The Working Holiday Visa for Ecuador

Updated 2022-10-09 13:48

Ecuador is truly a paradise for adventure and nature lovers, and thanks to the Working Holiday Visa program, they will be able to discover this country while working! In this article, we will give you all the details you need to make your application to the Ecuadorian government easy and to make your stay as smooth as possible.

Romantic, enigmatic, enchanting, energetic, historic, vibrant, dynamic, cultural, friendly, breathtaking, and inspiring: these are just some of the adjectives that could help describe Ecuador. Despite its relatively small size compared to its gigantic neighbors, Brazil and Argentina, Ecuador is home to a staggering array of wonders.

Indeed, Ecuador is an incredibly beautiful country, with almost every type of spectacular landscape one could imagine. There are world-class beaches on the coast, which are always warm due to their location on the equatorial line. The country also rises to the highlands, nestled in the breathtaking peaks of the snow-capped Andes mountain range. The Andes, in turn, spill over into the Amazon basin, where a thick rainforest covers the mighty river. Active volcanoes and clear waterfalls dot the countryside, and Inca ruins lurk in remote locations. And let's not forget the picturesque colonial towns and the beautiful Galapagos Islands.

Conditions to be met for obtaining a Working Holiday Visa for Ecuador

For your application to be considered at the Ecuadorian Consulate or Embassy, you must meet the following requirements:

1. Your nationality

It is important to know that, so far, only two countries have been able to reach an agreement with the Ecuadorian government on the Working Holiday Programme. These are Australia, which signed an agreement that came into force at the beginning of 2019, and France, which also signed an agreement that has just come into force in May 2022.

You will therefore need to be either Australian or French for your Ecuador WHV application to be considered.

Good to know:

Living in France or Australia is not enough to be eligible for the WHV in Ecuador — you also need to reside there at the time of your application.

2. Your age

To be an eligible participant in the Ecuador WHV program, you must be at least 18 years old and no older than 30! This means that you have until the day before your 31st birthday to apply. However, it is recommended that you don't wait until the last minute to do so.

3. Having a valid passport

As with any WHV or international travel, it is essential that you have a valid passport! And it must be not only valid at the time of your application but also for a minimum of 12 months after your arrival in Ecuador, i.e., until your return to your country.

Good to know:

Your passport must also have a minimum of two empty pages. These two pages will be used for placing your new visa in your passport and stamping your arrival and departure from Ecuador at the airport.

It is also recommended that participants be cautious with their passports once they receive their new visas. A slip-up could cause a lot of trouble, as reissuing a visa is very complicated and time-consuming. Keep it safe.

4. Having sufficient savings / minimum budget

As with any trip, having some money saved up is a must. You will need to be able to meet your basic needs when you arrive in Ecuador (accommodation, food and drink, transport, etc.) until you find a job that will allow you to earn a salary.

The Ecuadorian government requires French nationals to have a minimum of 2,500 euros (EUR) for the entire duration of their stay and Australians to have a minimum of 400 US dollars (USD) per month (depending on the number of months they plan to spend in Ecuador), as well as enough money to buy a return ticket to their country of origin.

A statement from your bank account should be sufficient to show that you have sufficient funds for this stay.

5. Having a medical insurance policy

Health insurance is required to give you the green light to travel to Ecuador. It is, therefore, recommended that you choose an excellent insurance company that will cover you throughout your trip for all cases of illness, hospitalization, disability, repatriation, and even (for the ladies) maternity. Proof of insurance must be provided with your WHV application.

6. First-time participation

The Ecuador WHV is not too different from other working holiday programs around the world — it only allows one participation per person. This means that if you have already been on a WHV in Ecuador, you will unfortunately not be able to apply for a second one.

Good to know:

If you have already been on a WHV anywhere else in the world, for example, Canada, Argentina, Japan, Luxembourg, or Hungary, this will not count towards your application for the Ecuador program.

7. The quota per country

When two countries enter into a WHV agreement, a quota is usually established so that the receiving country can keep track of the number of people entering their country. In the case of Ecuador, here are the quotas decided by country:

  • For Australia - 100 places per year
  • For France - 300 places per year

Good to know:

If you want to be sure of getting a place, you are advised to apply at the beginning of the year, as quotas are usually updated on 1 January each year.

8. Purchasing flight tickets

You will need to submit a return air ticket when applying for the WHV. If you choose not to take a return ticket, you will need to prove that you can afford to buy a return ticket to your country.

9. Having a clean criminal record

To be offered a WHV to Ecuador, you will need a clean criminal record. This means that you must not have committed a crime! French nationals should contact the Department of Justice and National Criminal Records Department, and Australians should contact the Australian Federal Police to obtain this document.

10. Duration and price of the visa

The WHV visa in Ecuador lasts for 12 months. But the good news is that it is a multiple entry visa — which means you can leave Ecuador to visit surrounding countries; Peru, Chile, Brazil, etc.

Application for this visa is free of charge for French citizens. Australians, on the other hand, will have to pay 50 US dollars (USD) or approximately 70 Australian dollars (AUD).


The WHV applies to only one person — the applicant. This means that you cannot be accompanied by a dependant. If you wish to go on a WHV to Ecuador as a couple or with more than one person, they will have to apply separately and will be assessed independently.

How to apply for a Working Holiday Visa to Ecuador?

When applying for a working holiday visa for Ecuador as a French or Australian citizen, here are the documents you will need to provide:

  • A duly completed visa application form,
  • A passport (either French or Australian) with at least 12 months validity,
  • A copy of your passport (the pages containing your personal information)
  • Bank statement(s) or other proof that you have sufficient funds to travel to Ecuador (see above for details)
  • Proof of health/travel insurance covering your medical expenses in Ecuador,
  • A criminal record certificate from your government (this must be apostilled and translated into Spanish),
  • A medical certificate showing that you are in good health,
  • A return ticket or proof that you have sufficient funds to purchase one,
  • Two passport-size photographs with a white background (3.5 x 4.5 cm),
  • Cover letter in Spanish explaining why you have chosen Ecuador as your WHV destination.

Useful addresses:

Embassy of Ecuador in Canberra - Australia

59 Hopetoun Circuit,

Yarralumla ACT 2600,


Embassy of Ecuador in Paris - France

34 Av. de Messina,

75008 Paris,


Things to consider before moving to Ecuador

The cost of living in Ecuador

Before traveling to Ecuador, it is recommended that you have an idea of the cost of living in order to prepare your budget.

Here is a table that will give you an idea of the cost of living in Ecuador - (source Numbeo; as of July 2022):

Currency: US Dollars (USD)


1-bedroom flat (in the city center)


1-bedroom flat (outside the city center)


3-bedroom flat (city center)


3-bedroom flat (outside the city center)



Water, electricity, air conditioning, heating, waste collection for an 85m² apartment


Internet (60 Mbps or more, ADSL/cable, unlimited data)



1 ticket (one way) for local transport


Monthly pass for local transport



Rice (1 kg)


Milk (1 L)


12 eggs (normal size)


Bread (500 g)


Chicken (1 kg)


Red meat (1 kg)


Oranges (1 kg)


Bananas (1 kg)


Apples (1 kg)


Potatoes (1 kg)


Onions (1 kg)


Water (1.5 L)


Wine (mid-range bottle)


Local beer (0.5 L)


Imported beer (0.33 L)


Cigarettes (pack of 20)



Movie theatre - 1 seat


Sports club - monthly cost for 1 person


Looking for accommodation in Ecuador

Finding accommodation is a crucial step when preparing for your trip to Ecuador — you don't want to arrive and find that you have no place to rest and feel safe!

Airbnb is a platform that you should not forget: it could help you find the kind of accommodation you want (studio, house, single room, shared room, or other) at the rate you want. Websites such as and can also help you find accommodation of all types in Ecuador at attractive prices.

Those on a tight budget can also find accommodation in Ecuador through hostel or Couchsurfing options on Prê,,,, or

Looking for work in Ecuador

It is important to note that the Ecuadorian government emphasizes that the work done during the WHV on its territory must be used to finance the stay and that the purpose of this stay must be to discover the culture, the landscape, the people, etc., and not to find a job to settle permanently.

Ecuador Expertini is a website that will help you find a job in Ecuador according to your qualifications or desires! Indeed, Glassdoor and Millionmakers are also good platforms for finding job options. Don't forget that woofing is also possible in Ecuador and could allow you to learn new things while meeting new people - and are sites that could help you find friendly hosts in Ecuador.

Learning the Spanish language

It's probably no secret to you by now that Spanish is the majority language used in Ecuador. If you want to understand the locals and be understood by them, you will need to make an effort and learn Spanish. Apps such as Duolingo, Babbel, Memrise and Rosetta Stone could help you learn a good base of written and spoken Spanish in a fun way! Also, don't hesitate to find a local tutor to help you improve your Spanish.

Useful links:

Ministry of Justice - France

Australian Federal Police

We do our best to provide accurate and up to date information. However, if you have noticed any inaccuracies in this article, please let us know in the comments section below.