Australia’s working holiday programme provides young professionals with an invaluable opportunity to live, work and travel in a new location.
Backpackers can embark on an exciting adventure and earn income to support their new life down under.
Meanwhile, Australia benefits from the arrangement too.
In fact, backpackers account for roughly 13% of tourism spend in Australia – totalling roughly $3bn per year.
While in Australia, backpackers typically work in a wide range of industries – both in big cities and rural communities.
Australia’s farming and fruit-picking sectors rely heavily on the annual influx of working holidaymakers. However, no matter where you look you will find backpackers contributing to every facet of Australian society.
Jobs in retail, hospitality, tourism, agriculture and more are readily available for backpackers - allowing you to earn some cash and gain real-world experience as you explore a new location.
If you are currently considering whether you would like to be a backpacker, you may be wondering how much you are likely to earn while working in Australia.
With that in mind, we are here to answer some of the most common questions backpackers ask about their pay and tax in Australia.
How much will I be paid while working in Australia as a backpacker?
In truth, exactly how much you will be paid while working in Australia will depend on your job and personal circumstances.
First things first, the national minimum wage in Australia is $740.80 per week ($19.49 per hour).
However, backpackers can expect to earn more, depending on the sector in which they’re employed.
According to Talent.com, the average salary for a backpacker in Australia is $57,200 per year ($29.33 per hour).
If you land an entry-level role, you can expect to earn $42,656 per year. Meanwhile, more experienced professionals will command approximately $92,430 per annum.
Hospitality staff in metropolitan areas can expect to earn anywhere from $20 - $25 an hour plus tips. Tips can often work out at $50 -$200 per week.
The average farm salary in Australia is $54,853 per year ($28.13 per hour). Entry-level positions start at $47,505 per year, while the most experienced workers will make up to $177,075 per year.
Fruit pickers can expect to earn a minimum of $25 per hour while working in Australia.
Nanny roles advertised in Australia usually offer a salary range of $50k - $60k per year.
Teachers can expect to earn between $70k - $95k per year.
Receptionists can expect to earn $45k - $55k per year. Meanwhile, sales assistants typically earn $50k - $60k.
Salary for labourer roles are normally advertised between $50k - $70k per year.
Salary ranges as per Indeed.
The below graphic illustrates exactly how much you can expect to earn, depending on the occupation in which you work.
Finding a job in Australia
Depending on the type of work you are looking for while in Oz, there are many different job sites which are focused on different industries to suit your needs.
Here’s a couple of sites where backpackers can find jobs in Australia:
Good luck on your job search!
Do backpackers have to file an Australian tax return?
Backpackers will have to pay tax on income earned while working in Australia.
However, you will not necessarily have to file an Australian tax return.
That said, it’s important to have a clean tax record while in Australia as a backpacker.
This is particularly true if you would like to apply for a second Australian visa and extend your time down under.
The best way to ensure that you are compliant is to lodge a tax return with the ATO before the 31 October deadline.
What’s more, many backpackers are entitled to claim a tax refund at the end of the year. That’s right, you may be entitled to claim back some of the tax deducted from your wages!
In order to claim your tax back, you must file an Australian tax return.
We help thousands of working holidaymakers to get their tax refund
A tax refund sounds good! Who can claim tax back and how does it work?
Thousands of Australian backpackers are entitled to claim a tax refund every year. In fact, the average Australian refund is $2,600. With this in mind, it’s easy to see why it makes sense for every backpacker to file their tax return and check if they are due money back.
In short, it is likely that you will be entitled to a tax refund if you:
- were in Australia on a 417 or 462 visa
- were considered a tax resident during the year
- are from one of the following countries;
- United Kingdom
However, even if you are not from one of the countries listed above, it is still a good idea to check if you can claim a refund.
Am I an Australian resident or non-resident for tax purposes?
All temporary visa holders entering Australia are typically taxed as non-residents.
However, if you’re visiting Australia for longer than six months, have lived in the same place and established ties with the local community, then you’ll likely be considered an Australian resident for tax purposes.
Want to Learn More About Australian Tax?
Who can help me with Australian tax?
Taxback.com can help you with your Australian tax requirements.
Taxback.com have been supporting backpackers in Australia with tax filing and refund services for more than 25 years.
Taxback.com will file a fully compliant tax return on your behalf and transfer your maximum refund straight to your bank account.
Why file with Taxback.com
- Your maximum tax refund guaranteed
- Simple online process – no complicated forms
- 100% ATO compliance guaranteed. This is important if you wish to apply for a visa in the future
- No tricky tax forms – Taxback.com take care of all the paperwork
It could not be easier to file your tax return with Taxback.com. To get started, quickly register here and a Taxback.com tax advisor will be in touch to start your application.
Apply for your Australian tax refund