Work Information

As well as a great place to chill out from your travels, Childers Eco-lodge is also a working hostel. We match backpackers looking for casual work with local employers and farms. There may be harvest work or other farm work. There is no cost to backpackers for this service.

To enquire about working here, please fill out the Work Enquiry Form and return via email to  If we do not have any jobs available we put you on the waiting list for 2 weeks.  If you are still looking 2 weeks after you send in your Work Enquiry Form, just send us another email every couple of weeks to stay on the waiting list.  Of course if you are waiting at the hostel you are first in line for jobs over those on the email waiting list.

We service farms around Childers and north to Gin Gin so there is a wide range of harvest work in vegetable and fruit picking year round.  Our main work is Mango picking in January, Avocado picking March - July, and zucchini picking year round.  We also have other seasonal work at times during the year. 

Most of our farms pay an hourly rate so you earn good money and jobs are highly sought after.  Payslips are provided and work qualifies for the second year Working Holiday Visa.  We expect you to work hard and respect the hostel and our rules.   Fruit picking is strenuous work involving working long hours and doing repetitious tasks that can be physically demanding.  As a consequence, sufficient physical fitness is an inherent requirement of working as a fruit picker.

If you are working you pay the weekly accommodation rate in advance.  Dorms are $190 per week; Doubles $205 each per week in an Eco-tent.  You must give 2 nights notice if you are leaving to get a refund on the balance of your week.  A bond of 2 nights or credit card number is required when you arrive.  You need to give 2 nights notice of leaving, otherwise your bond will be kept/processed.  If you give 2 nights notice the balance of any weekly payment will be refunded.  A $20 deposit for plates/cutlery is required in cash and refunded when you return everything issued to you (unless you have your own plates etc).  If you are working you pay the weekly rate - you cannot 'check out' for any nights then come back to work.

We encourage you to use your own transport to get to work and car pool with others. That way there is no extra cost if you have a car, or you pay a set daily rate if you are getting a ride with someone or in our vehicles.  You pay transport at the end of each week.

  Requirements for Working

If you want to work on a farm, you will usually need the following:
  • To be fit and healthy
  • To be able to get up early
  • To not drink the night before you are working and go to bed early
  • To have a good attitude and want to work hard
  • To be able to work in hot conditions
  • To commit to stay for a minimum period (for the length of the work)
  • To have a valid working holiday visa for the length of the work
  • To have a Tax File Number, Bank account

Work clothing and equipment:

  • Tshirt or sometimes a long sleeve collared shirts 
  • Shorts or sometimes long pants
  • Closed shoes/boots (flip flops or sandals are not suitable)
  • A wide brim hat (or at least a cap)
  • Gloves (for some jobs, may be supplied by farmer)
  • Sunscreen
  • Water bottles – up to 3 litres in summer
  • To take your own healthy lunch and snacks in your own cooler bag
It is often hot, working long hours for farmers who expect you to work hard.  You have 1 chance to prove you can be ready in time to leave in the mornings, and 1 chance to prove you can work well if you are late, hungover or do not work hard you will not have work the next day.  Work is often at short notice - if you don't have the clothes for work, you will miss out so be prepared.
Farm work can be very short notice - a farmer rings up and may want people the next day, so no work is guaranteed unless we have a specific position to fill.  The people who have been waiting here the longest get first chance at the jobs when they come in, if they fit the requirements of the farmer.  People with a car move up the line as everyone has to share a ride to work.
You need to be aware that it can take much longer to complete your 88 days for your second year working holiday visa than 3 months - this because you do not usually work 7 days a week, and you don't often get one job which lasts for 3 months with the same employer.  You may have to work several different jobs and have times with no work in between - so leave yourself enough time to get your regional work done, and have enough money if there is no work around.
Weather affects everything to do with farming.  You cannot work in the rain for most crops. Heat or wet affects how crops grow so hours in the day or length of season aren't an exact science.  We work with the farmers to keep everyone informed of expected work as best as possible.
Harvest work may be available year round.  Farms we service include mangoes, avocadoes, pineapples, zucchini, watermelons, rockmelons, pumpkins and more.  Check out the seasons for each crop as an indication. 

Apply Now

Email the Work Enquiry Form to