Get a Job in Hospitality - Do the best RSA Online in Australia (plus NSW by email)

Your passport to fun, well paid jobs in hospitality!

Working in restaurants, bars and at catering events industry in Australia is one of the best ways to meet people, earn great money (high minimum wage) and get a job anywhere in Australia but FIRST you need to do some RSA training.

Know you need it? - Click here to do the best RSA we have done and recommend

Before you start looking for job for most states it is mandatory that you have an Responsible Service of Alcohol certificate.

  In this page:

The Basics

Before applying to jobs in hospitality it is highly recommended you get an RSA certificate.

Employers will invite applicants with it to interviews over applicants who don't.

Fortunately it is cheap and easy to do simply start here.

Essentially to work in a position that involves the service of alcohol, a Responsible Service of Alcohol course (also known as an RSA training) is required. The RSA course is often nationally accredited which means you can work in many states in Australia. After completing a course (which involves training and assessment) you will receive an RSA certificate to show future employers.

Courses are suitable for bar staff, waiters, bottle shop attendants and anyone else working in licensed premises serving alcohol.

Note: Each state has it's own liquor legislation and it's own RSA requirements particular to that state. This means you may need to get more than one certificate if you hope to work in different states. Some courses are accrediated for mutiple States - obviously a big advantage for travellers and Aussies who like to work interstate.


Why do I need to complete a Responsible Service of Alcohol course?

In Australia, it is against the law to serve alcohol to an intoxicated or underaged person. If proven, there are severe penalties for both the employers and employees involved, especially in case of injury. This is why it is mandatory in most States for all staff who serve alcohol to complete one of the Responsible Service of Alcohol courses. For most states in Australia the course can be completed online except Victoria (Vic) and currently New South Wales (NSW) where the course needs to be done by email or in person. 

For anyone in Australia serving Alcohol this is important because many employers will not consider hiring you without it.

Fortunately for Queensland,  Western Australia, South Australia, Northern Territory and the Australian Capital Territory the online Responsible Service of Alcohol courses can be completed online in about 3 to 4 hours before you start looking for work. It takes about 6 hours to complete the New South Wales course.

Don't forget to put on your resume that you have an RSA certificate before applying to jobs!

New South Wales (NSW) now offering training by email (correspendence) - see below.

Complete your RSA course before you leave home

Most working holidaymakers travelling to Australia are unaware of the RSA rules and regulations until they arrive and apply for a job. Then they need to find out where they can enroll at a relevant training centre to complete the course and get their certificate. This can sometimes waste precious days and may mean you miss out on a good job opportunity.

There are hundreds of courses - some good some bad - some cheap some expensive - but we recommend the course mentioned on this page (and we have done others)

Important Note - Doing The Right Course:

A "Nationally Accredited RSA Certificate" covers many states in Australia (including QLD, WA, SA, NT) but there are exceptions most importantly - VIC and NSW. If you think you might end up working in New South Wales (NSW) and Western Australia (WA) for example, you normally would have to get two certificates one that is "National Accredited" for Western Australia and one that is "Queensland Accredited". However some training companies enable you to get both certificates by doing just one course. Decide where you are likely going to want to work and just do the training which are includes the states you want to work.

For more information - Reviews, tips and even answers to the hardest questions check out the best RSA online QLD, SA, NT and WA.

Victoria - Classroom Only

If you would like to work in Victoria you will need to do a course in person when you get to Victoria.

Koops offers $45 courses which are four hours long and also the cheapest we could find. They have both day and night course options and locations around Melbourne. You can book your course here.

For more information about getting a Victorian RSA Certificate and a list of providers with a handy map (so you can see which training center is closest to you) - Check out the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation

How it works - completing the RSA course online

Once you purchase an RSA course you'll get a unique pin number and password sent by email. You can start the course immediately and resume whenever you want - the system remembers where you were. Once completed, a Certificate of Attainment is issued to you. The course takes approximately 3 to 4 hours in total to complete. You will then be able to choose if you want to receive the certificate by email in PDF format or by mail or both. Most people choose both, but the printable copy sent to your email address is fine for your future employers.

NSW Note: For NSW you will be issued with a temporary certificate valid for 90 days. In that time you need to go to Post Office in NSW and get your photo I.D. card. In Feb 2014 online RSA training for NSW was suspended, so training will now need to be completed in a classroom or there is now the option to do it by email correspondence - see below for our recommendation.

Awesome for backpackers who want to keep their options open for all types of work in Australia: Look out for programmes specifically which include the RSA for Queensland, Nationally Accredited RSA (QLD, SA, WA, NT), RSG (Responsible service of gambling) and Hygiene for Food Handlers course (Save $70 compared with doing all the courses individually plus you know you have everything done. Make sure you put them all on your CV - It will show how serious you are at getting a job in hospitality). On the other hand if you just want to work in a service job the RSA certificate is often all you will need. In some cases you may need the other ones too but the RSA is by far the most common and will show that you are serious about getting work.

New South Wales - by Email Correspondence

In person RSA for New South Wales 

You will need to find an RSA course for NSW that offers classroom training. If you are staying in a hostel check the noticeboards for a trainer.  

How it works - completing the RSA by Correspondence in NSW

You can now complete the RSA course via e-mail correspondence in NSW.

Course content and assessment is emailed and you simply send it back.

You to take the course from anywhere!

The course takes about 4 hours to complete and costs about $120.

If you answer all questions correctly, you will receive your Interim RSA Certificate (valid for 90 days in NSW only) in PDF format within 24 hours.

Click here to start the RSA for NSW we recommend.

How much does the RSA course cost?

Most RSA courses cost about $60 AUD, except NSW which is about $120 ($70 of this course goes directly to the NSW government). If you want to work in multiple states it is a good idea to consider doing a combined course.

Beware of the cheap ones. Many backpackers trying to save a buck choose the cheap ones. In our experience this can often lead to second rate training and poor support. For example, most courses require that you contact a trainer (a real live person) if you fail a question twice - with cheaper courses you may be in for a long wait and be more likely to fail a question because the training sucks.

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