What is Work & Travel?
Work & Travel is the official program of the US Government for cultural exchange youth, addressed to students of all fields of study, enabling them to work legally in the USA during academic holidays for a period not exceeding 4 months and travel within the United States for up to 30 days after its completion.
What are the possibilities of Work & Travel?
Participation in Work & Travel is an opportunity to get to know the United States, its lifestyle and the environment of work of Americans, improve language skills, gather a lot of valuable experiences, helpful in later looking for a job after graduation, conclusion many friendships and to earn a living.
What level of English does student need to present?
A person participating in the program must have a sufficient command of basic communication in English.
Does anyone look after the participants of the Work & Travel during their stay in United States?
Yes. This role is played by the American program organizer (sponsor). This care focuses on help students in case of any troubles or problems.
How long can a program participant legally stay in the United States?
This time is determined by the date appearing on the DS 2022 form + 30 days.
What kind of work do participant of W&T?
Most of the offered positions are seasonal work related to tourism, hotel industry, gastronomy and recreation that do not require special or prior preparation.
Can I work in more than one place?
You can work even in several places, as long as the additional activities do not interfere with the basic one employment.
Can I change jobs during the season?
Yes, as long as the approval of the organization sponsoring the program is obtained – the “Full-sponsor placed” option. The other options give you more freedom of action.
How many hours do students work?
Employers provide employment for an average of approx. 35 – 40 hours a week. However due to the specific, seasonal nature of the work, there may be some fluctuations in this dimension.
How much do program participants earn?
Working and pay conditions are the same for all students, including American students. The average rate for an hour’s work is around $ 12. Standard rates are between $ 10 and $ 17 per hour of work. Customarily tipped items have a lower base rate. The highest salary is paid for performing jobs that require special experience.
How is the salary received?
The payment is usually made every two weeks and can be collected in the form of a check, which is made at the bank or cash desk at the place of employment, and in the form of a transfer to an account previously set up by the employee.
What conditions must be met to open an account with an American bank?
To open a bank account in the US, the most common are: Passport, Visa, DS-2022 and Social Security Number. There are banks that set up accounts for students before receiving a social security number.
What is a Social Security Number?
It is the number corresponding to the Polish NIP, PESEL and ID card numbers. This number is necessary to work legally in the USA, set up a bank account, etc.
Do foreign students employed in the US during their vacation have to pay taxes?
All foreigners, even seasonal workers, legally working in the United States, as well as US citizens, are required to pay federal, state and local taxes. It is about 15% of the total remuneration, paid by the employer to the appropriate offices.
Can I get a tax refund?
Of course. At the beginning of the year (January, February), employers send students W-2 forms, which are the basis for settling the tax paid. The last paycheck can also be used for this purpose.
What documents should I have when crossing the American border?
Immigration officials require J-1 visa holders to present a valid J-1 passport (at least until May next year than the planned vacation trip) with a J-1 visa, Form DS-2019, a return ticket, and approximately $ 400 in cash.
Can I buy a flight ticket overseas by myself?
Yes, you can buy a plane ticket by yourself. Our office does not require the purchase of an air ticket through us in the case of the Self program.
Are program participants insured for the duration of their stay in the US?
In the program we offer, the insurance is already included in the total fee. Each student is insured up to $ 100,000.
How many times can you participate in the Work & Travel program?
There are no quantitative restrictions.
Is it true that this year, in addition to students, post-secondary students can also participate in the program?
Not. Post-secondary students are not allowed to participate in the program.
Are final year students eligible to participate in the program?
Yes, even if they finish their studies before the program starts. It is not necessary to postpone the defense of the thesis after returning from the program. The student, however, can not take the final exam before an interview with the Consul regarding the visa.
Can students on dean's leave take part in the program?
Not. According to guidelines received from the embassy, students on dean’s leave are not eligible for the program. The exceptions are students who were forced to take leave for important reasons, e.g. for medical or family reasons.
How do I get a job offer by selecting Full-sponsor placed?
Students choosing Full-sponsor placed select 3-5 preferred employers from the available list.
What does the interview with the consul look like? How should I prepare for it?
The American Embassy has prepared a video especially for you, which outlines the procedure for applying for the program and “declassifies” its last stage, which is a meeting with the consul. Watch here.