Can You Work with Job Seeker Visa in Germany?

A Job Seeker visa is a perfect opportunity for non-EU citizens to come to Germany and search for a job. It’s much easier to find a job when a candidate is already in the country as they will apply from abroad.

Although not all people can afford six months of “vacation” in Germany, the question of part-time employment while staying on a Job Seeker visa in Germany comes up.

Holders of the Job Seeker visa can work up to 10 hours per week in Germany. The new immigration law, introduced in March 2020, made it possible for foreigners on Job Seeker visas to undertake employment in Germany. These 10 hours can be used as a probation period in the company.

Therefore, as a holder of the Job Seeker visa, you can work up to 10 hours per week in Germany. The job can also be unrelated to your qualifications unless it doesn’t require any special skills and certificates. In this post, you will learn which jobs are suitable for a Job Seeker visa and how you can get one. Read about the new rules for a German Job Seeker visa in 2022.

Working on a Job Seeker visa in Germany

The Job Seeker visa is a short-term visa for qualified applicants who want to come to Germany and look for a job. The duration of the visa is six months without the possibility of extension, but the working visa can be obtained within Germany if a job offer is provided. 

By obtaining this visa, a skilled worker can access the German job market. Both academic and non-academic professionals can apply for a Job Seeker visa

During the job search, one can work up to 10 hours per week in Germany. Holders of the visa can also travel outside of Germany for 90 days. However, employment is possible only in Germany.

They can take occasional jobs until they receive an offer for full-time employment according to their qualifications. After that, the Job Seeker visa can be converted into a working residence permit within Germany.

To apply for the Job Seeker visa, you need to have a university degree or completed vocational training and some funds in the banking account to support yourself.

Before coming to Germany and spending money here, applicants must understand their chances of getting a job here.

The best chances to receive a job in Germany with a degree can be found in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics-based (STEM) professions. 

Nursing, electricians, metalworkers, hospitality, and gastronomy workers offer the best opportunities for people with vocational qualifications.

Both can work during their stay on a Job Seeker visa in Germany for up to 10 hours per week. If the part-time job requires particular skills and certificates, they should match your already obtained qualifications. Otherwise, employers in Germany won’t be able to hire you.

Jobs for Job Seeker visa holders in Germany

Since you can only work 10 hours per week and your stay couldn’t be longer than six months, there are only particular jobs available for you. Most common ways to earn some money on the side in Germany its non-qualified part-time jobs or so-called student jobs.

  • The majority of part-time jobs require some German language skills

This will be a problem for someone who comes to Germany to look for an English-speaking position or a job without German skills needed, and therefore their language skills are close to zero.

You might be lucky to find a student job for English speakers, such as a city guide, English tutor, translator, waiter, barkeeper, and some positions in the tourism industry.

  • Fewer employers are willing to hire someone for a short period. Most jobs require prior training. Hence, companies would rather invest time in someone with long-term plans.

You can have good chances when applying for some short-term projects, festivals, and events, where workers are hired only for a short period of time anyway.

There are many events and celebrations in Germany where foreigners can work as waiters or other support staff for decent money and with a short-term agreement.

Consequently, you shouldn’t rely on a side job in Germany as a source of existence while staying on a Job Seeker visa. For this reason, the German government will require a fixed amount of money in your banking account before coming to Germany (around 5,200 EUR).

This way, a Job Seeker visa holder can support himself while staying these six months in Germany.

If you decide to work during your stay in Germany anyway, here are potential jobs one on a Job Seeker visa can have:

  • City guide
  • Waiter/Barkeeper
  • Kitchen personnel
  • Courier
  • Translator
  • Freelancer
  • Pet Sitting
  • Babysitting
  • Cleaning

In most cases, foreigners don’t need additional qualifications and skills to work in the positions mentioned above.

If you don’t speak German finding a job will be more difficult; in this case, you can opt for particular industries with the highest availability of English-speaking jobs, including:

  • Jobs for highly skilled professionals
  • Teaching English
  • IT jobs
  • Jobs in tourism
  • Jobs in gastronomy
  • Job in a global companies

How to find a job in Germany?

The most critical step in this process is finding a job, especially if you rely on this source of income. I would advise you to start searching for a part-time job before you come to Germany so that you can attend some interviews upon arrival.

Almost all jobs in Germany can be found on online job platforms (Jobbörsen) or companies’ websites. If the company language is German, it will be described in German, and if it’s English, accordingly in English.

Most popular websites for all types of jobs: 

Other helpful resources:

Where to find English-speaking jobs in Germany?

The interview process for a simple part-time job isn’t complex as for a full-time job. Sometimes candidates will be required to complete a day or two of internships so the employer can see them in action.

If the job is English speaking, your interview will happen in English, but for German jobs, you will need to prepare for an interview in German. Also, your CV must be in German style.

How much can you earn in Germany?

Because Job Seeker visa holders can only work 10 hours per week, don’t expect to cover all your living expenses with the side income. The average salary for unskilled jobs in Germany is between 9 EUR and 19 EUR per hour. The rate depends on the region, position, requirements, and others.

With the average pay is 12 EUR, you can calculate that your maximum earnings with maximum hours (40) are about 480 EUR per month. The cost of living for a single in Germany is at least 1,000 EUR per month, assuming you are sharing the apartment with someone.

Read more about the cost of living in Germany.

Anna

Anna is an enthusiastic expatriate with experience of living in Germany, Austria and Greece. She shares her passion for living abroad on this website.

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