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Want to travel and earn when you graduate? Head to Australia!

29th March 2012

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For many of us, the hardest decision we had to make when collecting our A-levels was which university we wanted to attend, and whether they would be willing to take us.

Outback Australia - Uluru (courtesy of Tourism Australia)

But with student debt now toppling the £30,000 mark, and a job market that can only be described as ‘gloomy,’ more and more school and college leavers are throwing away their UCAS forms and booking themselves a flight down under.

In just the past six months, sales of Working Holiday Visas for the youth travel specialist STA Travel have risen by 10 percent, a figure which is expected to continue rising.

STA Travel marketing director Natalie Placko said: “This is a tough economy for young people and many are struggling to find work or are looking for an alternative to university thanks to the hike in fees this year.

“Heading off to work in Australia and earning Australian dollars is a good move for young people at the moment. The Australian economy is strong and there’s a buoyant employment market, whereas in the UK youth unemployment is at record levels. Taking the chance to work in Australia for a year is a smart move for young people in the current climate.”

From the turquoise waters of Cairns to the towering Uluru, it’s not difficult to see why so many students choose Australia as their post-graduation destination of choice.

But with the race heating up for graduate schemes and unpaid internships, a lot of students who may not have previously considered travelling after university are now looking abroad to gather some much-needed work experience and ride out the recession.

Placko said: “We want to nurture the philosophy that travelling is all part of the education process - it’s not solely about exam results and going to university. We want to make it as easy as possible for young people to get access to the world of travel and work.”


Working alongside Tourism Australia, STA Travel are seeking to boost awareness of the opportunities available to young people in Australia as they decide their next move either before or after university, or if they are contemplating a career change.


With the help of the states and territories, they are offering the chance to win one of seven jobs in each of the different states and territories of Australia, ranging from acting as an official photographer and social media manager at a surf school on Bondi Beach to being a dive instructor in the Great Barrier Reef.

Other jobs include acting as a cook on a dive boat in Tasmania, becoming a conservation assistant in Seal Bay or Victoria’s Phillip Island Penguin Parade, working under the stars in the Northern Territory as part of the team of an award-winning outdoor dining experience or even working in a microbrewery in Perth.

STA have also released a raft of great travel offers, with prices starting as low as £599 for a return flight, camper van hire from £28 a day and 20 per cent off all tours.

Rodney Harrex, regional general manager for the UK and Northern Europe at Tourism Australia added: “Taking up a Working Holiday Visa in Australia is a great opportunity for young people – it’s a chance to gain new skills and explore a country that has some of the most diverse landscape in the world. Combining work with travel means you can fund your trip as you go and there are some truly unique job opportunities on offer.”

Though some parents may still shudder at the thought of their sons and daughters postponing their career to become world weary travellers; with its superb infrastructure and English-speaking locals, Australia is arguably one of the best starting points for an inexperienced backpacker.

For a chance to win your dream job in Australia, go to to enter. Flights, the job and visa fees are all included in the prize.


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