An increasing number of people are choosing holidays to Australia for their gap years and other working sabbaticals.

An increasing number of people are choosing holidays to Australia for their gap years and other working sabbaticals.

This is according to the Australian Visa Bureau, which revealed that it has seen a 20 per cent increase in the number of visas granted in the first three months of 2009 when compared with the same period last year.

Organisation spokesperson Amanda Gripske admitted that she had been anticipating a drop in the number of Britons opting for holidays to Australia, but that this was not the case.

“We have been taken by surprise and we anticipate that the year will be one of the best for Australian working holidays yet,” she added.

Ms Gripske speculated that the increase could be due to increased restrictions on American visas implemented this year, as well as increased publicity surrounding the Baz Luhrmann in December.

Meanwhile, separate research from the same organisation has shown that the Electronic Travel Authorisation, which is digitally attached to a person’s passport and can be applied for quickly online, is the most popular form of visa for holidays to Australia.

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