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Students and Graduates

Pupils and students

As a pupil or a student with an appropriate residence permit, you are allowed to work in Austria, provided that your primary purpose of stay is not jeopardised.

Employment permit

If you are a pupil or a student with citizenship from a third country or Croatia, you are subject to the Act Governing the Employment of Foreign Nationals and require an employment permit (Beschäftigungsbewilligung).

Please note:
This also applies to marginal employment.

As a pupil or a student, you are eligible for an employment permit for employment of up to 20 hours a week without a labour market test. Companies have to apply for this employment permit at the Public Employment Service (Arbeitsmarktservice - AMS).

Please note:
Employment permits may be granted with or without a labour market test. In case of a labour market test a permit will only be granted if there is no worker registered with the AMS who can be placed.

If you are a pupil or a student from Croatia, you are eligible for unlimited labour market access, after twelve months of continuous employment in Austria with an employment permit, to be confirmed by the AMS.

Please note:
After having successfully completed a programme of studies in Austria, you can switch from the residence permit "Students" to the Red-White-Red Card. Upon graduation you can file for a one-time renewal of your residence permit for a period of twelve months for your job search in Austria.

Graduates from third countries

Residence Permit for Job Seekers

If you are a third-country national who has pursued and successfully completed his/her studies or his/her compulsory training after studies you may renew your residence permit "Students" for a period of twelve months for the purpose of searching for employment, provided that you fulfil the general requirements under Austrian settlement and residence law (such as sufficient means of subsistence, health insurance coverage etc.)

Red-White-Red Card for graduates

If, within these twelve months, you receive an employment offer from a specified employer (work contract) which matches your level of qualification, you can apply for a Red-White-Red Card without a labour market test, provided that you also fulfil the following requirements:

  • you get paid the locally customary gross minimum salary which comparable Austrian graduates (junior employees) would receive, but in any case a minimum of € 2,349 (2019) per month, plus special payments (holiday and Christmas pay) and
  • you fulfil the general requirements under Austrian settlement and residence law (such as locally customary accommodation, health insurance coverage etc.).
Please note:
For graduates, there is no points system. The Red-White-Red Card allows you to settle temporarily in Austria and to work for the employer specified in your application.

Red-White-Red Card plus for graduates

You may apply for a Red-White-Red Card plus with unlimited labour market access if you were employed in accordance with the eligibility criteria for at least 21 months during the preceding 24 months.

You can find more information on the Red-White-Red Card plus here.



» mehr lesen

Graduates from Croatia

As a graduate with Croatian citizenship, you have a right of settlement, but no unlimited access to the labour market.

Instead of a Red-White-Red Card, you are issued an employment permit without a labour market test if you fulfil the criteria for the Red-White-Red Card.

After a year of continuous employment with an employment permit, you will receive unlimited labour market access, to be confirmed by the AMS.

Example "Graduates"

A South Korean graduate with a technical Master’s degree from
an Austrian college wants to remain in Austria after completing
her studies and find employment here.

After three months she finds a suitable job with a salary which
significantly exceeds €2,300 gross monthly pay. As she fulfils
the requirements, she can apply for the Red-White-Red Card.

Image courtesy of WKÖ


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