Guide to working in Europe for Americans: Germany

Germany is possibly one of the easiest countries in the EU for Americans to find work. Unlike the previous post, Spain, the German government has a relatively easy and straight forward approach to working in their country. If you find a job, then you can work there. Granted, only if you have a bachelors degree already.

Finding a Job on your own. 

For Americans there are two ways of getting a work permit, before you arrive in the country at the various consulate offices throughout the U.S. or after you have arrived already.

Steps to finding a job in Germany.

Step 1: Find a job: The following databases can be used to finding employment within the European Union.

Step 2: Upon Arrival to Germany: stop in at the local Ausländeram (Alien’s Office) and turn in the following papers:

    • two fully completed application forms and required declaration in duplicate
    • two passport photographs
    • valid national passport and two copies of the data page (Please note these important regulations concerning your travel document/passport:
      (a) its validity has to extend the duration of the visa you are applying for by at least 3 months
      (b) it has to contain at least two blank pages;
      (c) it must have been issued within the previous 10 years. If it has been issued before that, your passport can not be accepted. That even even applies in cases where the validity has been extended by the authorities of your home country.
    • employment contract or letter of intent from your future employer inGermany and two copies thereof
    • your driver’s license and/or utility bill in your name as proof of residence in the consular district where you plan to apply
    • Visa fee.
-From www.Germany.info

 Programs

Due to the relative ease of earning working papers in Germany for Americans there seem to be a lack of programs sponsored by the government or independent groups that don’t require a fee. However, there is one organization that provides scholarships and funding for study:

German Academic Exchange Service 

DAAD offers stipends for German study and exchanges in Germany for North American students and post-graduates.

_____________________

The job market in Germany for Americans is the most open out of all the EU countries. If you are looking for a way to work in the EU this is a great opportunity, however, keep in mind that Germany is very proud of their language and while they are accepting to foreigners coming in they are not accepting to foreigners not learning their language. Upon applying for a residence visa the officer will assess your language skills and if he sees that you have a limited knowledge of the German language you will be required to take classes through an Integration Course. More information here.