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UK Working Holiday Maker Visa

Introduction:

The working holidaymaker scheme allows nationals of participating Commonwealth countries, British overseas citizens, British overseas territories citizens, or British nationals (overseas) who are aged between 17 and 30 to come to the United Kingdom for a holiday of up to two years. You will be allowed to work, but the holiday must be the main reason for your stay in the United Kingdom and the work you do must be a minor part of this. See eligibility for details of the requirements you must meet to qualify for a working holidaymaker visa.

You may work for a total of up to 12 months during your stay. You may choose when to work and when to take your holiday breaks, but if you work for a total of more than 12 months you will be breaking the conditions of your working holidaymaker visa. Your visa will be valid for up to two years from the date you arrive in the United Kingdom, and any time you spend outside the United Kingdom during that time will count as part of your permitted stay here.

While you are in the United Kingdom on a working holidaymaker visa, you can take most types of work, including voluntary work. However, you may not establish any type of business or to provide services as a professional sportsperson. Any other type of professional work is permitted.

The working holidaymaker visa is a short-term immigration category. If you come to the United Kingdom on a working holidaymaker visa, you will be allowed to stay for a maximum of two years. When your visa expires, you will be expected to return to your home country. You will not be allowed to extend your visa as a working holidaymaker. You may be able to stay longer by switching to a different category of visa. See extending for more information about this. However, we do not view the working holidaymaker visa as mainly an employment category of visa, so there are restrictions on your ability to switch to another category while you are still living in the United Kingdom and you should not expect to be able to do so.

If you have previously come to the United Kingdom on a working holidaymaker visa, you will not be eligible for further entry clearance in this capacity.

Please note the working holidaymakers scheme is due to be deleted later this year when the new points-based system Youth Mobility Scheme of Tier 5 is launched.

Since Feb-2005, this scheme has been going towards making the service undertaken incidental to the holiday of which it forms a part, and not the key reason behind this Working Holiday Maker UK visa application. As a result, candidates may only work for 12 out of the 24 months duration decided.


In addition you may only switch to a UK work permit application if the occupation in which you have a job offer features on the Skills deficiency Occupation List. Though, switching to the Highly Skilled Migrant Programme is still permitted.


The governments of Japan and UK now run a Working Holiday scheme, which give wider opportunities, especially for young people to experience the culture and general way of life of the other country for the purpose of promoting greater mutual understanding between Japan and the United Kingdom. This scheme makes it possible for citizens of one country to enter the other primarily for a holiday over an extended period and to be able to take work incidental to their holiday in order to supplement their travel funds.


Working Holiday Maker visa, British citizens need not get further permission to connect in remunerative activities while in Japan, provided these activities do not contravene Japanese laws and policies, particularly those regulating businesses offering food and entertainment as well as any other regulations in force which affect public order and good morals.


Validity: 2 years


Eligibility:


To qualify to enter the United Kingdom as a working holidaymaker you must:

  • Be a national of one of the Commonwealth countries listed in Appendix 3 of the immigration rules, a British overseas territories citizen, British

  • overseas citizen, or British national (overseas);
  • Be between 17 and 30 years old;
  • Intend to come to the United Kingdom mainly for an extended holiday, working for no more than a total of 12 months during your stay;
  • Not intend to establish any type of business or to provide services as a professional sportsperson during your stay;
  • Be unmarried or not in a civil partnership, or married to or in a civil partnership with a person who also qualifies as a working holidaymaker and who

  • intends to take the working holiday with you;
  • Not have any dependent children who are aged five years or over, or who will turn five before you complete your working holiday;
  • Be able to support and accommodate yourself in the United Kingdom without recourse to public funds;
  • Not have spent time in the United Kingdom on a previous working holidaymaker visa; and
  • Plan to leave the United Kingdom at the end of your working holiday.


Other Requirements:

  • You must be single, or married to someone also eligible for a working holiday visa and plan to take a working holiday with you,
  • You must not have dependent children aged five or over during your stay in the UK,
  • You must show proof of sufficient funds in your bank account. UK Immigration does not identify how much 'sufficient funds' are. However, the idea is to show that you won't get into financial trouble and rely on public funds to maintain you. You can do this best by having round about 2500 GBP (AUS$6000) and a return ticket. If you only have a one-way ticket, you will need to have more funds in your bank account.

Visa Applications
You will need to prove that you have enough money:

  • To pay for your journey home or onward journey to another country at the end of your stay in the United Kingdom; and
  • For your accommodation and living expenses for at least the first two months of your stay in the United Kingdom, or for at least one month if you

can show that you have a job arranged in advance.

Visa Extention

The working holidaymaker visa is a short-term immigration category. If you come to the United Kingdom on a working holidaymaker visa, you will be allowed to stay for a maximum of two years. When your visa expires, you will be expected to return to your home country. You will not be allowed to extend your visa as a working holidaymaker.

However, once you have been in the United Kingdom for 12 months on a working holidaymaker visa, you may be able to stay longer by switching to a different category.

You may be able to stay here by switching to work permit employment, but only if the occupation involved is on our list of shortage occupations. The employer will need to apply for a work permit for you. If the occupation is not on home office list of shortage occupations, you will not be able to switch to work permit employment while you are still in the United Kingdom. This will apply until work permits are replaced later this year by Tier 2 of our points-based system for managing applications to work, train or study in the United Kingdom.

You may also be able to stay by switching to a visa for innovators if you meet the requirements.

Home office have now closed the Highly Skilled Migrant Programme to applications from people who are already in the United Kingdom, so it is no longer possible to stay in this country by switching into this category. The Highly Skilled Migrant Programme has been replaced by Tier 1 (General) of the points-based system. It is not possible to switch into this category if you are here as a working holidaymaker.

Applications for permission to come to the United Kingdom, or to extend a stay here, are normally decided according to the immigration rules in place at the time we make our decision on the application. You should bear in mind that the rules may change and many of our rules about working in the United Kingdom will change as new tiers of the points-based system are introduced this year.

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