For many keen travelers and young people today, travel is less about the two-week vacation and more about a solid stint of living and working overseas. This kind of travel has been taking off in recent years, with more and more students and college graduates taking a ‘gap’ year to gain experience and seek opportunities overseas.This is a great choice for many young people, giving them the chance to deeply experience new cultures without the unrealistic financial burden of a long, finance-draining holiday- a young student on a pharmacy technician salary could hardly afford to save several months’ expenses in advance, let alone the travel costs. However, there are logistics to be dealt with that the typical vacationer would not expect.
Firstly there is the matter of visa types. For most tourists, a short-term visitors visa will suffice and is relatively cheap and easy to come by in many countries. However, when you add work and a long stay into the equation, the matter of visas becomes more complicated. For example, visitors from most countries are able to obtain a $30USD tourist visa on arrival in Indonesia. This would allow them to stay 30 days, extendable on application to 60, with no paid work of any kind permitted. This is a very easy and uncomplicated process.
However, add a little paid work into the equation, and it becomes very complicated. One would have to apply for a work visa, which means first obtaining a “sponsorship” from an Indonesian company which typically costs hundreds of dollars. The work visa itself costs around $1200USD per year. When you take into account the low wages in this continent, it becomes apparent that Indonesia may not be a suitable choice for your working holiday, except in circumstances where you have actually been offered a job in advance so your employer can arrange your visa.
Luckily there are many other options and opportunities available all over the world. Those aspiring to live the working holiday dream simply have to be meticulous about their research before leaving home.