I was just wondering where is the best place to get a work visa online or elsewhere?
Directly from the official deparment of immigration website.
And what else would I need to sort out?
A plane ticket and long-term (backpacker) travel insurance, since regular travel insurance usually only covers you for short trips (up to 3 months, mostly). Once in Australia you'll also want to open a bank account (walk into any bank with your passport within two weeks from arriving and you'll be done in 15 minutes) and get a tax file number (apply online; takes 1-2 weeks to arrive). A very rough idea of what your itinerary could look like would also be useful (e.g. do you go west or east), just to have something to fall back on when you just want to move on without wanting to do research. Don't bother making it too detailed, though - your plans will change when over there anyway.
I'd definately agree to get the visa directly from the Oz immigration website. I've applied for mine through STA Travel and to be honest they do nothing for you, apart from send you a link for the visa application and charge you about an extra £30 for the privilege! I think the website is a lot quicker too, some say as quick as 48hrs, but it can take up to 4 weeks when they're busy like now with so many people leaving in time for the Oz summer. Mine has taken 3 weeks and counting..... but i'm in no hurry apart from wanting to know i'm definately going!
Thanks a million guys thats so helpful
I'm thinking of heading to aus around Feb time, when are you thinking of going? Has anyone decided to use Bunac or do you think booking independently is the best way to go?
I'm looking at going either June or September next year (trying to avoid peak flight times!). Have had to get my visa sorted really early as I'm on the verge of turning 31 eek!
I think I'm going to book the Cairns welcome package with STA Travel, as that's where I want to start so I can work my way down the East Coast as the weather gets better. It's only about £150 and maybe a bit of a rip-off, but I want to book some kind of welcome package (for reassurance more than anything!) without spending too much on it. Although I may change my mind and just organise it all myself, I've heard setting up a bank account is as easy as walking into a bank with your passport, and you can get the Tax File No. easily online.
Bunac looks good due to the group flight element (although expensive) and they have job offices in Sydney/Melbourne you can walk into. I've heard a lot of good things about Travellers Contact Point (TCP only run packages in peak season for Sept-Feb btw).
Some orgs do good excursions etc included as well, so I think if you want to be part of a group from the very start and you want the reassurance of job support etc then a package may be a good idea, but it's worth adding up the separate costs of these things and seeing if you could do them cheaper independently.
Hey Tracey, thanks for the advice, I need to do a bit more research, the reasurance of a group flight and a centre to help is very tempting, but today I might be brave and book it all independently! I turn 30 next year which has given me a bit of a kick to just go out there and do it, its always been on my things to do list!