Players are not paid but do get assistance from their teams. This differs from team to team but can include meals and accommodation while travelling, flights to away games, bus travel to away games, accommodation, access to a car, work contacts or job search assistance and more.
Each team may retain six import players (non-Australia permanent residents or citizens) at any time, but may play only four in any one game. Import players are supported more than local players due to the challenges they face in arriving into a foreign country for a relatively short period of time.
The AIHL started in 2000 with three teams, expanded to six teams in 2002, and to eight teams in 2005. Currently there are nine teams, with the recent additions of the Melbourne Mustangs, and the Perth Thunder.
Joining a Team
Most teams do their recruiting from December to March, with occasional players being picked up in early April due to injuries or drop-outs. To apply to a team you will need to phone or email the appropriate team’s General Manager with a hockey resume.
Once you arrange to join a team and arrive in Australia your team will assist you in registering as a player in Australia, including the purchase of an ITC card through the IIHF.