It is currently very difficult for a foreigner to obtain a work permit and find legal work in Croatia, due to rising unemployment rates and regulations on the hiring of non-citizens. Potential employers must make a case for hiring a foreigner instead of a citizen, and the process can be time consuming and complex. However, some employers opt to illegally "hire" foreigners and pay them under the table.
There are, however, some exceptions that allow foreigners to work without a work permit. Some of these are particularly suited to short-term and seasonal work. For example, individuals working in some sectors of tourism may work in Croatia without a permit for less than 90 days a year. A full list of exceptions is provided by the Ministry of the Interior.
There are many possibilities for seasonal summer work, due to Croatia's booming tourism industry, including cruise ships, charter sailing companies, restaurants, hotels, and guided excursions organized by local and foreign touring companies.
Again, it's difficult to secure employment in Croatia, but not impossible. Though search engines produce occasional listings for summer jobs, directly contacting potential employers can yield better results. Do some research, pick out some companies you are interested in working for, and send them a professional email along with your CV.
Be sure to highlight knowledge of any foreign languages. The coast attracts large numbers of guests from Italy, Germany, Austria, and the Czech Republic in addition to Australia, England, the U.S., and Canada.
There are several classifieds-type websites that list job openings in Croatia. One of these, Moj Posao, is specifically for job searches and even has an English language site. Most of the job listings will still be in Croatian, but some will be in English if the employer is looking for English fluency.
You can also browse job listings on EasyExpat.
EURES is a resource that facilitates mobility between EU member states. It provides information about job vacancies, living and working conditions, and a CV posting service.
However, though Croatia is slated to join the EU in June 2013, it could take several years for job seekers to be able to move freely between Croatia and other EU member states. This transitional period may last up to seven years.
Participating in expat forums is a great way to find job leads and get career-related advice from other foreigners living in Croatia. There are many active and seasoned users on the Visit Croatia Forum who are happy to assist newcomers.
You can also share information on EasyExpat' forum.
Newspapers are actually not a popular resource for job listings in Croatia. It's better to browse the classifieds sites such as Njuškalo and Moj Posao listed above.
Teaching English or other foreign languages at a language school, proofreading and editing copy, and caregiving are all common entry-level positions for expats in Croatia.
Teaching English is a great way to find work in Croatia, as there are several language schools throughout the country and most are interested in hiring native speakers. Many don't require ESL teaching certification, and prior teaching experience is not always necessary. A solid grasp of the language, of course, is.
However, laws currently require Croatian companies to hire a certain number of Croatian nationals for each foreign employee. This is a difficult situation for small language schools that want to hire native speakers. Their solution is to take on foreign "volunteers" and pay them cash under the table. Though this arrangement is common, keep in mind that it is illegal.
Some foreigners offer private lessons in English or another foreign language instead of working for a school. Rates per school hour (45 minutes) range from 50 to 100+ kuna. Sift through ads on Njuškalo, Oglasnik, and Moj Instrukcije to find out what other people are charging. Again, this is common practice, but technically illegal if you do not have a work permit.
An employment contract is standard for any working environment and in the case of student or short-term work; a student employment contract may be used. This usually establishes the duration and terms of the employment. A formal student work contract is not mandatory (it is possible to sign a standard employee contract instead), but may have additional benefits for a student position.
Even foreigners who are not students should be familiar with student contracts in Croatia, as they are sometimes used to pay non-students for small jobs. Basically, the company will pay a student through a student contract who will then pay you for your work, minus a small "service" fee. Though this is common practice, be aware that it is not legal.
ISIC (International Student Identity Card) - Offers full-time students 12 years and older discounts on travel rates, accommodation, shopping, entertainment, and inexpensive international phone calls. All cards issued in the U.S. include travel insurance that covers medical expenses. A passport-sized photo is required and the card costs about $25 and is valid for up to 16 months, depending on the country of issue. You can buy the card online or at several locations in Croatia.
IYTC (International Youth Travel Card) - The counterpart to ISIC for travelers under 26 who aren't enrolled in school, this card offers a smaller range of youth travel discounts. The associated ITIC (International Teacher Identity Card) offers similar discounts for full-time teachers.
ISE Card (International Student Exchange Card) - An internationally recognized identification card with thousands of discounts in over 80 countries, it is valid for one year from the date of issue. Students of any age are eligible, as well as faculty members and young adults from 12-25. The price is $25 and you can purchase it online. However, currently only two businesses in Croatia offer ISE discounts.
Currently, a work permit is required for all foreign nationals who want to work in Croatia. Keep in mind that Croatia is slated for EU accession in June 2013, so laws pertaining to the employment of foreigners will be changing over the next few months, but details are not yet clear.
For more information on visas, consult the section on "Passport and Visas".
|You will find information on voluntary jobs or internship abroad in our other articles on the left column of this page.
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