How To Get A Visa To Work In Italy

Italy is a beautiful country steeped in history and tradition and many people who have visited on holiday return there to settle and work. The first thing you need to know if you’re thinking of working in Italy is that there is a considerable amount of red-tape to navigate your way through first.

Here’s a succinct guide to obtaining a visa that will allow you to work in Italy.

Working in Italy

There are a number of different categories of working visa that you could apply for. If you are unsure which of these visas is applicable to your individual circumstances, contact the Italian Ministry Of Foreign Affairs for clarification or have a look through the helpful information on their website.

Your country’s consulate or embassy will also be able to help you if you require more information.

Do I need a visa?

The first thing you need to do is establish if you actually need a work visa in Italy. If you hold Italian citizenship, you don’t need a visa. Likewise, if you are an EU citizen or reside in a European Free Trade Association member country, you won’t need one.

If you don’t fall into either of these categories, you will need either a work permit or the Italian Holiday Working Visa. Italian Holiday Working Visas are only available to migrants who are citizens of Canada, New Zealand or Australia.

In order to work in Italy, you must have sponsorship from an established Italian employer or a foreign organisation that is authorised to conduct business in Italy and they are responsible for filing all your application paperwork.    

Schengen (business) visa

When you submit your visa application form, you’ll need to supply additional supplementary documentation including:

  • Correspondence from your employer explaining why you are required to work in Italy and dates of your proposed stay.
  • The original written offer of employment from the Italian company at which you propose to work.
  • Proof of how you will financially support yourself once you are living in Italy.

Artists’ independent work visa

If you are a performer (for example, an actor or musician) and you will be travelling to Italy to work during a performance tour, you will need supplementary documents in addition to your Schengen visa.

  • A contract signed by the theatre or company for which your troupe will be performing together with an affidavit which states that your independent work contract will not be changed to a subordinate work contract.
  • A Permesso di Soggiorno (stay permit) issued by the Questura of the city in which you will be working. This document must be procured within eight days of your arrival in Italy and you must submit it when you leave.

Work permit in Italy for religious activity

If you’re going to be working in Italy for some sort of religious purpose, you will need additional supporting documentation.

  • A letter from your church congregation or home parish making it clear what your religious qualifications are and your reasons for coming to Italy.
  • A letter from the host Italian congregation confirming your eligibility for an Italian work visa.

The Italian work visa system can be rather protracted and slow so it’s recommended that you apply for your visa at the same time you begin to look for work. If you are at all unsure what’s required for your individual circumstances, ask your own embassy for guidance or invest in the services of a professional migration consultancy.


Image source: Ramsay World Travel