When I applied for my Australian Working Holiday Visa, on a random Tuesday evening after a shitty day at work, I had no idea what to expect. All I knew is that I was done with working, for now anyway.

Fast forward over a year later and I feel like I've lived a thousand lives out here already. Several jobs have come and gone, and my skill set has absolutely exploded. I seriously believe there is no job I can't do now. From Office Manager, to tour guide, to blueberry picker, my roles down under have been ridiculously varied, so lets talk about that. 

Grace holding a very small baby wombat in regional Australia
Cuddles with one of the animals I helped to look after as part of my 88 days regional work to qualify for a second working holiday visa

I'm just going to say it - getting a job in Australia isn't easy. Maybe it once was, but since the end of the pandemic an influx of visitors have been arriving with Working Holiday Visa's, myself included. So you can't just hand out a couple of CV's and hope for the best anymore. Gone are the day's of stepping off the plane straight into the workplace, and anyone who say's otherwise either arrived long ago or has been incredibly lucky.

That's not to say there isn't work in Australia, there definitely is, but you might end up in an unexpected role...

Grace the Office Manager

Chief Organisation Officer, or Office Manager to us peasants. Yes once upon a time I was responsible for the day to day running of a whole central Sydney office, wild! It was a challenging role at times but honestly I enjoyed it and I would do it again in a heartbeat. I had to very quickly learn how to do a multitude of tasks in this incredibly varied role, but ultimately I now know what it takes to organise and run an office space. 

Grace the Bar Crawl Leader

On the complete opposite end of the scale is my 'job' as a bar crawl leader for the Sydney Working Holiday Girls. Most Saturday nights you'll find me and a few other hosts marching a group of rowdy girls through the streets of Sydney as we hop from bar to bar. It's a great gig that I hope I continue for as long as I live in Aus, but not one I EVER saw myself in before I came here!

Grace and a group of girls posing for a photo whilst on a girls only bar crawl in Sydney CBD
Hosting a girls only bar crawl through central Sydney

Grace The Tour Guide

From time to time I also lead tours for the Sydney Working Holiday Girls too. Previously I've taken groups to the Hunter Valley, and even an overnight trip to Port Stephens, which is beaut by the way! In these roles I've really become a people person, a problem solver, and someone who can think quite quickly on their feet - love that for me!

Grace The Kangaroo Wrangler

Well this was more of a carer role, but Kangaroo Wrangler sounds much cooler. Anyway, there is no way I could have ever predicted landing a job looking after some of the most amazing creatures on the planet! Feeding the animals, cleaning their environments, administering important medication, going on rescues and bringing injured animals into the recovery center, I've done it all. I'm not sure I can add 'Kangaroo Physiotherapy" to the skill set on my CV but, I sure as hell learned a lot in this role. 

Grace holding and feeding a baby kangaroo
Feeding one of my favourite baby Kangaroos at the animal sanctuary

Grace The Cleaner

When I landed in Australia I made a promise to myself that I wouldn't be afraid of starting at the bottom, and that's exactly what I did when I accepted a role cleaning in exchange for my hostel accommodation. And let me tell you cleaning a hostel kitchen is an EXPERIENCE. What did I learn in my time here? People are GROSS, and for some reason they think it's okay to pour pasta down the sink???

 - If you're interested in volunteering for accommodation while travelling, check out this article on how to get free accommodation while travelling Australia, for tips and more information - 

Grace The Blueberry Picker

Another surprise role, but one I found myself needing for my visa. Previously Working Holiday Visa holders would need to complete 3 months of work in regional Australia to be granted a second year visa, luckily from July 2024 this no long applies to UK passport holders! 
So my role as a Blueberry picker was just that - I picked Blueberries. But believe it or not, it actually takes skill to pick berries quickly, accurately, and without damaging them. Well I guess I have that skill now!

Grace holding very large ripe blueberries which are ready to be picked
Picking the biggest blueberries I've ever seen as part of my 88 days regional work

Grace The Receptionist 

More recently I have been taking on temp Receptionist roles, and honestly it's a vibe. I reply to silly little emails, and take silly little phone calls all day, fab! But actually in these roles I've really developed my interpersonal skills, and my ability to constantly adapt to new environments. Not to mention I now know the bus routes to virtually every Sydney suburb!

So I've lived a thousand lives, had a thousand jobs, and I'm not done yet! I feel like in Australia you really have to do whatever it takes to survive and pay your bills, but you are rewarded with such an incredible standard of life out here.

Taking on all of these diverse jobs has given me knowledge I'd never usually gain, and it's also given me the confidence to try new things.

Who knows what role I'll land next? 

Thanks for reading!

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