Israel has working holiday schemes with Australia, Austria, Germany, South Korea, and New Zealand. New Zealand being the oldest (launched in 20111), and the majority came into effect in 2016, and some are still to be implemented.
Number of visas available
Country / Number of visas available / Date agreed and/or implemented
Australia / 500 / Signed 2014, Implemented 2016
Austria / 0 (Israel yet to implement2) / Signed 2016
Germany / Unlimited(?) / Signed 2014, Implemented 2016
South Korea / 200 / Implemented 2016
New Zealand / 200 / Implemented 2011
As of 2016, both the New Zealand and Australian3 visa quotas are fully utilised. However, the Israeli working holiday scheme had a low use rate. Which is a shame as Israel have put some effort into making a nice website and video about the working holiday programme in Israel.
Pros and Cons
Benefits of using the Israeli working holiday visa:
- Being able to stay longer than 90 days
- There is no actual working holiday class visa, so you are issued a 3 month B1 work visa, which can be extended to one year on arrival.
Cons of the Israeli working holiday visa:
- It is not well known internally, and the government systems surrounding it reflect that (I guess you can swing this to your gain too if are on to it).
- Except for South Korea, the minimum wage is lower in Israel than the other countries
Other notable elements:
- There is a plethora of religious activity as Jerusalem is a converging point for Abrahamic religions – Judaisim, Christianity, and Islam.
- The startup/tech industry in Israel is touted as second only to Silicon Valley. This can be attractive for people looking to get into the startup work, or interested in contracting in the tech industry.
Working holiday visa information by Israeli Embassy in Canberra, Australia
Working holiday visa information by Israeli Embassy in Wellington, New Zealand
Working holiday visa information by Israeli Embassy in Seoul, South Korea
Working holiday visa information by Israeli Embassy in Berlin, Germany