Are you looking for fruit picking jobs in Australia as a way to fund your travels down under?
Whether you’ve just left school, planning a gap year or looking for a working holiday opportunity, kick off your adventure down under with a fruit picking job in Australia.
From the best fruit picking spots in Australia to visa applications, we know it can be a little overwhelming. We’ve prepared an extensive guide to make your decision process a little easier.
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Best Fruit Picking Job Spots in Australia
Fruit picking jobs in Australia vary by region, but it is relatively easy to find work at any time of the year.
From Queensland, one of the major fruit-growing regions in the country to the island of orchards that is Tasmania, here is a summary of the best fruit picking spots in Australia based on each Aussie territory:
1.Fruit Picking Jobs in Victoria (VIC)
If you’re looking for fruit picking jobs in Victoria, December through February would be the best time for you to find a placement.
For those interested in getting fruit picking jobs near Melbourne and travel the city on their days off, several fruit farms are located within an hour’s drive from the city.
Depending on the weather conditions, you may also find work in the cooler highland river valleys like the area situated near the Murray River and Shepparton.
Best Season: November to February
Fruit Harvested: Citrus, grapes, raspberries, cherries, strawberries
Located only 1 hour from the central business district, Blue Hills is perfect for those looking to do some fruit picking near Melbourne whilst travelling the city during the weekends.
Nestled within the heart of the Yarra Valley winery region, this new orchard is open for fruit picking in Victoria in the summertime.
2.Fruit Picking Jobs in New South Wales (NSW)
Located on the east coast of Australia, New South Wales is one of the country’s major fruit and vegetable growing regions. The peak season for fruit picking in New South Wales (NSW) is between November to April.
This region also boasts a great array of pristine beaches, so looking for a fruit picking job near the coastline would allow you to enjoy the sea on your off days.
Best Season: November to April
Fruit Harvested: Persimmons, apples, blueberries, cherries, oranges
Perfect for those planning to work fruit picking jobs near Sydney, this 5th-gen Australian family farm grows apples, persimmons, nectarine and peaches – and also makes their own apple cider!
A family business, this blueberry orchard is strategically located along the sunny coastline of New South Wales, north of Coffs Harbour.
3.Fruit Picking Jobs in Queensland (QLD)
You’re up north now! Queensland is the perfect encapsulation of the east coast surfers paradise with popular attractions like the Great Barrier Reef, Fraser Island and Brisbane.
With vast fields of strawberries, bananas and pears, it’s a great idea to do some fruit-picking in Brisbane, earn some cash and explore the sunshine state on the weekends.
Best Season: June to November
Fruit Harvested: Strawberries, bananas, pears, melons
Just outside Bundaberg, SSS Strawberries is one of the country’s largest strawberry farms. With a cohesive training programme for staff and expert farmers to learn from, you’ll be fruit picking in Queensland in no time.
This summery strawberry farm set in one of Queensland’s coldest regions offers fruit picking jobs near Brisbane. The crops are grown between September and June.
Check the complete article about Fruit Picking Jobs in Queensland
4.Fruit Picking Jobs in Western Australia (WA)
This territory boasts a varied climate due to its large size and location, hence offering different fruit picking jobs in Western Australia (WA). You can find grapes, apples, pears, rockmelons, mangoes and famously, fish as well.
It’s a great place to do some fruit picking in Perth and at the same time enjoy its beautiful beaches and gardens. Having said that, this territory offers more than just Perth, try exploring its baffling rock formations and sweeping vineyards.
Best Season: All year round, depending on the fruit
Fruit Harvested: Grapes, apples, pears, rockmelons
If you’re looking for fruit picking jobs in Perth, Berry Sweet is only 30 minutes away and it is one of the best quality and most sustainable soft fruit growers in Australia.
If you’re up for travelling to the far north of Western Territory, this melon farm does the trick. Caravan accommodation is provided, so you don’t have to worry about lodging while you learn about sustainable melon harvesting.
5.Fruit Picking Jobs in South Australia
Why fruit picking in Adelaide?
This region boasts Australia’s oldest wine-making region, Barossa Valley.
So, you can just imagine the number of grape picking jobs here, especially from February to April. You can also find work picking citrus fruits in the winter months.
Imagine getting a fruit picking job in Adelaide where apples and pears are in abundance and then exploring Riverland for their citrus fruits and grapes? It’s a dream working holiday!
Best Season: April to September
Fruit Harvested: Grapes, strawberries, citrus
Only 28km from Adelaide, Beerenberg has made a name for itself for its premium jams and gluten-free products. You can pick strawberries during the weekdays and explore Adelaide on your day-offs.
6.Fruit Picking Jobs in Tasmania
Don’t miss out on Australia’s most beautiful landscapes in Tasmania. This island of orchards is the epitome of the western wilderness. In addition to its main crops like apples and grapes, make sure you try their fresh seafood as well.
Best Season: October to May
Fruit Harvested: Apples, grapes
Join a premium Tasmanian cherry orchard that’s been in the business since 1856. They employ a large number of casual pickers and packers during cherry season.
With an innovative and expanding business, Tasmanian Berries provides fruit picking jobs in two of their farm sites in Christmas Hills and Exton.
7.Fruit Picking Jobs in Northern Territory
Darwin and Katherine are the hottest spots in the Northern Territory for fruit-picking jobs during fruit season, heralding the sweetness of summer.
The coastal climate of the Darwin region promotes early mango flowering and melon ripening, hence the best season for harvest would be from May to November every year.
Best Season: May to November
Fruit Harvested: Mangoes, bananas, melons
With multiple farms across the country, PInata Farms in Darwin has a vast production of honey gold mangoes. Being near to the city of Darwin, accessibility to the city is very much sought-after by potential seasonal workers.
Before diving into your preferred locations and applying for the jobs right away, it’s good to understand what the job entails and the necessary visa you would need.
Visa Requirements For Fruit Picking Jobs In Australia
Apply for the First Working Holiday Visa (subclass 417) which allows people to do short term work in Australia to help pay for their travels. You must:
- Have a valid passport
- Be 18 – 30 years old (except for Canadian, French and Irish citizens who can be 18 to 35
- Have around AUD5,000 (USD3,694) for your initial stay and the fare to where you are going after leaving Australia.
- Apply online from outside Australia
- Not be accompanied by dependents
- Have not previously entered Australia on a subclass 417 or 462 visa
The duration of stay for the Working Holiday visa is a maximum of 12 months.
In terms of fees, you can apply for a Tier 5 Temporary Worker Visa for AUD495 (USD366).
Processing times vary between 3 to 7 months.
What is Fruit Picking?
Fruit picking as a job may sound like a piece of cake, but it is the most important step in the fruit production process.
Fruits are delicate, hence fruit pickers would need a gentle touch while harvesting with an effective technique.
Fruit picking doesn’t require formal education, however, it is a very labour intensive job especially when you’re in Australia due to its unpredictable and extreme weather patterns.
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Why Try Fruit Picking Jobs In Australia?
There’s nothing like Australia!
Australia is deemed the land of the sun, nature and endless stretches of beaches, and there is just so much to explore down under. From diverse landscapes to friendly locals, it’s clear why Australia is one of the top places to visit.
Why fruit picking?
Well, Australia boasts one of the world’s freshest fruit produce, thanks to its climate and fertile land. Fruits like apples, melons, bananas and a variety of berries get harvested in huge amounts every year.
What better way to earn some money there whilst travelling the country?
Fruit Picking Seasons in Australia
The best time to find fruit picking jobs depends on the region you are in.
Generally in the southern part of the country, the harvest season is usually between November to February.
And if you find work up north, then harvest season is generally all year round depending on the fruit.
Seasonal fruit picking jobs in Australia usually are posted a few months before harvest season, so it would be best to check the National Harvest Labour Guide published every year for more accurate and up-to-date information.
What Are The Working Hours Like?
On average, the working hours for a fruit picker ranges from 5 – 6 hours per day, and a minimum average of 30 hours per week. With that said, do keep in mind that you may need to work more than 30 hours a week and sometimes less.
How Much Are Fruit Pickers Getting Paid?
Seasonal workers can be paid in two different ways:
- Hourly: Being paid hourly means you will be paid an agreed amount by the hour.
- Piece Rate: The more you pick, the more you earn. You will be paid for the amount of fruit picked.
Having said that, You will be paid within the National Minimum Wage for harvest work in Australia which is at AUD20.33 (USD15) per hour as of the date of the article.
You may check on the updated minimum wage on the Australian Government Fair Work website.
Is There A Minimum Age Limit To Pick Fruit?
The minimum age to apply for a working holiday visa in Australia is 18.
You have to be between 18-30 years old, have a valid passport from your country and must not be accompanied by a dependent.
Cost of Living in Australia
Is living in Australia expensive?
Well, Australia has one of the highest costs of living in the world with its most expensive city being Sydney followed by Melbourne. However, don’t let this discourage you as you can always take the budget route and plan out your expenses.
In Australia, a single person’s living costs (excluding rent) can range from as low as AUD1100 (USD813) to AUD1500 (USD1108) per month on average.
Although proper accommodation in city centres like Sydney or Adelaide isn’t cheap, you can find clean budget hostels and guesthouses for as low as AUD15 (USD11) to AUD20 (USD15) per night in smaller cities and AUD80 (USD59) to AUD110 (USD81) per night in comfier private rooms.
It would be best to do your research before heading over to plan out what suits your budget best.
Typically, places in suburbs or smaller cities are slightly cheaper and you can take public transport to get to the city for the day.
The transportation network in Australia is fairly accessible especially within and between cities. Getting around in Australia by bus is the cheapest and most convenient mode of transportation around the country.
Inner-city buses and trams make travelling within the city really fuss-free.
Exploring a new place by car always offers unique scenic landscapes and great road trip experiences. Rent a car or a campervan and go on one of the most spectacular road trips in the world through the Great Ocean Road in Victoria.
Another affordable and scenic way to travel from point A to another is by rail.
The magnificent rail journeys like the Indian Pacific and The Ghan are routes that you should consider taking as it’s a spectacle to see!
If you’re exploring within a town or a city, we recommend either walking or cycling. This will not only save you a lot of money, but you’ll also be able to see the city from a different perspective.
How To Apply For Fruit Picking Jobs?
Now that you know what is required for fruit picking jobs in Australia for foreigners.
First and foremost, look for a reliable job board or an official website of your preferred farm or orchard.
Find Reliable Job Recruiters
It would be best to apply for a fruit picking job through an employer with a proper website and clear expectations in terms of job scope, accommodation details and salary.
However, do also have a little job search on Google and job boards that will help you find a reliable agriculture recruiter and avoid being scammed when you’re there.
Some job boards to check out:
Farming season is usually November to February every year, so make sure you are able to secure your visa and have the necessary documents for your employment.
The visa processing duration varies between 3 to 7 months, so be sure to buffer in extra time when you’re doing your application preparations.
In a nutshell, fruit picking is a great way for you to earn some cash to help fund your travels around Australia. And you never know, while working and travelling, you might just make some new like-minded friends as well!