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Expat Advice: Working in Florence, Italy

What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?

Florence

What are the main industries in this city? What types of career opportunities commonly exist? How do most people find new jobs?

Tourism, tourism, tourism.

Florence is based on the tourist. At the beginning of the summer months tourism was down and I was in danger of losing my job. My boss had to cut back on my hours for a month because of the lack of tourists.

Career opportunities for outsiders would most likely be in the hotel industry. Working for one of the major hotels in the US first then trying to get transfered overseas is the best way to work the legal way.

What type of work do you do and how did you find your job?

I am a salesperson at the local outdoor market. It's not the most glamorous but it is paying the rent. I got my job through my roomate who works there as well.

Expats living in Italy interested in expat health insurance should take a minute to get a quote from our trusted expat health insurance partner, CIGNA.

How did you obtain your work permit? What advice would you have for others about work permits?

I don't have a work permit. I wish I did but it's nearly impossible for someone who is not hired by a foreign company or is not a student to attain a work permit.

Have you taken language and cross-cultural training courses to prepare for your assignment? If so, how have they helped you on the job?

I enrolled in a month long Italian class that helped quite a bit. For me, the best way to learn the language has been to live day to day here. Just going to the market or seeing a movie is the best way to learn how the locals speak.

What advice would you offer others about finding jobs and working abroad?

If you can, get hired by an Italian company or find any other way to attain a work permit before getting here because it will make your life 100% easier.

On the Italy Expat Forum

Join our Italy Forum and talk with other expats in Italy who can offer you insight and tips about living in Italy. Here are a few of the latest discussions on the Italy Expat Forum:

Italy expat forum topic
residency and having a car (1 reply)

Ciao a tutti! Well, my experience in Italy has so far been a bit difficult, not Italy's fault! Maybe some poor planning on my part plus (lots of) unexpected circumstances. I apologize if some of this has been discussed before, but I couldn't find the information I needed. So, the poor planning part is not realizing I should have nailed down a place that would provide legal residency before I got to Italy. I didn't realize all the ramifications of not having that, and I didn't know that it was going to be difficult finding a dog friendly rental. Maybe it's not difficult if the entirety of Italy can be included, but after getting very sick within 2 days of arrival and realizing how helpless I am here, my choices of where I should live for the near future are quite a bit less than the entirety of Italy. I've settled on Lucca although it may not work out if I can't find a place I can afford that allows dogs. Lucca has lots of friendly expats and also friendly Italians. My experience in Todi helped me understand how important "friendly" is. I'm in a B&B in Lucca Centro for 2 months while I try to find a long term rental. I understand hopeless in terms of dog-friendly rentals. In the US I ended up buying houses because there was nothing (decent) for rent that allowed pets. I don't really want to do that here. But I do not understand how real estate works in Italy. Each realtor seems to have his/her own list of properties and they don't know anything outside of that. So my first question is should I go into every every real estate office in Lucca and ask for help? Is it considered "bad form" if I have a stable full of realtors? I don't want to start off on the wrong foot because I don't know how things are done here. I've been told to be patient, but the clock is ticking on my short term rental, and it's amazing how 2 months can evaporate. And at the end of 2 months, it will be high season for B&Bs, and I can't afford those rates. The other concern I have is that I have a car only until the end of June. The current lease is not renewable. Question 2: how do I buy or lease a car in Italy without legal residency? Is it possible? I thought I read somewhere on this forum that I can buy a car (without a legal residence and carta d'identita) if I have some kind of document from the comune where my citizenship is registered (Calabritto). I can't find the post now. Can someone verify that? And what about insurance? Can I get insurance without legal residency? Anyone know anything about long term car leases through this company: www.leaseplan.com/it-it/ Maybe I'm looking at the worst case scenario, but it could be possible for me to end up without a place to live and without transportation, not because there isn't a place, but because I don't know how things work here and I am limited in my ability to communicate. I've also reached out to the expat community in Lucca by way of FaceBook. Thoughts? Suggestions? Advice?

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Italy expat forum topic
Finding real estate agent -- how does it compare to US? (3 replies)

In the U.S. I can go to realtor.com or a myriad of websites, find property, and engage the seller's agent directly or use my own real estate agent. As the buyer I pay no commission. How does this work in Italy? Do all agents have access to a MLS type of service (can I access this for Rome?) Who pays the commission and how is that split between buyer and sellers agent? Do I just find a real estate agent that I like in Rome and engage that person to find me a property? I spoke to some local agents and they seem to be showing me their own listings (or maybe they are just putting their logo and contact info on the listings). It is a little confusing for someone new to real estate in Italy

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Italy expat forum topic
Moving to Italy, but do not meet financial amounts for Elective Residence (7 replies)

Hi all. I am planning on retiring next year and would like to move to Italy. I have seen figures of 31000 Euro and 38000 Euro for and individual and a couple. My pension will be a little short of that. I am wondering if there is another way to move to Italy in this situation. I have seen "after you have lived there legally for 5 years" you can become a permanent resident. So how does one live there legally for 5 years without getting an ER Visa?

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Comments about this Report

bpinmn
Mar 23, 2011 19:26

Thanks! Great advice

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