Planning To Study Or Work In Australia? Read This First

Student visa fees have increased and changes to the working holiday visa have come into effect. Here's what you should know about your study and work options in "The Lucky Country"
Studying in Australia
A slew of changes to work and study visas have come into effect in Australia from July 1, 2024BERMIX STUDIO/Shutterstock

Indians applying for an Australian student visa must begin their application process from outside the country, rather than within Australia from July 1, 2024.

This change affects holders of specific visas, like those on visitor and temporary graduate visas, who will no longer be allowed to apply for student visas while in Australia. The Australian government has emphasised that it will only consider student visa applications from offshore applicants who can demonstrate a genuine intention to pursue studies in the country.

The University of Melbourne is Australia's second oldest university and has one of the highest admission requirements in the country
The University of Melbourne is Australia's second oldest university and has one of the highest admission requirements in the countryEQRoy/Shutterstock

Student visa applications already lodged within Australia before July 1, 2024 will continue to be processed unaffected by these regulations. The Australian government has stated that temporary graduates should plan to leave the country when their visa expires or explore job opportunities that could lead to employer-sponsored visas or permanent residency if they wish to remain in the country.

Under the new regulations, holders of visitor visas are permitted to study for up to three months while their visa is valid. Individuals planning to pursue studies exceeding this period must apply for a student visa from outside Australia. Offshore student visa applicants are ineligible for a bridging visa to remain in Australia while their application is processed.

The University of New South Wales is ranked highly for those pursuing science, technology, engineering and mathematics degrees
The University of New South Wales is ranked highly for those pursuing science, technology, engineering and mathematics degreesDr. Victor Wong/Shutterstock

Certain visa holders in Australia, including temporary graduate, maritime crew and visitor visa subclasses, are now prohibited from applying for a student visa from within the country.

Furthermore, the application fee for international student visas will increase from AUD 710 to AUD 1,600, i.e., from INR 39,595 to INR 89,229 from July 1, 2024.

Looking To Work In Australia?

Indian nationals aged 18-30 with qualifications in sought-after technology fields will be eligible for a new temporary visa of up to two years from July 1, 2024
Indian nationals aged 18-30 with qualifications in sought-after technology fields will be eligible for a new temporary visa of up to two years from July 1, 2024Alex Erofeenkov/Shutterstock

As of July 1, 2024, nationals of China, Vietnam and India who want to undertake a working holiday in Australia will first have to apply for one of a limited number of places via a ballot. The ballot will replace the current “first-come-first-served” system, which the government says will make the process fairer and more efficient.

That’s because the work and holiday visa has caps: for Vietnam, there are 1,500 places while China’s is set at 5,000. India’s program has not yet commenced but it's expected to be set at 1,000. Applicants will also have to cough up INR 1,394 (AUD 25) for their application. If selected, they will then be eligible to apply for the work and holiday visa (subclass 462).

The city of Adelaide in South Australia
The city of Adelaide in South Australiamyphotobank.com.au/Shutterstock

Furthermore, Indian nationals aged 18-30 with qualifications in sought-after technology fields will be eligible for a new temporary visa of up to two years from July 1, 2024.

The program is called the Mobility Arrangement for Talented Early-professionals Scheme (MATES). The pilot program has 3,000 places for primary applicants with qualifications in renewable energy, mining, engineering, information and communication technology, artificial intelligence, financial technology, and agricultural technology.

The MATES program has 3,000 places for primary applicants with qualifications in renewable energy, among others
The MATES program has 3,000 places for primary applicants with qualifications in renewable energy, among othersSteve Tritton/Shutterstock

Eligible individuals who win a place in the ballot process can then apply for the visa after paying a fee of INR 20,355 (AUD 365). Immediate family members included on this visa will not count towards the 3,000 place cap.

This visa is the result of the Australia-India Migration and Mobility Partnership Arrangement signed in May 2023.

(With inputs from multiple news agencies)

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