As the number of students studying abroad continues to increase, many are also looking for opportunities to work while pursuing their education. However, the regulations and requirements for working as an international student can be complex and time-consuming, which leads to many questions from students. To help provide answers to some of these commonly asked questions, a recent study conducted by Erudera.com provides insights into the policies of several countries.
According to the study, over 6 million students studied abroad in 2019, which highlights the importance of this topic to students. While some countries do allow international students to work while studying, the number of hours and types of jobs allowed can vary. In most cases, a work permit is required, and some countries require that the student has already secured a job offer before applying for a work permit.
For example, Finland allows international students to work up to 30 hours per week, while in the United Kingdom, students can work up to 20 hours per week during the semester, but they need to obtain a work permit and hold a Tier 4 student visa in order to do so. In Estonia, there is no limitation on the number of working hours for students, but they need a work permit after graduation if they want to stay in the country.
Germany allows students to work full-time for 120 days or part-time for 240 half days without a work permit, while in the United States, students can work up to 20 hours a week during the semester but need to be enrolled full-time and have valid F-1 status.
In Denmark, students can work up to 20 hours per week and full-time during summer break, but they need a work permit or an establishment card when applying for work after graduation. In Latvia, students can work up to 20 hours per week during the semester and 40 hours a week during the semester break without a work permit, while in Norway, students from Nordic Countries, EU/EEA, and Switzerland can work up to 20 hours per week without a work permit.
In Romania, students can work up to 20 hours per week, and those with a work permit can work more hours in the country without the need for a work permit. In France, students can work up to 964 hours per year, but if the number of working hours exceeds 964 per year, the employer should apply for a temporary work permit on the Ministry of the Interior website on behalf of the student.
Foreign students in Portugal are allowed to work up to 20 hours per week during the school year and full-time during the summer months. They are required to have a work contract and a work permit, which can be obtained through the Portuguese Immigration and Borders Service (SEF). The work permit is usually issued for the duration of the academic year, and it is renewable each year. So, the maximum number of hours that international students can work in Portugal is 20 hours per week during the academic year and full-time during the summer months.
There are a few countries that do not limit the number of working hours for international students, such as Estonia and Latvia. However, in terms of the maximum number of hours that can be worked per week, France is the country where foreign students can work the most hours, up to 964 hours per year. If the number of working hours exceeds this limit, the employer should apply for a temporary work permit on the Ministry of the Interior website on behalf of the student.