Working or participating in an internship abroad

Are you planning on working abroad? Before you begin applying for work abroad, evaluate your language skills, expertise, and the employment situation of your field in your destination country.

Working in EU and EEA member states and Switzerland  

As a Finnish citizen, you have the same work-related rights and responsibilities in EU and EEA member states and Switzerland as their own citizens. 

If you want to work in one of these countries and find information about job vacancies, training, and the labour market in the country, you should check out the EURES online service. 

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Working in a country outside the EU and EEA region and Switzerland  

As a rule, you need a work permit issued by the immigration authority of the destination country to work in countries outside the EU and EEA countries and Switzerland. As a job seeker, you will be personally required to find out the necessary prerequisites and procedures related to the work permits. For more information, contact, for example, the embassies of the countries that you are interested in.  

Interning abroad  

An internship abroad supports your professional development, language skills, and readiness to work internationally.  

If you are studying in a vocational institution, you can apply for a workplace learning spot through your educational institution. 

If you are a higher education student, traineeships from abroad can be provided to you by, for example, your own educational institution, in case of EDUFI internships, through the Finnish National Agency for Education, which is responsible for international mobility and collaboration as well as international student organisations. 

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Job interview or application trips within the EU and EEA region and Switzerland  

Your TE Office or local government pilot can reimburse you for any travel and accommodation costs for a return job interview journey to another EU or EEA country or Switzerland if the work you applied for will last for at least two weeks and your working hours will be at least 18 hours per week on average. 

Going on a job seeking trip on an unemployment benefit 

As an unemployed job seeker, you are allowed to go to another EU or EEA member state or Switzerland for three months to look for work and still retain the right to an unemployment benefit that is paid in Finland. During your job seeking trip, you will only be able to receive earnings-related unemployment allowance and basic unemployment allowance. You cannot receive labour market subsidy during the trip. 

To be able to receive unemployment benefits while you are abroad, your unemployment before your trip must have lasted for at least four weeks. The expert at the TE Office or the local government pilot can reduce this period at its discretion and for a special reason, for example, if you have already agreed on a job interview. Your unemployment period can also be calculated to include the time that you have participated in a service that promotes employment. 

Report the travel date to the TE Office or the local government pilot well in advance of your departure. It will inform the payer of the unemployment benefit that you will be leaving to look for work in another EU or EEA member state or Switzerland. 

Remember to order a U2 form from Kela or your unemployment fund well in advance of your departure, as you will need to take this to the labour office of your destination country. Kela or your unemployment fund will determine whether the prerequisites for transferring the unemployment benefit that falls within their domain are met. 

After you have arrived at your country of destination, remember to register as a job seeker at the local labour office within seven days. This will allow you to receive your unemployment benefit for the duration of your trip. If you register later, you will only receive money from your registration date.  

During the job seeking process, you are required to comply with the obligations and supervision methods that have been mandated by the labour officials of your destination country. 

Your unemployment allowance is paid by Kela or your unemployment fund. During your job seeking trip, you can apply for unemployment benefits as usual online, or you can post your unemployment period notice to the payer.  

Register as an unemployed job seeker after your trip  

When you return to Finland, register immediately as a job seeker. Your unemployment security may change if you do not return to Finland and you do not register as a job seeker at the latest on the return date mentioned in the U2 form. This will prevent you from receiving any unemployment benefit before you have been employed or have participated in labour market training in Finland for four weeks. You may be entitled to a labour market subsidy. 

For more detailed instructions, contact your TE Office, local government pilot, Kela, or unemployment fund.  

If you are not a citizen of an EU or EEA member state or Switzerland, contact the TE Office or local government pilot and the payer of your unemployment benefit. 

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