Government removes 40-hour-a-fortnight cap on student visa-holder workers

Government removes 40-hour-a-fortnight cap on student visa-holder workers

Updated: 19/01/2022

International Student – Working Hours Flexibility

The Morrison Government has supported Australian businesses during the pandemic by allowing Student visa holders to work additional hours in critical sectors.

Due to current workforce shortages, the Government is temporarily extending this arrangement by removing the limit on Student visa holders’ working hours across all sectors of the economy.

This measure takes effect immediately for all ongoing students as well as new student arrivals who start a job prior to their course commencement, and will be reviewed in April 2022.


Prime Minister Scott Morrison has announced that the federal government will remove the 40-hour-a-fortnight cap on student visa-holder workers. This means they will no longer have restrictions on the number of hours they can work.

Foreign students will be allowed to pick up more hours to help alleviate worker shortages.

It is great news for many IT students who have been striving to get a job in their field. As many recruiters only hire workers who are allowed to work full-time, it has been a conflict for many qualified and highly skilled international students.

As one of our students said, “I receive over 10 job offers every week, however, recruiters don’t give a chance to part-time or casual workers – it’s the nature of the IT industry to hire full-time jobs. I always just needed the chance, and now it’s an opportunity for me to reach out and get the full-time position I’ve been wanting for months.” Alyne, Diploma of IT – Business Analyses student.

It is with the great news that the work restriction has been lifted by the Prime Minister, it shows the importance of the international workforce for the Australian economy.

Key points:

  • The federal government has removed the 40-hour-a-fortnight working restriction on visa holders
  • International students have welcomed the government’s announcement
  • The fuel retailer’s association says the decision will ease pressure on its industry 

Mr Morrison encouraged international students to return to Australia, and backpackers are also allowed into the country under working holidays visas, on the condition they are fully vaccinated.