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‘Thought I’d try my luck’ – carer on her way back to Australia after winning €10 return airfare

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A lucky Irish travel enthusiast prepares to travel around the world for the price of a takeaway meal.

Imear Smith (31) from Crossdoney, Co Cavan is one of 200 winners who secured return flights to Australia for just €10.

Late last month, the Australian government announced a program to strengthen the country’s workforce by offering a limited number of return flights from Ireland to Adelaide.

The competition was open to applicants from Ireland and the UK who have working holiday visas and can travel before September 30th.

Eimear lived Down Under for a few years but moved back home four years ago. She was planning to return to Australia in July anyway, but thanks to the cheap fare, she saved over €2,000.

Eimear works in social care and plans to continue her career with a company in Hervey Bay, south Queensland.

“I worked in Australia for three years and returned home at the end of 2018. I haven’t really settled in yet so I was keen to return once the pandemic is over.

“I’m going out again in July. When I saw the 10 euro flights, I thought, “Sure, I’ll try my luck and apply”, and then I won.

“I have a job and everything ready in social care and a training development officer. I’ll be working with a friend of mine who has a company out there called Beyond the Spectrum that works with people with autism.”

Eimear, who previously lived in Townsville, north-east Queensland, said it’s the relaxed pace of life and the people of Australia that she misses the most since returning, and these are the main reasons she wants to return.

“It’s so chilled and it’s just the weather and the beaches and really everything,” she said. “For me it has to be the people too. It’s such a friendly place and I love to travel so I’ve decided to return there.

“I’ve always lived in Cavan, and I don’t think I’ve ever lived the big city life, so that was something too. Townsville is on the east coast, on the beach and all. To get to the beach now, I drive two hours, whether it’s Donegal or Dublin.”

Like so many others, Eimear has found the lack of travel during the pandemic very difficult.

She said hopefully lockdowns are now a thing of the past and she can’t wait to start exploring again.

“I didn’t really travel much the last time I was there – I’ve never been to Adelaide,” she said. “The flight I won is to Adelaide and there are conditions that I have to spend some time there.

“So I will spend a week in Adelaide, travel around and then make my way to Hervey Bay where I will work and live.”

The Working Holiday Visa entitles you to stay and work in Australia for 12 months, but can be extended for an additional year if you wish and work towards permanent residency.

“I used to be promoted but I returned home before I got my residency permit so I have to start all over again but hopefully it will work out for me,” Eimear said.

“I’m lucky that if I go over again I can apply for a residence permit, but that can take up to 18 months.”

She added that while she is delighted to be returning to Australia, she will miss many things from home – most notably her friends and family.

“The family connections, my nieces and nephews, my mother and father. Of course also the culture. Ireland is beautiful,” she said.

“For the first time since coming home I realized that Ireland is a beautiful country. I have traveled almost all of Ireland during lockdown.”

Eimear said she’ll “see how it goes for a couple of years,” but she doesn’t rule out returning home for good one day.

https://www.independent.ie/irish-news/i-thought-id-try-my-luck-care-worker-heading-back-to-australia-after-winning-10-return-flight-41672859.html ‘Thought I’d try my luck’ – carer on her way back to Australia after winning €10 return airfare

Fry Electronics Team

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