Studying in Poland as a foreign student has a lot of benefits, including giving you the right to work. Foreign students, both EU and non-EU, can work in Poland without any necessary bureaucratic procedures. However, as always, there are certain things that you need to be aware of to not lose your rights. The best practices, if followed, will maximise your chance of finding a good job that will make you happy and provides you with some additional budget necessary to enjoy Poland to the fullest.
Foreign students don’t need a working permit
Let’s start with the most important topic – you do not need to apply for a working permit, even if you are a non-EU citizen (if you need more reassurance here is the legal stand of the Polish government regarding people who do not need a working permit). As always there is a catch – to not need a working permit you need to hold a valid residence permit given you on the basis of your studies in Poland and to apply for it you can’t be working. In simple words, don’t sign any employment contract before your resident permit is finalised otherwise you can’t apply for it. If you have a job you will need to apply for the residence permit through your work and this path is much more complicated.
It’s important to know that you can legally have a full-time job while studying. Of course, it may be too much, but it’s up to you, there is no maximum limit of hours that you can work a week.
Your working rights after graduation
One of the greatest things about graduating in Poland is that you don’t need to apply for a working permit to work in Poland. You can stay in Poland and keep working as long as you wish.
Types of jobs that are best suited for foreign students
There is a high probability that you don’t speak Polish. It’s not the end of the world, but it also means that a lot of jobs may be not available to you. However, you can change this disadvantage into your strength. There are plenty of jobs best suited to native speakers. Here are some ideas:
- Native speaker – you can earn a lot of money by teaching kids and adults your native tongue, English, Spanish and German are the most popular, but in bigger cities, you will find people keen to learn Chinese, Japanese and Dutch
- call centres – your language skills will be loved in any call centre
- IT jobs – your ability to speak Polish will probably not matter, it’s important that you can code and communicate in English
- Hospitality – in big cities like Warsaw or Krakow English may be enough to get you a job in hospitality
- Part time jobs managed by work agencies – this type of work usually request some kind of physical work, but you probably won’t need Polish for it. Sometimes you can land an exciting and fun job, think – Christmas elf and decorating Christmas trees in the supermarkets
Is it easy to find a job in Poland as a student?
The simple answer is that it depends. If you live in a big city it’s quite easy to find something suitable. In some of the metropolis, the unemployment rate is around 2-3% so the outlooks are very positive. However, if you are in a smaller place your options may be limited. Stay positive and keep applying.