The Greek Community of Melbourne (GCM) welcomed the announcement of Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs of Greece, Terens Quick and the Minister for Immigration of Australia David Coleman about the implementation of the bilateral agreement for the Working Holiday Visa between Australia and Greece. This visa allows young people to visit each country respectively with the right to work. The reciprocal agreement was implemented on 1 July, 2019.
It has been a long journey; the arrangement has been in the works since May 2014, and was ratified by the Greek Parliament in December 2015 by law No 4353/2015 (National Gazette No 173, Issue A, 14-12-2015).
Minister Quick noted that it is a positive outcome after many years of uncertainty while Mr Coleman stressed that “Australia enjoys a great friendship with Greece and there has been much interest from Greece in participating in the Work and Holiday visa program. This announcement will provide more opportunities for work and cultural exchange between our nations. The Morrison Government is committed to the working holiday program which provides regional areas and farmers with access to more workers.”
Kicking off, the bilateral agreement will make it easier for 500 young Australians between 18 and 30 years to work and study in Greece and vice versa for 12 months.
Greek nationals need to perform specified work in regional areas to be eligible for a second working visa. They can then extend their visas to a third year if they provide six months of regional work in the second year.
The agreement takes the number of countries participating in the Working Holiday Maker programme to 43.
For the visa to be granted, applicants must not have previously participated in a program for the Youth Mobility (Work and Holiday) or in a program for Work Holidays in Greece.
A tertiary degree, or the successful completion of at least two years of undergraduate university studies is a prerequisite.
Personal expenses will not be covered, which means applicants must have enough financial resources to support themselves, as they cannot be employed by one employer for more than six months, unless the appropriate permit is granted.
During their stay in Greece, applicants are not allowed to take part in studies or training for more than four months during the 12 month period.
As the main purpose of the program is recreation, the work should be linked to this in some way. Note that candidates cannot work as an au-pair while on this visa.
To apply candidates require the following:
- Signed application for the letter;
- Valid copy of passport;
- Formal declaration that the reason is to visit Australia for holidays for 12 months without accompaniment by dependent persons;
- Formal declaration of not having participated in any such programme before;
- Formal declaration that there is no criminal record for the applicant;
- Formal declaration that the applicant has sufficient funds to issue her/his tickets and cover her/his first expenses for at least one month (those funds are stipulated at 3,000 euros and are reciprocal for both countries);
- Copy of degree of education;
- Certified copies of other degrees (if obtained in other countries, they should be accompanied by a certificate of their formal recognition by Hellenic NARIC (ΔΟΑΤΑΠ) or in the case of students, a formal document that certifies the continuation of their studies after the successful completion of two years of studies;
- Certificates of English as a foreign language (at least B2 level);
- 30 euro fee for the application.
Youth interested in participating in the program can apply to the Embassy of Greece in Canberra or to the Consulates General and Consulates of Greece in Adelaide, Melbourne Sydney and Perth.
To find out more and to apply visit:
For Australian nationals wanting to visit Greece: https://www.mfa.gr/australia/en/greece/greece-and-australia/work-and-holiday-visa.html