Fruit Picking in Autumn

Fruit picking in Australia does not stop when the weather cools down, so here are a few tips on where the fruit picking is this Autumn.

Our citrus fruits thrive in the cool weather with the season starting April/May. For the best chance of regular work head to the Riverina area in Griffith, Sunraysia close to Mildura, Victoria and the Riverland region in South Australia.

See information below from the Harvest Trail website -

These regions specialise in oranges, mainly the winter Navel fruit with is largely destined for export, or the Valencia oranges that are harvested in the warmer months and service the juice trade as well as for fresh consumption. Parts of Queensland also have some significant citrus crops, mainly specialising in mandarins.

Winter Navels start in May or even as early as April, but the best work opportunities don’t materialise until June when the harvest starts to peak. The big advantage of citrus work is that the harvest lasts a long time and work is available almost all year with little moving around.

Typically there is not a lot of rain in NSW, SA and Victoria from May to July so the volume of fruit picking work is not adversely affected.

Be aware this type of work is not for the faint hearted! You will be climbing up and down ladders with a bag of fruit on your back. Most work of this type is paid by “piece work” which means that you will be paid by the weight of the fruit you pick, i,e a set rate per barrel or box. An employer must always let you know how much you will be paid, so ensure that you have this information before you get started.

Happy Picking!


Workers needed in Melbourne

Hi Member's,

If you will be in Melbourne on the 2nd, 3rd and 4th of May and would like some work. Please contact our Melbourne team on 03 9080 6420 or email Josh on josh@worktravelcompany.com.au for all the details and to get placed into the role.

Hurry we have  multiple positions available but they are still limited so first in best dressed.


What is ANZAC Day and what does it mean?

What does ANZAC stand for?

ANZAC stands for the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps.

What is ANZAC Day?

ANZAC Day, which falls on 25 April each year is one of the more important patriotic events in the Australia calendar. Apart from Australia Day, ANZAC Day is the only other day that is celebrated for celebrating something of Australia and its past.

ANZAC Day is celebrated in respect of the troupes that were deployed from Australia and New Zealand who made the journey together to Gallipoli in 1914 when Britain declared war which automatically placed Australia and New Zealand in favour of the Commonwealth. On this trip they bonded and faught together on the battle lines. Fast forward 100 years and this bond today is known as the ANZAC spirit.

What does ANZAC Day mean today?

Today ANZAC Day is a day for Australians as a day of remembrance and a day to pay respects and say thanks to the the service men and women who had given their lives to protect Australia and New Zealand but also to give us the free nations we have today. Today ANZAC Day has 2 particular events that happen all over the country. The more formal event which is the Dawn Service which happens in a more formal setting usually at war memorials around the country followed by a more social event which are usually street parades with past and present service men and women in most Australian cities and other towns.

Other Events on ANZAC Day

Apart from the Public Holiday we all get on ANZAC Day another many Australian’s look forward to is visiting the local RSL and some pubs to have a drink and play a game that started all those years ago on the battle field called “Two-Up”. The game is illigal these days but for one day in the year it is made legal for some fun and for traditions sake. Two up is a coin game with two coins and wager with other spectators whether the coins will land on heads or tails.

That’s the crash course on ANZAC Day.

Enjoy the 25th of April!


How powerful is your passport?

Hold your passports, we have new passport powerhouses!

Over the past few years there have been a lot of movement in the travel space but nothing more important than the changes to the power of the passport one holds. As the aspiration and desire to travel and see different places on this planet fuelled by social media influencers and the wanderlust lives they live it becomes more apparent how important the passport you hold is.

The Henley Passport Index has put together the list of most powerful passports in the world. The Henley Passport Index is based on authoritative data from the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and bases its rankings on how many countries a passport entitles a traveller to enter without having to pre-apply for a visa.

The latest rankings sparks good news for the local Asia -Pacific region but also shows the inroads many Asian countries are making in terms of development.

Dr Christian H. Kälin, group chairman of Henley & Partners said “Historical data from the Henley Passport Index over the past 14 years shows an overwhelming global tendency towards visa openness and that most countries remain committed to collaboration and mutually beneficial agreements.”

Top 10 from the Henley Passport Index:

1. Japan, Singapore, South Korea — 189 (destinations)
2. Germany — 188
3. France, Denmark, Finland, Italy, Sweden — 187
4. Luxembourg, Spain — 186
5. Austria, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Switzerland, US — 185
6. UK, Belgium, Canada, Greece, Ireland — 184
7. Czech Republic — 183
8. Malta — 182
9. Australia, Iceland, New Zealand — 181
10. Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovakia, Slovenia — 180

Countries from Europe continue to have the most powerful passports in the index with European nations dominating the top 10.

On the bottom of the list and the countries with the least travel freedom were Iraq and Afghanistan with passport holders only able to travel freely to 30 destinations closely followed by Somalia and Syria at 32 destinations.

Check out it if your passport also offers the power for a Working Holiday visa to Australia here

To see the full Henley Passport Index click here


Your guide to the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras

If you didn’t know already, the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras is one of the longest running celebration of the LGBTQI (Lesbian, Gay, Bi-Sexual, Transgender, Queer/Questioning, Intersex) community in Australia. The most famous being the street parade that starts on “Oxford Street” and ends on ANZAC Parade.

The extraordinary showpiece shines the light on everything LGBTQI from the lives some live, culture, communities and creativity. It’s one of those things that everybody visiting or living in Sydney during Mardi Gras week should experience at least once. The parade has it all, out of this world floats, more glitter and sequins than any outdoor festival you’ve been to, amazing costumes (and in some cases the lack of clothing – but hey, its mardi gras).

Come with an open mind, a smile, be in the mood to have a laugh, your dancing shoes and expect big crowds. Oh, and expect a big night!

For more information, maps, vantage points and general information on what’s happening on Mardi Gras visit  http://www.mardigras.org.au/events/parade

Photo credit to images above: Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras


Visa Increases for some Work and Holiday 462 visa countries

Minister for Immigration, Citizenship and Multicultural Affairs, David Coleman announced earlier this week increases to the number of available Work and Holiday 462 visas to some countries.

  • As of this week the number of Work and Travel 462 visas available to Chileans have increased from 2,000 to 3,400

The number of places available to Spanish, Israeli and Peruvian nationals under the program have all recently increased.

  • For Spain an increase from 1,500 to 3,400 places (28 December 2018)
  • For Israel an increase from 500 to 2,500 places (28 December 2018)
  • For Peru an increase from 100 to 1,500 places (2 January 2019)

This brings great news for our agents, Spanish, Israeli, Peruvian and Chilean nationals and also for the Australian economy.

To view the full report click here


Finding Nemo

After living in Australia for a few years, it was time for me to venture up to tropical North Queensland and find out what was so great about the Great Barrier Reef! I was about to live out one of my lifelong dreams, and I can tell you I was not disappointed.

The anticipation from myself and the rest of the people on the boat was obvious, and the staff were amazing and answered all our questions with the same level of enthusiasm as us!

We booked the trip through “Passions” and showed up to check-in at 7am (as instructed by my confirmation email) at the “Reef Fleet Terminal”. After some paperwork and signing the safety instructions the boat departed at 8am and I was nervous and excited to live out one of my lifelong dreams. The 25 metre catamaran set off on a two hour journey from the mainland to the Great Barrier Reef. Everyone’s anticipation to dive and snorkel for the first time ever was enormous but the staff was amazing answering all our questions about what to expect.

Once we were an hour out to sea, the staff began making their rounds asking us a series of health related questions and then we were divided into groups of “Divers” and “Snorkellers”.  To no surprise, most of the reefs are in the middle of the ocean with no land in sight. I am not afraid of the big blue sea, but jumping off a huge boat into the middle of the ocean feels pretty daunting at first. After strapping on the wetsuit and snorkel gear, I took a leap of faith and jumped in. The first time I opened my eyes under water was a bit terrifying as the sea bed was 15 meters below us. Once I was in the water, I had to swim about 20 meters from the boat to get to the actual reef. There it was – the GREAT BARRIER REEF! It was better than anything I have seen on television (in fact, actually better than anything I have ever seen before)!  The reef seemed to be endless, with colourful fish surrounding you and the coral just a few meters below.  Everything was so peaceful and calm. We saw parrotfish, turtles and YES – we found NEMO!

After our lunch break (with a delicious variety of food), which was great as we were all ravenous. We headed to another part of the reef. Our second dive spot was at Hastings Reef which was even more beautiful than the first. We got up close and personal with a reef shark, but don’t worry they are not too big, and not at all harmful – apparently! Seeing sharks was one my biggest fear when jumping off the boat, but when you are in the water, you feel so mesmerized by the colourful underwater world of the reef, you forget all your concerns.

My friend and I were actually the last people to get back on the boat as it was just so incredible that we did not want to leave. We got back to Cairns, and brought home with us memories that will last a lifetime. One of really important things you learn is that the reef tax that everyone has to pay when they visit the reef goes towards marine conservation. So, it was a nice feeling to know that as well as having such an amazing experience, you are also contributing towards protecting the reef for future generations, so they can experience why the reef is one of the Seven Wonders of the Natural World.

I really wish I was still hanging out with Nemo, but there’s always next time!


When Aaron went skydiving

Christmas was approaching and I had no idea what I was going to do. Go to the beach? Have dinner with friends? Go out? I felt like I was doing these things at the  weekend anyway, and as it was Christmas and I was away from home I wanted to do something totally out of the ordinary, something I would remember for the rest of my life. That’s when I started thinking about Skydiving….

After a few second thoughts, my mind was made up and I had decided to Skydive on Christmas Eve. The bus picked us up at the hostel, and at first I thought I was going to be the only crazy person to jump out of a plane on Christmas Eve. But, it turns out that there were at least 50 other crazy people that had the same idea. The bus took us to the beautiful Wollongong beach where we were going to do the actual Skydive. Checking in and getting all the equipment takes about 30 minutes, which gives time for the excitement, and the nerves to build!

Then, I met the instructor who was going to jump with me. The first question I wanted to ask was how many times had he done this? The answer was more than 8,000 times, so I knew I was in good hands! We started the video by me sending some Christmas greetings to my family (at the time they had no idea I was doing this). We then went to the plane and took off…that’s when the adrenaline really starts to kick in. The amazing views of the coast do not distract you from the fact that you are about to jump from a plane 15,000 feet up in the air. Until that moment I was not scared about the whole experience, but then they opened the door of the plane…

That’s when you realize what you are really getting into. Fortunately (or unfortunately?), the Instructor does not let you think twice, you jump immediately!

It is about 60 seconds of freefall, then, it is about 3 – 4 minutes where you get to enjoy the stunning views of the beach. These days everyone is so busy taking pictures of moments, instead of actually enjoying them. With a Skydive you do not have that option, you are purely there to enjoy the experience –  and let someone else capture the moments for you.

The Instructor is in charge of the photos and the video, so all you need to do is take in every second. For me, this was the perfect Christmas present to myself, but whether you want to jump out of a plane at Christmas or on any other day, I guarantee you that you will not regret, or forget it!


Reasons to apply for your Working Holiday Visa and come to Australia

Almost 200,000 young people decide to come to Australia to travel this beautiful country and work along the way to fund their travels every year. But why out of all countries do they choose Australia? Here are some, but definitely not all the reasons to apply for your Working Holiday Visa and come to Australia!

Travelling

Australia might be the smallest continent, but it’s the world’s biggest island at the same time. With its 7,692,024 square kilometers it has a lot to offer and for you to see. From the white sands on the Whitsundays islands, rain forests and the red and dusty Outback to metropolitan cities – exploring Australia can keep you busy exploring for months so there’s no need to worry about boredom!

The Great Barrier Reef

As one of the seven wonders of the natural world the Great Barrier Reef is one of Australia’s most remarkable spots. The colourful corals will have you amazed and the coral reef is not short on activities either. Snorkelling, scuba diving, helicopter tours, glass-bottomed boat viewing, swimming with dolphins and much more – The Great Barrier Reef’s has everything a traveller’s heart is longing for.

Uluru / Ayers Rock

The large sandstone rock formation in central Australia is a deeply sacred place to the Indigenous Anangu people. Whether you choose to walk with a traditional owner, join a camel tour, self-drive or dine under a canopy of stars there is something to suit everyone. The cultural centre close to Uluru also gives you a chance to learn about Australia’s indigenous culture.

The people

Famous for their laid-back attitude, Australian people will make you feel welcomed with their ‘no worries’ motto.  But you will not only meet Australians on your journey – as a multicultural country and popular travel destination you’re bound to meet people from all over the world that might eventually become your travel mates. So if you’re up for cultural exchange, Australia is your place to go.

The weather

One of the first things that come to mind when thinking of Australia is the great weather. While that might not actually be the case everywhere in a country as big as Australia,  the climate is still much milder than some places in Europe. The northern states typically experience warm weather most of the time, with the southern states experiencing cooler winters. So if you plan your itinerary right, you might even end up with a whole year of summer!

The wildlife

There are some amazing species in Australia that you can only find here! Australia’s native animals can be more or less difficult to spot in the wild, but you are guaranteed to see them in one of the wildlife parks across major cities and regional areas in Australia. Meet kangaroos, koalas, wallabies, wombats and also a few different types of spiders if you fancy.

Break out of routines

Coming to Australia can be a great way of breaking your tiring routines you’ve been trapped in for months or even years. Going on an adventure through Australia in either a car, campervan or bus together with other travellers will certainly keep you entertained with new locations, new experiences and new stories to tell. There is so much to see and do in Australia that there will absolutely be not one day like the other.

Work experience

As casual staff on your Working Holiday visa you will get experience in many job fields such as hospitality, construction, customer service and more if you’re up for it. With many different employers during your stay you will get an insight into the work life in Australia and meet lots of new people along the way.

Learn about yourself

No matter where you’re from, working and travelling in Australia will be a unique experience you won’t find in your home country. From newly gained freedom and flexibility to challenges while working in a different country, on a Working Holiday Visa in Australia you will definitely learn more about yourself, what you’re capable of doing and you will grow with your experiences.


A road trip to Hyams Beach

What do you do in Sydney when you have the weekend off, but have seen all of the beautiful beaches in the near area? Go for a beach that is a little bit further from Sydney! My friends and I decided to make a road trip to Hyams Beach – the beach that was proclaimed the whitest beach of the world, but apparently is only ONE of the whitest ones. This little exception doesn’t make it less worth the visit though. If you don’t have the time (or money) for the Whitsundays, Hyams Beach is your place to go.

A good road trip should be planned properly. We only planned. But it still kind of worked out. Here’s my road trip experience to Hyams Beach with a few tips for yours along the way:

Renting a car

Hyams Beach is easiest to reach with a car, so renting one (if you haven’t bought one) is your first step to actually getting your road trip going. What my friends and I did was probably not one of the smartest solutions. We rented a car at the airport car rentals which are usually more expensive than regular ones, so not necessarily recommended (try getting one in the outer suburbs or book online). We were short on notice with our plans though and we didn’t want to start in the city, so that seemed to be the safest option. Before taking the car for a drive remember to take photos of the car and especially of any scratches you can find to be on the safe side when returning the car so you don’t get hit with a repair bill for damages that were already there.

Take your driver’s licence. This might seem like an obvious one, but my friend, who was supposed to drive, was so convinced that her ID was her driver’s licence that she forgot her actual one – and someone else had to drive. So make sure you take it (plus your international licence) with you!

Driving

Most car rentals will have automatic cars as their cheaper option – simply because it’s easier. At least that’s what one might think. But in Germany, where the friend that was actually driving and I are from, it is still more common to have a car with manual gear shift. And driving from the airport with an automatic car for the first time was not necessarily the best idea. We had quite a rocky start as the brakes were far more sensitive than my friend was used to and it was weird for her to drive without a clutch. She was able to manage after a few minutes, but what I recommend is – test driving with an automatic car before you actually drive on the streets.

Driving on the left

From Sydney airport it was about a 3h ride and we were on the highway 90 percent of the time. This was actually a pretty good way for my friend to get used to driving on the left. Having a front passenger next to you that also keeps an eye on the road can also be helpful in case you really get confused and drift to the wrong side when turning.

Wildlife crossing roads

I know you have probably heard of this but thought ‘yeah, sure, a kangaroo randomly crossing the road, that’s not going to happen’. Let me tell you, it does happen.  It was just a 10 minute drive to the beach from our accommodation and in those 10 minutes we actually had a kangaroo suddenly crossing the road just before our eyes and if my friend hadn’t been alert in the first place, we easily could have hit it. So yes, ALWAYS keep an eye out for wildlife outside big cities in Australia.

Kiama blowhole

On our way we stopped by Kiama to see the lighthouse and the Kiama blowhole. Unfortunately it was extremely rainy so we only stopped by for about half an hour and had our lunch there. Kiama itself is a lovely coastal town and worth a visit as it is on your way anyway. The blowhole was not as spectacular as we had hoped, but we still had a good break there (it may be good to check the tides before stopping by as the water goes up way higher when it’s high tide).

Accommodation

My friends and I rented an Airbnb only a week before our departure for $30 per person. We stayed in a cottage about a 10 minute drive from the beach. There are also quite a few villas right next to the beach available, but they are obviously pretty expensive and have to be booked in advance. Accommodation in the area of Hyams beach usually starts with $100 per night, but not necessarily per person, so taking friends with you makes your trip a lot cheaper.

The cottage we stayed in was very cosy and had a kitchen so we could buy groceries and cook for ourselves. We even had kangaroos sitting in the front yard and jumping around through the garden. One of them was even staring at my friend brushing her teeth in the morning.

Hyams Beach

Hyams Beach and the surrounding beaches in Jervis Bay are by far the most beautiful beaches I have ever seen and you will never look at other beaches the same way again. The sand is super white as it consists of pure quartz and the water is clear with almost no waves, so it’s perfect for swimming and relaxing. We woke up extra early on Sunday to drive to the beach and witness the sunrise over the beach and it was amazing! See for yourself, but remember those kinds of things always look better in real life than in photos!

Next to Hyams Beach there are also Chinaman’s Beach and Seaman’s Beach. The neighbouring beaches are just as beautiful and most of the time less crowded, so if you’re visiting in the peak time you might want to consider going to these options. In peak times, parking spots can be limited around the beaches, so you should either be early or be prepared to walk.

After our 2 days at Hyams Beach we made our way back to Sydney. Before that we wanted to see a few other beaches in Jervis Bay (Territory) – if you go further south and enter the Jervis Bay Territory, you have to pay to enter $11 for day pass for the Booderee National Park. There you can find camping sites and a few other beaches such as Greenpatch Beach and Bristol Point Beach. We went down to Bristol Point beach for an hour and came across a mini figure 8 pool:

The rest of the way back was pretty quiet as everyone was tired from the weekend. If you don’t want to stop on your way back, make sure to bring some snacks and enough water – especially in summer when it can get really hot!

The return of our car went smoothly and we could head home directly after. Even though we could have planned better we all enjoyed our short trip to Hyams Beach. Not only was it an adventurous yet relaxing experience , but we also grew closer on this journey. Whether it is Hyams Beach or anywhere else, I definitely recommend grabbing some of your friends and taking them on a roadtrip!