Those of us lucky enough to live abroad for even a short period of time know that it is an experience guaranteed to change your life. Working Holiday visas allow Canadians to live in a range of countries around the world and even make a living without the hassle of finding sponsorship for a work visa. Even though international travel is not readily available right now due to the pandemic, planning a working holiday for the future is an exciting way to spend your time.
See also: The Awesome Truth About Solo Travel
Below you’ll find ideas and details about some incredible options for Canadians looking to experience life abroad!
Always dreamed of spending a few years beachside? Canadians aged 18 to 35 are able to live and work in Australia for up to three years through the Working Holiday visa (subclass 417), though you will need to apply in twelve month increments for a total of three participations in the program. You’re able to live anywhere in Australia and to do any kind of work on this visa, though you should be aware that in most cases, you can only work for the same employer for a maximum of six months. In order to apply for the second twelve-month visa after your first year, you will need to have completed at least three months of “specified work”, which usually involves living and working in a regional area of Australia. You will need to do a further three months of specified work in order to apply for a third and final year, with each twelve-month visa costing AUD$485 (around CAD$460).
If you’ve ever dreamed of exploring life in Spain, you’re in luck! Canadians aged 18 to 35 can live and work in Spain for up to two years on a Working Holiday visa as part of their larger Youth Mobility Program. In order to be eligible, you will need to have savings of at least CAD$3,000 to support yourself, and you must not have a criminal record. There are five categories under which you can apply for your Working Holiday visa to Spain, with categories D (post-secondary students wanting to work during their trip) and E (non-students wishing to work during their trip) being most relevant. Each category allows you to live and work on a casual basis in Spain for up to twelve months, but you can apply once in each category, allowing you to stay for up to two years if you meet the requirements of both.
Interested in trying the English way of life? Or maybe exploring Scotland, Wales, or Northern Ireland? Canadians aged 18 to 30 are able to apply for a Youth Mobility Scheme visa (T5), which allows them to live and work in the UK for up to two years. You’ll need to have at least £2,530 (around CAD$4,390) in savings to show that you can support yourself in the UK, but you’re able to work wherever you’d like once you’re there.
Fancy living in stunning New Zealand? Canadian citizens aged 18 to 35 can apply for either a 12 or 23 month Working Holiday visa, so long as they have at least NZD $4,200 (around CAD$3,700) in savings to live on, and medical insurance cover for your entire trip. This visa allows you to live and work wherever you’d like in New Zealand, though you can’t accept a permanent job or study for more than six months. After you arrive, there is no entry or exit limit, so you can come and go from New Zealand as many times as you like before your visa expires.
Ever thought about spending a year in Japan? Canadians aged 18 to 30 are able to apply for a Japanese Working Holiday, so your dreams of living in Tokyo might be closer than you think! To apply, you must currently reside in Canada, have no criminal record, and hold at least CAD$3,500 in savings to support yourself during the initial period of stay in Japan. You will also be required to provide an itinerary of your stay, so this visa involves a bit more planning ahead of time than some of the other options. You should also be aware that there are some restrictions regarding work options during your stay – you are not allowed to work at “places affecting public morals”, which includes bars, cabarets, and nightclubs.
How does living in Ireland for two years sound? In order to be eligible to apply for a Working Holiday Visa in Ireland, you will need to be a Canadian citizen aged 18 to 35, have at least one year of insurance cover, and hold at least CAD$2,500 in savings to support yourself during your stay. The working holiday visa itself costs CAD$150 plus a $15 return fee, and it usually takes about six to eight weeks from application for your visa to be processed and issued. Once you’re there, you are able to work wherever you’d like, and there is no entry or exit limit on the visa, so you can travel outside of Ireland to explore neighbouring countries as much as you’d like!