The Australian Antarctic Division (AAD) is being forced to spruik the benefits of working on the icy continent.
It is looking for workers - from plumbers to doctors to station leaders - to head south.
But so far, only 1,200 people have applied for jobs next season compared with 2,000 last time.
AAD spokesman Rob Bryson says there is competition from the mining industry, but says that cannot match the Antarctic experience.
"Only 300,000 people in the history of humanity have had their feet on the ground in Antarctica," he said.
"You go to Antarctica, you get three good meals a day provided for you, pretty good living accommodation and a great experience thrown in as well, which is priceless." Keldyn Francis, 26, is heading to Mawson station to be chief plumber.
"To go down there and do a job I love in such a unique environment will be really rewarding," he said.
The recruitment period has been extended until January 10.