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Aussies lure Kiwis for their OE!

Australians want young Kiwis to work and travel in the great southern land!

With a quarantine-free travel bubble between New Zealand and Australia on and then off and then extended until goodness-knows-when, the Aussies have thrown down the allure and are trying to tempt Kiwis across the deep to do their OE.

Swimming at Twelve Apostles
At the Twelve Apostles on the Great Ocean Road. Pic supplied by Tourism Australia

And it’s not just about enticing Kiwis to travel around Australia and explore the states and beaches, towns and cities – it’s about getting them to do the jobs backpackers usually do from other parts of the world but who are not allowed in.

They’re in the same boat as New Zealand – needing workers in horticulture and hospitality, but as they no longer require Kiwis to quarantine and they need the labour, they’ve thrown down the welcome mat.

But how much do they pay and what jobs are available?

Well I’ve done the research for you – and added links so you can continue your own job hunting.

I spoke to Tourism Australia this week who have put this campaign together to get young New Zealanders thinking about Australia to fulfil their travel urges because Kiwis can whistle right on into Australia without quarantine like Australians have to do here.

Snorkeling in Great Barrier Reef Australia
A little snorkel at Great Barrier Reef. Pic credit Tourism Australia

So while the OE (overseas experience), which is a rite of passage for Antipodeans, looked like it was off the cards for gap year students and young people, the Aussies have saved the day!

Admittedly it’s not London, where yours truly went to seek her fortune and be a nanny – and found them to be mutually exclusive (before being fired after three weeks, but that’s another story…)

Sure, there’s no cheap weekends in Europe to be had, but Australia is a good time. It’s the size of the United States and while the middle may be one big barren desert, the edges are well worth exploring, or even head into places like Mildura on the very edge of the desert!

Bladensburg National Park Australia
Bladensburg National Park. Pic supplied Tourism Australia

So what jobs are on offer in Australia?

Well here is a link on the Tourism Australia website to 14 jobs that are easy to get right now for Kiwis. They include barista, bartender, farm hand, waiter, deckhand, labourer, receptionist, aupair, sales assistance, call centre operator, house keeper, events work and there are professional contract jobs if you have a degree or experience.

There are also chef jobs in resorts, a sommelier required in Adelaide, or go cherry picking in Tasmania. Plus check out

Making espresso
The perfect crema!

What do you get paid?

The minimum wage in Australia, as of November 2020, is A$19.78 for a full time worker and A$24.73 for casual hours. You can check out more on pay rates in Australia for winery/horticulture work at

Of course, you can probably get all these kinds of jobs in New Zealand too right now without travelling, but if it’s travel you want and your plans seem dashed, there is hope!

Camping in Australia
Camping in the bush – mind the creepy crawlies though!

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Hi, I'm Megan Singleton and I'm the word slinger of this travel blog as well as on radio in NZ every Sunday. Former Travel Editor at Yahoo NZ and current freelance writer for a few newspapers and mags from time to time, I set off on this travel writing journey 20 years ago and I've pretty much always got a suitcase half packed (or half un-packed!) I'd love you to join me on Facebook or Twitter and sign up for my newsletters if you want loads of travel tips, advice and deals!