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Super Refunds for Backpackers – Complete guide for Backpackers

Backpackers Guide to Claim Their Superannuation Fund
as they leave the Country



If you arrived in Australia as a temporary resident, you might have the opportunity to work here. And if you find a job, you may be entitled to Superannuation from your employer. While you work, your super will continue to grow.

You can claim your super as a Departing Super Payment of DESP for short. While you’re in Australia, it’s easier to certify documents and contact your Super Fund. But if you haven’t done that, things could get messy.

You may have worked on multiple jobs and have super money lying there without your knowledge. It may also be hard for you to track down your super money or get the necessary requirements needed to claim back your super fund.

The good news is that there are steps you can take to claim back your super in spite of the odds. Depending on your needs, you can either do this yourself or work with services like the Australian Super Finder to help locate your super money and reclaim them for.

In this comprehensive guide, we will provide everything you need to know – from the requirements you need to meet to the different steps you need do to claim back your super money. We will also talk about how you can take advantage of our services to make the whole process much easier for you follow.

But first things first…

What is Superannuation?

Super is the required pension system in Australia. Even if you are staying in Australia on a Visa for a working holiday, if you make above AU$450 every month, the employer would be, required by the law to donate a value that is equal to 9.5% of your salary into a super fund as per your nomination.



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So your super can be thought of as a pension amount that whoever hired you the pays for you. It is an extra amount and will not be deducted from your salary. Whoever hired you must pay 9.5% of your yearly wages towards your super fund.

At times employers could give you a “package” in which they are going to include super in your yearly salary. If you have not nominated a fund, your employer is going to send it to a fund nominated by the tax office or their company.

As a short-term resident of Australia, you have the right to reclaim the donations that were made for you.

Is my Employer Paying Super?

At times, employers give out a membership card. If they do not, you can just inquire from your employer about super fund information. In a situation where you have had more than just a single employer, make sure that you are keeping track of your information for every superannuation account and you need to always inquire about your superannuation information before leaving a job; this is going to make it much simpler when talking about reclaiming your superannuation.

Note (Entitlement to Super): As soon as you generate above $450 every month, your employer will be responsible for paying super.

How Backpackers Can Set Up a Super Account

Employers normally prepare their superannuation funds for their workers, however, if you desire to travel and work a lot all over Australia, it might be a more interesting idea to prepare your superannuation account and request your employer to forward your superannuation into the account.

If you are starting your first bank account (or even if it is no longer your first bank account) in Australia, it is also possible to request your bank to prepare a superannuation account for you.

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What can I do with my superannuation if I am a temporary resident departing Australia?

If you are a temporary resident, and when you depart Australia, then you could claim a DASP or departing Australia superannuation payment, meaning you can take your superannuation with you.

In general, to qualify for a DASP, the following criteria must be met:


  • you’re not an Australian, permanent Australian resident, or New Zealand citizen
  • you entered Australia on a temporary visa (under the Migration Act 1958, without subclasses 405 and 410)
  • you have since left Australia
  • your visa isn’t valid in Australia anymore.

What can I do with my superannuation if I am bound for New Zealand?

If you are officially moving to New Zealand, then different rules apply. Under the Trans-Tasman Retirement Savings Portability scheme, after you have migrated, you can decide to leave your superannuation in Australia, or you could transfer it a KiwiSaver account.

You will have to check:

  • that your existing and future fund are arrangement participants
  • that your current and future fund complies with the APRA (Australian Prudential Regulation Authority) and the New Zealand KiwiSaver scheme
  • that your current fund is not an SMSF
  • that you know the retirement savings rules of New Zealand, as once your savings have been moved, these rules will usually apply.

What can I do with my superannuation if I have already moved overseas?

It is worth verifying what the retirement savings or super situation are in the country or nation you have moved to. Research on whether – as well as on what grounds – you can withdraw or recover any super contributions you make while you are settling down overseas.

Also, if you are close to the preservation age, try to determine if there are implications for taking your super once you become qualified.

Update your information before Leaving

Make certain that your super fund has all the relevant details so they can easily contact you. Moreover, this can avoid any unclaimed or lost superannuation balance that might’ve been moved to the http ato gov au.

A Super Refund for Backpackers

Had you been employed in Australia at a certain point of your stay, the employer would have given an amount that is 9.5% of your total income as a required contribution to your super fund. Travellers and backpackers should be able to get around 33-35% for holders of working holiday or 60-62% for other holders of visa, after subtracting the tax from Australia as well as the super fund’s charge.

Residents of New Zealand, Australia and as well as long-term holders of visa could not reclaim Australiasuper (includes dual citizenship). As soon as you depart Australia, you’re qualified to reclaim your super refund.

When can I claim my super back?

If you are a temporary resident working in Australia, then your employer needs to pay superannuation guarantee (SG) on your behalf.

People cannot often access their superannuation until retirement. But as a temporary resident, you can claim your superannuation when:

  • You have left Australia
  • Your visa has expired or been canceled

This payment is called a DASP (Australia superannuation payment).

If you depart Australia while your visa is active, then you can either choose to wait until the expiration of your visa, or you can cancel it. You can certainly request the Department of Immigration and Border Protection for the cancelation of your visa so that you can get a DASP. This is free. You will have to complete the “Form 1194” and lodge it straight with DIBP.

How to claim my superannuation?

If you’ve opened your super fund via your bank, then you should contact your fund at once. They will notify you regarding the pertinent documents for them to provide you with your funds. Mostly, you will have to give them a copy of your visa (expired) along with an authenticated copy of your passport. Do this immediately. If your super account does not have any activity, then your fund will be moved to the ATO. Thus, you will have to claim your superannuation via the ATO website.

Claiming your superannuation is free, but you can’t get it back fully. On July 1, 2017, a tax of 65% will be deducted when backpackers claim their super rather than 38%. Moreover, a management fee is usually deducted.


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The process

In claiming your superannuation, you will have to go to the ATO website.

You’ll need to fill out a form online.

When filling out the form, you will have to provide the following:


  • your name, birth date, and other personal information
  • your passport number
  • email address
  • Australian TFN (tax file number)
  • your superannuation account details – including the Australian business number (ABN) of your super fund and your member number. You can find this information online when accessing your account

Mostly, you will have to attach an authenticated copy of your visa, or whatever proof establishing that your visa has expired, along with your passport’s certified copy.

Moreover, decide how to receive your super payment. It can either be by cheque or by an international money transfer to a financial institution abroad. Note that, if you need a money transfer to a bank abroad, then you’ll be charged with extra fees, which are transfer fees.

Once finished, just lodge the form online.

Processing times

Processing a DASP claim is often completed after 28 days from the day you submitted your complete application.

Hiring a tax agent

If you don’t like doing it, then don’t be anxious. You can take the services of a tax agent who will run through this process on your behalf. Taxback has present for more than 15 years on the market, and their team of professionals will provide you with quality service and exploit your chances of getting money from superannuation.

Also, they help you get your tax back before the end of the financial year. For instance, if you’re leaving Australia in December, you don’t have to until next year – July – to claim back your tax. You can do it much earlier, along with claiming your superannuation.

This tax agent has the pro of no-refund-no-fee. If you cannot get a tax refund, Taxback will not charge you. If you are a permanent resident in Australia, you superannuation will remain bound by the same rules. If you’re a temporary resident, then you could claim a departing Australia super payment.

You could be departing Australia for many reasons – career opportunities, adventure, love, new prospects, or you could be returning home.

While you have a list of things to cover off before leaving, think about any super you might have accrued while you were working in Australia. After all, it’s your own hard-earned money, so it is an excellent idea to monitor it.

Super tips for Australians or permanent residents departing the country

Even though you are leaving Australia permanently, if you are a permanent resident or Australian citizen, your superannuation will remain bound by the same rules.

What that means, in the majority of cases, you often will not be able to access your superannuation until you reach the preservation age (55 and 60), depending on your date of birth.

In the meantime, if you will continue working for an Aussie employer, they may still have to contribute to your superannuation; check the ATO website for more details.

Is there a stress-free, no-hassle way to find my supperanuation?

The answer is quite easy: you reach us, simply fill up our brief superannuation refund package, and we are going to do everything else. A lot of holders of Working Holiday Visa reach Australia and as soon as they begin their first job are requested for their ‘Superannuation’ information and could not provide it.

It is problems like that which will delay your free superannuation advice refund or even sabotages it, and you have to deal with them along the way. But it is also problems like that which our service specializes in helping you resolve. We will detail the whole process of how we do it after we have laid down the essentials.

For more inquiries about how we can help you with this process, call our administrators at 1300 252 167


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Paying a Super Fund and Reclaiming One’s Superannuation

As we have discussed already, even though you are on a student visa or a working holiday visa, if you make above AUD$450 every month, your employer will be obligated by the law to spend an amount that is equal to 9.5% of your salary towards a super fund per your nomination.

In a case where you did not nominate a fund, your employer is going to transfer it towards a fund nominated by the tax office or the company.

The good thing is that you do not need to wait to retire to get this amount. You can directly apply for a super tax refund when you depart the country for good and with the expiration of your visa.

Australian Super Finder can organize a lost super finder and the refund for you as soon as you depart the country for good with the expiration of your Visa. Super refunds could be worth some thousands of dollars. We can help you get your Australian super refund.

Claiming Your Super – Qualifications for a Refund on Super

You are qualified to reclaim your super if:

•    You were in Australia on a 457 Visa, student visa or working holiday visa.
•    You have departed Australia.
•    Your visa has reached cancellation or expiration.

You could get your superannuation via the internet through us at Australian Super Finder. The papers that you are going to need are:

•    your personal information (date of birth and name);
•    your passport number;
•    your Australian TFN or tax file number and your membership and super fund number.

We will explain how you can acquire each of those requirements in the later part of this section.

Verify before a Refund for Super

•    Information regarding your sgc super fund – After enabling your account, you should have gotten a letter or a membership card.
•    The number of your membership
•    Your fund balance

Important Note: There are thousands of superannuation funds in Australia such that if you reach Australia, there would be a thousand ways to start one. A lot of the banks currently here are giving superannuation accounts if you are starting and opening your usual bank accounts or, so to speak, during the beginning of your first job, your employer should be able to assist in getting you prepped up as well – the most important thing to bear in mind here is that – if you have an open fund – use the same exact fund for all work.

The cause that you probably wish to maintain all of your superannuation in just the single account is that this amount is again an amount that you could reclaim if you are departing Australia for good (granted that you are not a long-term resident) and by having the donations in a single fund for the length of your stay in Australia it is going to mean that the entire process of reclaiming the funds is going to be simpler and it is going to save you cash while you stay because every fund is going to charge you handling fees.

The Amount That I Get Back

Australian Super Finder helps you get back as much of your super fund as legally and legitimately possible. The amount is based on factors such as the donations made by the employer as well as the kind of fund you paid towards him.

The amount of super you can reclaim will be affected by the administration and insurance charges of your super fund scheme, and also a 38% withdrawal tax subtracted by the Government of Australia.

The total Departing Australia Superannuation Payment is going to be under the 65% rate of tax where:

•    You have held or hold a 462 or 417 visa and had superannuation contributed for you as you were working with any of these visas, as well as
•    Departing Australia Superannuation Payment is given to you during or after July 1, 2017.

The 65% rate is going to apply to your entire Departing Australia Superannuation Payment amount, which includes whatever superannuation you might have gotten while being employed under another visa.

Fees made before July 1, 2017, are going to be applied to tax with the present rate, which is 38% for an element with tax.

Departing Australia Superannuation Payment submissions are usually handled in a period of 28 days. An application may only be submitted if you have departed Australia and your visa has an expired or cancelled status.

If you happen to be a Working Holiday Maker and considering qualifying for a Departing Australia Superannuation Payment application, you might want to do it at the earliest convenient time possible to let superannuation funds that have the best of opportunities to handle and pay for your request.

International students, backpackers, and 457 visa holders are privileged to get their super back as soon as they leave the country for good because of the expiration of visa; however, a lot still struggle with their finances.

Locate your lost super

In Australia lost superannuation money accounts for $18 billion or less. If you have unmonitored superannuation accounts, Australian Super Finder can locate your lost super money for you.


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Can I Consolidate My Super

If you think you have multiple superannuation accounts from several employers, it would work to your benefit if you could consolidate your accounts into one to pay a single set of fees that can save you hundreds annually and thousands eventually.

Here in Australian Super Finder, we can carry out the consolidation procedure for you, but prepare for any withdrawal or exit fees, and see to it that you don’t lose essential benefits such as non-transferable insurance.

Evaluate your options and fees

Look up what fees your fund charges you as well as the investment options being offered. A super fund with low fees has less impact on your super balance while you are away.

Look into contributions

If you are under 65, or between ages 65 and 75, and qualify the work test requirements. Then you can keep on making contributions regardless of where you work or live. Contributing, however, may not be tax effective, so you will have to check out the tax rules according to your cases and the country you will be staying.

Making the Claim

Claiming your super is possible once you have departed Australia and your visa has been cancelled or reached expiration.

Turnaround Time for Getting Your Super Back

Within 28 days of the ATO getting your submission, you should get your superannuation. If there is more documentation required, there might be a delay in the process, and this could occur if your superannuation claim is above $5,000.

Earning and working for your super while you visit Australia with a short-term Visa can help you qualify for the superannuation to be given to you in the form of a DASP or Departing Australia Superannuation Payment once you depart.

For you to qualify for your DASP, there are some qualifications that you must fulfil.

Before you submit your application for Departing Australia Superannuation Payment, verify with whoever hired you if all the super requirements especially the payments have been taken care of.

For six months and above after you depart Australia and if you have not yet acquired your Departing Australia Superannuation Payment, the super fund is going to have your super sent to us.

By submitting an application with Australian Super Finder or through an online claim, you may get your super.

Claims Online

Without charge, online claims can be sent through the Departing Australia Superannuation Payment online claim scheme – External Link for Australian Tax Office held money and super funds.

Online claims are going to be electronically checked and assessed through the DIBP or Department of Immigration and Border Protection. This will verify your visa and immigration status. A Departing Australia Superannuation Payment claim can only be submitted once you have departed Australia and if your visa has been cancelled or is expired.

We still recommend, however, that you begin your online Departing Australia Superannuation Payment application if you still stay in Australia and possess all the necessary qualifications. Note down the details that you submitted, because you are going to need these details when you continue your saved submission and apply after departing Australia.
Your super fund is going to request true copies with your proof of identification papers if you have a claim that is $5,000 or above.

It is a lot easier to verify the necessary papers while staying in Australia. Therefore we advise that you perform this before departing. Verify with the super fund so you can acknowledge the kind of paperwork that is needed.

Working In Australia A Few Years Back and Claiming Super Fund

It’s possible. We can help you claim your Australian super refund for you for as far back as 1994 granted that you have left Australia for good along with the expiration of your visa. To reclaim this amount for you, we are going to need information such as your super fund name as well membership number. You may chat live with our customer service representatives to assist you with what you have to do.

Find Out About Your Super Fund

•  If you have no idea about the whereabouts of your super money, get in touch with your employers in Australia to discover which superannuation fund they transferred it to in your name. You should also be able to find your superannuation money with the use of Australian Tax Office online lost super search utility, SuperSeeker.

•  To use SuperSeeker, you must have your TFN, date of birth and name.

You don’t need to bother yourself with this process though, as Australian Super Finder specializes in finding lost super. As long as you have all the requirements, we will not only find your lost super but also help you in consolidating them.

Paper Documentation

Document submissions entail an expense because they need you to pay for and secure, from the DIBP, an immigration status certificate.

You can get an immigration status certificate with the use of Form 1194 Immigration status certification and ask to nullify a short-term resident visa.

The certificate is going to be sent via email straight to the elected super fund.

Finishing your application for DASP form is a necessity, and you have to send it to your super fund(s) to receive your Departing Australia Superannuation Payment.
For Australian Tax Office-held amounts, you have to be using the proper form and submit it straight to us.

If by any chance your super has been sent to us due to the fact that it is already six months or above after departing Australia and you have not yet applied for your Departing Australia Superannuation Payment, you could still apply for your Departing Australia Superannuation Payment from us by way of the Departing Australia Superannuation Payment submission scheme onlines.

You will get an email from the ATO. Post your documents to us by following the instructions on the email sent to you, if need be.



Getting a TFN

Be sure that you have your TFN or Tax File Number secured or you could wind up making payments which could be way more in tax. Your Tax File Number is utilized by the ATO or Australian Tax Office to monitor your super payments and is somewhat similar to the NI number in the United Kingdom, the SIN in Canada or the PPS in Ireland.

For makers of working holidays, you are going to have your Tax File Number as soon as possible after getting into Australia. Workers who have no TFN are going to be taxed at a standard 46.5% because whoever hired you is legally required to accomplish this.

We have joined forces with taxback.com to help all clients take care of their superannuation refunds.

The necessary items for applying for a superannuation refund are listed below:

•    You should have left Australia
•    You need to have a short-term visa with expiration (student, 457, 417)
•    You need to accomplish the proper exit forms for your fund
•    You have to provide the necessary true identity papers according to requirements of the fund

Based on the fund your superannuation is affiliated with, the process changes in based on which documents are necessary, and this is the part where AustralianSuperFinder.com.au comes in – we wish all clients to check and frequently visit our website or keep in touch with us about your superannuation refund before leaving Australia toe to ensure that all documentation are in order so that you can go home free of any worries!

Based on sending the refund to you – AustralianSuperFinder.com.au is going to be able to transfer the amount to your home account; therefore, you should not need to be bothered with saving your Australian money.

The handling times for a superannuation refund take 12 to 14 weeks and the usual refunds for makers of working holidays Filing with taxback.com are $3,380 – this is a lot of money so have to contact us today and see for yourself what is due to you! Go ahead and enlist for a callback and have yourself set up a super account today!

Tax File Number: The Easiest Way to Get It

There a couple of options: You could apply on your own (Do It Yourself), or you might acquire aid and utilize a company for travellers who are going to set up your Tax File Number for you.

•    Get Help
•    Do It Yourself

Every option has a given disadvantage as well as the advantage.

Making use of Travelers Company and having some support

•    Advantage: It’s simpler than doing it alone.
•    Disadvantage: It is more costly.

Do It Yourself: Applying for your Tax File Number

•    Advantage: Doing it alone is less expensive.
•    Disadvantage: Doing it alone is going to mean you will have to do more work.

Getting Help – Arrange your Tax File Number by way of a traveler’s agency

Utilizing a travelers agency has two different pros – you will not be required an address in Australia, and they are going to send through email your Tax File Number to you. For a lot of makers of working holidays who would just be arriving or who have just reached and are located in a hostel as they search for a job – it could only be the true way of not getting taxes at 46.5% tax fees.

One popular traveler’s agency that provides this kind of service is Visa First with a charge of 25 EUR/GBP. To make sure that you do not pay a lot of tax you can lodge your Tax File Number submission here.

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You could also use your postal address about your native country, and someone from their group is going to get in touch with you. Applying before reaching Australia or after arriving is possible. When necessary, they could also grant you a “lodgement receipt” that could help you should you begin working before you get your Tax File Number.

Should you have some inquiries regarding TFNs call us here – We are going to be happy to make sure you receive as much cash as possibly needed!

Do It Yourself – Submit your Tax File Number for the working holiday

You may also submit an application for a Tax File Number via the ATO or Australian Tax Office. It might typically take around 10-28 days for it to be released. Submissions could be made for your Tax File Number in Australia using the Australian Tax Office either on the internet or personally.

The central challenge makers of working holiday grapple with while they apply straight via the Australian Tax Office is that you are required a postal address in Australia (the address you are required for must be secure because they will be sending your Tax File Number – that has to remain secure).

If your address is in Australia and you are going to be personally there to get your information within 28 days then “no worries dude,” just go straight ahead and then apply. You should also have to give info like your travel document number or your passport, your contact information for yourself or your chosen contact person and of courses your name.

Showing My Tax File Number to My Employer

You need 28 days so that you can give this information to whoever hired you, then after this, they have to deduct tax in your usual pay at a percentage of 46.5%. It is your job to provide your Tax File Number to whoever hired you.

Therefore it is typically going to take around two weeks to acquire your Tax File Number as soon as you have made an application for it, it is recommended to handle it as soon as possible.

System for Australian Super Finder

1. Online Submission

Fill out your super details and your personal information. Upon submission, you will receive the confirmation email.

2. Papers You Need

•    A photo page copy on your Passport
•    A copy of your Email from immigration or Visa
•    A departure stamp copy when possible (not a problem usually)
•    Make sure that you get the departure stamp at the airport. It is compulsory depending on super funds. If there is none, do not worry, there are always alternatives.

3. The Preparation

We take care of everything regarding your application to your super fund. If need be, we get in touch with your super fund.

4. Receive Your Check

Wait for your super refund to be sent to you. Through mail, you will usually get your super refund within a period of 1 -2 months.
The amount that you will get:
•    Estimated 33-35% for holders of working holiday visa and 60-62% for other holders of short-term visas of the balance after subtracting Australian tax and super fund’s charge.
•    It is highly advisable that you verify the super balance.
•    Get in touch with your super fund to check the balance.

5. Currency Conversion

You are going to receive a check in Australian dollars. Has it converted to your currency through a bank in your country?

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How long will it take?

Due to our close ties with the Super Funds, it is easier for us to process your claim. It generally takes 4-6 weeks although it would also depend on the number of super accounts we need to track for you, the Super Fund you belong to and whether or not the ATO is withholding your money.

Some refunds can be processed for as short as 2 weeks.

What’s the Fee?

There are no fees involved in getting a super refund quote but should you opt for our service; we will be charging a fee. Usually, we deduct the fee (nominal fee) from your refund, so there is no need for you to pay us directly.

To get more detailed information about fees, feel free to email us with the details of your super fund.

How much do I get back?

Calculating a quote will depend upon your present super account balance, and it is one that we can do for you. Calculating quotes using payslip figures will yield inaccurate results. The reason for this is because each fund charges insurance premiums, annual management fees, and others.

We will advise you on how much you can get back once we’ve completed the search for you.

What If I Don’t Have My Superfund Details?

Australian Super Finder will track your lost super accounts. We specialize in search lost super Australia for our clients. That’s what we do every day.

How Can I Get Paid?

There are several options for payment transfer: Paypal, Cheque, Australian Bank Transfer, and International Bank Transfer.

What If I Lost My Passport?

With us, there may still be a way to claim your super money back. Call our office for a free consultation.

What if I’m a New Zealand or Australian Resident?

We hate to give you the bad news, but you won’t be qualified for an early super refund.


Just to review…

After departing Australia, you are qualified to reclaim your super refund. It is a lawful duty by whoever hired you for anybody generating $450 dollars every month to have the payment of 9.5% of the earnings into a superannuation fund per month.

This is not coming out of your salary but is an extra cost expended by whoever hired you. The great news is that as soon as you get out of Australia, you have the qualification to get the money again. We have provided you with all the essentials in this post.

The regular Super refund through taxback.com is $3380. Therefore, you need to reclaim it as soon as you can.

How then are you going to get your super fund upon departing Australia?

It is quite easy: you can contact us, complete our brief superannuation refund pack and we are going to handle the rest. All you need to do make sure you have all the preliminary requirements needed and submit those requirements to us.

You can start the whole process now of claiming your super money now. You can begin by filling up our form with all the important information needed to get you going. The process is easy, and it shouldn’t take you long.

We hope this guide has been helpful to you. If you have backpacker friends who, like you, have departed from Australia and are looking to claim their super refund, then this post can also guide them. Help spread the knowledge by sharing this guide with them!

For more inquiries, contact us at 1300 252 167. Feel free also to explore more about superannuation in our knowledgebase.

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