Ultimate Australia and New Zealand
Paid work + flexible travel in Australia and New Zealand
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Group Size: Avg 10-30
Trip code: AOLK
Duration: Up to 12 months
This amazing combo trip includes our bestselling Absolute Oz Jobs paid work programme in Australia with our popular Oz and Kiwi travel passes! Begin with a full week of fun in Sydney and beach camp and then get expert assistance finding a paid job in Australia. Use your flexible Sydney to Cairns travel pass to explore the East Coast of Australia at your own pace. Head across to stunning New Zealand and discover the beautiful North and South Islands with our hop-on-hop-off Kiwi Discovery Pass. Enjoy paid work and travel adventures on this ultimate combo experience!
- Aged 18-30? Combine paid work with travel and adventure on this exciting combo trip, which includes 3 of our most popular programmes!
- Week 1 is all about fun in the sun in Australia: Make friends on our amazing activity-packed intro week in Sydney and Beach Camp
- Find a paid job in Australia with expert assistance from our jobs team: Get help with the practicalities of job hunting plus 12 months of job support
- Travel along Australia’s East Coast at your own pace, seeing it all from Sydney to Cairns with an inclusive travel pass, valid for 12 months
- See all the amazing highlights of New Zealand’s North and South Islands with our flexible Kiwi Discovery Travel Pass
This exciting combo trip includes our amazing Absolute Oz Jobs paid work programme in Australia and a brilliant, flexible travel pass along the Aussie East Coast from Sydney to Cairns, plus a hop-on-hop-off travel pass in New Zealand!
Australia: Absolute Oz Jobs: 8 days + Independent work/travel time (approx. 6-7 months)
Our Absolute Oz Jobs programme is the ideal introduction to Australian paid work. You’ll enjoy one week of amazing activities & sightseeing in Sydney first:
Day 1: Arrive in Sydney. Arrival day and free time.
Day 2: Sydney walking tour. See Darling Harbour, the Botanic Gardens and Opera House. Welcome dinner.
Day 3: Sydney. 9.15am: A comprehensive job orientation. Boat party in Sydney Harbour. Lunch included.
Day 4: Beach Camp. Depart Sydney for a 2-night Beach Camp adventure. Dinner included.
Day 5: Beach Camp. 4x4 tour of the sand dunes (plus sandboarding!). Learn about Aboriginal culture and go on a bushwalk. Breakfast, lunch & dinner included.
Day 6: Beach Camp–Sydney. Browse the coastline for bottlenose dolphins on a boat cruise. Head back to Sydney. Breakfast included.
Day 7: Party Night. Free day to relax and plan onward travel. 7.30p.m: Enjoy entry to four city bars and clubs (plus 4 inclusive drinks!). Hop on a party bus and explore the streets in style!
Day 8: Bondi to Coogee Beach Tour. Check out some gorgeous coastlines on a cliff-top walk (tour leaves at 10am). Intro week ends this afternoon in Sydney.
Let the Job Hunt Begin!
Now it’s time to kick-start your Aussie job search. Our job support team will give you all the help and advice you’ll need in order to secure yourself a paid Aussie job. You also have a full 12 months of job support. The programme includes:
- 12 months access to the online jobs network and vacancies nationwide
- A CV review service
- An orientation
- Advice about setting up your own Australian bank account before you go
- An Aussie mobile phone SIM card
- A Tax File Number
- Access to free Wi-Fi
- A 12-month mail holding service
- Help and advice about long-term accommodation
- An inclusive bar skills course
- A free, inclusive online RSA (Responsible Service Alcohol) course (valid in all territories except New South Wales or Victoria)
Using the job database you’ll have access to over 1900 job adverts at any one time, so the sky’s the limit when it comes to finding paid jobs in Oz! Wage rates will vary, but you can expect to earn around £10-£15 per hour.
Australia: Sydney to Cairns Travel Pass: Minimum 13 days, valid for 12 months
During your time living and working in Australia you’ll have use of this brilliant, open-dated, flexible travel pass as part of your trip package, which you can use to explore the Aussie East Coast.
The route can be completed in a minimum tour time of 13 days, or you can make the most of the 12 months validity on your travel pass and hop off to stay a little longer in any of the destinations en route. We recommend you allow at least 4-6 weeks to make the most of the East Coast, especially if you wish to add in other experiences, such as a fun tour on Fraser Island or sailing in the Whitsundays.
Please note: The travel pass route includes several compulsory overnight stays, where you will enjoy unique adventures and activities. The cost of these is not included in the trip price.
The full East Coast route from Sydney to Cairns runs as below:
Sydney - Hunter Valley - Barrington Tops Farm - Port Macquarie (Koala Hospital) - Surf Camp - Remote River Camp - Byron Bay - Brisbane – Noosa/Rainbow Beach (for Fraser Island) - Cooroy - Emu Park - Rockhampton - Airlie Beach (for the Whitsundays) – Townsville (for Magnetic Island) - Tully - Cairns
We have broken down the route into stages so you can see where you’ll be going and what you’ll be doing along the way:
Sydney - Barrington Tops: Depart Sydney at 8am and sip wine in the vineyards of the Hunter Valley. Overnight stay in stunning Barrington Tops National Park. Opt to go inner tubing (additional cost), or relax with some fishing and wildlife spotting. This unique overnight stay costs AUD60 and includes accommodation, meals and activities.
Barrington Tops - Surf Camp: Explore beautiful Barrington Tops National Park and then visit a Koala Hospital to meet these cute and iconic animals. Your next destination is surf camp - surf's up! Accommodation costs at surf camp start at AUD60 per night.
Surf Camp - River Camp: Spend more time surfing (extra cost). Then go off the beaten track and swim in the stunning inlet of Solitary Islands Marine Park. Camp out in this remote and wonderful place! This overnight stay costs AUD50, and includes accommodation, meals and activities.
River Camp - Byron Bay: Make tracks for the legendary surfing and arts town of Byron Bay and enjoy the laid-back vibe in this coastal town. Byron Bay is a popular spot, so you may want to hop off here for a few more days by the sea.
Byron Bay – Brisbane – Noosa – Rainbow Beach: Explore the headlands at Danger Point and Snapper Rocks, before driving along the Gold Coast into Brisbane, ending up in the smart beach resort of Noosa. You can hop off here for the night, or head on to Rainbow Beach, gateway to famous Fraser Island.
Rainbow Beach - Noosa - Emu Park: Travel to Emu Park and check into a beautiful beach resort for approx. AUD35 a night. Optional Treasure Island Overnight Experience. AUD99 including transfers to Great Keppel Island, accommodation, dinner, treasure hunt and turtle spotting walk.
Emu Park - Overnight Train - Airlie Beach: Relax on the beach or opt to visit a local crocodile park. Catch an overnight train to Airlie Beach, gateway to the Whitsunday Islands.
Airlie Beach - Magnetic Island: Take a ferry to tropical Magnetic Island. Nearly 50% of Magnetic Island is National Park, and the island boasts amazing beaches and abundant wildlife. Enjoy a guided walk around the island.
Magnetic Island – Tully: Head to Tully and enjoy a unique Rainforest experience. Visit a swimming hole, spend the night in a historic country pub and enjoy a sunrise mountain hike and champagne breakfast. AUD120 extra cost. Alternatively, stay in a hostel in Tully at hostel rates (around AUD35).
Tully – Cairns: Travel north by train from Tully to Cairns. If you fancy adding in amazing activities in Cairns, book our Cairns Adventure, which includes white water rafting, snorkelling, kayaking and a hot air balloon ride, or discover the gorgeous Great Barrier Reef on our Learn to Dive course.
Please note that we will book the pass for you as open dated, so you can decide the date that you want to start the pass- please download the trip notes for more details.
Don't forget your travel pass is fully flexible, so if you fall in love with anywhere along the way you can hop off and spend more time in your favourite spots!
Please note: itinerary and inclusions are subject to change.
Fraser Island and Whitsundays Add-on
Complete your Travel Pass experience with our awesome Fraser Island and Whitsundays Add-on. The pack includes a fantastic 2-night yacht cruise around the Whitsundays, stopping off at Whitehaven Beach and some beautiful snorkel spots, and a 4x4 camping experience on Fraser Island that sees you exploring in a 4WD vehicle and camping out under the stars.
Make sure you save money by booking this add-on pack BEFORE you travel. Booking locally is a lot more expensive so get ahead of the crowd and secure your adventures early! (and spend the money you save on more fun and games in Oz!)
If you wish to book this Add-on please contact your travel adviser. You can also book either of the adventures separately so let your travel adviser know your preference.
Please note: You will now need to arrange your own flight from Australia to New Zealand. The cost of this flight is not included.
New Zealand: Kiwi Discovery Pass: Minimum 30 days, valid for 12 months
Valid for 12 months, your bus pass allows you to spend up to a year exploring New Zealand, or if you prefer you can complete the entire tour route in a minimum of 30 days (although we recommend you allow around 38 days to make the most of your travel pass experience).
You don't have to start in Auckland! You can start and end at any stop along the route!
You should arrange your arrival into Auckland the day before the tour begins, as there is an early start in the morning!
Auckland to Paihia, Bay of Islands. Your flexible, hop-on-hop-off tour begins today at 7am in the lively city of Auckland. Your destination is the relaxing seaside town of Paihia, known as the ‘gateway to the Bay of Islands’. Visit Parry Kauri Forest Park.
Paihia to Cape Reinga and Back. Stop off at Te Paki Stream to try some inclusive dune surfing and sandboarding, before arriving at Cape Reinga. Please note: Today is a round day trip from Paihia and you cannot hop off the bus today.
Paihia to Auckland. Today is a free day to relax and enjoy Paihia at your leisure. Join a boat cruise, sign up to swim with dolphins, laze on the beach or hike to the famous Harura Falls. In the afternoon, the bus will take you back to the bright lights of Auckland.
Auckland to Hahei. Travel south to the stunning Coromandel Peninsula and settle into your beachfront accommodation. Head over to Hot Water Beach to dig and relax in your own personal hot water pool! (weather & tide dependent)
Hahei. Free day to relax and soak up the beautiful surroundings and awesome optional activities of Hahei.
Hahei to Rotorua. Journey through the rolling hills of the Waikato region. Optional activities include visiting The Lord of the Rings Hobbiton set. Free day to relax and explore in geothermal Rotorua.
Rotorua to Lake Aniwhenua. Maori guided tour, activities, meals and stay at Lake Aniwhenua (optional: extra cost of NZD89). Optional activities include: traditional fishing, eeling, weaving lessons, cooking classes and kayaking (cost NZD10-20).
Lake Aniwhenua (via Taupo) to Whakahoro. See the stunning Huka Falls then visit Lake Taupo. Optional skydiving (approx NZD250). Rural country farm visit and overnight stay.
Whakahoro. Explore the countryside around the rural country farm. Optional activities include a 4x4 tour, a horse trek or kayaking.
Whakahoro to Raetihi. Explore the Tongariro National Park. Option to do legendary 1-day Tongariro Crossing Alpine Walk (extra cost). Stay overnight at a historic Nurses’ Home in Raetihi.
Raetihi to Wellington. Travel to Wellington. Free time to explore New Zealand’s capital city.
Wellington to Marahau (Abel Tasman National Park). 8am ferry to South Island (extra cost of approx. NZD55). Visit to Marlborough wine-making region (optional wine tasting). Final destination of the day is Marahau, on the edge of Abel Tasman National Park.
Marahau (Abel Tasman National Park). Explore Abel Tasman National Park. Optional activities on offer include sailing, kayaking, skydiving, stand up paddleboarding or hang gliding. All optional activities are at an extra cost.
Marahau to Franz Josef. Journey along the rugged west coast. See the seal colony at Cape Foulwind and the unusual Punakaiki Pancake Rocks with their impressive blowholes. Stop off at the mining town of Greymouth and Hokitika en route to Franz Josef.
Franz Josef. Free day to explore the area around the fantastic Franz Josef Glacier. Join a guided bush hike, or enjoy a heli-hop and tour of the unique icy area, including entry to hot pools (extra cost of NZD250).
Franz Josef to Wanaka. See Lake Matheson, travel through Haast Pass and Makarora, see Lake Hawea then end up in Wanaka in the late afternoon.
Wanaka to Queenstown. Early walk up Mount Iron or skydive (skydive extra cost). On to Queenstown, the adventure capital of the world! Spend 2 unforgettable nights here.
Queenstown to Gunn’s Camp. Start early for a scenic drive past Lake Wakatipu, before arriving in magical Milford Sound. Opt to do a Milford Sound boat cruise (extra cost) before travelling on to Gunn’s Camp.
Gunn’s Camp to Invercargill/Stewart Island. Take a leisurely stroll through beautiful beech forests on a Viewing Gantry walk. Travel South to Invercargill. Hop across to Stewart Island (ferry at own cost) or stay in Invercargill overnight instead.
Invercargill/Stewart Island to Queenstown. If you stayed on Stewart Island, enjoy a free morning before travelling back to the mainland (ferry at own cost). If you chose to stay in Invercargill overnight, you’ll head out on a tour sea-lion, penguin and dolphin spotting. Travel back to Queenstown.
Queenstown to Aoraki/Mt Cook. Arrive at the base of New Zealand’s highest mountain Aoraki/ Mt Cook in the early afternoon. Take a short walk, join a 4WD tour or visit the Sir Edmund Hillary Alpine Centre.
Mount Cook to Rangitata (via Tekapo). Journey through ‘Lord of the Rings country’ and stop off at the sparkling waters of Lake Tekapo. Take an optional hike up to Mt John observatory for a killer view. Tonight, stay in an original sheep station in Rangitata Peel Forest.
Rangitata to Christchurch. Optional white water rafting or horse riding this morning. Spend the night in the wonderful city of Christchurch.
Christchurch to Kaikoura. Journey up the beautiful east coast to Kaikoura. Spot seals, soak up the spectacular views, swim with dolphins or go whale-spotting (seasonal).
Kaikoura (via Picton) to Wellington. Travel along the wild coast, stopping at a seal colony en route to Picton. You can choose to stop off here, or catch a ferry (extra cost of NZD51-75) across the Cook Strait to Wellington.
Wellington to Auckland. Leaving at 6.40am, you’ll zip back to your starting point in Auckland today, arriving in the late afternoon. Here your epic hop-on-hop-off adventures come to an end!
Don’t forget, you can hop on and off along the route for up to a year!
Please note that we will book the pass for you as open dated, so you can decide the date that you want to start the pass- please download the trip notes for more details.
Please Note: This itinerary is for guidance only and is subject to change. There are lots of extra, optional activities on offer all along the tour route and all optional activities are at your own, extra cost. Ferry costs are not included in your trip price.
Please note all activities, itineraries and routes are subject to change
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Absolute Oz Jobs: You should arrange your flights to arrive into Sydney Airport (SYD) on a Sunday, depending on your start date. You will need to go to a pre-set meeting point at Sydney airport and a greeter will direct you to the shuttle bus which will take you directly to your hostel to begin your first week of fun and adventure!
Sydney to Cairns Travel Pass: You will need to arrange travel back into Sydney for the start of the Sydney to Cairns Travel Pass. Trips run at least three times a week and your travel pass is valid for 12 months from your departure date. As the trip departs early (8am) you should arrange your arrival for at least the day before the travel pass experience begins.
You will need to arrange your own flight from Australia to New Zealand. The cost of the flight is not included.
You should plan your own transport to arrive in Auckland for the start of your Kiwi Discovery travel pass. As day 1 begins with an early 7.00am bus departure, you will need to plan your arrival in to Auckland for the previous day and arrange accommodation at your own cost. You will need to let us know where you are staying in advance so we know where to pick you up from. We can help advise you about accommodation in Auckland, just ask one of our travel advisors.
Australia: Absolute Oz
Week 1: Sydney and Beach Camp
Accommodation for the first 7 nights of your stay is included, in a city centre hostel in Sydney during nights 1, 2, 3, 6 and 7, and in shared accommodation during your stay at beach camp on nights 4 and 5.
In your hostel in Sydney, you’ll enjoy modern facilities in shared dorm accommodation with up to 10 people. The hostel is a hub of exciting city action, with its own backpacker bar. The onsite café serves breakfast and there’s also a kitchen with fridges and storage. The hostel has 24-hour reception, phone booths on every floor, security lockers, laundry facilities, Internet and Wi-Fi, and a postal service.
Some meals are included in week 1: A welcome dinner and drink, 2 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 2 dinners and 4 free drinks. Other meals are not included.
What do I do about accommodation after the first week in Australia?
After the first 7 days of accommodation some people decide to extend their stay in a hostel or to rent an apartment. The most popular option is to rent an apartment, and our team in Sydney can assist you with this. The advantage of renting is that it is the cheaper option and you get your own private room. Our customers often end up renting a place with the friends they meet in their first week on the programme. You can expect to pay £100-£150 per week. The minimum contract is normally 3 months but some agencies will ask you to commit to six months.
Alternatively you can extend your stay in a hostel. This is a great option for those that want to travel around quite a lot. Hostels offer cheaper rates for those that want a long term stay, for example for one month or more. It is really easy to book accommodation in hostels. You can often walk in and get a room that day but we recommend that you make a reservation the night before. Depending on where you stay in Australia, you can expect to pay around £140-£175 per week.
Please note that when you are working in Australia, you will earn enough to cover your living expenses like rent, food and bills. If you would like any more information, please contact us for more details.
Australia: Sydney to Cairns Travel Pass
No accommodation is included as part of this flexible travel pass, but in each overnight location you will have accommodation reserved for you, so you don’t have to worry about where you will be staying. These will range from shared dorm rooms in hostels, at an average cost of AUD28 (approx £16) per person per night, to en suite twin or double rooms in motels, at an average cost of AUD100 (approx £57). Accommodation costs are to be paid locally.
Unique Scheduled Overnight Stays
This travel pass includes several compulsory, scheduled overnight stops in locations off the beaten track, complete with amazing and unique adventures and experiences.
Each of the following overnight stops are at extra cost to be made by local payment:
- Barrington Tops Overnight Stay (AUD 60): Stay on the edge of Barrington Tops National Park, in a private lodge overlooking the Barrington River.
- Surf Camp Overnight Stay (approx. AUD 60): Stay at a beautiful beachside location in a laid-back surf camp.
- Remote River Camp Overnight Stay (AUD 50): Journey to the Solitary Islands Marine Reserve and camp beside the river overnight.
- Treasure Island Overnight Stay (AUD99): Cruise across to Great Keppel Island and enjoy snorkelling, turtle spotting and a treasure hunt adventure.
- Tully Rainforest Experience (AUD120): Visit a swimming hole, spend the night in a historic country pub and enjoy a sunrise mountain hike and champagne breakfast. In some locations you will be camping in remote campsites, but permanent toilets and shelter areas are provided.
You will spend one night on an overnight train. The train does not have sleeper carriages but it is modern and comfortable, with reclining seats, a bar and dining car. In some locations you will be camping in remote campsites, but permanent toilets and shelter areas are provided.
If you choose to hop on and off for independent travel time, you will be responsible for finding and paying for your own accommodation, although your helpful tour guides will be able to advise you of the best (and cheapest!) local options.
New Zealand: Kiwi Discovery Pass
Accommodation and meals are not included as part of this hop-on-hop-off bus tour. Each stop-off on the bus route offers unique accommodation options, which we offer our travellers at a reasonable cost, with a typical night costing about NZD25-30 for a dorm room and NZD60-80 for a twin or double room*. We reserve accommodation in all our overnight stops so you’ll be guaranteed one night’s accommodation in each overnight stop if you want it.
If you wish to take advantage of this offer, tell your guide/driver and they will book it for you (you pay as you go). If you wish to choose your own accommodation, or want to stay longer in any of the locations along the route, to make the most of your 12 months flexible bus pass, then you are free to select your own accommodation and your guide can help you with advice and booking.
The optional night at Lake Aniwhenua is NZD89 including accommodation, bed and linen, a tour of sacred Maori rock carvings, a Marae experience, community activities, afternoon tea, dinner and breakfast.
Please note: in peak season twin and double rooms may have limited availability.
This tour is available to travellers aged 18-30.
Due to Working Holiday Visa (WH Visa) age restrictions, this trip is only available to 18-30 year olds. As you are planning to work in Australia you’ll need to apply for a Working Holiday Visa. You can book a Working Holiday Visa through Gap 360 or apply online. To be eligible, applicants need to meet the following requirements:
- Hold a passport issued by an eligible country or region
- Be aged 18-30 (inclusive) at the time of applying
- Not be accompanied by dependent children at any time during their stay in Australia
- Meet health, character and financial requirements
- Not have previously entered Australia on a Working Holiday visa (unless applying for a second visa)
- Be outside Australia when they apply and when their visa is granted
- Apply within 12 months of intended travel to Australia.
- Have sufficient funds to cover your expected living/trip costs during your stay
- Have funds for a return or onward ticket to depart Australia (or an actual ticket)
- Have health insurance
You will need to apply for Medicare once you are in Australia and in order to do this please ensure that you can provide TWO forms of ID e.g. passport, driving licence, birth certificate.
UK citizens don’t need a visa for New Zealand and can stay in the country for up to six months. If you are planning on working at all during your time in New Zealand, you will need to apply for a Working Holiday Visa (available to 18-30 year olds) and can do this by visiting the New Zealand Immigration website.
From 1st October 2019, visitors who are transitting through or entering New Zealand as tourists will need to hold an Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) before travelling to New Zealand. Tourists will also need to pay an International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy (IVL) alongside the ETA. People entering New Zealand on a Working Holiday Visa do not require an ETA.
Fraser Island Add-On: In order to drive a 4x4 on Fraser Island you must be aged 21 or over and have a full, clean, manual driving license. Otherwise, you can see the island from the passenger seat!