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Working Holiday Makers flood back into Australia

Matt Paff
Feb 23, 2023

The Australian Department of Home Affairs regularly publishes data via the Australian Bureau of Statistics on temporary visa holders in Australia. The most recent data comes from December 31, 2022 and it highlights a complete recovery from the COVID lockdown lows.

There were 2.39m visa holders in Australia as at December 31, 2022 compared to the pre-COVID benchmark of December 31, 2019 of 2.4m

Visitor Visas In Australia

Visitor visas, were at 635,816 as at 31 December 2019 and have recovered to 530,283 as 31 December 2022, despite airlines still not operating at pre-COVID level and airfares being significantly more expensive than they were 3 years ago.

Working Holiday Visas Australia

Checking the stats on 417 and 462 working holiday visas, which peaked at 141,000 as at December 31, 2019 and bottomed at 19,324 2 years later – Australia had 112,335 active working holiday visas as at 31 December 2022 – showing significant momentum in the working holiday visas coming into Australia.

Assessing the quarterly trend:

Working Holiday Makers have flooded back into Australia

It appears that there is a pent-up demand for Working Holiday Makers (WHM) in Australia created by the COVID border closures. With 30% cap increases on countries with 462s through to June 30 2023 and the changes afoot to UK 417s (age limit increase to 35 and 3 year visas rather than 1), we expect that on current trends, WHM arrivals should continue to exceed departures at least through until the end of the June Quarter, even beyond. This should see a peak of close to 200,000 WHM in Australia by then.

Here’s the full break-down courtesy of

Work in Australia can help!

Are you thinking about a Working Holiday down-under? Why delay, act now and join the rush of like-minded young people heading to Australia. Make the first move and contact us today!

Matt Paff
February 23, 2023