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Working in Australia

Here’s some more useful information about working down under:

You will need a Tax File Number (TFN) as this is essential for working in Australia. The number identifies you as a tax payer and ensures that you won’t be emergency taxed - around a whopping 49%! To get one of these you could get a *starter pack* which has it included or you could wait until you get to Australia and go to a Tax Office. You can apply for one there for free but you must have an address for them to deliver it to.

There are some special courses that need to be taken for some areas of work in Australia. The Responsible Service of Alcohol (RSA) course needs to be completed before being able to work in a bar. If you want to work on a building site in NSW, QLD and VIC, you need to do a course to get an Occupational Health and Safety induction (OH&S), also known as a ‘Green Card’. Other courses include Responsible Conduct of Gambling (RCG) and RTA Traffic Control. All of these are one day courses and usually cost around $100.

Some companies also offer skills training programmes for new jobs, including bar skills, barista skills, controlling traffic, waiting tables etc. These programmes give you an advantage over the competition and you’ll gain experience in the job too. Remember that often the companies that train you may find you a job at the end of the course as well.

Many backpackers move into a flat or shared-house when they get a job, as it can work out cheaper than a hostel in the long run and it means that you don’t have to share a noisy room with a bunch of strangers when you have to get up for work in the morning!



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