Tourism is at the core of the economy in Florence, and with so much to draw people into the city, there are huge numbers of jobs in this sector. During the peak season there are more tourists in the city than local Italians, so much so that tickets to main attractions often sell out. Many expatriates move to this city and there are also many students living and studying in Florence.
Manufacturing still plays a significant role in the economy of Florence, particularly the production of food and wine, with many important vineyards in the area surrounding the city and also throughout Tuscany. Alongside the food and wine, Florence also produces various handicrafts, glassware, jewelry and clothing.
The professional and finance sectors in the city are also growing. With so much going on in this city, there are opportunities available for expatriates, particularly in the tourism industry, but also for people with more artistic pursuits.
Speaking Italian will significantly help with any job applications for an expatriate looking for employment in Florence. Artists and writers have been drawn to Florence for centuries to look for inspiration and to absorb themselves in the histories. Writers and artists may flock to the city, but this is usually not steady employment.
The easiest option for anyone from an English-speaking country is to find work as an ESL teacher. These positions can be easily found online before going out to the city. Professional jobs are a possibility, but Italian employers have high expectations of their staff, requiring relevant degrees and work experience in the right sector.
Universities in particular are very welcoming of foreign employees on their staff, and contacting them directly by letter or email is the best way to find out what vacancies they have available and see if there is anything to suit your skills. The advantage of working for one of these universities is that they will often pay for Italian classes for you, giving you an extra benefit.
In the place of a work permit in Florence, you will need to apply for a residence permit in order to work in the country. For European Union residents, you will not need a work permit and only have to apply for an Italian Residence Card, and this can be obtained once you have already arrived in Italy.
For other nationalities, your employer will need to obtain clearance to hire a foreigner to work at their organization. Once this has happened, you will be able to apply for a residence permit, and for this application, you will need a contract with an employer and a passport that is valid for at least six months. This permit can be applied for online.