Work & Travel USA – Applications open now!

A once in a lifetime opportunity for current university students, and recent graduates from Australia and New Zealand who are looking to gain international work experience, explore the US, and immerse themselves in the American culture. The opportunities in the US are endless, the flexibility of the J1 allows you to work and travel in the US for up to 12 months, with additional grace periods on arrival and at the end of your visa up to 30 days (travel only). With 50 states to pick from, you could call Las Vegas, New York, Chicago, or Austin your home for a year and experience the best each state has to offer.

Why go to the USA with BUNAC 

With over 60 years of experience sending people to the US – we know everything there is to know about living and working. We’ve sent over 500,000 on work abroad trips since 1962.

  • We work with the best in-country J1 sponsor to provide you with support before and on arrival in the US
  • Build your global connections and make friends through our social groups
  • Applications are open year-round. You choose when your adventure starts
  • BUNAC’s COVID Booking Promise - Find out more


  • Full-time tertiary level student currently in a nationally accredited institution of higher education (in at least your first year of study when applying for the programme and cannot start until you have completed one year of study)
  • Recent graduate from full-time tertiary study. You are eligible if you arrive in the USA within 12 months of graduation.
  • New Zealand or Australian passport holders only



  • $200.00
  • Work & Travel USA Program fee $1800. (includes SEVIS fee & Insurance for 13 months)

Additional costs 

  • US Consulate application fee of US$160 (held at your nearest Embassy Auckland, Sydney, Melbourne, and Perth)
  • Proof of funds USD$1000

Please view the program T&Cs here before booking.

Work USA 12 Month FAQ

How long can I stay?

12 months + 30 days grace period before you arrive and at the end of your visa to travel the US.

Can I leave the USA during my J-1 visa stay?

Yes, but for no more than 30 days. Your visa sponsor will need to approve and sign off you DS_2019 from before you can leave the US. Please note that you cannot leave and re-enter on the J-1 visa during the 30-day grace period at the start of your visa as well as the 30-day grace period at the end.

Can I extend my J1 visa?

No, it is not possible to extend your visa after 12 months. You do have a 30-day grace period for travel and preparation to exit the US at the end of your visa.

What is the DS-2019 form?

This is the official US Government form that our sponsor issues on your behalf to allow you to apply for your Work and Travel J-1 Visa at your local US Consulate.

What is SEVIS?

Student Exchange Visitor Information System. The US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) operates the tracking system called SEVIS for all J-1 visa holders. Compliance with SEVIS is simple and straight forward. However, failure to comply with any of the regulations of this system could have devastating effects on your current visit and any future travel to the USA. You have four main obligations under SEVIS:

1 - Validation or Activation of your visa

2 - Reporting/changing your residential address

3 - Getting approval for your employment

4 - 60-day feedback form

Do I need to attend an interview at the US Consulate?

Yes. Everyone who applies for a US Visa must attend a personal interview at their designated US Consulate. The Bunac team will provide you with assistance to help you prepare for your US Consulate interview.

Do I need to take the Insurance?

Yes, insurance is compulsory. The US State departments required all J1 visa holders to be covered for the full length of their visa. This policy is specifically designed for J1 visa holders to ensure you meet the visa requirements. Click here (doc attached) to read more about the insurance policy.

Don’t forget medical costs in America can be very expensive!

Can you arrange a job before you arrive?

Yes you can, or you can land one when you arrive in the USA.

What sort of work can I do on my visa?

Being on the J-1 visa means you do have the flexibility in the type of work you do. Whatever type of job you’re looking for, its always best to be flexible and open to all types of work. Here are some examples of main types of jobs Work USA pax have worked in the past:

  • Hospitality and Tourism
  • Construction
  • Shipping and freight logistics
  • Retail
  • Fashion blogs and magazines
  • Marketing

There are some jobs you cannot do whilst on the J1 visa, these are all listed below. If you have any queries or don’t know what category the job you are applying for falls into then please contact us

  • Au pair or nanny
  • Camp counsellor or football coach
  • Medical Professional
  • Maid or domestic helper
  • Pyramid selling
  • Casino dealer, cashier, croupier
  • Driving with passengers
  • Inappropriate jobs
  • Starting your own business or being self-employed (includes freelancing)