At a time of rising inflation and loan instalments, many Poles find going abroad to be the only chance to improve their financial situation. Where is the best country to work in and what earnings can you expect? Is it possible to find jobs abroad available immediately ?
Most frequently chosen destinations of economic emigration from Poland
For many years, the trend of the economic emigration of Poles has been the same– the most common destinations are Germany, the Netherlands, and the UK. Scandinavian countries are also very popular.
Some people, when choosing a country to emigrate to, attach importance to the distance from their home country. As a result, many Polish people choose to work in Germany, Austria, the Netherlands, or the Czech Republic. Better-educated people seeking high wages opt for Scandinavia and Switzerland.
Permanent or temporary stay?
When planning to go abroad to work, you should consider whether you are interested in seasonal , or long-term work. Depending on what you choose and what time of year you decide to go, the Western European labour market will have a slightly different offer for you.
For those looking for a job for just a few weeks, seasonal work in horticulture and agriculture is a good option. Especially in spring and summer, we can count on a crop of job offers in these industries. As a fruit or vegetable harvester, you can earn good money in a short time without being bound by a long-term contract. What’s more, these jobs don’t require good English, experience, or particular skills. There are quite a few people who go to the same place every summer and work on plantations or in greenhouses to supplement the income they earn in their home country. Outside the summer season, you will find temporary occupations in manufacturing, catering, or cleaning business.
Those choosing to emigrate for longer can easily find employment in large European distribution centres, wholesale companies or manufacturing firms. In addition, workers with a technical background, engineers, as well as those with forklift licences and type C and E driving licences are sought after throughout Europe.
What to watch out for when looking for a job abroad?
When browsing through adverts on job seekers’ websites or online forums, you may come across job offers abroad available immediately. However, before rashly deciding to leave, it’s advisable to check carefully beforehand whether a particular job offer isn’t a fraudulent attempt. This is particularly important if you are going to a foreign country on your own, don’t know your employer, or are staying there for a limited time.
The best way to avoid unpleasant surprises is to screen the employer or recruitment agency concerned using services provided by the relevant authorities. Moreover, you can look online for reviews of a particular company, although it isn’t an entirely reliable source of information. As far as employment agencies are concerned, it’s best to use the services of certified firms affiliated with trade organisations that undergo systematic audits.
Working abroad without knowing the language
Speaking a foreign language is certainly an asset that will help you find a job abroad. But what if you haven’t got even a basic command of English, German or French? Do you still have a chance to get a job with a foreign employer?
The answer to this question is: yes, mostly. However, it all depends on the industry and the position you are applying for.
Expectations of a manual worker will be smaller than those of an engineer who has direct contact with customers. If you choose one of Poles’ favourite emigration destinations, you have a good chance of working in a future team with your fellow countrymen. For example, in some Dutch cities, Poles account for more than 80% of the staff in greenhouses, production halls, or warehouses. The knowledge of English or Dutch is therefore not required on the job.
Over time, Polish employees have the opportunity to learn basic phrases that will make it easier for them to manage in a foreign country and increase their chances of promotion. According to many people, the best and easiest way to learn a foreign language is to live among those who use it.
Work abroad with accommodation
Before going abroad to work, it’s worth taking care of things such as health insurance or accommodation arrangements. For those who are travelling to the country of their choice for the first time, we recommend using the services of reliable employment agencies . In addition to offering a job to the candidate, they handle all the paperwork and help organise transport and accommodation. This way you don’t have to worry about things like security deposits for housing, certificates from employers or residence registration. In addition, agency housing is usually not far from the workplace, so time and money are saved.
Why choose the Netherlands?
The Netherlands has for many years been among the top five happiest countries in the world according to a UN ranking. The country was ranked 5th in the World Happiness Report 2021. In comparison, Poland was near the bottom of this ranking, in 44th place.
Furthermore, the Netherlands has for many years been among the top three countries chosen by Poles as a country for economic emigration. The popularity of the destination is certainly determined by the diverse range of jobs on offer, the relatively high salaries, and the well-developed economy. People who don’t speak English or whose command of this language is very basic also have opportunities to find good jobs in this country. Particularly popular among our compatriots is warehouse work as an order picker , as well as gardening work that involves tending or harvesting fruit and vegetables.
Depending on the industry, basic hourly wages in the Netherlands vary between 10 and 14 EUR. The gross hourly rate for a warehouse worker is between 11 and 14 EUR. You can earn between 300 and 600 EUR per week for working in a Dutch greenhouse or on a plantation.
Your final salary will depend on several factors such as weekend and holiday work, the amount of overtime, shift-related bonuses, or seniority. The better the employee’s education, industry experience and language skills, the higher the earnings.