So, you’re taking the leap and moving to Austria? Wonderful! You’ll be please to know that the beautiful alpine country is filled with breathtaking nature, rich culture, and plenty of things to do in your free time. But what about working in Austria? Well, here are some key things you need to know before making the big move.
1. Austria offers a healthy work-life balance
When moving abroad, it’s important to adapt to your new working culture. The Austrian business culture is fairly formal and conservative, and there is an emphasis on hierarchy in most companies. Therefore, roles are generally very clearly defined, and being punctual and loyal is paramount. Showing these traits will therefore help you land a job in Austria. Despite the formal work culture, however, Austrians value a healthy work-life balance. As a result, they are able to properly balance their work commitments with family time. In fact, Under Austrian employment law, workers benefit from one of the most generous annual leave entitlements in the world. This is great news if you are moving to Austria with kids and want to explore the country.
2. Salaries and minimum wage are higher than in other parts of Europe
One of the most appealing factors for expats thinking about working in Austria is the high salaries. In fact, the average monthly salary in Austria is on par with most of Western Europe and Scandinavia, and far above those in Eastern Europe. Furthermore, since 2020, the minimum wage in Austria is set at €1,500 a month, which is at the same level as France and Germany. It is also far higher than the minimum wage in most parts of Europe, which makes it a highly appealing place to work for expats.
3. Employees benefit from strong labor laws
Thanks to Austria’s compulsory social insurance system, employees benefit from an extremely well-structured employment law that offers broad protection and rights for workers. This includes an entitlement to 25 days’ paid holiday per year, sick pay, and generous maternity and paternity leave; among other things. There are also unemployment and disability benefits in place to help support workers who suddenly find themselves unable to work. Conveniently, employers will register employees for social security when they are hired, which means you are effectively covered from day one if you are working in Austria.
4. Applying for a work permit is fairly simple
Fortunately, the Austrian work permit system is quite simple, and there are several types of work visas available depending on your circumstances. If you are a citizen of a country in the EU or EEC, you don’t need to apply for an Austrian working visa. However, if you are from outside of the EU and EEC, you will need to obtain a work permit or Red-White-Red Card to work in the country. Generally, the easiest way to get one is to find a job with an Austrian employer. Of course, it also helps if you are highly skilled or trained and can provide added value to the Austrian market.
5. Austria is a great place to start a business
If you want to be your own boss, then you’ll be glad to know that starting a business in Austria is fairly simple as far as requirements go. In fact, the country welcomed 41,087 new businesses in 2018. If you are a citizen of an EU country, Switzerland, or the European Economic Area, all you have to do is register your business. However, if you are an expat from outside the EU, you must first get a residence permit. You will then need to apply for a trade license from your local district authority. If this is granted, you can then register your business with the Austrian Commercial Register. Of course, you should do some market research first to make sure that you find an innovative niche for your brand. But it’s definitely worth looking into if you want to work for yourself and enjoy all Austria has to offer.