Tier 5 Youth Mobility Scheme (YMS)

This scheme, introduced in November 2008, replaced the Working Holidaymaker visa. This visa allows you to work in the UK for full two years and is only open to participating countries.

The countries and territories participating in the scheme, and the number of places allocated to them for 2012, are:

  • Australia - 32,500 places
  • Canada - 5,000 places
  • Japan - 1,000 places
  • Monaco - 1,000 places
  • New Zealand - 10,000 places
  • Republic of Korea - 500 places
  • Taiwan - 1,000 places

How do I qualify?

To qualify you must score 50 points as follows:-

Nationality – 30 Points

You must be a national of a participating country; New Zealand, Australia, Canada, Japan or be a British Overseas Citizen, a British Overseas Territories Citizen or a British National (overseas).

Age – 10 Points

You must be between 18 and under 31 on the date your application is received by the UK Border Agency.

Maintenance – 10 Points

You will need to show you have £1890 (approximately NZ$3700) available to support yourself in the UK. To demonstrate this you will need to provide bank statements that are no more than 28 days old.

Other points to consider

You will need to confirm that you do not have any children under the age of 18 that are living with you or that you are financially responsible for.

You cannot apply if you have previously been issued with a working holiday visa; unless you did not activate this visa by entering the UK.

You cannot play/coach professional sports and there are restrictions on setting up your own business.

You cannot switch from a Youth Mobility visa to another type of visa while in the UK and you must leave the UK when your visa expires.