April 8, 2022

Temporary Visas changes | A summary

Since the COVID pandemic hit Australia and the rest of the world, in late 2019, many changes have been implemented to support temporary residents holding a valid visa to remain lawfully in Australia and to help support the recovery of the economy as well as fill the workforce shortages.

The large amount of information spreading during the last years, adding up to border restrictions and traveling rules in constant change, might have generated confusion for some internationals living or wanting to live permanently and temporarily in Australia.

For this reason, we have prepared a summary of the most recent changes and news regarding Visa to keep you updated.

Temporary relaxation of working hours for student visa holders

The first temporary relaxation of working hours was implemented in 2021 and is still in place. As of today, all international students in Australia including their dependants can work over the limit of 40hs fortnightly in any industry. But remember, you MUST continue to balance your study and work commitments even though there is flexibility in the number of hours you can work*.

In addition, new student arrivals who wish to commence a job prior to course commencement are temporarily allowed to work before their course commences and for more than 40 hours a fortnight in any sector of the economy. This also includes secondary applicants*.

Student Visa application fee refund

In addition, if a student visa holder traveled to Australia between 19 January to 19 March 2022, they will be eligible for a refund of their visa application charge. Students will be able to apply for a refund up until 31 December 2022**.

Do you think you are eligible for this Refund?

Temporary Graduate (subclass 485) visa extension

From 18 February 2022 eligible Temporary Graduate (485) visa holders have been automatically granted a visa extension until 30 September 2022. Eligible visa holders are those who,

  • Held a Temporary Graduate visa on 15 December 2021 with an expiry date before 30 September 2022
  • the primary visa holder was in Australia at the time of the visa grant
  • the primary visa holder was outside Australia for any period between 1 February 2020 and 14 December 2021 (inclusive) as the holder of a Temporary Graduate (subclass 485) visa
  • the visa has not been canceled since 15 December 2021
  • had not been granted a further substantive visa since 15 December 2021.

Holders of a Temporary Graduate (485) visa that expired between 1 February 2020 and 14 December 2021 have also been extended until 31 September 2022 if complying with eligibility requirements***.

COVID-19 Temporary Graduate replacement stream

The COVID-19 replacement stream is a replacement for the initial Temporary Graduate visa. It is only available for Temporary Graduate visa holders impacted by the Australian travel restrictions and will only be open from 1 July 2022. This stream is only available for people who could not stay in Australia for the full period allowed by their previous Temporary Graduate visa****.

To be eligible, applicants must:

  • currently hold, or have held a Temporary Graduate visa that expired on or after 1 February 2020; and
  • have been outside Australia at any time between 1 February 2020 and 15​ December 2021.
  • more information on eligibility requirements to be informed in the following months.

Are you stranded overseas and need a valid visa to return to Australia?

Contact Us


Working Holiday Maker (WHM) program

Several new Working Holiday Maker programs have been recently arranged by the Australian government and countries such as India, Brazil, Mongolia, and Switzerland as well as establishing a limited quota yearly.

This is a temporary visa oriented to seasonal workers looking to find a job in any industry in Australia to help fund their holidays in the country. There are several requirements to apply for this visa, such as

  • You must be aged 18 to 30 years old (inclusive) when you apply.
  • You must not have previously entered Australia on a Work and Holiday visa (subclass 462/417)
  • Meet education requirement
  • Meet English level
  • Have enough money
  • Meet health and character requirements
  • Have a letter of support
  • Not have had a visa canceled or a previous application refused

and more*****.

Some of these are still not open for applications, more information will be available as soon as the programs are open.

Are you in South Australia and not sure what visa to apply?

Visa conditions 8203/8204

These conditions have been there for a while now. If a Student Visa is granted with these conditions, the main applicant must not change their course of study, thesis or research topic without the approval of the Minister.

As of today, we have only rarely seen these conditions attached to some Student Visas of applicants from a certain country. Official announcements have not been released as of 8 April 2022 regarding new conditions attached to future applications.

Check which visa conditions can be attached to your Granted Visa HERE.

If you want to receive the latest visa updates directly in your EMAIL, 

Click Here