G’day mate, want a visa?

I’m currently sharing my office with a part-time retiree, Patty. She’s a lovely lady who’s around to help work on some special projects. And as she was packing up her things one day recently, she said, “Okay, I’m off. Going to go home and see if my daughter has made it safely to Australia.”

My mind being hyper-attuned to all things related to international travel, I spun around in my chair. “Why’s she in Australia?”

Turns out that her daughter found out about a program for 18 to 30 year olds to get a work permit for one year in Australia. I asked what kind of work she was doing under this visa, and Patty said there wasn’t any specific work restriction. Her daughter thought she may teach yoga, or tend bar since she’s done that before, or do retail as she used to work at LuluLemon (which actually has locations in Australia – I had to look it up).

I’m not sure if my jaw was on the floor, but maybe it should have been. It all seemed too good to be true.  An easy visa.

I asked Patty to e-mail me information about this program, and true to her word she did. She also said that if she were young enough to qualify, she’d do it in a heartbeat.

I know that I threw Australia out there in my original list of locations I was considering, but really it was lower on the list of ideas. I felt like I should include another English-speaking place, or another continent in my considerations. Now it seems like I may have to move it up the list.

A HUGE “pro” is the apparent ease of getting this visa. Patty said her daughter applied online and voila. Easy-peasy. Oh, and the speaking English thing, too.

A couple cons though are that it’s only for one year, and I was hoping for two years – enough time to no longer feel like a tourist. I also have to admit that I was really looking forward to the possibility of seeing some of the ancient architecture of European cities. Australia was discovered and settled around the same time as the Americas. I know, I know, architecture nerd… But as my momma always says, beggars can’t be choosers. And it looks like some other windows are closing.

Looks like I need to add my former roommate Katie to my list of interviewees as she spent a few months working there while studying for her PharmD.

And completely out of the blue – between me discovering about this program and publishing this post – Kristin from www.allofusrevolution.com commented on a different post of mine saying I should go to Australia. 

I e-mailed her. Look for an interview from her here on the blog shortly…

So. Australia. Maybe I need to look into this more. No, wait, scratch maybe: definitely.

Too bad it’s two letters off from Austria – you know, where they get seven weeks of paid leave per year… 🙂

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5 Responses to G’day mate, want a visa?

  1. Aimee says:

    Well I feel a dummy, because I hadn’t even thought of suggesting Auz, and yet it is a very popular choice because of the easy-visas. Also, it may be worth seeing if your job is “in demand” as you may be able to stay longer… friends of friends were social workers – which were needed – and got a 2-year visa. I guess I had it in my mind you were more European-bent, but I’ve only heard interesting and generally positive things about Auz – and the weather seems to be a huge benifit! What an adventure…

    • Alissa says:

      Aims, if I had my druthers, I still think of all the places I could go I’d want to be in the UK. Even more than Italy. 🙂

      But life with the Aussies could definitely be fun, too!

  2. Cheryl says:

    I was wondering why you had replied to Kristin’s post “you’re about 10 posts ahead of me!”

    By the way, the sister of our Children’s Ministry Director at Aurora has recently moved to Sydney. (Her husband has a long-term position there and Annie’s family is going to visit them in December.) At least it could be another point of contact.

    • Alissa says:

      That’s because in real life things happen in spurts and not at all in a logical order. Rather than confuse folks by having four posts one day (ranging from doubts to visas to destinations) and then nothing for a week, I arranged posts and placed them in a queue.

      I’m hoping to show the evolution of this process – in case anyone feels inspired to follow in my footsteps – so things are posted basically in the order in which they occur, but also with a (hopefully) semi-logical progression.

      See? You named me “logical” for a reason… 🙂

  3. Pingback: Peace Corps 101 « The Big "What If…?"

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