Is going on a working holiday part of your bucket list? Or are you still in your early stages of planning for it? We have compiled a summary of the total cost we had to incur before stepping foot into Australia for our Working Holiday, so that you’ll be more informed in the actual PRE costs. (We were shocked by it as we were spending it, so yes. Be prepared.)
Before even going for your working holiday, you need to get your visa. This applies more for Singaporeans, but do check with your country’s Australian embassy for the price of the visa. They review it yearly.
The fee for Singaporeans is S$464, and an additional S$55 for application. They also only accept cash or bank drafts, so just prepare your cash. You can find out more information here.
After that, you will need to go for a health checkup by one of their approved medical institutions. We went to SATA @ Ang Mo Kio, but you have to give them a call to book an appointment. There are also other medical institutions that approve, and the list is here. Just search for your country and there will be a list of approved panel physicians for your health checkup.
Insurance (it’s gonna take the bulk of your savings)
It might be something you haven’t thought of at the start of your application journey. But getting an insurance is very important especially in Australia. You don’t want to end up having to pay exorbitant medical fees if you end up having to visit the clinic or the hospital (touch wood!).
Do take note that you can’t just apply for any travel insurance, as most travel insurance’s base condition allows you to be out of the country only for a maximum of 90 days, meaning in 90 days you have to set foot in your home country. It just doesn’t make sense.
There are a few travel insurances for Working Holiday makers in Australia, but we went ahead with World Nomads’ Insurance as we felt it was widely recognised (especially in Australia since you will be receiving medical treatment in Oz). You can get a quote from them here, but the prices would generally be in USD!
We got the cheaper insurance for a year, but if you think you really need the extra insurance, you can get the more expensive one. For us, the normal one was enough 🙂 (the difference would be the premiums)
Tip: Just get an initial quote, and let it get sent to your email. Soon after, you will get a 10% discount code on your insurance 😉 #marketing
Damage: ~S$1,500 (for a year)
Next, would be the most exciting part. Booking your flight. There are numerous flights that go to Oz, so do try out Skyscanner or Hopper to find the cheapest flights. Since we were flying from Singapore and landing in Melbourne, it was going to be nearly an 8 hour flight. A few of our options are: Scoot (budget airline), Qantas, Emirates and Qatar. These were the cheaper options in my opinion.
Honestly, it depends on your desired comfort level. We went ahead with Emirates as it was a full service flight with food and sufficient entertainment throughout our journey. The services were also impeccable for the price that we paid. Just think about whether you’ll prefer budget or full service, as you might need to get food and check-in baggage for the flight.
Damage: ~S$362.50 (one way ticket)
You’ll need a place once you land, right? If you have a friend or relative staying in the city you are entering, you can ask them if you can bunk in with them for a few days to save some money. But for the majority of us, we have to book somewhere else for at least a week or two to settle down before finding our long term accommodation.
We chose to go ahead with Airbnb for two of us and got a private room with our own bathroom for around S$60/night. Not too shabby. The average rates of hotels is $150/night, and average rates for a bed in a hostel is around S$30/night. Do consider staying outside of the city for a cheaper option, and from there you can get a myki card for your daily transport. 🙂
If you don’t have an Airbnb account, sign up with this link for a $45 discount! 😉
Damage: ~S$500 for 2 weeks
For us, we landed in Melbourne Airport, so we had to get our asses to the city. There is something called a Skybus here, which is the airport bus and it goes directly into the city. You can choose to buy your tickets once you touchdown, or get your ticket online. We got ours from Klook at a discounted rate, so do check it out! 🙂
Total damage: ~S$3,069.50
And that’s it! The true cost of a Working Holiday Visa in Australia even BEFORE reaching. I’m not trying to deter anyone, but it’s always good to be well informed regarding how much you have to spend on top of having to bring in minimally 5000 AUD (it’s a visa requirement ). Especially if you are intending to stay in a city for an extended period of time, you will have to rent a room which can cost around A$100 a week in the suburbs. (an upfront bond will have to be paid, which is generally the price of one month’s rent)
TBH, you’ll be able to cover your initial losses eventually. But it’s always the initial costs that drives people a little mad 😦 Regardless, we totally recommend everyone to try this at least once to learn more about another country’s culture, and to look at the world a little more. It might be scary at the start, but trust me, you’ll definitely not regret it. ❤
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