israel

Between the sun-soaked beaches and holy towns and villages, Israel is a spectacular place to spend a year abroad. Tel Aviv has numerous tech companies and businesses where English is the first language, making it easier than ever for foreigners to find a job.

man riding boat surrounded with buildings during daytime

Italy

The grand Colosseum in Rome, the rugged coasts of Amalfi, and the rolling hills of Tuscany are just a few places you can visit when you spend a working holiday in Italy. Hospitality, tourism, and retail are just a few places where youth mobility visa holders can work.

  • Age Limit: 18-30 (35 if you are from Canada)
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Countries Accepted: Australia, New Zealand, Canada, South Korea
  • Other Things to Note: You may only work for a total of 6 months, and only 3 months with one employer
  • More Information: Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Japan

From the chaotic, neon-lit cities of Tokyo and Osaka to the striking landscapes of Kyoto and Nara, Japan has something to delight all working holiday participants. You can work almost every top of a job here, including sports, retail, and farming.

  • Age Limit: 18-30 (25 if you are from Australia or Canada, 26 if you are from Iceland).
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Countries Accepted: Iceland, Chile, Czech Republic, Argentina, Spain, Hungary, Austria, Slovakia, Poland, Portugal, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Norway, Denmark, Ireland, the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Korea, Canada, New Zealand and Australia.
  • More Information: Japan Working Holiday Visas, Ministry of Foreign Affairs Japan

New Zealand

As one of the most friendly places on the planet, New Zealand is a great choice for spending your working holiday. Whether you’re working out in the country or bustling your way through the city, you’ll love working in the beautiful country of New Zealand.

  • Age Limit: 18-30 (35 if you are from Argentina, Canada, Czech Republic, Hungary, Slovakia, or Uruguay)
  • Duration: 12 months (23 months if you are from Canada or the UK)
  • Countries Accepted:  Argentina, Hong Kong, Philippines, Austria, Ireland, Poland, Belgium, Israel, Portugal, Brazil, Italy, Singapore, Canada, Japan, Slovakia, Chile, Korea, Slovenia, China, Latvia, Spain, Croatia, Lithuania, Sweden, Czech Republic, Luxembourg, Taiwan, Denmark, Malaysia, Thailand, Estonia, Malta, Turkey, Finland, Mexico, United Kingdom, France, Netherlands, USA, Germany, Norway, Uruguay, Hungary, Peru, Vietnam.
  • More Information: New Zealand Working Holiday Visa, New Zealand Immigration
houses in near mountains and trees during daytime

Norway

Although it may be one of the most expensive countries to live in, Norway does have a youth mobility program for those looking to spend time up north. Who can say no to the opportunity of spending a year surrounded by some of the most unspoiled landscapes in the world?

  • Age Limit: 18-30 (35 if you are from Canada)
  • Duration: 12 months (2 years if you are from Canada)
  • Countries Accepted: Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Japan, Argentina
  • Other Things to Note: You may only work for a maximum of 6 months with one employer (does not apply to Canadian citizens).
  • More Information: Norwegian Directorate of Immigration

Poland

Famous for ornate castles and colorful architecture, Poland is a country that will amaze you from the second you step off the plane. And it’s one of the most affordable places to live, which is perfect for students or entry-level employees.

  • Age Limit: 18-30 (35 if you are from Canada)
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Countries Accepted: Taiwan, New Zealand, South Korea, Japan, Australia, Canada
  • More Information: Republic of Poland

South Korea

Even if you don’t speak Korean, South Korea is a great choice for your year abroad. You can land potential jobs in hospitality, retail, tourism, or even teaching English across the country.

  • Age Limit: 18-25
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Countries Accepted: USA, United Kingdom, Taiwan, Sweden, Romania, Portugal, Poland, Netherlands, Mexico, Italy, Israel, Ireland, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Hungary, Japan, Czech Republic, Germany, France, Denmark, Canada, Chile, Brazil, Belgium, Austria, Australia.
  • Other Things to Note: Some countries have a maximum number of visas to distribute. You cannot work longer than 1300 hours a year.
  • More Information: Working Holiday Info Center

Singapore

Slightly different than other youth mobility schemes on this list, the Singapore Working Holiday Programme is catered specifically to students and recent graduates. With this visa, you can hold numerous jobs, including those in the medical and legal industry.

  • Age Limit: 18-25
  • Duration: 6 months
  • Countries Accepted: Australia, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, United States
  • Other Things to Note: You must be a recent undergraduate or graduate (within the last 3 months)
  • More Information: Ministry of Manpower

Slovakia

Bratislava, Bojnice, and Orava are three of the biggest cities where you can work during your year abroad in Slovakia. And since you’ll be sandwiched between western and eastern Europe, you’ll have plenty of other countries and place to explore during your free time.

  • Age Limit: 18-35
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Countries Accepted: New Zealand, Australia, Canada, Japan, Taiwan
  • Other Things to Note: Some countries have a certain number of visas to distribute. You can only work a maximum of 6 months with one employer.
  • More Information: Ministry of Foreign Affairs
woman standing on road near concrete arch at daytime

Spain

The youth mobility scheme between Spain and New Zealand, Canada, Japan, and Australia is a great opportunity for travelers to explore this cultural capital. Work in a big city like Madrid or Barcelona, or head to Majorca or the Canary Islands for a plethora of tourism and hospitality opportunities.

  • Age Limit: 18-30 (35 if you are from Canada)
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Countries Accepted: New Zealand, Canada, Australia, Japan

Sweden

There’s more to Sweden than meatballs and Scandinavian furniture! From the quaint rural villages along the coast to the metropolitan capital of Stockholm, Sweden has the perfect mix of city, culture, and history that is guaranteed to please.

  • Age Limit: 18-30
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Countries Accepted: Australia, Chile, Hong Kong, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, South Korea, Uruguay
  • More Information: Swedish Migration Agency

The United Kingdom

The youth mobility UK scheme is one of the most popular choices for a working holiday – and for a good reason. The United Kingdom is a multicultural region with plenty of job opportunities for foreigners in England, Wales, and Northern Ireland, in numerous fields like tech, retail, hospitality, and tourism.

faq

Frequently Asked Questions

Which Countries Offer Working Holiday Visas?

Working holiday programs are reciprocal agreements between two countries. You can only get a visa for countries that have a special agreement with your home country.

Countries that offer a working holiday are: Argentina, Australia, Austria, Canada, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, South Korea, Singapore, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, and The United Kingdom.


How does a working holiday visa work?

Working Holiday Visas allow you to live, work, and study in a country for a few months to up to 3 years. You are allowed to work to cover your living expenses and help fund your travels in the country, but you may be limited to how many months you can work for one company.


How many times can I get a working holiday visa?

Some countries allow you to renew the visa, while others only allow you to apply for it once. You should check with the country you want to get a working visa for.


Can I get a working visa if I’m over 30?

Most countries have an age limit of 18-30 years old for Working Holiday visa applicants. However, there are some countries that allow for people over 30 years to apply depending on the circumstance. Check with the country you want to apply for what their age limit is.


How long can I stay in the country with a Working Holiday Visa?

A Working Holiday Visa will let you stay in the country for 6 months up to 3 years. The duration depens on the country, so you should check with the country you are applying for.


How much does a Working Holiday Visa cost?

The cost of visas can change from time to time and is dependent on the country that you are applying for. Check the cost for a Working Holiday Visa in the country you are applying for.

Ready to go on your Working Holiday? Where would you like to go? Tell us in the comments below!

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If you need help with a US visa, a UK Visa, or visa to Europe, including help with appointment booking obligations, IaM can help. For more information and advice on US immigration, UK immigration law and US visa applications or if you need any help or assistance please, reach out to your Visa Coordinator at IaM.

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