Job Hunting in Vienna as a Student.

 If you either are trying to find a job in Vienna as a student that holds a Passport that it not within the European Union, search no more, you have found a place that will help you figure out the ins and outs of getting a job! 

Most people studying abroad will only study for a semester and that is easier to do than doing your whole academic career abroad. Simply put, your expenses are going to be somewhat easy to save up for, or easy on your parents to pay.  But once you take the step into staying longer finances can start to dry up quickly. Yes, I am full aware that it is the same for any other college student that living off of Ramen and peanut butter is the norm. But for the most part you have a scholarship, a grant, or financial aid, which can ease the burden.  Here in Vienna I have not really found many scholarships and the ones I do find I never am eligable since I am not a citizen, or I am not a citizen of a poor country.  Studying abroad though can be the same or sometimes even cheaper than attending hometown colleges. I have been lucky to have been supportted by my family while I have been abroad.

So if it to support yourself while studying abroad, to help your parents with the finances, or if you just want extra money in your wallet here is the way to do it. (Legally that is!) Sorry This can't be much help to other countries, or other regions of Austria but I could imagine that it would be fairly similar.

Before you can even start looking for a job you must have:
  1. A valid residency permit, that somewhere should state you can work with working papers.
  2. A valid Medelzettel.
  3. Proof of being inscribed into that current semester or the upcoming semester from the UNI.
  4. A CV or Resume with a picture of yourself. (In German)
If you are a registered student at a UNI but are a Ausserordentlich Student (an extra ordinary student) meaning those pesky classes you must take before you can be a regular student. (German and whatever else the UNI requests) If you fall under this catagory I have been told that you can not work, but once you have your visa you should be able to tell if you can or not from your permit card.

If you are studying for your BA you can ONLY work for 10 hours per week! If you are studying for your MA you can ONLY work for 20 hours per week! The chances of you getting more hours than that are slim!

It doesn't matter what you are paid but you can not go over that time!  Most employers will know about working papers for forgien students, and there will also be some who have no clue and will be scared off and then not hire you. Every employer is also looking for people to hire that are bi-lingual and speaking German pretty well even if you are working in the back of some store. If you can speak English fluently you have a great leg up but speaking it as your mother tongue is also a good selling point. The more languages you speak the better!

So after you have scoured the paper, the internet and in window for hire signs, and what feels like sending out 40 resumes to every place in town you might get 2-3 calls saying they are interested and will want to set up a date for an interview!WOO-HOO! Don't get too excited the fun has yet to begun!

After your interview you will within a few days possiably get a call back saying they would like to hire you. Many jobs here are not secured after the phone call stateing they would like to hire you but what comes next is forgien to many Americans, it is called a schnuppertag, or a trial day. Where you go to work for a few hours they show you the ropes and you will be put to work you won't just be shadowing. Then hopefully you will get called back a few days after that saying if you were chosen.
IF you were chosen then you will have to go to your districts AMS (Arbeits Markt Service) where you will need to show your permit card saying you found a job and need the formula for working papers. You will be sent to another room just for forgieners, after showing your permit card to them they will give you a folded piece of paper that you need to fill out and also some things your employer needs to fill out. You will also be asked what exactly kind of company it is you will be working at, which will then determine where you must go to hand in the formula. There are certain offices for certain types of jobs if you got a job at a bank, you would have to go to another office than your friend who got a job at a bakery. They will then give you the adress of the proper office and after having your employer fill out and stamp their part of the formula, you will need to fill out your part. Before turning the formula in you will need to have a: copy of your passport, a copy of your permit back and forth, a copy of your medelzettel, and a copy of your UNI papers.

Once all that is done, you will just then sit back and wait about a week for the paperwork to come in and then your employer will let you know when they have recieved it and when your first day of actual work will be.

The trial day is NOT paid!

So for summing this lengthy post up this is the few steps you must do for your working papers:
  1. Have a residence permit and enrolled into the UNI.
  2. Send out resumes and wait for a responce.
  3. Have an interview. (Make it known then you need to obtain working papers)
  4. Work a trial day. (Expect this, but it is also possiable you won't have one either)
  5. Wait for a responce, and if it is positive then set up a date to stop by with the formula that your employer will need to fill out.
  6. Obtain Working Formula from AMS. (You can obtain the formula sooner as well)
  7. Fill it out and also have your employer fill it out as well.
  8. Bring it to the AMS that deals with similar types of companies you will be working for.
  9. Wait for the paper work to come back


  1. So there is only an hourly restriction? I thought it was a money restriction based on per month net income.

    Anyways, thanks for the post! It sure helps.

    1. Yes it is now an hourly restriction. A couple years back it was based on income per month. Just also remember that there are taxes and the more money you earn the higher percentage of tax you will have to pay. I think it is over 400 euros you start paying taxes. Under that amount there might be small taxes that you can get back or no taxes at all. That I am not so sure of.
      Just if you are looking for a typical student job to get the bills paid you will on average for hourly pay earn around 7 to 8.50 euros an hour.

  2. Thanks for listing down the step-by-step process. It can be really helpful to people who want to apply for a job in Vienna, or in other countries with similar processes. It may not be exactly the same, but it definitely covers the broad strokes. Good day!

    Jimmy Murphy @ Barracuda Staffing

  3. Every one know as well Vienna is one of the best place in the world we can get lots of idea to read this types of blogs .I have plan to visit this place in my vacation ......

    Cheapest student accommodation in Preston | Liberty Living Preston


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