Austria Job seeker visa FAQs
The Red-White-Red Card plus is issued in the shape of a bank card and entitles its holder to settlement and unrestricted employment. Holders of a Red-White-Red Card plus may change their employer at any time without needing to apply for a new permit.
Holders of a Red-White-Red Card may apply for a Red-White-Red Card plus if they have been continuously employed in accordance with the requirements decisive for admission for a minimum of ten months within the preceding 12 months. Family members of Red-White-Red Card holders and of holders of an EU Blue Card may apply for a Red-White-Red Card plus from the beginning.
Workers are considered very highly qualified if they achieve at least 70 out of 100 points according to the points system. This category is addressing very highly qualified and experienced top-level personnel, such as scientists and senior top-level management.
Third-country citizens with a very high level of qualifications may apply for a six-month visa for the purpose of job searchif they reach a minimum of 70 points.
The main criteria for education points will be
Graduation from an institution of higher education, minimum duration of programme: four yearsin the subjects of mathematics, informatics, natural sciences or technology (MINT subjects)
Post-doctoral qualification (habilitation) or PhD.
Visas for the purpose of job search have to be applied for at the competent Austrian representation (embassy, consulate) of the applicants’ home countries or countries of residence. Visas for the purpose of job search will be granted if the Public Employment Service (AMS) confirms to the Austrian representation that the required points for admission have been reached.
Very highly qualified workers who have obtained a job search visa may apply for a Red-White-Red Card with the competent residence authority in Austria if they are able to submit an employment offer (work contract) during the period of validity of the visa. The competent authority can either be the Provincial Governor (Landeshauptmann), the authorised Regional Administrative Authority (Bezirkshauptmannschaft) or the Local Administrative Authority (Magistrat).
The Red-White-Red Card is a combination of residence permit and employment permit for qualified third-country citizen workers. It is available for the following groups of applicants:
- Very highly qualified workers
- Skilled workers in shortage occupations
- Other key workers
- Graduates of universities and colleges of higher education in Austria
- Family members of Red-White-Red Card holders or EU Blue Card holders
- Holders of a Red-White-Red Card after a period of 12 months (10 months of continued employment with the same employer according to their qualification)
- Holders of a EU Blue Card, if they have been employed for at least 21 months during the previous 24 months according to their qualification
Family members are defined as:
- Registered partners of the same sex
- Minor children, including adopted children and stepchildren (up to the age of 18).
At the time of filing the application, spouses and registered partners must be 21 years of age.
Family membersof Red-White-Red Card holders and of holders of an EU Blue Card may apply for a Red-White-Red Card plus with unrestricted labour market access from the beginning. The card may be renewed after one year, independently of the renewal of the Red-White-Red Card or the EU Blue Card of the original card holder, if the family members have their own income.
Family members must prove elementary German skills at the time of the first application. Family members of particularly highly qualified workers and holders of an EU Blue Cardare not required to prove German skills with their application.
Residence titles affording the right to gainful employment
- “Red-White-Red – Card” (right of settlement and the right of being employed with a specific employer on the entire Federal Territory)
- “Blue Card EU” (right of settlement and the right of being employed with a specific employer on the entire Federal Territory)
- “Red-White-Red – Card Plus” (right of settlement and unrestricted access to the labour market)
- “Settlement Permit” (right of settlement; unrestricted gainful self-employment possible, salaried employment only with additional AES approval)
- “Long-term Resident– EC” (after 5 years settlement without interruption and completion of Module 2 of the Integration Agreement; long-term residence permit including unrestricted access to the labour market)
- “Long-term Resident – Family Member” (after 5 years settlement without interruption and completion of Module 2 of the Integration Agreement; long-term residence permit including unrestricted access to the labour market)
- Rotational employee (Austrian Employment Service (AES) approval required: confirmation of employment or employment permit as rotational employee; no AES approval required in the case of Section 18(3), clause 2 of the Aliens Employment Act)
- Seconded employee (AES approval required: confirmation of employment or employment permit as seconded employee; employment longer than 6 months)
- Self-employed person (if the alien has contracted to perform certain services and the contract covers a period of more than 6 months; AES may be involved)
- Artists (self-employed or employed; activity is predominantly of an artistic nature and the income earned covers their livelihood; a liability declaration is permissible; when employed: AES approval required: confirmation of employment or employment permit as artist)
- Specific cases of gainful employment (if such employment is exempted from the Aliens Employment Act; explanation of exemption circumstances required)
- Researchers (having a hosting agreement with a certified research facility
- How is population and geography of Austria?
- Austria covers an area of 83,878 square kilometres with a population of 8,375,290 residents (as of 1 January 2010), including 895,144 foreign citizens (11% of total population). In 2010, an average of 1,543 million people with migration background lived in Austria, that is 18, 6% of the entire population.
- Vienna is Austria’s most densely populated province with 4,097 residents per square kilometre; the Tyrol is the least densely populated province with 56 inhabitants per square kilometre. In 2009, the average life expectancy was 80 years.
- Austria is bordered by Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Germany, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Slovenia and Italy.
Austria has a typical central European transitional climate, i.e. warm summers, cold winters and adequate precipitation.
Additionally, there are two distinct climatic regions in Austria:
- The east shows a Pannonian climate (warm to hot summers, relatively low precipitation and cold winters).
- The central Alpine region has the characteristic features of the Alpine climate (more precipitation in summer compared to the east and long winters with heavy snowfall).
The Austrian economy grew by 2.1% in 2010 (according to preliminary WIFO calculations). In 2010 the GDP rose by €10.1 billion or 3.7% to around €284.4 billion at current prices. The GDP per capita was €33,900 (+3.4%). As measured by the GDP per capita, Austria is in the upper sector not only within the EU but world-wide (source: Statistik Austria).
The Austrian economic structure is mainly dominated by small and medium enterprises. The most important industrial branches are:
- Food industries
- Machine and steel industry
- Chemical and vehicle industry
- Electric and electronic industry
- Wood and paper industry
- How is employment and jobs in Austria?
- Austria, anyone can take a job from age 15 on, respectively after later completion of compulsory school. Before completion of compulsory school, young people from age 15 on may be employed in certain cases such as an apprenticeship or practical training. Children and young people up to age 18 are covered by child and youth employment legislation.
- Part-time working is widespread in trade. Seasonal work is common in tourism and the hotel and catering trade in cities and tourist areas as well as agriculture and forestry. In the building trade, fixed-term employment contracts are also possible. Freelance service and work contracts are replacing conventional employment contracts in all fields of employment.
- The type of employment stipulated in the employment contract does not necessarily correspond to the real-life situation: e.g. a contract may state a freelance services contract, althogh the occupation is carried-out in personal dependence, meaning the employed person is bound by instruction, directions regarding working hours, place of work, etc. In this case the contract is in fact a regular employment contract and the respective rules apply.
- Full and Part-time work
- Independent contractors
- Minimally employed
- New self-employed workers
- Seasonal workers
- Agency workers
- Voluntary workers
- What is Public Employment Service?
- The Public Employment Service (AMS) offers a wide range of services and support for jobseekers and employers. In the area of labour migration, the AMS decides over admission to the labour market according to the Act Governing the Employment of Foreign Nationals (AuslBG). The AMS also examines whether the criteria for the grant of a Red-White-Red Card are fulfilled.