Down Under dream | 

New scheme offers €10 return flights to Australia to attract Irish workers

The scheme recalls Australia’s famous ‘Ten Pound’ programme, which ended 40 years ago

Glenelg Beach in Adelaide, Australia. Photo: Stock

Pól Ó Conghaile

Fancy escaping to Australia for the working holiday of a lifetime?

A new scheme aims to make that Down Under dream a reality, and plug gaps in the Australian workforce, by offering a limited number of return flights from Ireland to Adelaide at just €10/£10.

From today, April 26, Irish citizens aged 18-35 can register online for the €10 return tickets, which go on sale in May.

And the catch?

Only 200 return flights are being made available at the special €10 price.

Applicants must also be Irish or British citizens, have a Working Holiday Visa and be available to travel before September 30 this year.

Flights are with Qatar Airways, via Trailfinders, and applicants will also need to buy a “starter pack” including some accommodation on arrival and access to a tax file number and bank account.

Three-night starter packs are priced from £171/€218 with Trailfinders.

The scheme is reminiscent of Australia’s Assisted Passage Migration Scheme, or ‘Ten Pound’ programme, which ended 40 years ago.

Run by the South Australian Tourism Commission (SATC), it aims to attract working holidaymakers back to Australia after the Covid-19 pandemic to help address employment gaps and skills shortages in the country.

Visas “are being processed quickly,” the SATC said, adding that those missing out on a €10 ticket could avail of a “special follow-up fare” to Adelaide due to be released in mid-May.

"It’s a real win-win for young people eager to travel and work abroad, and for our local tourism industry,” said Zoe Bettison, the South Australian tourism minister.

"Our tourism operators have missed having international visitors on their tours and experiences, and booking up accommodation, and they’ve also missed the Irish backpacker workforce and the vibrancy they bring.

"These backpackers foster a love for our state and our country which often inspires them to return later in life.”

International travellers to Australia are required to provide proof of double vaccination against Covid-19, but a negative pre-departure test result is no longer necessary.

For more info on the scheme, visit

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