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10 Best Expat Jobs in Europe

If you’re considering the option of living abroad, it’s likely you’re already looking for job opportunities. The truth is that some jobs are easier to get than others when you are looking for a job as an expat.

However, that doesn’t mean you’re limited to doing certain jobs. The first job you’ll get abroad will depend on factors such as language skills, job experience, studies and demand for certain jobs.

Being an expat can be an advantage when looking for certain jobs, for example, jobs where they may require being multilingual (receptionist, translator, interpreter, etc.)

Keep reading to discover jobs in Europe for expats.

Expat jobs in europe

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Expat jobs in Europe

Au pair

Au pairs and nannies are good jobs for those who look for a short experience abroad.

When it comes to moving abroad there are plenty of things to consider, however, being an au pair or nanny makes things easier as you’ll be provided with accommodation and food.

Of course, you must like taking care of children as it can be very demanding, but it’s a great way to immerse yourself in the culture and improve your language skills. 

The main disadvantage of being an au pair or nanny is that you won’t get much money from it, you’re most likely to have pocket money to spend on leisure activities such as day trips or eating out during your time abroad.

Also, you need to be willing to compromise your flexibility so you won’t always have weekends off. 

I’ve heard good and bad things about being an au pair.

During my time in the UK, I met many friends that were doing this job, and they luckily had a good experience as the host family was very caring and generous with pocket money.

But you also hear experiences about working too many hours or asking au pairs to do other tasks that do not involve taking care of the kids – things like tidying up the house, doing the shopping, etc.

If you want to be an au pair, my biggest advice is to look for host families on reliable websites and agencies.

Also, schedule a skype call with the family before agreeing to the job. This way you can find out more about how they are and what their expectations are.

One of the most popular websites to find au pair jobs is AuPairWorld.

Call centre

call centre

Call centres or customer service jobs can be a good addition to your CV and working experience. Although you must be fluent in their language to get these types of jobs.

Some companies will look for multilingual advisors, especially for popular languages like Spanish, French and Italian, as they deliver their products to other countries and want to be able to offer customer support for them.

This type of job can be a bit stressful for anyone who doesn’t like to deal with phone calls, complaints and sometimes sales. However, some companies do pay good wages.

Cruise ship

Working on a cruise ship is a unique experience, and one of the best things about working on a cruise ship is travelling the world.

You’ll be able to travel to incredible destinations such as the Caribbean, South America, the Mediterranean, Asia, etc.

Not only will you travel, but accommodation and food are covered. You won’t have to worry about paying rent or doing the shopping. This also allows you to save a good amount of your income. 

But there’s more to working on a cruise ship, it’s the perfect job to make connections, meet incredible people, make friends and, who knows, meet your other half. 

However, it isn’t all roses!

Although you may be able to travel to incredible destinations, the truth is that you won’t spend much time there or be able to simply relax. Working hours are long and there aren’t many days off.

At the same time, this isn’t a job for you if you like having clear boundaries between work and life. You’ll have to adapt to living in small rooms with others, and yes, you won’t see your family and friends for a long time.

Freelancer

Girl typing on her laptop

Being a freelancer is the latest trend and you’ve probably seen so many people on social media talking about remote work and freelancing.

It seems like it’s the dream as you don’t need to commute to work, you have more flexibility and the most important thing is that you can work anywhere you want.

So, what type of freelancer can you be?

  • Programming
  • Software Developer
  • Graphic Designer
  • Writer or copywriter
  • Marketing
  • Translator
  • Photographer
  • Videographer
  • PR
  • SEO professional 

I truly believe that being a freelancer is one of the best jobs for expats because it gives you the freedom to go to your home country to see family and friends and travel more often.

The main disadvantage of being a freelancer is sporadic work.

Most freelancers need to juggle between many projects as they are all short-term and it’s difficult to find a long-term one, or clients may end a contract earlier than expected.

Freelancers have indeed freedom which is a big plus for anyone who wants to be able to travel, live abroad, determine how many hours they want to work, etc.

But it isn’t for everyone as many people want a stable job and income as well as more of a structured day.

Best platforms to find a freelance job

Hotel receptionist

Hotels and hostels often need multilingual receptionists to communicate with guests, so this could be a job for you if you want to put your languages into practice and if you love being surrounded by new people every day.

The downside of being a hotel receptionist is, of course, the working hours.

You’ll be expected to work different shifts (morning, afternoon, evening) and some weekends and holidays. It isn’t a flexible job, so you really need to be passionate about providing great experiences to guests.

📌 Related post: 12 Cheapest Countries to Live in Europe

Language Teacher

woman writing in a notebook

This can be your ideal job if you love teaching and you know languages.

Most European schools include English, French and Spanish in their curriculums. However, there has been an increase in German too.

The level of entry for this job isn’t low as you aren’t only required to know the language you teach but pedagogy.

Many countries require a teaching qualification and they really value any school or volunteering experience you have.

Teaching can be a rewarding job, but only if you’re passionate as you’ll have to spend extra hours marking, joining after school meetings, learning different teaching techniques, attending parent’s evenings, etc.

If you’re looking to teach in a language academy, you won’t necessarily need a degree or master’s, but again, school experience and language courses are musts.

At the same time, teaching in an academy is less stressful than teaching in a school or high school. Basically, you have fewer hours to teach and students that go to an academy often want to learn and improve the language.

For native English speakers, teaching English abroad is such a great opportunity. Many companies also facilitate the process of finding teaching jobs and placing you in schools.

Also, you don’t have to worry if you don’t know the country’s language to get the job.

So, what certifications do you need to teach English abroad? Most places will ask you for a TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) certification. These certificates can be expensive, so I recommend looking at these cheap TEFL courses to teach English.

However, you need to know that some countries may ask for a degree in education too.

Some of the best countries in Europe for teaching English abroad

  • Spain
  • Italy 
  • Portugal
  • Poland
  • Hungary
  • Prague
  • Czech Republic

Tour guide

New York City Sunset

Being a tour guide can be a really fun job.

Not only do you get the opportunity to show other beautiful places but learn about them too. When you’re new in the industry, you’ll find it easier to get a job in a smaller tour and travel company

However, if you feel like there’s a gap in the market, you could offer your own tour guides – from food experiences tours to hiking tours. 

One of the best places to offer guides or experiences is Airbnb experiences.

The downsides of being a tour guide for a company are that you may spend a lot of time on the road travelling, you’re likely to work on weekends and holidays, your schedule can change without much notice, and it can get boring in the long-term.

Translator and interpreter

First things first, most people don’t know the difference between a translator and an interpreter. 

Everyone thinks they are the same things, however, the easiest way to understand the difference is that translators will translate written documents whereas interpreters will translate orally.

Both have a high demand and it’s perfect for anyone who can speak multiple languages at a proficiency level. 

If you’re looking to work for a translation company, they’ll want you to have some experience and, probably, a degree or masters in Translation.

When it comes to translation and interpreting, there are so many fields you can choose from – legal, medical, tourism, etc.

Although there is a high demand for all sectors, audiovisual translation has become a very popular one.

As a translator you don’t have to work in an office, you can also find remote positions or be a freelancer. The main disadvantage of being a translator is that you’ll spend many hours in front of your laptop trying to meet deadlines.

As an interpreter, you need to be ready to travel at any time. You don’t normally have a permanent location and you need to be flexible. It’s really good if you like travelling and don’t mind commuting. 

Another disadvantage of both jobs is that your income will be determined by the languages you speak. For example, a translation from Spanish to English is lower paid than an English to German translation.

Waitress

food at a restaurant table

Hospitality jobs such as waitress, bartender or cook are easy to get as you don’t need much experience.

Whether you want to get some working experience in your new country or you don’t have a very good level of the language, this job is for you.

Some of my first jobs in the UK were in hospitality, and if you’re looking at moving to London or anywhere else in the UK, you’ll be surprised how many hospitality roles there are and you can apply for.

The good things about working in hospitality are getting delicious meals for free, earning a little bit extra with tips and other workers tend to be very friendly.

One of the main downsides of working in hospitality is working on weekends and holidays. At the same time, you may need to work long hours or extra hours if the restaurant is really busy, and you don’t have a good break.


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There are many types of jobs that expats can do in Europe. It’s a matter of job experience, language skills and demand for jobs in the country you want to live in. 

To find any of these jobs, you can look on job boards such as Indeed or sign up with a job agency to source opportunities for you if you don’t have the time or much experience. 

Which job sounds better to you? Let me know in the comments below.

If you have any questions or want any advice on expat jobs and life, reach me on my email at cristina@mylittleworldoftravelling.com or on Instagram at @creina.diary. I’m always happy to help.

Cristina xx

P.S. Do you know of friends who are looking for a job abroad? Share these jobs for expats in Europe with them.

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10 Comments

  1. I can speak from experience about freelancing – it’s a great job but volatile and you need to be flexible.

    1. Cristina Reina says:

      I completely agree with you!

  2. I’m thinking of becoming an expat so this list is really helpful! I would like to teach English but I’m very bad at teaching so I don’t know where to start!

    1. Cristina Reina says:

      I am glad you’ve found it useful 🙂 Also, I hope you get started on teaching English.

  3. Megan Lawrence says:

    As someone who’s lived as an expat a couple of times, it’s an experience I highly recommend. Great ideas on how to fund it!

    1. Cristina Reina says:

      I’m happy to hear you agree on having an expat experience.

  4. Thanks for sharing such great tips. I am an expat as well so these are definitely helpful to know what opportunities are available for people who have to uproot often.

    1. Cristina Reina says:

      You are welcome 🙂 I am happy to hear you’ve found these tips helpful, and I hope you find the right opportunity for you.

  5. Amber Dickison says:

    This was a super helpful guide! This is something that I definitely wish was around when I was first job hunting when I first moved to Europe. You post is super insightful!

    1. Cristina Reina says:

      Thank you, Amber 🙂

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