The SWAP Work in Australia + Melbourne Welcome Week is unbeatable value and the perfect start to your working holiday adventure Down Under! There isn't a better introduction to Australia than a full week of experiences including: a visit to St. Kilda Beach, a city art and food tour of Melbourne, sightseeing, and more in a friendly group!
After your first week in Australia, you'll be armed with a group of mates and the knowledge to help you transition smoothly into your working holiday. From big city experience to a rural setting, or a mix of both, the backdrop of your working holiday is entirely up to you!
Wherever you decide to settle, our SWAP services will kick into high gear to support you in finding a job and accommodation, and sorting out your phone and bank account as soon as possible. Once you've made yourself at home, you'll get to know Australia as a local, make lifelong friends, add to your resume, and discover your favourite places for flat whites and meat pies. Good onya because that's what it's all about!
Arrival in Melbourne: Whenever you choose to arrive in Melbourne before the Welcome Week begins, we will pick you up from the airport. How convenient is that?!
Your Welcome Week starts on a Monday, so plan accordingly. Landing a few days before? No worries! We can organise any extra nights at your YHA accommodation.
Monday: Our morning meet and greet will see you get to know your new travel family before we put you at total ease by organising your bank, phone number and tax file number. This means that you’re organised for life in Australia from the start!
After that it’s time for us to take you on a guided tour of Melbourne where you’ll learn why so many travellers love this incredibly diverse city.
We'll end the day with a riverside group welcome meal on Southbank, one of Australia's most iconic settings.
Tuesday: Melbourne is home to the Southern Hemisphere’s biggest open air market and it really is a true treat for all the senses.
After haggling a bargain and exploring the wonders of Queen Victoria Market’s many stalls, we will spend the afternoon in the most Melbourne way possible, eating and drinking.
It feels like Melbourne has more food establishments than anywhere in the world so we thought the best way to showcase that was to create an exclusive food tour just for you... SO WE DID!
Wednesday: Sure we want you to experience this fantastic city, but we also want you to see its beautiful surrounds. Mornington Peninsula and Phillip Island are two of the most incredible yet barely touched spots in Australia.
We will be having some much-needed beach time, plus we'll be wine tasting and heading to spectacular scenic lookouts. To finish off we'll be watching over 500 PENGUINS running across the beach (yes, you read that right!)
Thursday: Australia is known for its famous SURF and this is the day that you'll complete another Australian must-do as you learn how to ride a wave. This day includes a few hidden secrets along the way but the main thing you need to know? You will get the chance to get up close to KOALAS and KANGAROOS. Another bucket list item ticked, two in one day! (In the winter, surfing may be replaced by kayaking/mountain biking, depending on weather)
Friday: Melbourne has many celebrated suburbs and St. Kilda is as famous as they get.
We'll head to this quaint beach suburb taking in its iconic promenade, alfresco cafes and famous landmarks. The afternoon will be spent lazing on the beach, paddle-boarding (included!) or if you’re feeling adventurous... skydiving!
April-September: The beach day will be replaced with firstly a secret inclusion and then an enriching and insightful Aboriginal heritage walk and smoking ceremony in the Royal Botanical Gardens before viewing Melbourne from the highest viewing platform in Australia; the incredible Eureka Skydeck.
Saturday: Do you want to go in to work or do you want to travel? Either way we will get you organised! Saturday is the perfect time to look at everything you will need after your first week in Australia.
We’ll go through all of our job resources including resume writing, employer database and farm-work opportunities, as well show you how to explore this magnificent country. This will be done in a group AND one-on-one setting meaning you’ll leave with all questions answered.
What do we need after that? To join Melbourne’s biggest bar crawl of course.
Sunday: And just like that, your best week ever ends, and your best year ever begins!
What better way to spend our final Sunday afternoon together than lazing on a rooftop overlooking the city with your new travel family? We’ll crank up the BBQ, hand out the beers and soak up the skyline as we talk about memories made over the best week of your life.
Don't just take our word for it. See the stories from some actual recent participants
You will get a 1-year visa that allows for multiple entries into the country.
Get real support from our local staff for your entire working holiday. The staff are experts at work and travel and know Australia inside and out. They'll help you get set up, find a job and a place to live, be there to answer any questions you may have, or just to talk.
One of the greatest advantages of going with SWAP is the immediate, built-in social network that you will be connected to as soon as you arrive! As early as your first orientation, you'll already be meeting fellow travellers on the same adventure as you. It's the perfect opportunity to make new friends, find potential roommates, and network with people to find your next job. It's much easier (and more fun) than hanging out in a pub by yourself, or looking for roommates on Craigslist.
The first 7 nights in Melbourne are included as part of your welcome week package. You’ll spend 6 nights at a central hostel in Melbourne in a dorm style room with your new friends on the tour, and one night is at a hostel on Philip Island.
We've been helping Canadians live and work in Australia since 1986, so we know what it takes to successfully apply for an Australian visa. That's part of the reason why thousands of Canadians choose SWAP to help ensure their application's success. Our dedicated visa experts will go over your application in detail and make sure it is perfect. If we notice anything, we'll work with you to make sure it's flawless before your paperwork is submitted to the Australian government.
Over 30 years of Australian visa expertise isn't the only thing you'll get on the SWAP Work in Australia + Melbourne Welcome Week program. You'll also get:
Working and living in Australia with SWAP is easy. You can register online here, or do it in-person by visiting any of these Merit Travel locations and talking to a friendly travel counsellor. The choice is yours and our staff will be there to help you either way! The program price includes all the support services offered in Australia (listed in the support section), plus all the support services offered in Canada by SWAP to make sure your application goes through without a hitch and your working holiday is a success.
Canadian passport holders, ages 18-35 with no dependents
The SWAP Work in Australia + Melbourne Welcome Week Package has fixed arrival dates (see below). Please register and book an arrival date 8-12 weeks in advance of leaving (subject to availability)
› September 1, 8, 15, 22, and 29, 2019
› October 6, 13, 20, and 27, 2019
› November 3, 10, 17, and 24, 2019
› December 1, 8, and 15, 2019
› January 5 and 12, 2020
› February 2, 9, 16, and 23, 2020
› March 1, 8, 15, 22, and 29, 2020
› April 5, 12, 19, and 26, 2020
› May 10 and 24, 2020
› June 7 and 21, 2020
› July 5 and 19, 2020
› August 2, 16, and 30, 2020
› September 6, 13, 20, and 27, 2020
› October 4, 11, 18, and 25, 2020
› November 1, 8, 15, 22, and 29, 2020
› December 6 and 13, 2020
Any period up to 1 year
You must have the amount of $5000 AUD saved in your account as of the day you submit your application. These are called support funds and are a requirement of the Australian government
The SWAP Work in Australia + Melbourne Welcome Week Package is only $1550 CAD! That includes the full SWAP working holiday experience in Australia and 8 days of fun and excitement (and accommodation) on the welcome week tour.Take the 1st step ››
"I work as a waitress at Guylian Belgium Chocolate Cafe in Circular Quay, which is right next to the Opera House and I could see the Harbour Bridge every day at work. I loved watching the sunset behind the bridge form work. Sydney recently hosted a festival called VIVID in which they light up the portions of the city and because most of the lights were in Circular Quay I got to see all the light shows from work, it was incredible!"
"If you're on the fence about taking the working holiday, just take it. If you're on the fence of going through SWAP, also just do it. The cost basically pays for itself with what they provide you and the time and stress that is avoided."
"Being able to meet people from all over the world and spending time at the beach after work. Australia is just an incredible country and Sydney is a beautiful city to live in. You can get it all in Sydney, whatever you're in the mood for, whether it be hanging out at iconic beaches like Bondi, hiking through the Blue mountains or Royal National Park, enjoying the nightlife in the CBD, checking out live bands in the hipster scenes of Newtown, or taking a stroll in the rich neighbourhoods of Paddington and Vaucluse - Sydney is a one stop shop and a great starting off point for working holidayers."
"SWAP is definitely worth every penny. Being a girl travelling abroad alone, I deeply appreciated that everything was taken care of for me, from the visa application to the transport voucher from Sydney's airport to my hostel. SWAP makes your arrival in a foreign country stress-free! They the kindest and most helpful staff I have ever seen, and they even become friends. I do not regret putting my trust and money in the SWAP program."
"I used them to book all of my Aussie adventures. I even did the welcome week in Sydney twice when a friend came to visit at Christmas. I loved it so much I had to do it again."