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Moving to & Living in Sydney: A Working Holiday Guide

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By Sarah Hemsley

Last updated: 31st May 2024

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If moving to and living in Sydney is high on your bucket list, you’ve found the perfect Working Holiday guide to start planning your big adventure. Here are all our top tips, and tricks to know before you take the leap and move to Sydney & New South Wales.

How can I move to Sydney?

Moving to Sydney is straightforward. Follow these 3 easy steps to get you going:

1. First, the exciting part - plan your travels!

No one goes to Australia simply for work… it’s all about travel and making those lifelong memories! Most backpackers spend 6 weeks (or more) ticking iconic sights off their Aussie bucket lists before finding work. Make the most of your big move and explore Sydney & New South Wales. Spot the Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge, visit incredible art galleries and museums, plus, experience buzzing nightlife. You can even adventure into the breathtaking Blue Mountains. There are endless things to do. For details on the perfect package to start your dream Working Holiday in Australia, keep reading...

2. Next, apply for a Working Holiday Visa.

Your Australia Working Holiday Visa is different to a visitor visa. It allows you to work anywhere in Australia for up to 12 months. From 1st July 2024, as a UK Citizen you can easily apply for 3 Working Holidays Visas without having to meet any specific work requirements! You just need to be aged 18-35, with a valid passport, proof of birth certificate and money to pay for the cost of your yearly visa. You should also have enough funds in your bank account to support yourself on your move to Sydney (£3000 is recommended). Gap 360 are accredited Aussie specialists, so you can apply for your Australian Working Holiday visa with us or add it to your Working Holiday package booking. Speak with a travel advisor to learn more.

3. Finally - book your one-way ticket to Sydney!

This is the moment when it starts to feel real. You’ll be pinching yourself screaming “I’m moving to Sydney!”. If you are flying from the UK, you can find great deals on flights to Sydney International Airport! Many airlines stopover in Qatar, Singapore or Malaysia. Our expert flight team, Flights 360, work directly with airlines to get you the best possible flight for your itinerary. For a flight quote, contact Flights 360.

Working in Sydney

Travellers on boat holding Australian flag

The best way to fund your trip Down Under is by working. A perfect way to get your Working Holiday off to a great start is our Absolute Oz Jobs Working Holiday package. Start your adventure with a ready-made group of friends and enjoy a fun-filled week in Sydney before starting your job hunt. With 12 months‘ access to our jobs database and the support of our legendary local employment team, you’re sure to find your dream Oz job quickly!

The most common types of employment are in hospitality, au-pair/nanny roles, customer service, construction and harvest/farm work where salaries range from £15 - £25 per hour. Along the way, you’ll pick up some brilliant work experience, CV-friendly skills, and advice about Aussie bank accounts and accommodation. Plus, get an Aussie SIM card to stay connected throughout your adventure. 

Climate & Weather

Travellers on beach in Australia

When you think of Sydney & New South Wales, you probably picture bright blue skies! Australia is known for its warm sunny weather so expect lots of sunshine but, like everywhere, they still have a winter. Make sure you pack prepared with some warmer layers and a raincoat. To give you an idea of temperatures, their summer falls from December to February with temperatures averaging 30°C, and winter falls between June to August with temperatures averaging 15°C, so it’s still far from cold. 

Is Sydney Safe?

Boats at Sydney Harbour

The state of New South Wales and the city of Sydney are generally regarded as quite safe, but you should always take common sense precautions as if you were travelling in other major cities such as London or New York. Not to sound like a parent but ‘there’s safety in numbers’ so try to stick with a group of friends when out and about, especially late at night. Plus, it’s more fun with others!

If you’re worried about travelling solo, book one of our Sydney & New South Wales group tours. You’ll be led by a knowledgeable tour guide, and meet a group of like-minded backpackers in the same boat as you.

Cost of living in Sydney

With moving to Sydney comes paying for your own rent, utilities, food and bills. Although Sydney isn’t the cheapest city to live in, there are ways to make your trip Down Under more affordable. Think about house-sharing with a group of mates. Splitting your bills between a group of you will help save you some dollars. On a Working Holiday with us, our Aussie team can help advise you where to look for the best accommodation. You’re bound to make lifelong friends with your housemates, who you may not have bonded with any other way! There are also work opportunities where accommodation may be free or subsidised, such as becoming an Au Pair - a great choice if you have experience in childcare.

Transportation in Sydney

Travellers walking along light rail platform

Once you’re settled in Sydney, we know you’ll want to explore! Who can blame you? Thankfully, getting around Sydney is very easy. There are loads of efficient public transport links to get you in, out and around the buzzing streets. With its tap-to-pay system, you can easily hop on a bus, train, metro, light rail or ferry to get from A to B. You can also use Apple Pay and Google Pay which is super convenient for making payments on your travels. If you prefer, you can also get an Opal card which is a contactless travel card you can top-up with money. Just remember to tap on and tap off for every trip. This can be used on transport services in Sydney and further afield including the Blue Mountains, Central Coast, the Hunter Valley, Illawarra and the Southern Highlands.

If public transport isn’t your style, or you’re on a budget, you can easily get about by foot. The city is extremely walkable, and it’s the best way to see Sydney’s iconic sights first-hand! 

Bars, Restaurants & Entertainment

Bar tender pouring cocktail

There are tons of things to do in Sydney & New South Wales! Besides the adventurous activities, Sydney has so much more to discover. Picture yourself wandering around impressive art galleries and museums. There’s even Luna Amusement Park for a fun-filled afternoon of fairground rides. Plus, of course, your trip wouldn’t be complete without visiting the iconic Sydney Opera House. Take a seat inside and enjoy all kinds of art, dance, and music performances. With 40+ shows a week, there’s something for all. 

The fun doesn’t stop there! Another benefit of moving to and living in Sydney is experiencing its thriving nightlife. With a wide range of bars and clubs, right on your doorstep, a night out will always be on the cards. Enjoy a drink with new mates and make lifelong memories together.

Not only that but there are tons of events that take place throughout the year! We recommend a night in the city during late May to mid-June when Vivid Sydney takes over the city by celebrating all things light, music, ideas and food. You won’t want to miss it; the sights and sounds and delicious food are spectacular. Foodies, you’ll love it!


Now you’re all clued up on what to expect when moving to Sydney, take a look at our Sydney & New South Wales group tours and Working Holidays to get you started. 

Got a question? Speak with one of our expert travel advisors who are on hand to help you plan your dream trip to Sydney! 

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