Five Alternative Jobs in Australia with the Backpacker Job Board

Five Alternative Jobs in Australia with the Backpacker Job Board

I don’t know about you but after seeing the Inbetweeners 2 movie earlier this week, I have been wanting to head out on another gap year ever since. A gap year where I would head to Australia and use that second year working holiday visa of mine, but we all know that isn’t going to happen any time soon so I thought I’d write about it instead.

Most Brits heading over to the land down under have an idea in their head about what their time will be like. They’ll get a job easily, won’t have to work too hard and get to enjoy the sun, surf and nightlife constantly. Unfortunately it isn’t quite like that, much like the boys find out in the film – Australia can be a dream but working there is much like being in England. Having said that, it doesn’t have to be – although there are a lot of dead end jobs that you could do at home, there are also jobs that could be a once in a life time experience for backpackers.


Here are my top five picks of alternative jobs in Australia

Fruit picking – Something I actually did in Australia because it allows you to apply for a second year visa. There are many stipulations for the visa so make sure you read the fine print before signing up to a job. Fruit picking is a job I went in to for a few reasons: it is said to be good money, it gets you a second year visa, but most importantly it was something I would never try at home. Although the money for my job didn’t turn out to be great, the memories of my time working in the fields and living on a working hostel boat are some of best from Oz.

Find fruit picking jobs here with the Backpacker Job Board and check out my top tips for fruit picking here

Farm Hand – This is different from the job above because it involves working with animals. Often farms in the outback will look for a couple (male and female) as they want the male for farm duties and the female for housekeeping and possibly childcare. This would be an awesome experience to live with the locals in the Aussie outback and save a huge amount of money. This work can also count for a second year visa but check the small print.

Find farm jobs here with the Backpacker Job Board

Au Pair – If you like kids then this is the perfect way to earn bucks in Australia. Unfortunately most jobs will be offered to females and it only works if you are travelling alone – although you may find a daily nanny position if you are lucky. I have worked as a daily nanny for years and it is a great job for being able to spend your days outdoors. Working as an Au Pair means they provide food and accommodation for you as well as a weekly wage. The only downside to this job is it doesn’t offer a social life but the chance of living with locals will hopefully balance that out.


Find Au Pair jobs here with the Backpacker Job Board

Mining – Well not quite literally but working in the mines could make you A LOT of money. I met several people who worked in the mines just outside of Perth during my time in Australia. It doesn’t matter if you have a trade skill or not as there are a vast array of jobs. A normal month working in the mines would be three weeks of seven days and then a week off, when you can head back to Perth. This seemed a norm for most as there were no shops/nightlife etc in the mines.

Here is an example of a mining job

Camp Cook – I had a friend who did this in Northern Queensland and raved about her experience. The idea is you cook for the men working on these camps – often horse ranches or army bases. You would again get a once in a lifetime outback experience and save a lot of money because you weren’t living in a big city. Some places will want qualified chefs whereas others are not so fussed – my friend was a sweet chef, making all desserts, cakes and general treats.

Here is an example of a camp cook job

Now let’s introduce to you the Backpacker Job Board who have helped me to put this post together.

The Backpacker Job Board was launched about six years ago as a free online service to help backpackers find work and earn some cash to help fund their travels. Since then, they’ve successfully found work for thousands of backpackers. The service is still free. It’s free for employers to post jobs and free for backpackers to apply. There are no fees or membership sign-up costs.

I find that so many of the websites which list jobs are often over-run with spam, fake jobs or ambiguous recruitment agency positions. (I certainly found this with the Australian Gumtree, a website most backpackers use for job searches.) As such the guys at the Backpacker Job Board site manually moderate all the jobs that come through. It’s a painstaking process – but it means that the vacancies they have online are the best.

The majority of jobs posted on their site offer a really unique experience to backpackers – something which couldn’t be purchased via a tour operator. Their vacancies offer the opportunity to see outback Australia as well as rural, coastal or city life. The Au Pair and help exchange positions give backpackers the chance to live with a real Australian family and get a true sense of Aussie culture and life down under.

The Backpacker Job Board is the perfect place to start searching for your once in a life time working experience in Australia.

Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by the Backpacker Jobs Board; however all opinions are my own and I would never recommend a site I wouldn’t personally use. While in Australia I spent hours using Gumtree trying to work out which jobs were real – I certainly wish I had known about awesome job boards like this one.


  1. 14th August 2014 / 10:31 pm

    I’ve worked at a paintball place as a marshal which was cool
    And my best Aussie job was summer as a life guard at wet n wild was amazing once in a lifetime experience up the Gold Coast loads of theme parks you could work at 🙂

  2. 18th August 2014 / 4:04 am

    Hi there! Any tips for an Australian looking for work in the UK? I’m a British citizen as well which helps, currently looking to spend some time (and make money) in the UK before travelling Europe.

    • 18th August 2014 / 8:30 am

      My best advice is always to print off cvs and hand them around places, but it also depends what you are looking for.. Gumtree isn’t as great for jobs here as in Oz, Reed is okay so is the government website. Good luck.

  3. 4th November 2014 / 7:20 am

    All good to know. I’m new to Melbourne and currently looking for a job. It’s a pain in the ass.

  4. 16th March 2015 / 12:06 am

    Australia really is one of the best places in the world to visit and work and the jobs you describe above are fantastic ways to see the “real” Australia!

    I would recommend that every backpacker/traveler/gap year enthusiast try these sorts of rural jobs at least once – in some cases it may even help extend your visa!

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