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Posted on Apr 19, 2012 in Living Abroad |

Visa First helps recruiting Irish workers for rebuilding Christchurch NZ

Various employment agencies and contractors have got in touch with Visa First to ask for assistance regarding hiring qualified Irish workers, who are to participate in the rebuilding of the New Zealand city of Christchurch, which was badly affected by several devastating earthquakes during the years 2010 and 2011. The increased demand for new workforce has been caused by the fact that a number of insurance companies have released significant amounts of money in order to settle the post-earthquake claims with individuals and businesses from the local community. Edwina Shanahan, Manager with Visafirst.com, has issued the following statement concerning the issue: “In June or July of this year we expect the funds to be released by the insurance companies, which means the work on the rebuild will ramp up considerably. In 2011 alone approximately 4,000 Irish people travelled to NZ on permanent residency, skilled migrant or working holiday visas. So New Zealand is already a popular destination for Irish people looking for work. However , we envisage this figure growing significantly in 2012 in line with increased demand for tradespeople and construction professionals to assist with the rebuild,” “Irish qualified engineers, quantity surveyors, construction project managers, are fortunate in that they speak English and have easily recognisable qualification, so employers know what they are getting when they look at an Irish skilled CV. We have found however that for some trades, an employer likes to see evidence of work experience and we provide this with applications, for carpenters and builders, and painters”. You can visit Visa First website to find out how to apply for New Zealand Visa. Sources: http://www.businessworld.ie/bworld/livenews.htm?a=2932166 http://www.fxcentre.com/news.asp?2932166 http://insideireland.ie/2012/04/18/irish-being-recruited-for-christchurch-rebuilding-66204/   blog.visafirst.comMore...

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Posted on Apr 18, 2012 in Living Abroad, Migration News |

Flows in the new student visa system in UK bring bogus students

The new points-based student visa system in the UK proved to have flows that could have been predicted and avoided, according to Amyas Morse, head of the National Audit Office (NAO). The new student system allows students from outside the European Economic Area to study in the UK. It appeared, however, that the UK Border Agency that implemented the new system is more lenient towards students with incorrect visa applications and focuses more on illegal immigrants. With the previous visa system for non-EEA students, the number of students who could attend college was unlimited. They could also move college freely, without notifying the Agency. The new points-based system – Tier 4 – requires each student to be sponsored only by educational institutions licensed by the Agency. Students now cannot switch colleges without the Agency’s permission. The new system holds the sponsoring colleges responsible for the students’ intentions to stay in the UK. Tier 4, however, was implemented too soon, before the Agency set a major controlling policy. As a result, NAO calculated that during the first year Tier 4 came into effect, between 40,000 and 50,000 people may have entered the UK to work rather than to study, and the Agency never checked whether these individuals were indeed attending college. At the moment the Agency still does not take full measures to ensure that people with denied requests for visa extension do actually leave the country. According to NAO, the Agency introduced new controls and compliance strategy in December 2011 that are expected to reduce the number of bogus students. However, the Agency still needs to establish ways to deal with overstaying students on the points-based student visa. Source: nao.org.uk blog.visafirst.comMore...

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Posted on Apr 18, 2012 in Living Abroad, Travel |

Do You Need a Visa for Thailand?

Bangkok, Thailand is considered one of the top hubs for backpackers for the Southeast Asian region. Getting there, however, usually requires a special type of visa which depends on your nationality, the amount of time you’d like to stay and the activities you’d like to partake in. Some countries are exempted from visa requirements if visitors from these countries will not stay in Thailand longer than 30 days and their purpose for visit is just tourism. Here’s a list with countries that do not need a visa when entering Thailand for tourism purposes for less than 30 days, according to Learn4good.com: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil*, Bahrain, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Iceland, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Republic of Korea*, Kuwait, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Monaco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Oman, Peru*, Philippines, Portugal, Qatar, Singapore, Spain, South Africa, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States of America, Vietna. *Thailand holds bilateral agreements on visa exemption for holders of diplomatic, official and ordinary passports for a visit of not exceeding 90 days with Brazil, the Republic of Korea and Peru. Therefore, nationals of these 3 countries are exempted from visa requirements and are permitted to enter and stay in Thailand for a period of not exceeding 90 days. Thailand being among the top destinations for backpackers, however, is not accidental. Visiting that country for just a month is simply deficient. One needs longer time to be able to really sink in the atmosphere and experience the lifestyle of the locals. What is awaiting visitors in that country requires a little bit of free spirit in order to fully understand the surroundings as it may come a bit shocking to the ones used to an orderly everyday routine. Here’s what the solo backpacker Chris, who is based in Bangkok, Thailand, had to say about his first visit in Banghok’s most famous street among travelers – Khao San Road: “I still remember the sense of almost complete terror that I felt when I first arrived, on my own, at Bangkok’s Khao San Road. It sounds...

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Posted on Apr 17, 2012 in Living Abroad, Migration News |

New report on temporary visa holders in Australia reveals key trends

A new report Temporary entrants and New Zealand citizens in Australia is now available. The report provides a snapshot of various groups of temporary visa holders and New Zealand citizens who were present in Australia as at the end December 2011. The report highlights some key trends: some 1,045,840 temporary visa holders were present in Australia on 31 December 2011, a 0.6 per cent increase from last year; the largest groups of temporary visa holders present in Australia on 31 December 2011 were visitors (367,970), followed by students (254,680), working holiday makers (subclass 417 and 462) (134,840) and Business (Long Stay) (subclass 457) visa holders (128,600); between December 2010 and December 2011, the number of student visa holders decreased by 12.5 per cent and visitor visa holders by 1.1 per cent, while the number of subclass 457 visa holders and working holiday makers increased by 10.9 per cent and 14.1 per cent, respectively; during the same period, the number of visitors from India and China increased (16.7% and 10.5% respectively) while the number of students from India and China decreased ( 34.7% and 7.6% respectively); the countries with the most number of Working Holiday (subclass 417) visa holders were the United Kingdom (19.4%), South Korea (16.6%) and Ireland (12.2%); the countries with the most number of Business (Long Stay) visa holders were the United Kingdom (26.7%), India (13.7%) and the Philippines (7.3%);  and, some  597,730 New Zealand citizens were present in Australia on 31 December 2011, a 6.9 per cent increase from the previous year. Source: migrationblog.immi.gov.au blog.visafirst.comMore...

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Posted on Apr 10, 2012 in Living Abroad, Travel, Travel Stories |

Why Do You Need a Visa for Thailand

Bangkok, Thailand is considered one of the top hubs for backpackers for the Southeast Asian region. Getting there, however, usually requires a special type of visa which depends on your nationality, the amount of time you’d like to stay and the activities you’d like to partake in. Some countries are exempted from visa requirements if visitors from these countries will not stay in Thailand longer than 30 days and their purpose for visit is just tourism. Here’s a list with countries that do not need a visa when entering Thailand for tourism purposes for less than 30 days, according to Learn4good.com: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil*, Bahrain, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Iceland, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Republic of Korea*, Kuwait, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Monaco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Oman, Peru*, Philippines, Portugal, Qatar, Singapore, Spain, South Africa, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States of America, Vietnam. *Thailand holds bilateral agreements on visa exemption for holders of diplomatic, official and ordinary passports for a visit of not exceeding 90 days with Brazil, the Republic of Korea and Peru. Therefore, nationals of these 3 countries are exempted from visa requirements and are permitted to enter and stay in Thailand for a period of not exceeding 90 days. Thailand being among the top destinations for backpackers, however, is not accidental. Visiting that country for just a month is simply deficient. One needs longer time to be able to really sink in the atmosphere and experience the lifestyle of the locals. What is awaiting visitors in that country requires a little bit of free spirit in order to fully understand the surroundings as it may come a bit shocking to the ones used to an orderly everyday routine. Here’s what the solo backpacker Chris, who is based in Bangkok, Thailand, had to say about his first visit in Bangkok’s most famous street among travelers – Khao San Road: “I still remember the sense of almost complete terror that I felt when I first arrived, on my own, at Bangkok’s Khao San Road. It sounds...

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Posted on Apr 2, 2012 in Living Abroad, Travel, Travel Stories |

Traveling Is Part of My DNA, I Guess

Izabel Garabedyan is a lady whose Holy Bible is the ‘Lonely Planet’ guide, and who is dreaming to visit all countries in the world. She is the kind of person who always sees the positive side in things especially when it’s about traveling. Izabel is probably one of the very few persons I know who is pursuing the “living now” concept. And she is one of the few who succeed in distancing herself from the material world, and appreciating the Earth as a gift to us from Nature. She just returned from a five week journey to South America where she visited four countries in a raw… The love for traveling can really be contagious as long as you are open to it and seemingly Izabel has it. In her case, traveling exists in her life from the moment she was born as her parents were traveling whenever they could. They taught her that “traveling and getting acquainted with new cultures, people and ideas was much more valuable and important for [her] personal growth than buying shiny stuff.” She embraced this philosophy and started applying it in any possible way. While in South America, for example, she said she “didn’t put any make up on and totally forgot about straightening [her] hair!” And although she forgot about vanity, people were calling her “Shakira” and were happy to get acquainted with her. When asked, “How many countries have you visited in your lifetime,” she couldn’t recall because the number does not matter. The places, the people, the cultures, the experiences are all in her head and heart, and this is what life is about – really. I love to travel however I am not even close to Izabel’s soaring heart which is why I asked her the trivial question about her worst and best experiences in South America…She replied that even crossing a flood at 6 a.m., bare feet in Bolivia, at 4C degrees, was a positive experience. “[…] Especially when somebody (indigenous Bolivian woman) you do not know and whose face you cannot recall now gives you socks found...

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Posted on Feb 1, 2012 in Living Abroad, Migration News |

Australia in need of skilled workers from Scotland

February 18th and 19th will be life-changing dates for hundreds of Scots looking to immigrate to Australia. Apparently Australia is in constant need of skilled migrants as new construction projects are in line, and workers shortage in mining is growing. Western Australia alone has about 500,000 openings for skilled workers, for instance. According to recent government statistics, over 17,000 people from Scotland immigrated to Australia. In 2009, however, over 470,000 people from the UK moved to the country, making it the top immigration destination among the people from UK. Britons choose Australia to start a new life mainly because of the low unemployment rate, the great weather, the regular recruitment of skilled migrants from the UK, and the laid back image of the Australian lifestyle. To fill in the job openings in Australia, a special event – Down Under Live – will take place in Edinburgh. It’s meant to objectively advise those who are interested in moving to Australia by shedding light on the process of immigrating to OZ and on anything a person and/or a family needs to know in order to start a brand new life away from home. Guests of the event would also have the opportunity to talk to employers and to specialists in helping people to emigrate. The Down Under Live event is the biggest expo in UK, dedicated to emigration and jobs in Australia and New Zealand. This year the event will take place both on 18th and 19th of February in Edinburgh. blog.visafirst.comMore...

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