Backpacking around Australia is an amazing experience. You get to explore natural wonders at your fingertips from white sand beaches and lagoons to natural rainforests, mountains and ranges.
With all this travelling though, it can often end up being an expensive trip. If you are backpacking in Australia, you may have come across the issue of being low on funds.
With this in mind, one of the best ways to make the most of your time in Australia and avoid running out of money is to work while you travel. If you’re not too sure where to start, we can help you out. Take a look at our top 5 backpacker jobs to earn money in Australia.
Fruit picking jobs
Fruit picking jobs and harvest work, in general, are highly seasonal, but they are also a fun way to earn money in Australia while backpacking. Finding fruit picking backpacker jobs in Australia is a great way to see more of the lesser travelled parts of Oz while making some lifelong friends along the way. You can travel the length and breadth of the country following the harvest seasons. From banana farms in the tropical north to blueberry picking in New South Wales through to apple and pear harvests in Tasmania.
Some great places to look for fruit and produce picking jobs in Australia include Murray River, the Queensland Coast, The Top End of the Northern Territory and Margaret River in Western Australia.
- It’s fairly easy to pick up a position as farmers are always looking for help
- Pay is decent at anywhere from $25.41 to $30 an hour
- You get to spend your time outdoors away from a desk
- Fruit picking jobs in Australia can be physically hard and tiring
- Not as reliable long term as other industries
- Being out in the sun all day can lead to sunburn and heat fatigue
Gig economy jobs for backpackers
The gig economy is heating up, with plenty of people turning to odd jobs such as food delivery or air tasker jobs to help earn some extra cash. Like many casual positions, you get out what you put in, so if you’re willing to work, you can make a good amount of cash here. Earning money in Australia with gig economy jobs can include everything from rideshare drivers and food delivery drivers to pet sitters, furniture removalists or freelancers. The scope is wide and can be tailored to your interests, skills and talents.
A great benefit of the gig economy is that you can do it practically anywhere there is internet service. This makes it a great way to earn money in Australia while backpacking with little to no experience.
- Flexibility and ability to travel while working
- Huge variety of gig economy jobs available in Australia, so you shouldn’t struggle to find work
- You can often work to your own timetable, which is perfect for those who want to spend more time sightseeing and exploring
- Often requires you to have your own equipment or vehicle such as a bike, car, laptop etc depending on the job
- Pay can be lower than a traditional job
- No job security or peace of mind
Bar and hospitality backpacking jobs in Australia
Working in hospitality is a great way to earn money in Australia while backpacking. Australia has a huge hospitality industry, so you should be able to find work anywhere in the country, especially in the top tourist destinations. Many businesses will hire and train someone even if they don’t have any experience, which makes it a great option for everyone.
Hospitality jobs can be found all around Australia, simply walk into any bar or restaurant and ask to see the manager.
- Work experience not often required
- Easy to find work throughout Australia
- Pay is usually reasonable, especially if penalty rates are offered
- You will often have to give up your weekend and evenings
- Can be harder to go exploring for more than a day or two due to shift work
- Customer service isn’t necessarily for everyone
Fishing jobs for backpackers in Australia
If you have some experience on fishing vessels or in the industry, you shouldn’t have any trouble getting a position in one of the many coastal towns in Australia. Working on a fishing vessel or charter cruises is a great way to spend some time on the water while earning some extra cash.
These backpacking jobs understandably are found in coastal locations in Australia, so might not be suitable if prefer larger metro destinations.
- Fishing jobs in Australia offer great pay
- If you love fishing or being on the water, you’ll have a great time while getting paid
- You’ll learn a lot about the industry and location from your coworkers and team
- Experience in such a position is often required
- Limited positions depending on location and season may be available, making it a competitive job market
- Hours of work are often long
Housekeeping work in hotels and hostels
Housekeeping jobs are a quick and easy way to earn money in Australia while backpacking around. You will have plenty of places to find work from hotels and motels to the hostel that you are staying in. Housekeeping often has set hours that allow for plenty of time to explore your current location.
You will be able to find plenty of housekeeping jobs no matter where you are, to earn money in Australia while backpacking.
- Housekeeping jobs in Australia are often easy to find
- Pay rates are often quite good, with $20 – $30 an hour being standard
- Experience is often not required to get into the industry
- Can be a physically demanding job, with lots of walking around and picking things up
- You may find some duties unpleasant
- You are often expected to work swiftly and accurately, requiring attention to detail
Backpacking around Australia doesn’t mean that you have to chew through your entire travel fund and head home early if you run out of money. With some creative thinking and a bit of research on the internet, you will be able to find plenty of backpacker jobs that can help you earn money in Australia while still experiencing the best that the country has to offer.
Backpacker Job Board is a great place to start your job search. The site is free to use and has 100s of active job vacancies, all suitable for working holidaymakers.
About the author
Matt is the founder of Five Bees Media. A digital media company behind such websites as Backpacker Job Board - Australia's most popular job site for working holiday makers.