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There is a high influx of students seeking overseas education nowadays to get the best education possible, gain global exposure and experience different cultures. As of 2019, more than 6 million international students were studying abroad. Germany itself has over 400,000 overseas students enrolled in various programs at German universities. While studying abroad has many perks, the cost incurred to live and study in a country like Germany is relatively high. However, there are plenty of options for part-time jobs in Germany for international students. Part-time jobs help students save up and manage their finances, taking the burden off education loans and day-to-day expenses.
Advantages of Working in Part-Time Jobs in Germany
Source: Zippy Writers
There are many advantages of working while studying abroad. Here are some of the main perks of having part-time jobs in Germany for international students.
1. Improve your Skills
Part-time jobs will help you improve your knowledge, interpersonal skills, communication skills, time management, competence to carry out a task, and ability to learn and grow. The everyday interaction and communication with your colleagues, customers, and managers will also enhance your confidence level. You will become confident and competent to work with Germans and people from other cultural backgrounds. Work experience will improve your overall skills that will be helpful when you start your career after graduation.
2. Earn Extra Money
The primary benefit of having a job is the money that comes with it. Germany has strict minimum wage law that requires employers to pay a minimum of 9.60 euros an hour, irrespective of the job type. On average, students earn between 10 to 15 euros an hour and a minimum of 450 euros a month. This amount is a substantial sum you can use for day-to-day expenses, keep aside as savings or even pay off your education loan. The money you save up will be an added financial security to fall back on in times of need.
3. Experience Work Culture
Part-time jobs will provide you with an opportunity to experience German work culture, rules, regulations, and ethics followed at work. German work culture is different from other countries, and you will get to experience that first hand. You can learn how they interact and communicate with each other and the passion and perfection with which they carry out a simple task. This invaluable experience will certainly come in handy when you pursue your professional career in Germany.
4. Expand your Network
Another major benefit of working in a part-time job is the number of people you will meet and interact with every day. Your colleagues, managers, subordinates, people you meet with when you travel to work, etc., will become familiar and provide you with an opportunity to expand your network. With more interactions at work, your acquaintance will grow into camaraderie, which is very much required in a foreign nation. You can socialise and bond with your colleagues after work and seek their help for job recommendations when you kick-start your professional career.
5. Learn to Manage Finances
In Germany, if you consistently surpass your monthly student earning of 450 euros, you are required to get an income tax number. A certain amount would be deducted from your salary every month automatically as taxes and pension money. If you earn more than 450 euros, you will learn about taxes, managing taxes, pension insurance, claims, and other technicalities. Irrespective of your earnings, you will still become cautious with spending your money and learn valuable lessons on handling money, budgeting and financial management.
6. Save-Up on your Blocked Account
According to German Law, international students have to block a monthly amount of 861 euros, amounting to 10,332 euros a year in their blocked account. This blocked amount is to prove sufficient funding to support your stay when studying in Germany. If your part-time job takes care of your monthly expenses, you can avoid using this fund and carry it over to the following term.
Type of Part-time Jobs in Germany
Now that we are aware of the advantages of working in part-time jobs, let us look at the type of jobs an international student can find in Germany. We can categorise them as on-campus, off-campus and online jobs, which are all equally popular among students.
On-Campus Jobs for Students
Source: Employment Alert
There are plenty of job opportunities for students within the university campus. You can find admin and clerical jobs in the Admissions department or HR department of the university. Students can also become academic assistants or research assistants for professors and assist them in their work. Libraries may have vacancies for library assistants, bookkeepers and clerical jobs, which you can find posted on university bulletin boards. Students can also work at university cafes or restaurants as waiters, cafe managers, food service assistants, kitchen assistants, etc. If you are academically sound, you can also tutor fellow students or juniors for a reasonable fee. Below is a list of on-campus part-time jobs you can look for at German universities.
- Admin Related Jobs
- Academic Assistants
- Research Assistants
- Library Jobs: Library Assistants/Book Keepers/Data Entry/Admins
- Support Staff at University Cafes
- Swimming Instructors
- Personal trainers at Gym
- Student Tutors
- Campus Newspaper Jobs
- Mailroom Attendants
Off-Campus Jobs for Students
Germany allows students to do part-time jobs off-campus without the need for a work permit. However, there are restrictions on the number of hours and days students can work outside the campus. The most popular off-campus part-time jobs in Germany are paid internships that are part of your program, which gives you professional work experience and remuneration. Other jobs commonly sought by students are support staff at cafes, restaurants, malls, supermarkets and small companies. Students can also find jobs in gas stations, media and newspaper agencies. These jobs pay a decent hourly wage of 10 to 20 euros, depending on the complexity level. Below is the list of off-campus jobs that you find through online ads, social media, student forums, job sites, university bulletin boards, or even through your network of friends.
- Paid Internships
- Industrial Production Assistants
- Support Staff at Cafes & Restaurants
- Jobs at Supermarkets/Malls: Sales, desk jobs, billing, support staff, inventory manager
- Sales & Marketing Jobs
- Clerical/Admin Jobs
- Gas Station Jobs
- Assistant Jobs at Media/News Agencies
Online Jobs for Students
Currently, online jobs are gaining popularity within the student network. With the boom in social media and digital businesses, there are plenty of job opportunities available online. Students can work at their convenient time and place and get paid well. The most common online jobs are social media management, content writing, data entry, digital marketing, web development and jobs in digital-based companies.
- Social Media
- Digital Marketing
- Blog Writing
- Website Content Writing
- Data Entry Jobs
- Language Translation Jobs
- Online Sales & Marketing Jobs
- Web Development
Important Employment Laws & Regulations in Germany
Source: LGM Advisors
It is essential that students are aware of the employment laws defined by the Federal Employment Agency, German Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs. Below listed are the major guidelines to follow while on part-time jobs in Germany:
Legal Limit for Working Hours: Germany has legal limits to the number of working hours and days. Students are not allowed to work more than 48 hours a week, with average working hours not exceeding 8 hours a day. Also, students are only permitted to work a total of 120 full days or 240 half days annually.
Mandatory Work Permit for Full-Time Employment: Students cannot take up full-time employment on a student visa. If you wish to work full-time during vacations, you would be required to apply for a work permit from the “Agentur für Arbeit”, the Federal Employment Agency and The Foreigners’ Authority.
Special Rule for Language Course Students: International students pursuing language courses are only allowed to work during breaks/holidays and would be required to get permission from the Federal Employment Agency and The Foreigners’ Authority.
Income Tax: Students can earn up to 450 euros a month without the need to pay taxes. If your employer is paying your wages on a mini-job basis, your earnings will be able to earn 5,400 euros annually. The annual tax exception threshold is 9,000 per year for students. However, if you work more hours and regularly make more than 450 euros a month, you will need to get an income tax number. There will be an automatic deduction of some amount from your account every month, and for students, this will be taxes and pension insurance payments. Students can recover the tax amount at the end of the year by submitting income tax returns.
Complying With Employment Laws: International students must follow all rules and regulations while studying and working in Germany. If you are found guilty of breaking any employment law, you will be immediately expelled from the country. Hence, it is necessary to understand and follow the rules of the land.
Part-time jobs in Germany are a great option for international students to earn extra money and reduce their financial burden. Though public universities do not charge tuition fees, the cost of living in Germany is relatively high. In this blog, we have talked about the advantages of having part-time jobs, different types of part-time jobs in Germany, and important employment laws and regulations that students need to know. We hope you find the right student job that fulfils your monetary needs and other perks that come with it.
Learn more about the remuneration structure and payscale in Germany by reading the article below.