International options

The idea of working in a different country is attractive for many students. This may be for vacation jobs, a gap year, or as a graduate career. The information below provides advice about working abroad and the factors to consider.

Whichever country you’re interested in, key areas to research include:

  • how to find jobs and where vacancies are advertised
  • the regulations concerning work permits and visas
  • the best time to apply for vacancies
  • what is the preferred CV and application form style in that country
  • what are the rules and etiquette of interviews and workplace customs

Other things to find out are the availability of jobs, the demand for overseas workers in different types of work, typical salaries and cost of living, as well as aspects such as the national culture and lifestyle.

Finding jobs

Finding a job can depend on what level of work you are looking for. Graduate jobs and placements abroad appear on UK-based graduate websites, including Career Connect as well as platforms such as LinkedIn. Temporary and vacation work may be advertised on websites that specialise gap year opportunities.

However you are likely to find many more opportunities by using the national job sites for your chosen country. In some countries though, it is the norm to find jobs via networking and personal contacts, rather than by formal advert.
For graduate careers, you should also use specialist websites which cover particular job sectors, as many of these include opportunities abroad.

Key tasks

  1. Decide what type of work you are looking for. If you are not sure about this, go to Need a Starting point? to help you work out your career interests. If you’re looking for vacation work or a gap year instead, see our advice on taking time out.
  2. Think about which countries you are interested in. Issues to consider include the national language if it’s different to your native language. Some countries commonly use English in the workplace, but many don’t, and of course, you will need to be able to live and socialise there too.
  3. Once you know where you want to work, research the opportunities in your chosen country. Use our International careers database to find information on working in major countries around the world. Also see GoinGlobal for everything you need to find jobs and internships at home and abroad across more than 30 countries. GoinGlobal is protected for use on campus so see our Instructions on how to create a GoinGlobal account while off campus.