The Australian economy is slowing however many regions within Australia are still buoyant due the global demand for natural resources. There is a skills shortage in many areas of Australia – especially for tradesmen – as workers eschew traditional career paths and either get a job straight out of high school or work at remote mines for huge wages.
This vacuum has also left a great demand for lower-paid, unskilled workers and backpackers should be able to find work with little trouble. Fruit and vegetable picking and bar work are common.
The minimum wage is currently $AU14.31 per hour. [about 12$] Tipping is not compulsory or even customary, although tips should be given in cases of exceptional service. Cash-in-hand jobs are common for lower paid jobs so you might be able to pick up work even if you don’t have the appropriate visa.
For professionals, salaries are much lower than what you might expect to receive in London or New York. This is balanced by the fact that the cost of living is also much lower. You would need to contact the appropriate professional organization in Australia to check if your education and/or experience qualify you to work in Australia.
The Aussie dollar has been weakening against the US dollar recently however it is still in a relatively strong position, which means that it is a lot more expensive to travel to and within Australia. Despite this, most Australians admire a self-reliant, independent nature and someone ‘having a go’ so you may find that in Australia, persistence and hard work does pay off.