Temporary relaxation of working hours for student visa holders in the tourism and hospitality sector

The Federal Government has announced additional visa measures to assist the tourism and hospitality sector, which is experiencing work shortages during the COVID-19 pandemic.  The 40 hours per fortnight, work limitation for student visa holders has been relaxed for those who undertake work in the tourism and hospitality sector.  The Minister’s announcement can be found on the Department’s website More support for the Australian tourism and hospitality sector

This announcement complements the temporary relaxation of work rights for international students working in the aged care and disability sector, agricultural sector and nurses and medical students.

The additional flexibility in work hours in one of the above sectors does not change the requirement that student visa holders must continue to balance their study and work commitments.

Students who work more than 40 hours per fortnight in certain sectors, must continue to:

  • maintain their course enrolment
  • ensure satisfactory course attendance, and;
  • ensure satisfactory course progress.

Student visa holders who cancel their enrolment and stop attending classes, or fail to meet satisfactory course progress, may be in breach of their visa conditions. 

If students are working or have an offer of employment in one of the sectors above, and have finished their course, they may be eligible for a COVID-19 Pandemic (subclass 408) visa. They can only apply for this visa 90 days before their student visa is due to expire.

Students do not need to contact the Department if they wish to work more than 40 hours per fortnight in one of the sectors listed above.

Further information on these changes is available on the Department’s website.

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