VISAS. It’s a common topic when you’re an expat living over in Australia and it can be a VERY complicated subject at times. This post gives a few insights on the ups and downs you might experience when trying to get sponsored in Australia. If you’re thinking about moving over, have a read of this post.
What is a 457 visa?
A ‘subclass 457 visa’ is the most commonly used program for Australian or overseas employers to sponsor skilled overseas workers to work in Australia temporarily. The 457 visa provides 2 main alternatives, Business sponsorship and self-sponsorship.
Finding a Sponsor
If you have a relevant degree plus relevant experience, you should in the theory be able to find someone to sponsor you – HOORAH!
If you don’t have the above, you might find it a little harder. There are definitely some loopholes around this so don’t be put off. Do a little more research and seek some advice if you’re not too sure.
In most cases, by getting sponsored you bypass the dreaded 3-month compulsory farm work that you need to do to obtain your second year working holiday visa. No banana picking for you my friend.
I’ve heard that this can actually be one of the best parts of travelling Australia as you make loads of friends and can actually save up a fair amount of money. If you come over on a Working Holiday Visa, maybe do your farm work and make the most of your two-year visa before trying to find sponsorship.
With most sponsorship you will get a 4 year visa meaning you can enjoy this HUGE beautiful country and not have to worry about getting deported for a while, not bad eh? Now you can sit back and relax knowing you have a bit more job security and don’t have to find another job in 6 months. Phew.
If you decide to change jobs, you might be pretty restricted to what jobs you can apply for. You can move jobs as long as the next company is willing to take over your sponsorship that is, the problem is, some companies are put off by this. Some also can’t be arsed with the paperwork OR don’t even know what transferring sponsorship entails. This doesn’t mean that you won’t be able to move jobs, all I’m saying is that it ain’t easy chaps.
Permanent Residency (PR)
By getting sponsored, you’re one step closer to becoming a permanent resident, boom. Sponsorship tends to be most people’s first visa encounter and it gives you some time to decide if you really want to become a full blown Aussie and live here permanently.
Be a permanent resident of Australia you say? Where do I sign! Hold your horses, if you decide you want to go for PR, the most common way to do this is via your company who will need to nominate you. The catch here is that you’ll need to work for them for a minimum of 2 years before that can happen. That’s not so great if you don’t really enjoy the place you work.
Travelling vs. Holidaying
In most jobs you’ll receive 4 weeks annual leave and you’re spoilt for public holidays over here. The good thing is that unlike the UK, Aussies tend to take long 3-4 week holidays for a trip overseas. That means you can still get a decent trip booked in once a year. I went to Borneo last August, UK at Christmas and I’m off to Sri Lanka for 2 weeks in December so it’s possible!
You can’t really do a BIG travelling trip. If you decide you want to go on a 4-month trip to Asia you’ll most likely have to quit your job and if you don’t find another within 3 months, your visa is void and you’ll have to leave. That basically means when you want to leave, you need to be REALLY sure that you’re ready to go.
This site is pretty helpful if you need more information, otherwise leave me a comment and I’d be more than happy to help out!