So, you’ve decided to embark on your second year Australian visa and undertake your farm work! Although it may be hard work, your time in rural Australia will be a unique and memorable experience. You may encounter quirky towns and people, interesting animals and learn a new way of life.
After writing about my experience in rural New South Wales in previous weeks you may be wondering how you can find your own slice of farm work. Below I have suggested three avenues to go down to kick start your search.
Farm Job Forums
A popular way to find work, especially if you like the idea of fruit picking or production work is to search on farm job forums. These are job boards specialising in production and farm work.
Fruit picking is seasonal and is a popular way to get your second-year visa. This typically leads to you meeting lots of fellow backpackers and living with them for your 88 days. It is a sociable and fun way to complete your three months and will give you a new appreciation of where our food comes from. WARNING: The work can be very repetitive and with daily targets is very competitive. I’d recommend reading this post from Effy Talks Life who did her farm work on a banana farm for an insider’s look.
Another popular farm job is to work in the cotton gins. I knew several people in the Central West of New South Wales who worked in the gins and although it was a repetitive job with long shifts they earnt a lot of money to continue their travels!
Below are a few sites which could be a good starting point.
This is where I found my job and where a lot of my friends did too. Gumtree is a site in Australia where you can find all sorts of things. From sofas to houses to jobs it is a very popular website and app.
You can select an area or state and the type of work you would like to do. You will find a lot of independent farmers on here and potentially more unique experiences.
My role was advertised here with pictures of the farm and the family I would be working for. This really appealed to me and I applied with my CV. Within a few days I had an email for a phone interview and after a few more conversations I was offered the position! Gumtree does move quickly so if you do apply on here make sure you are in a position to start the process and aren’t simply browsing.
Facebook has branched out in recent years to offer a marketplace and also to be a place where people can advertise jobs. Many independent farms will offer their roles on this platform. Be on the look out here for scams though and be careful. Maybe google the farm for more information than the ad gives you before contacting them to see the legitimacy of the role. It is also good to ask to be in contact with a previous employee.
I was able to speak to my farms previous hire before I accepted the role, so I had a good idea of the family and what was expected of me. I could also voice any concerns I had. It was extremely reassuring, and most employers should be more than happy for you to do this.
Another avenue is to simply talk to those around you. You will likely start looking for regional work when you are already in Australia and therefore will have met other fellow backpackers. Talking to those around you about their experiences is a great way to see what job would suit you and what to look out for.
If their experience sounds up your street then they may be able to offer you their contacts. My old employers sometimes reaches out to let me know they're looking for a new hire to see if I know anyone, so this avenue is well worth trying out!
Good luck with finding regional work and enjoy the experience, it is unlikely you’ll ever get to experience something this unique ever again.
For more information on my own regional experience click here!