What is a Working Holiday Visa?

Updated: 5 days ago

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In countries outside the United States, the term ‘holiday’ is what Americans call a vacation. With that in mind, the Working Holiday Visa (WHV) is pretty self-explanatory. A WHV allows for the traveler of one country to legally work while they are traveling the foreign country that issues the visa for a set period of time.

Working Holiday Visas are structured with young adults in mind. To give them international experience that will ultimately enrich their lives while also stimulating the economy.

As of November 2018, there are more than 50 countries that have Working Holiday Visa programs. These countries include Canada, Thailand, New Zealand, Chile, South Africa, Spain and Russia. To check which countries you qualify for, the best source will be the immigration departments of the country you are a citizen of.

Visa requirements vary from country to country, however most WHVs stay along these guidelines:

Age Restrictions: Most Visas require the applicants to be between the ages of 18 and 30. (In some cases, the traveler can be up to the age 35).

Employment Restrictions: Some restrict how long you can work for one employer and what type of work you chose.

Financial Requirements: Before receiving a visa, the traveler must prove that they have a reserve of money upon arrival to the country.

Medical Insurance: As a traveler in the country, you aren’t entitled to certain social services provided by the country, so you must have traveler’s medical insurance for the duration of your stay.

Background Check: Some countries require you to pass a criminal background check prior to receiving a visa.

Working Holiday Visas are structures with young adults in mind. To give them international experience that will ultimately enrich their lives while also stimulating the economy

One of the benefits of the working holiday visa is the traveler doesn’t have to save as much capital prior to the trip. Once the visa holders arrive, they are able to begin working to supplement their funds. Another bonus is that when you spend the money you earn, less money lost in currency exchange. The traveler’s budget really gets dinged with transfer fees and a variable market.

A Working holiday is a great way to spend a gap year, for those that work remotely, or for those that want to test the waters of living abroad.

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